These days, everyone wants to be “agile.” Here’s how successful businesses build the people, processes, and marketing technology needed to scale agile marketing. Agile Marketing aims to increase the marketing function’s speed, predictability, transparency, and flexibility to change.
Agile Marketers also adhere to a set of principles, which include statements that define what it means to be an Agile Marketer. Great marketing necessitates strong collaboration with the business, sales, and development departments. Great marketing initiatives are created by motivated people. Companies just have to give them the space and support they require, and trust them to do the task. The primary metric of progress is learning, as measured by the build-measure-learn feedback cycle. Maintaining a consistent pace and pipeline is essential for long-term marketing success. Don’t be afraid to fail; just don’t make the same mistakes twice. Maintaining a constant focus on marketing basics and strong design improves agility. The importance of simplicity cannot be overstated.
Agile marketers use the Scrum approach to better alignment with the organization’s business goals and sales employees, improve communication both within and outside the marketing team, and increase marketing’s speed and responsiveness. The process is similar to agile development, with a few minor changes.
is a tactical marketing method in which marketing teams pick high-value initiatives to spend their efforts on as a group. Agile approaches have aided in the transformation of software development. Agile software development helps software teams thrive by breaking work down into small chunks, collecting frequent feedback, and providing for flexibility to react to changes. Other professions, including marketing, have adopted agile practices as a result of the success of this strategy.
From Agile Software Development to Agile Marketing:
For years, the agile frenzy has been altering marketing teams of all shapes and sizes, but it has a much longer history outside of marketing. In the mid- to late-1990s, agile ways to managing knowledge work emerged in software development, dramatically altering the way developers handled their jobs.
A shift was desperately needed among developers. Traditional project management methods, such as the waterfall technique, were failing miserably. Project managers were supposed to acquire information about what the software was expected to perform and compile it into huge papers known as requirements using these strategies.
They’d hand over the specifications to the developers, who would then endeavor to design software that met the requirements. Because the developers would inevitably discover unknown dependencies and experience unforeseen delays, it would take significantly longer for them to complete it than the project manager had estimated.
People are also notoriously lousy at precisely calculating how long activities will take. Things deteriorated to the point where, according to a 1995 survey, just 16.2 percent of software projects were completed on time and on budget. The situation was considerably worse at major corporations, with only 9% of projects meeting their deadlines and budgets.
It was also all too usual for the finished items to disappoint the customers for whom they were designed. The coders were so far removed from the people who would use their software that they were unable to produce useful software.
Developers would receive specifications from managers, who in turn would receive requirements from other stakeholders, who would base those needs on analysis or statistics gathered from actual users. It was like playing software telephone, except the final message didn’t look anything like the functionality that the audience had requested. In fact, according to a 1995 analysis of $37 billion in US Defense Department programmers, 46% of the systems “so egregiously did not satisfy the real demands (despite meeting the specifications) that they were never successfully employed, and another 20% required considerable revision” to be useful. Early Agile pioneers like Jeff Sutherland, David Anderson, Alistair Cockburn, Mike Cohn, and others began looking for a better method to operate in this context. The first Agile Manifesto for Software Development was written by seventeen software practitioners in February 2001. Scrum and Kanban techniques emerged as a result of this.
Agile marketing’s characteristics
Every effective agile marketing team has four key characteristics: agile-based teamwork, data-driven decisions, rapid and iterative releases, and adherence to the Agile Marketing Manifesto.
Collaboration and teamwork
Teams that embrace agile ways of working are the cornerstone of agile marketing. Workplace silos and hierarchies should be replaced with unrestricted team cooperation. Each project could engage each team member in some way. To encourage collaboration, team meetings and communication channels can be employed.
Decision-making based on data
Agile marketers approach marketing efforts with a data-driven strategy. Despite the fact that all modern marketers rely on data to some level, agile teams are driven by it. Agile marketers are always devising new experiments to improve the effectiveness of their teams, and they rely on data to measure and adjust their efforts.
