It’s rather challenging to be a marketer in today’s fast-changing business environment. Some of the methodologies you have learned and become used to no longer keep pace with today’s consumer expectations. You need a process that allows you to respond to shifting market conditions nimbly and cost-effectively.
Enters agile marketing — a methodology that can help you create more relevant and higher-quality output, recognize potential issues sooner before spending too much money on a campaign, create a faster and more accurate delivery cycle, stay competitive in the marketplace, scale up easily, and foster innovation within your organization.
Here’s what you need to know about agile marketing and how to use it to achieve marketing success:
What’s Agile Marketing?
It’s a project management framework that improves a team’s ability to hit milestones and optimize budget by streamlining team structure, communication, workflows, and processes to increase efficiency while maintaining quality.
This methodology enables teams to work more quickly and adapt to changes in the market more nimbly. It allows brands to adjust tactics based on the market’s response much more rapidly than the typical “big campaign” advertising model, which often runs in an annual cycle.
The Benefits of Agile Marketing
The Agile method can help facilitate project management and get measurable results by:
- Increasing efficiency through the elimination of unnecessary steps and red tape. Teams can work faster and capture more opportunities to attract customers.
- Breaking down silos within a company to create a truly customer-centric organization.
- Facilitating innovation with rapid testing to quickly discover insights about the changing marketplace. This allows you to drive marketing efforts with actual data that reflect real-time consumer sentiments.
- Boosting ROI because teams can run multiple campaigns simultaneously while gathering analytics to fine-tune the tactics. This allows brands to proactively respond to changes in the market.
- Making it easy to scale up and grow quickly without sacrificing your team’s efficiency.
- Keeping a customer-centric approach so you can focus on delivering what the customers want, instead of being bogged down by unnecessary documentation and meetings.
How Does Agile Marketing Work?
Agile marketing is an iterative process based on a scrum framework. Here are the key steps to building and running a successful agile marketing team:
- Assemble a cross-functional team consisting of members from different disciplines.
- Create a “sprint backlog” that contains all the projects the team aims to execute along with their due dates.
- Conduct a “sprint” on each of the items in the backlog to either complete a project or a phase of a project. Each sprint is short, typically lasts about two weeks.
- Facilitate close team collaboration throughout the entire project, from “progress” and “review” to “finished.”
- Hold daily scrum meetings that involve all the team members to discuss what was accomplished the day before, how they’ll be progressing that day, and challenges that arise.
- Conduct a “sprint retrospective” after a project is completed to reflect on what went well and what didn’t, as well as what can be improved.
How To Successfully Implement Agile Marketing
You may face some hurdles when implementing agile marketing so it’s important to be prepared, especially if the concept is new to your team. For example, stakeholders may be resistant to change, teams could be held back by the fear of failure, and many people are simply skeptical about new processes that are different from what they’re used to.
Here’s what you can do to facilitate the adoption of agile marketing in your organization:
- Understand the agile process in its entirety — many companies implement bits and pieces of the methodology, which prevents them from taking full advantage of the approach.
- Adopt a pioneer mindset — to inspire others to change, you need to take initiatives and experiment. This will inspire others to join in so you can build the momentum and success needed for organization-wide adoption.
- Get buy-in from stakeholders — don’t force a process onto your team since it’ll most likely backfire. Get your team members, managers, and department heads on board by educating them on how the agile process can benefit them and the company.
- Implement the right tools — use project management software applications that are designed to support the agile process. Provide training to your team so everyone can fully utilize the features to work efficiently.
- Align daily tasks with business objectives — make sure that the outcomes of individual sprints are in alignment with your company’s long-term business objectives. Set up a system to track all the activities, for example, by using this bullet journal format that helps you manage all the daily, weekly, and monthly tasks in one place.
Getting the Most From Agile Marketing
While agile marketing has many advantages, you should also be aware of some potential challenges. This will allow you to apply the methodology to initiatives that can benefit most from this approach.
Agile marketing has a less formal structure and therefore, projects may appear less predictable. Sometimes, the end results could be very different from what’s anticipated. This may throw some people off and they may require some handholding at the beginning.
You could get caught in the weeds when in the middle of a sprint and lose sight of the long-term marketing goals. Meanwhile, due to the method’s inherent flexibility, there’s a higher risk for budgets to run over if they’re not managed properly.
Given its pros and cons, agile marketing is most suitable for projects that require rapid deployment and can benefit from planning and evolutionary development. It’s ideal for initiatives that have less defined end goals and/or are a work in progress.
The process’s iterative approach allows for faster production and lower cost, making it a great option for dynamic businesses that need to respond to fast-changing consumer trends, shifting customer expectations, or uncertain market conditions.
When you leverage agile marketing to your advantage, you can build a productive and innovative team that can respond to market demands cost-effectively to improve the success of your marketing efforts.