What Does a Marketing Department Do? (With Benefits and Tools)

Updated June 24, 2022

Marketing departments perform a variety of functions internally or externally for companies. Regardless of the industry, these teams can help provide measurable benefits to many businesses. Effective marketing departments can help companies grow and expand to reach their highest potential and return on investment. In this article, we define what a marketing department is and does, explain the potential benefits of having a marketing department and provide a list of 11 common tools marketing teams may use.

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What is a marketing department?

A marketing department is a division within a business that helps to promote its brand, products and services. Typically, these departments can include many internal groups or individuals with specific expertise like:

  • Public relations specialists

  • Content creators

  • Graphic designers

  • Video production specialists

  • Social media specialists

  • Digital marketing specialists

  • Copywriters

  • Photographers

What does a marketing department do?

Depending on the industry or company priorities, marketing department responsibilities can vary but these are the most common:

  • Defining the company brand

  • Managing the company brand

  • Researching consumer or target audience trends

  • Ideating marketing campaigns and promotions

  • Managing campaigns and promotions

  • Designing visual elements for campaigns and promotions

  • Writing relevant and engaging content

  • Maintaining the company website

  • Using search engine optimization (SEO) with content

  • Developing social media strategies and campaigns

  • Managing social media platforms

  • Using social media listening to engage with followers and discover social trends

  • Creating and maintaining internal communications, like company newsletters

  • Working with media outlets to secure advertisement placements

  • Buying social media or web-based advertisements to drive traffic to company sites or platforms

  • Managing relationships with outside vendors or marketing agencies

Related: 12 Marketing Tips for Your Marketing Campaign

Benefits of having a marketing department

There are many benefits marketing departments can offer to companies, including:

Boosted engagement levels

Companies with marketing departments may experience boosted engagement levels because of improved promotional efforts. These improved efforts might include more organized, well-researched or relevant content specific to the brand's different audiences. One strategy marketing teams may use to help with this might be to determine where their audiences exist and their needs to select the best spaces to place content and the best content to produce.

Stronger content quality

Another benefit to using marketing teams may be stronger content quality because their job specifically focuses on producing high-quality content for target audiences or followers. This duty can allow them the time they need to analyze what content structures or formats are best perceived by target audiences. The results can then help them reach higher levels of content quality and relevancy. Stronger content quality may help a company set itself apart from competitors in the same industry.

Consistent brand voice and style

Marketing teams can provide benefits for consistent brand voice and style. Depending on the company's age, they might establish the brand voice and style with informed target audience research. These teams may also generate brand or company style guides to ensure communications remain consistent and use the same tone. Having a consistent brand voice and style might help clients or consumers more easily recognize or remember them.

Increased product or service profits

Another potential benefit of using marketing teams might include increased product or service profits. If a company offers clients or consumers specific products or services, these teams can highlight and promote them. This may help inform target audiences of the offerings available and the unique benefits they may receive if they choose to purchase them.

Improved customer relationships

Companies with strong marketing teams may also improve customer relationships through communications. A department might do this by using communication automation software to personalize messages that apply to individual customers. This can help provide them with the most relevant information while continuing to build lasting business relationships.

Advanced company growth

Advanced company growth is also a potential benefit of companies that have a marketing department. Boosted engagement levels, strong content and maintaining long-lasting relationships with customers can all help advance company growth. Part of this expansion may also include increased consumer loyalty to the company's brand. Typically, these teams can quickly advance growth through increased brand awareness.

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11 tools marketing departments use

Here are 11 common tools marketing departments might use:

1. SEO software

A marketing department may use SEO software to help it optimize the content it creates and implements across brand operations. Typically, SEO software can analyze text to determine how searchable it might be or its level of relevancy. If marketing teams use optimized written content, it may show up in more search results online or as suggested content which may help departments expand their audiences.

2. Grammar aid software

Grammar aid software can help a marketing department ensure all communications are grammatically correct. They might use this type of software to help with writing blogs, articles, email campaigns or newsletters. Typically, businesses can add this software type as an extension to their web browsers and use them within other work-related content creation or management systems. Grammatically correct communications may help companies look more professional to their clients, consumers or target audiences.

3. Photo editing software

Photo editing software can help marketing departments develop promotional photos or images. This development process may include adjusting elements like lighting, exposure or focus. The amount of editing needed for photos or images can depend on project needs. For example, if a photographer took an old photo from an event to promote an upcoming event, they might need to edit the photo to reflect the promotional efforts for the new event.

4. Video production software

Video production software can help marketing departments create original video content for social media, promotional advertisements or video blog posts also known as vlogs. Typically, this software allows users to streamline content together with cut, delete and combining commands, while also adding titles or music to video content.

5. Audio production software

Marketing departments may use audio production software if they host company-based podcasts. Company-based podcasts are usually 30 minutes to an hour and often focus on a specific topic or area of focus related to the business. Using audio production software can help with the development of each podcast episode, especially if the recorded audio components are not together. Typically, this software can help streamline audio production processes for marketing teams and help them produce engaging audio-based content.

6. Digital and print design software

A marketing department can use digital and print design software to create innovative graphic or visual elements to support their marketing efforts and campaigns. This can include illustration, animation and document design software, which can help with specific marketing operations. For example, illustration software may assist with the creation of graphic elements or brand logos and animation software might benefit video production by providing moving graphics. Document design software can be useful for company magazines, newsletters or brochures.

7. Social media management systems

Social media management systems can help marketing departments maintain social content calendars, schedule platform posts in advance and organize all social media-related content. Social content calendars can provide a marketing team with a place to plan social media platform content for their company in advance while keeping them organized with individual calendar dates. The functionality these systems provide can help marketing teams streamline their social media operations to reach higher levels of organization.

8. Social media listening systems

Marketing departments may use social media listening systems to help them recognize current trends on social media, how their company is being discussed and interact with posts that mention their company. Typically, this system type can provide marketing teams with insights into how their brand is being perceived on social media. Monitoring this can be important for departments, especially as their focus is on expansion and building their company's brand.

Related: Social Listening: What It Is, Why It's Important and How to Do It

9. Content management systems

Content management systems can help a marketing department organize and archive all the promotional content they produce. Typically, these systems can manage most content types, whether they are text-based or visual-based. Sometimes they may offer more complex management options for website management. Using these systems to help manage the structure of company websites and their content may help ensure they provide visitors with easy navigation features.

Related: What Is a Content Management System?

10. Data analytic software

Marketing departments may use data analytic software to measure their marketing or promotional results. Specific measurements may depend on the industry and an individual company's focus, but metrics they measure might include:

  • Time users spend on each web page or blog post

  • Pathways for users to reach their website

  • Levels of engagement with the brand

  • Audience interactions with social media posts or promotional campaigns

  • Demographic information about followers or audiences

Related: A Definitive Guide to Marketing Information Management

11. Customer relationship management

Marketing departments may use customer relationship management systems, or CRM, to help them streamline customer relations management operations. These systems can help marketing teams automate personalized messages to target audiences. For example, a retail company might send personalized target email communications to anyone who has purchased products from them in the previous five years. Doing this may help them increase their consumer engagement levels and potentially persuade people to purchase products from them again.

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