Our Customer Marketing Industry and Salary Reports will be launching at the end of this year, but we wanted to give you a sample of the kind of data you can expect from these reports. In this article, we’re going to go through the global presence of customer marketing, and how customer marketing teams are structured in 2023/24.

Psst…. Our survey for this year’s reports is out now. If you haven't already, we'd love for you to take the survey - the more responses we get, the better the reports we share with you and the rest of the community will be!

Customer Marketing Salary and Industry Survey 2024
Our State of Customer Marketing and Customer Marketing Salary surveys have been instrumental in collecting the data we share with you in our reports; though the surveys are now merging into one, none of the invaluable insights from our reports will be lost. 💪

Global customer marketing presence

Of the customer marketers surveyed in this survey, we began by getting an idea of the global presence of customer marketing. The majority of customer marketers that took our survey were primarily based in North America, making up 65.2% of participants. In a distant second, 10.1% were from the United Kingdom, 8.7% were from South America, and 7.2% were from Europe.

Global presence of customer marketing

Presence in types of businesses

The most frequent customer type remained overwhelmingly B2B, 92.8%, compared to 96.4% last year. Only 1.4% of participants were B2C, with the remaining 5.8% catering to both. Those that supported SaaS products remained the majority this year at 82.6% compared to last year’s 89.3%. Only 4.3% of participants promote physical products, with 13.1% supporting both.

Stage of growth

Stage of growth is one of the first indicators to show how things have developed one year on. Last year, 50% of those that took the survey worked at mid-growth companies. This year, it remains a small majority at 39.2% but is closely followed by the late growth/scale-up stages at 31.8% and enterprise at 18.8%.

Growth stage in which customer marketing is common

N.B. While none of our participants were from companies at the pre-product fit stage last year, 1.4% of participants came from this early growth stage this year.

Variety of job titles in customer marketing

This year, we had a broader range of job titles among those we surveyed, but the largest percentage of participants were Sr. Manager of Customer Marketing at 27.5%, with the roles Customer Marketing Manager (20.3%) and Director of Customer Marketing (15.8%) making up the next largest percentages. Last year, Head of Customer Marketing and Customer Marketing Manager made up 17.4% of the percentage respectively. But this year, Head of Customer Marketing dropped to 11.6%, while Customer Marketing Manager increased to 20.3%.

Notably, there was an increase in the variety of specialists within the job titles we observed, namely those that included Specialist, Analyst, or Consultant. There was also an increase in more senior titles within the survey group with titles such as Head or Director.

Variety of job roles

N.B. The job titles that make up ‘Other’ (16.4%) include Community Manager, Customer Advocacy Manager, Director of Client Experience, Senior Customer Marketing Strategist, Consultant, Director of Customer Advocacy, and Director of Client Experience.

Presence in different Industries

With our larger survey pool this year, we had a more varied spread of industries represented within it, with Computer & Networking, and eCommerce emerging as categories (albeit, only making up 2.9% of answers each). Advertising & Marketing made up 10.1% of answers compared to 7.1% last year.

This year, we combined the two largest categories (Software & Technology, and Technology & Services) to make up a more comprehensive category we’ve titled Software Services & Technology Information. Last year, Software and Technology Information made up 57.1%, with Technology and Services coming in at a distant second at 17.9%

This year, however, Software and Technology Information made up a smaller 44.9%, with Technology and Services making up a larger percentage or 23.3%. Combining these percentages, we can see that Software Services & Technology Information industries make up a marginally smaller 68.2% compared to the 75% from last year.

Industries in which customer marketing is common

N.B. The answers that made up the category of ‘Other’ included Educational Services, HR, Consulting, Security, and Healthcare.

Level of experience

36.2% of the participants had three years or less of experience, a 4.1% increase from last year. Second were those that had between four and six years of experience (31.8%), with and jump to those with over ten years of experience in third place at 21.8%.

Years of experience common for customer marketers.

