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Marketing

Welcome to the GitLab Marketing Handbook

The GitLab Marketing team includes multiple functional groups: Revenue Marketing, Community Relations, Corporate Marketing, Marketing Operations and Product Marketing.


On this page


Marketing Handbooks


GitLab Marketing Purpose


We GitLab

GitLab's vision is to become the single application for DevOps by becoming best-in-class in every DevOps software stage, from project planning and source code management to CI/CD, monitoring, and security so that organizations can break free from complex DevOps toolchains. The GitLab Marketing team is here to:

Data informed decisions

At GitLab, we are committed to making data informed decisions. To that end, we publish our monthly metrics reports on GitLab's public YouTube Unfiltered channel.

Integrated Campaigns

Marketing functional groups collaborate to produce Integrated Campaigns. An Integrated Campaign is a communication effort that includes several campaign tactics such as blog posts, emails, events, advertisements, content on about.gitlab.com, videos, case studies, whitepapers, surveys, social outreach, and webcasts. An Integrated Campaign will have a campaign theme that summarizes the message we are communicating to our market.

Active integrated campaigns

Have a new campaign idea? Make a suggestion

Marketing Project Management Guidelines

Marketing uses GitLab for agile project management including groups, projects, epics, roadmaps, issues, labels, and boards. Read through the documentation on each of these GitLab features if you are unfamiliar.

Groups and projects

  1. The Marketing General Group houses all marketing projects.
  2. Labels should exist at the group level so they can be used across projects.
  3. The following are the approved marketing projects, CMO approval is needed to begin a new project.
  4. Issues should be logged in the team project ultimately responsible for completing requested work. (i.e. If SDR needs list uploaded -> issue created (using template) in Marketing Operations project).
  5. Don't create groups with subgroups (use labels to segment workstreams within a team's project issue tracker).

Issues, Milestones, and Epics

  1. Each issue represents a discrete unit of work with a deliverable. For example 1 2 3
  2. Every MR should have an issue so that it can be tracked on issue boards.
  3. Milestones represent units of work to be completed within a specific time frame, sometimes referred to as sprints. They are comprised of multiple issues that share a common due date, and help break large projects into more manageable parts.
  4. Epics represent projects that comprise multiple issues. (Don't use "meta" issues for this purpose. If you have have existing meta issue you can promote them to epics using the /promote slack command.)
    • Epics live at the group level (e.g. issue from multiple marketing projects can be added to an epic.)
    • Epics are labeled with a group label of the team that owns the epic.
  5. The top 3-5 strategic initiatives are tracked in epics using the CMO label. (Don't apply the CMO label to other epics.)
  6. Roadmaps are used for time-based display of epics with a start and end date. (for example, events and time-based campaigns.)

Boards and Labels

  1. Each team has one or more boards to track ongoing workstreams.
  2. Generally, create a board for each function. (For example PMM has boards for Sales Enablement, Analyst Relations, Customer Relations, etc.)
  3. Each board uses a standard set of columns/labels so that folks can easily understand what is happening on another teams board.
  4. The board labels use group labels with status: and one of four statuses. Status labels are used on both issues and MRs:
    • Status:Plan - work that is proposed, in an exploratory state.
      • To exit the plan stage the work must be assigned to a DRI.
      • DRI accepts responsibility for the task by changing the label from Status:Plan to Status:WIP and creating an MR if appropriate. The plan status is optional, as issues that don't require formal planning can be opened and labeled Status:WIP.
    • Status:WIP - work in progress that has been accepted and assigned to a DRI.
      • Work in this stage should not be merged.
      • Issues and MRs should be prepended with WIP:. At GitLab we allow reviewers to start reviewing right away before work is complete.
      • Use MVCs: At any time, if the work is complete enough that merging would be better than what current exist the issue should be labeled with status:review and WIP: should be removed from the title.
    • Optional*: Status:Review - work has been completed enough that it is ready for formal review and approval.
      • Work that is approved can be either merged or scheduled.
      • The review status is optional.
      • Work that doesn't require review can simply be merged/closed.
    • Optional: Status:Scheduled - work that is complete but should be scheduled for a future date.
      • Scheduled status is optional as not all work will need to be scheduled.
    • closed - when work is delivered the issue should be closed.
  5. Don't duplicate status labels at the project level. Use group labels (at the Marketing Group level) as much as possible.

