Whether you’ve just secured some VC funding or finally achieved product-market fit, you’ll need to build a growth marketing team to really drive your startup’s next phase of growth.
While walking to my workplace at Postmates one day in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood, I found out our company had raised a $300 million Series E round. Following the infusion, our growth marketing team changed abruptly as we suddenly had a war chest to fuel our growth marketing efforts. I was lucky enough to be part of a rapidly expanding team that was eventually acquired and absorbed by Uber.
Today, I’ll share what I learned from that experience about what it takes to build a solid growth marketing team.
If you’re looking to hire your first growth marketer, I’ve already covered that in a previous column. If you already have a growth marketer and are looking to build a team, the information herein will show you how to do so successfully.
Growth pillars and who to hire
It is important to understand the core growth pillars that you can hire for, as there are quite a few that make up a full team:
- Paid acquisition.
As startups grow, so do their marketing budgets and the rigor of testing required. All that begs for more defined team structures.
It can be challenging to know which pillar you should hire for next, but this decision ultimately depends on where the next big opportunity is for your growth efforts. If you’re already running a few paid acquisition channels like Google, Facebook or Snapchat that have shown promising results and could benefit from optimization and scaling efforts, then you already have your answer.
And if you don’t have any lifecycle marketing set up and feel that it’ll help boost your conversion rates, then you know what you need to hire for, too.
After the Series E round at Postmates, our team determined we could benefit from having dedicated channel managers for our most promising channel: Snapchat, Facebook and Google. We quickly hired experts to help us ramp up testing and acquisition for each channel.
This is not to say that a well-versed growth marketer couldn’t have managed all those channels together, but there’s only so much one person can do. In my experience, it is quite inefficient for one growth marketer to manage more than three paid acquisition channels or two growth pillars. It’s quite common for one person to manage one growth pillar, one paid acquisition channel or multiple paid acquisition channels, but it depends on their ability as well as what they want to work on.