Skills Required to Run a
Remote Marketing Team

See also: Marketing Skills

Marketers are a necessity for most product and service-based businesses, with an effective marketing team having a profound impact on your bottom line. In 2020, the advent of COVID-19 drastically shifted the status quo of the markets, with businesses struggling to maintain growth, or even facing bankruptcy in extreme cases. During these difficult times, having a healthy marketing function can make or break your business.

COVID-19 also shifted the way we work and collaborate. Many companies have now moved to a remote working arrangement, which lends itself challenges arising from distractions, staying motivated, and managing projects efficiently.

In this article, we will outline the top skills required to run a remote marketing team successfully.

Man pondering post-it notes on a glass partition.

Effective Communication Skills

One of the biggest challenges with remote work is to communicate and collaborate with our peers effectively.

As a marketing team leader, you need to hone your emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills to better communicate with your marketing team members.

Effective communication encompasses not just using our words. In a typical in-office work environment, it also includes factors such as non-verbal communication, active listening, and facial cues we draw from one another in an on-site interaction.

Cartoon of woman communicating online.

Now that the team has moved to a remote arrangement, leaders need to brush up on digital communication skills. Here are some tips on how to communicate effectively to your remote marketing team.

  1. Write clearly and concisely.

    Get your points across by writing with simplicity in mind. Be direct and get to your point quickly. Eliminate any obsolete phrases.

  2. Watch out for your visual, video cues.

    Just because we are now working apart does not mean that we should stop working on our non-verbal communication skills. When you are on a team video call, it is easy to be distracted by social media notifications or desktop notifications. However, you must remain present by actively listening to your team members. Ensure that your posture remains upright, and you look into the camera to simulate the act of looking someone in the eye.

  3. 3. Simulate humour with emojis, GIFs, and memes.

    One crucial way marketing teams built rapport was in the social events and the team interactions in pockets of spare time between marketing projects. Build emotion into your writing and messages by inserting visual cues to help contextualize your communications. This is especially important when communicating with younger team members, which might mistake certain signs of writing as passive aggression.

    For example, if a junior marketer were to ask you a question, a short reply such as "That is fine." might raise some worries. If you would usually smile during short interactions, consider adding in a smile-emoji at the end of relevant sentences occasionally.

Good communication skills are not just helpful to run your remote marketing team effectively - it also helps you in writing compelling copy: from your ad copy, sales collateral to blogs and newsletters.

Data Analytics Skills

Cartoon depicting data analytics.

Marketing is now more data-driven than ever before. Platforms such as Facebook and Google now provide data in (almost) real-time, allowing you to track the cost of every impression, click, and purchase of your marketing projects. As such, marketing teams of the future need to include data analytics skills in their repertoire.

Learning basic data analytics skills is a core part of running an effective marketing team remotely. To properly analyse the after effects of your marketing projects, and determining which marketing channels are more profitable, is a necessary task to hit your quarterly key performance indicators (KPIs). Data analytics is essential.

Knowledge of data analytics allows you to look at product purchases and attributions to recognize any nascent trends as well as build new audience groups (known as Lookalike Audiences and Custom Audiences on Facebook) based on past consumer data. During the pandemic, people regularly made wholesale changes in their buying strategies and their consumption routines. An effective marketing team manager will be able to understand the data, note the trends, and then act on those insights.

Learn simple statistical analysis skills in grouping and visualizing your marketing data by using graphs, line charts and pie charts, to communicate and adapt your marketing strategy with your team effectively. Read more on simple statistical analysis.

Collaboration and Teamwork Skills

Cartoon depicting collaboration and teamworking skills.

Many marketing teams are struggling to collaborate effectively in-person. This is because marketing teams are usually composed of many specialists, with widely different skill sets. From content marketing and public relations, to search engine marketing and programmatic ads, each function in a marketing department often works in silos and do not have a full understanding of one another's job scopes.

Poor collaboration can lead to missed marketing deadlines, underperforming marketing campaigns, and an unprofitable fiscal year.

In a remote working environment, these problems are compounded even further.

To manage your remote marketing team effectively, work on improving your teamwork skills by helping your team members stay on the same page. Effective teamwork can be fostered as follows.

  1. Fostering Healthier, Productive Meetings: Learn to set clear roles in each meeting and an agenda prior to a virtual meeting. You should have a leader chairing the meeting, and a secretary taking notes and managing the team members. After each meeting, send out a short synopsis to each member of the marketing team delineating each person's responsibilities and KPIs.

  2. Build Better Group Cohesiveness: Develop a strong marketing team culture by co-creating group "norms" with the team members. These can be linked to ways of working within marketing teams, such as the agile framework or scrumban framework. The team jointly decides and agrees to an agreed way of working to deliver each deliverable and hit their KPI targets.

  3. Set Clear Workflows: In marketing teams, marketing projects often cross several silos. For example, the release of a marketing keystone toolkit will involve the content marketing team to develop the toolkit, the design team to design the asset, and the paid social ads team to develop the Facebook Ads campaign. A clear workflow mapping done on a digital kanban board will be able to establish who does what. It also makes processes repeatable - so you don't have to develop new workflows every time a new marketing project starts.

Introduction to Communication Skills - The Skills You Need Guide to Interpersonal Skills

Further Reading from Skills You Need

Our Communication Skills eBooks

Learn more about the key communication skills you need to be a more effective communicator.

Our eBooks are ideal for anyone who wants to learn about or develop their interpersonal skills and are full of easy-to-follow, practical information.

About the Author

As CEO and co-founder of Traktion, Saher Shodan is passionate about helping businesses scale with the right growth talent. Having started his career as part of the Uber launch team in India, Saher has 5+ years scaling marketplace businesses across 3 countries. He is also the co-founder of P2P events platform, Lemonade.