Campaign Tags

GitLab makes use of campaign tags throughout our systems in order to better track associated costs. For consistency, we use the naming convention of ISODate_Campaign_ShortName. More details on the ISO Date:

ISO 8601 provides a standard cross-national approach that says:

  • A general-to-specific approach, forming a date that is easier to process - thus, the year first, followed by month, then day
  • Numbers less than 10 preceded by a leading zero
  • Years expressed as "0" prior to year 1 and as "-1" for the year prior to year 0 (and so forth)
  • Thus, March 30, 1998 would be: 19980330.

Please see more about this process on the Marketing Ops page.

How it all fits together

Figuring out how where and how to create a board, epic, label can be confusing. The following diagram is a very high level example of how it all fits together. If there are questions please ask in the #mktgops slack channel (*must be GitLab team member for active link).

Marketing Rapid Response Process

Summary

There are times when a rapid response is needed to address M&A in the industry, competitive moves and other opportunities to newsjack. In order to effectively respond, GitLab marketing needs to monitor, create and publish quickly. Additionally, GitLab marketing needs to support GitLab executives with content, data and soundbytes for interviews, blog-posts, etc.

Process

If a rapid response opportunity arises, please alert the head of corporate marketing (or CMO if head of corporate marketing is unavailable) via slack or text message. Rapid response collaboration will happen in either the #competition channel (if it is competitive) or in the #highwire channel (if it is about other news). The head of corporate marketing will propose a recommendation on how to best proceed with an external company message and recruit the resources to accomplish the plan (this becomes the #1 priority for each resource, unless physically impossible or their manager provides a replacement). A template for a rapid response can be found here

The head of corporate marketing will assess the rapid response request within 1 HOUR (9amEST-6pmPST). Urgency will be assessed and will be determined to be 3 HOURS (ASAP) or 24 HOURS turnaround, and the action plan will be scoped accordingly - with a bias towards releasing an MVC as soon as possible, and iterating as more news becomes available. Any disagreements on urgency or action will be escalated immediately to the CMO for a final decision.

While each response will be a custom plan, the rapid response team will leverage appropriate resources to execute on the agreed upon plan. PMM/TMMs should be responsible for technical and product content and industry expertise and context, Content/Social will be responsible for writing and publishing, Web will be responsible for any non-blog web page changes needed, and Community will be responsible for monitoring and responding in public channels.

Marketing Team Functional Groups

Sales Development (SDR)

Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) focus on serving the needs of prospective customers' during the beginning of their buying process. When prospective customers have questions about GitLab, the SDRs assist them or connect them to a technical team member as needed. During the initial exploration if the prospective customer is interested in continuing their exploration of GitLab, SDRs will connect them to an Account Executive (AE) or Strategic Account Leader (SAL).

SDRs also contact people who work at large organizations to uncover or create early stage sales opportunities for GitLab SALs. SDRs team will plan with their paired Sales counterpart to target interesting accounts and develop plan for prospecting including contact discovery, understanding enterprise-wide initiatives that GitLab could assist with, and ensuring accurate data quality of accounts and contact in salesforce.com.

Position Description Handbook

Field Marketing

Field marketers focus on understanding the specific needs of the geographic regions where GitLab operates. They manage marketing activities, such as events and sponsorships, tailored to the needs of the region where the activity takes place.

Position Description Handbook

Marketing Operations

Marketing operations focuses on enabling the GitLab marketing organization with marketing technology, process, enablement and insights. They are responsible for evaluating, deploying and administering marketing systems, documenting and improving administrative processes, and analyzing our marketing data to ensure marketers are held accountable to continuously improving their work. Marketing Operations owns the tech stack used by Marketing.

Position Description Handbook

Corporate Marketing

Corporate Marketing is responsible for PR/communications, the stewardship of the GitLab brand, corporate events and the company-level messaging/positioning. The team is the owner of about.gitlab.com and oversees the website strategy. Corporate Marketing creates global marketing materials and communications and supports the field marketing teams so they can execute regionally while staying true to the GitLab brand.

Position Description Handbook

Content Marketing

Content marketers focus on understanding our audience of developers, IT ops practitioners, and IT leadership. They create useful content for GitLab's audiences, and ensure that the content is delivered to the right audience, at the right time, and in the right way.

Position Description Handbook

Digital Marketing Programs

Digital Marketing Programs focuses on executing integrated campaigns, with a digital-first mindset. They are responsible for executing, deploying, and tracking emails and supporting both sales and marketing in outbound mass communications.

Digital Marketing Programs includes online marketing, focused on managing online advertising, website experiments, and search engine optimization (SEO). Online advertising is aimed at increasing the volume of relevant traffic to GitLab's marketing site, website experiments are focused on improving web traffic-to-form submission conversion, and SEO is aimed at ensuring our marketing site ranks for the search engine keywords our audiences care about.

