“In marketing, you have to move fast”. Raise your hand if you are a marketer and have heard this before. ✋ But when you have what feels like a million on-going projects and deadlines on your plate, moving fast isn’t always easy to do. The solution? Adopting an agile marketing strategy. Now, this doesn’t mean you have to exactly follow a formal agile marketing plan. Instead, think of it as a trait of your marketing department. Both your team and strategy should have agility, meaning you move quickly, don’t plan too far out, are constantly improving, and seeing great results.
You Don’t Make Plans Too Far in Advance
When you have marketing agility you don’t make plans for a whole entire year and then stop planning. I think we all learned that lesson the hard way last year. The point of agile marketing is to constantly be adapting and going with the flow. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t plan anything. Please still create a marketing plan, but create a plan for shorter time periods. And instead of just deciding what you are going to do or accomplish, consider how you will get there and in what ways you will be able to adapt to your environment along the way.
You Are Constantly Improving
Agile marketing moves fast. Typically you will work in “sprints” which is basically the time allotted for a specific project and it’s usually only a couple of weeks depending on what you are working on. Therefore, if you are working on building a Progressive Web App (PWA) for your mobile marketing strategy or launching your first round of digital ads, they aren’t going to be perfect the first time. You’ll get the first draft of the project done in a sprint. Then in another sprint, you might come back to it and improve upon it, and this will probably continue forever because marketing and consumer behavior are constantly changing.
You Accomplish A LOT
Finally, marketing agility helps you accomplish more than you thought possible. Not only does it help you move faster, but it increases your team's overall productivity because it fosters better communication, increases employee engagement, creates transparency, and focuses on results. You might ask how just tweaking the way you think about your marketing strategy can do this. Here’s how:
Since your timelines for projects are shorter with agile marketing, the team always needs to be on the same page and aligned on goals. In formal agile marketing practices, many teams will have daily team meetings to check in with the status of a project. This constant communication among employees contributes to increased productivity.
Agile marketing also helps with the prioritization of tasks and makes it easier for employees to hit goals. Instead of working on long projects that span over months where you keep having to make changes, employees can accomplish tasks quickly and efficiently. There is also an increase in the quality of work because of increased communication, coordination, and transparency.
When working with an agile marketing strategy, it’s imperative everyone on the team is on the same page and aware of what’s being worked on. This means all projects and the status of projects must be transparent to everyone. The frequent meetings also help facilitate this transparency and also create an opportunity for feedback.
A staple of agile marketing is measuring results. This doesn’t necessarily mean just the success of a project, but measuring how quickly something gets accomplished, the quality of work, and then running tests to gauge how successful a project is. And the best part of agile marketing is if one of these areas is meeting the results you hoped for you, you can make a change in the next sprint!
While a formal agile marketing mindset might not be the right fit for every marketing team, creating a marketing strategy with agility is very beneficial for organizations. It will help you adapt to change better, move faster, and create a great work environment for your team.