What is a growth team?
Growth teams focus on driving product awareness, demand generation, sign-ups, conversions and retention by liaising with internal and external stakeholders.
When you first hear the term “growth team,” you probably think of a savvy business school vocabulary list. Isn’t everyone within a company playing a key role in driving market growth for your brand? However, in the B2B SaaS world, growth teams are key to accelerating sales and customer acquisition, connecting aspects of marketing, sales, product development and customer success staff while also fulfilling their own key roles.
First tied back to companies such as Airbnb and Uber, growth teams solve problems that enable further growth through experimentation and support while also serving as force multipliers within their company, breaking down silos and working cross-functionally to better serve customers.
What is a typical growth team structure?
Growth teams can ebb and flow in time, size, tenure and scope as a company grows and as the types of projects change. There is no one specific prescribed growth team structure out there, but teams are typically made up of talented staff with engineering, design, data science, customer success and product management experience bringing unique perspectives and resources to the effort. Similarly, growth teams are usually supported — or chartered — by senior company executives with specific goals, expectations and resources available to accomplish their mission.
For example, with a rise in the customer base, there may be increased pressure on customer support staff. While customer success staff continue to focus on serving users as problems arise, several members of the support team may join a growth team with engineers, designers and analysts to find and resolve root causes. This could include creating more self-service tools, modifying existing interfaces or adding new features that would better serve the customer in the long run.
What is the growth cycle?
Like many facets of the SaaS world, growth teams thrive on data and typically work in an iterative and cyclical fashion. While the exact phrasing can vary by model, the growth cycle can include:
- Analysis: Review metrics, product management KPIs, user analytics and user feedback to identify new trends or opportunities or evaluate ideas provided by internal and external stakeholders.
- Brainstorming: Identify initial features, next steps and goals that can achieve the desired outcome.
- Defining Actions: Identify the needed steps, resources and time frame, and conduct initial sequencing. Identify potential risks and issues for mitigation.
- Prioritizing: Review the existing product roadmap and where the product sits in its lifecycle, and determine the order and timing of deployment.
- Executing: Build prototypes, experiment and refine the idea. Return to the analysis stage or launch the idea with other internal teams.