Position Description Handbook

Marketing Program Management

Marketing Program Managers are responsible for creating and managing business to business marketing programs, supporting Field events, driving TOFU/MOFU traffic and continued engagement with both prospects and customers.

Position Description Handbook

Community Relations

Community Relations includes community advocacy, code contributor program and evangelist program functions. The team is focused on answering the following questions:

Handbook

Product Marketing

Product marketing is GitLab's interface to the market. The market is made up of customers, analysts, press, thought leaders, competitors, etc. Product marketing enables other GitLab groups such as Sales, Marketing, and Channel with narrative, positioning, messaging, and go-to-market strategy to go outbound to the market. Product marketing does market research to gather customer knowledge, analyst views, market landscapes, and competitor intelligence providing marketing insights inbound to the rest of GitLab.

Handbook

Marketing Production

Meetings and structure

These are just the required meetings for team members and managers. Of course, meetings are encouraged when it expedites a project or problem solving among members, so the team and company. Don't be afraid to say "Hey, can we hangout?" if you need help with something.

Weekly Marketing Strategy and Tactics Call (All Marketing team members)

Meeting goal: This is the main meeting where marketing strategy and tactics are discussed. Everyone in marketing is invited, but attendance is optional.

Run time: 50 minutes

The Marketing team meets weekly to review announcements, strategy developments, company updates, OKRs, and KPIs. This is the primary meeting for discussing strategy and tactics, resolving conflicts and communicating information.

The meeting should run as follows:

Weekly Direct Reports Meetings (Each manager with their direct reports)

Meeting goal: For managers to work with direct reports on personnel issues, PeopleOps requirements, performance reviews and hiring.

Run time: 25 minutes

Strategy and tactics should be discussed in the weekly Marketing Strategy and Tactics meeting. Weekly direct reports meetings should be held to discuss tactical people management issues. These meetings should be short and tactical - save strategy discussions for the all-marketing weekly call.

The meeting should run as follows:

Marketing team SLAs (Service Level Agreements)

When working remotely in a fast-paced organization, it is important for a team to agree on a few basic service level agreements on how we would like to work together. With any of these, things can come up that make it not possible to meet the SLAs, but we all agree to use best effort when possible.

Marketing Handbook Updates

Anything that is a process in marketing should be documented in the Marketing Handbook.

How to contact marketing

Requests from other teams

Social (@GitLab only, @GitLabstatus is managed by Infrastructure)

Everyone posts their own social updates, to the extent possible. If you want to request that something in one of these categories be posted, reach out to the point person below. They reserve the right to say no to your request, and copy in all of these categories may be adjusted by a marketing team member to ensure consistency in our brand voice.

Blog post editing

Newsletter

Marketing Newsletter

Marketing sends out a bi-weekly newsletter to our newsletter subscribers on the 10th and 25th of each month.

To add a content suggestion please find the Newsletter issue in the Marketing project and add your suggestion(s) as comment(s) to the issue in the format outlined on the issue description ( See example ). The title of the Newsletter issue will be formatted as follows: Newsletter MM/DD.

Content suggestions can be submitted up to 5 business days before the send date to ensure there is enough time for Content and Marketing Programs Manager's (MPM) review and set up workflow.

Anyone in the company can add suggestions, but the Marketing Program Manager in charge of the newsletter program (see division of MPM duties) will determine the final content of the newsletter. As a rule, we try to have a good balance of content, with a variety of blog posts, webcast landing pages, and product/company updates. The newsletter on the 25th will always lead with the release post for that month.

Other Newsletter

To request a newsletter to be sent to an audience outside the newsletter subscribers , please create an issue in the Digital Marketing Programs project, using the Newsletter issue template.

Newsletter requests should be submitted no less than 5 business days before the intended send date to ensure there is enough time for Content and Marketing Programs Manager's (MPM) review and set up workflow.

Sponsorship

We are happy to sponsor events and meet-ups where a marketing benefit exists, subject to approval by Field Marketing Managers. These sponsorships may be in cash or in kind, depending on individual circumstances.

Organizational or project sponsorships may also be considered where a marketing benefit exists. Typically, these sponsorships will be in kind - e.g., developer time commitments, or subsidized / free GitLab licenses.

Cash sponsorship of projects or organizations may be considered only in exceptional cases - for example, if a project or organization that GitLab depends on is struggling to survive financially.

Marketing Slack Channels

We use Slack internally as a communication tool. The Marketing channels are as follows:

Marketing email alias list