Unlike last year, where we found a relatively even divide when it comes to the level of experience, this year, nearly two-thirds of our participants have between one and six years of experience (66.6%).

Past education

Looking at the educational background of our participants, it’s perhaps understandable that the highest percentage studied Business, at 21.5%, due to the nature of the role being most prominent in B2B businesses.

Interestingly, joint second, we had Journalism (10.8%) and English (10.8%). In fact, we found that 30.8% of participants had a background in humanities rather than social science like Business and Marketing. 

This is an encouraging set of data as it implies that customer marketing doesn’t require a specific background to get access to the role, making it more available for a variety of personalities, people, and backgrounds. Communication and Marketing made up the same percentage of 9.2%, making up a combined 18.4% of answers.

Past education for customer marketing

N.B. Those that selected ‘Other’ studied things like Accounting, Economics and Ethics, Finance, Media, Biology, Theatre, and Liberal Arts.

With the wide variety of subjects studied, it’s fair to say that people can get into the role of customer marketing from a variety of different avenues with the presence of things like Journalism and History alongside Business and Marketing.

This leads to the question - why is marketing so low? More people in humanities move to customer marketing than those who had an actual marketing degree - This perhaps shows the importance of a customer marketer’s ability to interact with and build customer relationships over all else; humanities subjects like English and History provide equal transferable skills, like communication and analysis, that suit the needs of a customer marketing position.

Customer marketing in different company cultures

There were some other notable changes this year in company culture among our participants. While the majority remained the same, being product-led at 40.6%, the inclusion of customer-led companies dropped from 30.8% to 17.4%

The percentage of sales-led companies, however, remained very similar at 30.4% this year compared to a 30.8% last year. Marketing-led companies remained the lowest represented out of the majority groups at 8.7%, an increase of 4.9% from last year.

Company culture in which customer marketing is common

Placing your customers as the heart of your business will only help you grow. Unlike sales-led processes, there is little risk in prioritizing your customer’s needs and wants when developing your company’s products and services.

In fact, using a customer-led approach can have all sorts of benefits for revenue, growth, and the sustained success of your business:

  • Companies taking a customer-led approach to their tech investments grow 1.8x faster than their peers.
  • Customer-obsessed companies grow 2.5x faster than non-obsessed ones and retain 2.2x more customers annually.

Without connecting your customers with your product, you run the risk of developing features that aren’t relevant to your audience. Prioritizing sales over all else gambles with the danger of overpromising and underdelivering when selling your products to your customers.

Due to the change in economic conditions in the last year, this drop could be a result of companies prioritizing sales as a result; Product-led companies may have increased too due to this effect, as it is a more stable part of the company system to focus around as economic hardships are likely to result in a less stable customer base, with it being harder to acquire new customers.

Customer marketing team infrastructure

Role in company strucutres

Beginning the discussion about customer marketing’s role in a company structure, we first asked which department customer marketing is placed in.

As with last year, the majority was placed in Marketing, this year seeing a much bigger percentage at 71% compared to the 59.3% from last year. Product Marketing was the next highest majority again this year, with a smaller 14.6%, an 18.7% drop from last year. This year, we saw Customer Success (5.8%) overtake Sales (4.3%), compared to the 3.7% from the previous year.

Teams in which customer marketing is placed

Interestingly, of those companies that placed Customer Marketing under product marketing, 40% were product-led, and 40% were sales-led with the remaining 20% being customer-led. 

Those in sales-led companies recognize the importance of connecting customer marketing - and by association, their customers - with how they’re marketing their product. It also makes sense that customer marketing is more commonly associated with another customer-facing team like customer success than sales, as the work of Customer Success Managers and Customer Marketing Managers is often reliant on customer collaboration and customer feedback for success.

The size of a customer marketing team

Last year, the majority of customer marketers were working as a team of one. This year, it’s refreshing to see customer marketing teams are slowly growing, with teams of 2-3 making up the majority of answers this year at 39.2%. Though teams of one still made up the second largest single majority in the results at 36.2%, teams of 2-5 made up 49.4% of answers with only 14.4% of participants working with teams of over six.

