B2B Marketing World

B2B Marketing Manager

Definition, Team, Responsibilities, Skills, and Salary

Are you fascinated by the world of business-to-business marketing (B2B Marketing), with its dynamics and strategies? Or maybe you are thinking about taking the role of a B2B Marketing Manager? But you are not sure about the responsibilities and skills needed?

Then this all-inclusive guide is perfect for you. Discover the pros and cons of being a Marketing Manager in B2B, and explore the key roles and responsibilities. And find out how to step into this exciting role.

Whether you are a new marketer, a curious observer, or a professional manager seeking a career change, let us embark on this journey into the world of B2B marketing managers.

By Categories: Management13 min readLast Updated: January 7th, 2024
Post: B2B Marketing Manager

3 Article Highlights

  • What is a B2B Marketing Manager and his Marketing Team
  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • How to Become a Marketing Manager and Salary Overview
  • No time? [TL;DR] Read Summary

Chapter 1

What is a B2B Marketing Manager?

Definition and Business Marketing Team Structure

Let us start at the beginning and give you a clear picture of what a B2B marketing manager is. B2B, or Business-to-Business, refers to transactions between businesses, in contrast to Business-to-Consumer (B2C), where businesses sell directly to consumers. A B2B marketing manager leads a marketing team of B2B companies.

In the following sections, we will discuss into specifics of what a B2B marketing manager is, explore the structure of a B2B marketing team, and draw some comparisons and contrasts to the role of a B2C marketing manager. Let’s dive in!

Definition of B2B Marketing Manager

A B2B Marketing Manager is a strategic marketer responsible for driving business growth by implementing and managing marketing strategies aimed at other businesses.

A business marketing manager may report to a marketing executive (B2B CMO) depending on the company size.

As B2B Marketing Manager, you are responsible for creating and executing effective marketing strategies and understanding the business market and its challenges. Managers analyze market trends, identify product or service positioning opportunities, and strategize how to communicate the value proposition effectively. Always covering the specifics of industrial markets.

Further, business marketing managers collaborate with other teams, such as sales, product development, and customer service. This ensures that the marketing efforts align with the overall business goals.

The B2B marketing manager role requires a deep understanding of the business landscape, strong analytical skills, outstanding communication skills, and the ability to lead and inspire a team.

Structure of a B2B Marketing Team

The structure of a B2B marketing team can be categorized from different perspectives:

  • Hierarchically
  • Based on Responsibilities
  • Centralized vs. Decentralized

Hierarchically

While the specifics might vary from company to company, a typical hierarchical structure in the marketing department has the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at the top, overseeing the overall marketing strategy and direction. The CMO is supported by Marketing Directors responsible for managing different marketing units within the organization. Underneath them are the Marketing Managers who lead smaller teams of marketers, experts, coordinators, and interns, ensuring the successful execution of marketing campaigns and initiatives.

Hierarchical Marketing Organization

Hierarchical Marketing Organization © B2B Marketing World

Responsibility

Regarding responsibility, the organization divides the team based on their respective roles. These roles include content marketing, SEO, social media marketing, website and online marketing, events and exhibitions, analytics, project management, and so on. Each team has specialized knowledge and is responsible for their specific marketing domain. They collaborate on projects, campaigns, and initiatives to ensure the overall success of the marketing strategy.

Marketing Organization by Responsibility

Marketing Organization by Responsibility © B2B Marketing World

Centralized vs. Decentralized

The marketing team structure can also be classified into centralized and decentralized structures. In a centralized structure, all marketing activities are managed by a single central team that makes all the decisions. This team is responsible for all marketing initiatives and ensures consistent branding across all marketing channels.

On the other hand, in a decentralized structure, marketing activities are distributed among different business units or geographical locations. Each team operates semi-independently while sticking to the overall strategy. Many global acting companies use a decentralized marketing structure with teams across different geographical regions. Each team tailors marketing strategies to their specific region while maintaining the global brand’s integrity.