Iterative, rapid releases
Sprints, which are brief periods of time during which a scrum team works to complete a specific amount of work, are frequently used by agile marketing teams. The sprint cycle helps teams to tackle smaller quantities of work in a shorter period of time, resulting in iterative work releases. Sprints provide you the flexibility to change your strategy every couple of weeks because they’re so brief.
The Agile Marketing Manifesto is followed.
Finally, agile marketing teams adhere fervently to the values and principles outlined in the Agile Marketing Manifesto, which includes five fundamental values and 10 principles critical to marketing agility. All of a team’s processes, including as standups, sprints, and kanban boards, are based on these ideas and concepts. They’re the “why” that goes along with the “what.”
The advantages of agile marketing
Determine your most pressing pain point or desired benefit, and frame agile as a means to accomplish that goal for the most effective adoption of agile marketing. Agile should not be pursued for the sake of agility, particularly in marketing. To accomplish success, it’s best to approach an issue or objective with an agile mindset.
Productivity and speed
The first and most prominent advantage of agile marketing is the enhanced speed with which value is delivered. This is accomplished through altering the organizational structure and the way marketing teams plan and execute operations.
Agile businesses emphasize small, cross-functional teams that can finish projects autonomously with little handoffs between teams, rather than organizing individuals by function (e.g. creative, marketing technology, etc.). This helps the teams to go through work items quickly without being stalled owing to dependencies.
An agile team structure gives a large productivity boost without adding more personnel to the team, thanks to increased frequency and the ability to immediately adopt user feedback.
Collaboration and transparency
Agile marketing also tries to establish insight into the team’s processes through graphical workflows and regular touchpoints, which is a noteworthy benefit. Visualization improves communication between individuals and teams within the marketing department, rather than keeping everything in an intimidatingly enormous spreadsheet or hidden somewhere on a hard drive.
Agile uses visual management tools like a kanban board (digital or physical) and frequent synchronization meetings like the daily standup to let you experience complete process transparency. These make it easier to see what’s going on in the process and collaborate effectively.
The kanban board (which literally translates to “visible board” or “sign” in Japanese) allows visibility into all work. During a daily standup, the team can communicate daily priorities, progress, and challenges, allowing them to interact more efficiently and function as a unit.
Transparency holds agile teams responsible and aids in the development of a shared understanding of all projects in progress. Agile teams tend to use frequent client feedback to ensure that they are providing the correct work at the right time, so transparency extends to customer interactions as well.
One of the most cherished advantages of agile marketing is its flexibility. It shows itself most clearly in the way agile marketing teams use iterative planning instead of mindlessly following an annual marketing strategy to provide viable work.
The ability of agile marketing teams to adjust to changing conditions is critical to their success. Traditional methods of producing annual marketing plans, which included every detail regarding work for the next twelve months, were not assisting marketers in reacting to changing circumstances. In fact, it frequently stifled marketers’ ability to respond to shifting client expectations or market realities.
In an agile environment, teams concentrate on identifying long-term goals and figuring out the details along the way. This allows them the freedom to change course quickly in response to data and client feedback.
Success based on data
Because of Agile’s emphasis on experimentation, marketing teams should measure success by aligning marketing efforts with data. Impact KPIs from low-risk tests should be collected by agile marketing teams, as they will influence each final campaign they deploy. They should also keep track of team efficiency by collecting metrics from their processes. Agile marketers may maintain track of job cycle time, efficiency rate, and process throughput at any given time to ensure the team moves at a steady pace.
Small tests are done by agile marketing teams to confirm or disprove assumptions, track results, and improve campaigns over time. This allows teams to make more educated decisions regarding the types of campaigns they run, as well as how, when, and where they go to market.
Increased ability to compete
The marketing data gathered ensures that the lessons learnt are applied to the next project, ensuring that campaigns remain competitive and that returns on marketing spending continue to improve.