Size of customer marketing teams

When comparing team size and company size, last year we found very little correlation between the two sets of data, with both enterprise-style companies and mid-growth companies having the same range of team sizes. 

This year, however, we’ve found that the correlation was more streamlined. The percentage of customer marketers working solo dropped at each stage of growth, with 100% of the pre-product fit stage being formed of teams of one, dropping to 15.4% in enterprise companies. 

The same can be said for teams of 2-3, making up 50% of post-product fit growth stages, and dropping to 30.7% in enterprise companies. When considering that some enterprise companies are working with small teams (as little as 1-3 people working with their whole customer base), we hope to see teams increase in size in the coming years.

Who do customer marketers report to?

With the formalization of customer marketing positions within organizational structures, we want to next look at who customer marketers usually report to within these structures.

Job titles in customer marketing

N.B. Those that selected other cited answers such as Director of Content, Director of Public Relations, VP of Field Marketing and Loyalty, Head of Customer Engagement, VP of PR and Comms, along with others.

Interestingly, the largest percentages - both 18.8% of answers respectively - were taken by Head of Customer Marketing and Head of Product Marketing. Last year, CMO was the most common answer at 26.1%, but this year it made up only 5.8% of answers, a very interesting change.

This statistic also supports the idea that customer marketing teams have become more formalized in the past year. These teams are more commonly sitting under specific heads of departments (Head of Customer Marketing, Head of Product Marketing). As CMOs are responsible for all of marketing, seeing customer marketing be positioned under a dedicated lead, indicates that more companies are seeing customer marketing as a serious investment.

Those that selected CMO, were all headed under marketing compared to the more varied answers of the other responses. For example, those that answered to Head of Product Marketing were housed under marketing, product marketing, and sales.

Its seems that within the last year, the organizational structure has grown more complex despite the increased consistency in how customer marketing is placed within it.

This is likely due to company growth over the last year, as we’re seeing a slight restructuring of product marketing and sales as well (as they relate to customer marketing). 

Factors like company culture and company size will have an impact on who customer marketers report to - as with other positions, customer marketing is molded to suit the needs of their company. 

We also saw the introduction of new positions this year, with Head of Brand, Head of Integrated Marketing, VP of Marketing, VP of Revenue Marketing, and VP of Corporate Marketing.

Cross-functional collaboration

Next we asked our participants which teams they work most closely with; they could pick up to three answers. Looking at the internal cross-functional relationships important for customer marketing, we found a surprisingly even divide between collaboration with other departments. 

While last year, the clear majority at 50% worked with Customer Success, this year, it’s pretty well tied with Marketing at 31.5%. Product (17%) and Sales (19.3%) made up very similar percentages as compared to last year.

Teams customer marketing collaborate with

N.B. While there was an option for participants to select ‘Other’, no one selected it.

This perhaps answers the question of the variety of positions customer marketers report to, as customer marketing seems to have responsibilities relevant to at least four other departments. This year, we specifically saw a notable increase in the connection between product marketing and customer marketing. For example, a much higher percentage of customer marketers work closely with and report to product marketing.

“While the connection between product marketing and customer marketing has strengthened, it’s clear that both roles can stand independently as vital contributors. Customer marketing thrives as a distinct position, focusing on nurturing relationships, advocating for the customer’s voice, and highlighting their successes. By collaborating closely, we’re enhancing our ability to create tailored experiences and enabling customers to shine through compelling narratives.” - Florian Engel, Director. Customer Marketing at Aiven

We talk more about the attitude toward customer marketing, and if it’s valued internally, in part six of this report. First, we wanted to know a little more about the actual responsibilities covered by customer marketing positions.

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Our State of Customer Marketing and Customer Marketing Salary surveys have been instrumental in collecting the data we share with you in our reports; though the surveys are now merging into one, none of the invaluable insights from our reports will be lost. 💪

Seize this opportunity to redefine the world of customer marketing! Share your responses now. ⬇️