Decentralized Marketing Organization

Decentralized Marketing Organization © B2B Marketing World

B2C Marketing Manager

A B2C (Business-to-consumer) marketing manager is essential in consumer-focused organizations. They market a company’s products or services directly to consumers, leveraging strategies that resonate on a more personal or emotional level. This is because there are some distinct differences between B2B and B2C marketing.

While both B2B and B2C marketing managers share the core responsibility of promoting products or services, their approach, audience, and methods can drastically differ. A B2C marketing manager must appeal to a broader audience by leveraging mass media channels. Examples are radio, TV, movie theaters, billboards, daily newspapers, and other classic B2C communication channels. B2C often has narratives that resonate with consumers’ lifestyles, values, and deepest needs.

A key distinction lies in the perception of these roles within the company. In consumer companies, B2C Marketing Managers often receive greater respect and recognition than their B2B counterparts. This is primarily because their efforts directly impact the company’s visibility and impact on its end consumers.  B2C marketing can be measured through sales and customer engagement metrics. This is much harder to realize in business markets.

Chapter 2

Roles and Responsibilities of a B2B Marketing Manager

Key Duties and Actions of a B2B Marketing Manager

B2B Marketing Managers have a multifaceted role, balancing strategic planning with day-to-day operations. They are the ones who map out marketing strategies, collaborate with sales teams, and drive lead generation. Essentially, they’re the backbone of a B2B company’s marketing efforts, shaping the brand’s image and market positioning.

In this chapter, we’ll dive into the core job description of a B2B Marketing Manager. And explore the nuances that differentiate various types of Marketing Managers.

B2B Marketing Manager Job Description

B2B Marketing Managers are vital marketing team members as they connect top management and marketing operations.

They are responsible for planning, creating, implementing, analyzing, and adjusting marketing campaigns with their teams. They use data to create new campaigns, evaluate existing ones, and conduct customer journey mapping, customer satisfaction surveys, and segmentation to develop targeted marketing strategies.

As a marketing manager, you assist with trade show organization, paid advertisement creation, and building CRM journeys in marketing and sales tools. Further, marketing managers create and oversee marketing campaigns across various channels. Maintaining a strong brand image, managing the marketing budget, and doing thought leadership events are responsibilities you must cover as a manager. They also work on the company’s online presence and monitor key performance indicators.

Their tasks include establishing strong relationships with clients and partners and supporting them throughout the customer’s lifetime. Collaboration is a significant part of a B2B marketing manager’s role. This means working with cross-functional teams, external agencies, and sales teams to ensure aligned approaches.

B2B Marketing Managers closely work with the product management team for effective positioning. This is an essential teamwork approach to creating go-to-market strategies.

In many aspects, marketing managers are the most important connection between C-level marketing management and the operational teams.

Types of Marketing Manager

We have already discussed the different approaches to structuring a B2B marketing team. Consequently, there are various marketing manager roles and types.

B2B Marketing Managers according to Responsibility

  • B2B Brand Manager
  • B2B Marketing Campaign Manager
  • B2B Content Marketing Manager
  • B2B Online Marketing Manager
  • B2B Social Media Marketing Manager
  • B2B Event Marketing Manager
  • Public Relations Manager

B2B Brand Manager

They are responsible for developing and maintaining their company’s brand and corporate identity. This also includes the corporate design and, therefore, all elements of the brand. The aim is to align with the company’s values and resonate with the target audience. Brand managers hold a key role in shaping and protecting the heart of marketing: the brand.

B2B Brand Marketing Manager

B2B Marketing Campaign Manager

These managers oversee the creation and execution of marketing initiatives and campaigns. They use their knowledge about the company’s offering to tailor campaigns to the specific needs of business customers. Their goal is to drive sales and boost brand awareness.

B2B Marketing Campaign Manager

B2B Content Marketing Manager

As the architects of a company’s content, these managers create, curate, and distribute marketing content. They use blogs, whitepapers, webinars, or case studies to meet the target audience and position their brand in the market. Content marketing in B2B is incredibly complex, as these managers need to understand the portfolio in detail. This requires not only marketing skills but also a technical background. This makes the position of a B2B marketing manager probably the most difficult one.

