Four Attributes of High-Performance Marketing Teams

High-Performance Marketing

Looking to give fresh perspective and inspiration to your marketing team? Mollie Edwards identifies four areas marketing managers need to target in order to reach a level of high-performance marketing within their teams.


Building a high-performance marketing culture is becoming ever more challenging, yet crucial in the current economic climate. Two of the biggest obstacles marketing teams face is creating stand-out, innovative campaigns and moving fast enough to keep up with market changes and competitors. Those who aren’t agile enough put their brand’s at risk.

That said, a disciplined and efficient marketing team can be built with a strong customer focus, operational excellence, and the will to grow. With this in mind, I discover four attributes that are essential in building high-performance marketing teams.

#1 Customer focused

To drive effective campaigns, it is important for marketers to be close to their customers. The closer marketing teams are to the customer, the better the performance of the team. Subconsciously, when marketers interact directly with customers they tend to feel energised and adopt a higher sense of purpose, which as a result, will lead teams to solve customer problems and perform at a higher level.

For marketing teams to strengthen their customer focus, components such as creating an online community, a ‘voice of the customer’ programme and a customer advisory board, are all worth looking in to. Forum-like tools such as Zendesk, Influitive, and Jive, allow marketing teams to interact directly with customers and collect customer feedback, while Customer advisory boards share a brand’s best customers and their success stories.

#2 Revenue cures all

For a marketing team to be considered high-performance, they need to be able to drive revenue. Today’s consumer knows more about the product they are after than ever before, whether it be a flat screen TV or a pair of shoes. They have ditched the sales representatives and become researchers themselves, using the internet’s infinite amount of resources, reviews and forums. To drive revenue, marketers need to make sure they engage with customers through these channels by publishing content, establishing review resources and making an effort to regularly inform consumers through social sites.

Implementing a revenue cycle is another crucial factor for a marketers success. It begins with the first interaction between a potential customer and a company, and ends when the customer is happy, makes another purchase or refers a new customer. Revenue doesn’t end when your Instagram contest has gained 200 new web visitors. Follow through and see what happens next, take the 200 new web visitors and turn them into customers, don’t stop marketing until there is evidential revenue growth.

#3 Operational excellence

Marketing operations has been the fastest growing sub-function within most marketing teams for the past decade. It is the marketing teams who implement operational excellence at the core of their culture that produce the most consistent growth and profit performance in the long run. The Gartner 2020 reported that “the CMO needs a function that can drive operational excellence in planning and execution across the span of the organisation.”

To focus on process and workflow, marketers should ensure every team has one to three KPIs that they are responsible for. Creating a planning cycle will also assist towards specific objectives and can shift teams to become high-performance, while post-mortems can help marketing teams review and learn from their projects.

#4 Growth mindset

You’d be misconstrued to think you could power through the marketing industry without the want and need to grow. Growing and developing are consistent factors within marketing teams, with those who push themselves to learn new aspects of marketing being the highest performers. Professional growth should be a part of every marketing team’s hiring and management practices, including asking interviewees how they stay on top of the field. It is equally important to encourage marketers to try new things, which shouldn’t be difficult due to the industry’s abundance of opportunities. Ultimately having an approach that celebrates new learnings and insights is a key part of the culture and will result in a high-performance marketing team.


Read more: Redefining the Comms and Marketing Profession Post-Pandemic

About Mollie Edwards

Mollie Edwards writes across ICG business titles, NZ Marketing, StopPress and The Register.

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