B2B Content Marketing Manager

B2B Online Marketing Manager

Focused on digital strategies, these managers are experts in SEO, PPC, email marketing, and website optimization. Their primary goal is to increase web traffic and convert visitors into leads. The fast pace of today’s online marketing makes this role a prime example of how demanding a marketing manager role in B2B is.

B2B Online Marketing Manager

B2B Social Media Marketing Manager

With the rise of social media, these managers plan and implement a social media strategy. This includes close collaboration with the B2B online marketing and content marketing managers. Their goal is to drive traffic, increase awareness, and create leads on social media.

B2B Social Media Marketing Manager

B2B Event Marketing Manager

These managers oversee the physical presence of a B2B brand. Events such as trade shows, conferences, summits, product launches, and opening ceremonies are part of the game. They ensure each detail is planned and executed, ensuring the event promotes their company’s products or services. Events are still a big thing in B2B. Therefore, event managers are an essential part of each B2B marketing team.

B2B Event Marketing Manager

Public Relations Manager

These people manage their company’s reputation. They build and maintain relationships with the media, handle crises, and craft press releases and other public statements, ensuring a positive public image for the company.

Public Relations Manager

Centralized and Decentralized B2B Marketing Managers

In essence, whether a company follows a centralized or decentralized structure, each type of marketing manager contributes uniquely to the overall B2B marketing strategy. The aim is to ensure the brand resonates with customers at all levels – global, regional, or local.

  • Corporate Marketing Manager
  • Regional Marketing Manager
  • Local Marketing Manager

Corporate Marketing Manager: A centralized marketing manager role is the Corporate Marketing Manager, sitting in the company’s headquarters.  They shape and oversee the execution of the company’s marketing strategy on a global scale. This includes ensuring a consistent brand image and message across all markets. These B2B marketing managers orchestrate marketing activities, coordinating with different teams and departments. They aim to ensure alignment with the bigger marketing vision, strategy, and corporate goals.

Regional Marketing Manager: In a decentralized model, Regional Marketing Managers take over responsibility for a number of markets.  Clusters are typically the same as in sales, using, e.g., geographic regions such as Europe, The Americas, Asia Pacific, or Africa. They adapt the global marketing strategy to align with regional market dynamics, customer preferences, and regional competition. These managers possess a deep understanding of their specific region. Their job is to leverage their local market knowledge and drive marketing initiatives that resonate with the regional audience. Regional marketing managers are common in B2B as most industrial companies act globally.

Local Marketing Manager:  Local Marketing Managers focus on implementing marketing strategies within a specific country. They are the frontline warriors, tailoring marketing efforts to address local customer needs and preferences. Language plays an important role. Part of the local B2B marketing managers’ job is to translate and adapt content from the headquarters. Their work is crucial for establishing local customer relationships and driving locally relevant marketing campaigns. This also includes HR marketing to get the best people for a local subsidiary.

Chapter 3

How to become a B2B Marketing Manager

Education and Career Path

Becoming a B2B Marketing Manager requires a mixture of education, industry expertise, and hands-on experience. It helps to have an industry background and marketing and management experience. This might sound hard to achieve at first, but nowadays, it is easier than ever to cover the first part of the journey: education.

Education

Generally, a bachelor’s degree in marketing, business administration, or a related field is the minimum educational requirement. Typical bachelor’s degree programs are:

  • Marketing and Communication
  • Business and Economics
  • Public Relations and Journalism

A master’s degree deepens your knowledge and is definitely an advantage for a B2B management role.  Further education, such as an MBA, deepens your insights into strategic marketing, leadership, and advanced business concepts. MBAs also cover the human and leadership aspects and, therefore, a big advantage for roles above marketing management (Head of Roles and CMO).

Career Path of B2B Marketing Management

A B2B Marketing Manager’s career path often starts with an entry-level marketing role. This could be an internship or a position as a Marketing Assistant, where you can learn the basics and get a feel for the industry.

From there, you might step up to a Junior Marketing role, which involves more responsibility and allows you to handle projects and campaigns independently. These are probably the most challenging days of your career. You have responsibilities but likely lack experience. This means a lot of jobs will be the first time for you. Take on this challenge and prove yourself. Getting out of your business comfort zone helps you shine and be recognized.

After gaining more experience and demonstrating your skills, you could be promoted to a Senior Marketing role where you’d oversee larger campaigns and possibly manage a project team.

Finally, after proving your ability to lead, strategize, and deliver results, you could step into the role of a B2B Marketing Manager. This position demands strategic oversight of marketing initiatives, team management, and a deep understanding of B2B business models. A typical role is marketing department management. The above-discussed marketing management types are typical examples.

At all levels, marketing freelancers and fractional B2B Marketing CMOs are other options to choose as career paths.

Chapter 4

B2B Marketing Manager Salary

How much a Business Marketer Makes a Year

The salary of a B2B Marketing Manager can vary greatly.  Depending on the region, level of experience, and the size and industry of the company. However, it is possible to provide a basic overview.

In the United States, according to data from Glassdoor, the average salary for a B2B Marketing Manager is around $86,000 per year. This figure ranges from $59,000 to $124,000, depending on the factors mentioned earlier.

In Europe, the salary differs from one country to another. For instance, in Germany, a B2B Marketing Manager earns an average of €65,000 annually. In the United Kingdom, the annual salary is around £52,000. Sources: (1), (2)

As for India, the average salary for a B2B Marketing Manager is around INR 1,200,000 per year. Again, the marketing salaries in India vary based on the city and the industry.

These figures are just averages, and actual salaries depend on multiple factors. Also, in addition to the basic salary, many B2B Marketing Managers receive bonuses or other forms of compensation. This may significantly increase their total income.

Chapter 5

Summary [TL;DR]

B2B Marketing Manager in a Nutshell

In essence, a B2B Marketing Manager acts as the driving force behind an organization’s marketing efforts. This role requires continuous learning, adaptability, and a strategic mindset, coupled with a robust foundation in marketing and management skills.

Marketing managers in B2B companies act in different areas, such as brand management, marketing campaigns, content marketing, online marketing, social media marketing, event marketing, and public relations. Centralized marketing managers focus on global strategy, while regional and local marketing managers adapt strategies to regional and local markets. Each manager contributes to the overall B2B marketing strategy to resonate with customers at different levels.

Becoming a B2B Marketing Manager is a step-by-step journey, starting from an internship and gradually ascending to a management role.

The compensation for this role varies significantly based on region, experience level, and the company’s size and sector. The salary ranges from $59,000 to $124,000 in the US, while in Europe and India, it fluctuates based on the country and city. Additionally, many B2B Marketing Managers are entitled to bonuses and other packages that considerably augment their total income.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Find Answers to the Most Important Questions

What does a B2B Marketing Manager do?2023-12-12T16:19:44+01:00

B2B Marketing Manager is a strategic marketer and responsible for driving business growth by managing marketing strategies aimed at other businesses.

What is B2B Marketing Management?2023-12-12T16:22:22+01:00

The B2B Marketing Management consists of the Marketing Executive (Chief Marketing Officer – CMO) and Marketing Manager including all hierarchy levels.

What does a B2B Content Marketing Manager do?2023-12-12T16:24:27+01:00

A Business-to-Business (B2B) Content Marketing Manager is responsible for the planning, creation and distribution of all assets. The Content Marketing Manager is part of the Marketing Management Team and reports to the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO).

What does a B2B Marketing Campaign Manager do?2023-12-12T16:25:52+01:00

A B2B (Business-to-Business) Marketing Campaign Manager is responsible to plan and conduct a marketing campaign directed at other businesses. This marketing manager is part of the marketing management team and reports to the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO).

Stephan Wenger

B2B Marketing Expert, Editor and Marketing Management Consultant

Stephan Wenger is a seasoned B2B Marketing Expert with more than 10 years of experience in leading global companies. His extensive expertise lies in the realms of B2B online marketing, content marketing, strategic marketing, and driving synergy between sales and marketing, including effective lead management.

By Categories: Management13 min readLast Updated: January 7th, 2024

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