If you’ve worked in the tech industry, you’re probably familiar with agile development. This modern approach to software development relies on collaboration between cross-functional teams.
An agile methodology brings all components of a project together to work toward a unified goal. Traditional approaches treated each phase as an independent objective.
This way of working is now used by many marketing teams. By using agile marketing techniques, businesses can streamline campaigns and improve end results.
To drill down into how an agile approach to marketing works, we’re going over seven key elements involved.
1. A Defined Strategy
Determining a long-term plan is the first key element. This requires a good understanding of a business’s goals.
If an organization has a five-year plan, the marketing team will need to break this down into yearly quarters. Then they can develop marketing campaigns with well-defined strategies.
However, in an agile environment, there’s a lot of wiggle room. Encouraging adaptation and flexibility is paramount. The point is to avoid getting hemmed in by an original plan of action.
After establishing goals, the marketing team has a kickoff meeting. Here, they’ll discuss expectations and establish a culture of collaboration.
This culture thrives on simplicity and accountability. It also considers the customer during all phases. This last point is critical, as a marketing team needs to have an intimate understanding of a business’s client base.
2. The Right Team
In an agile setting, having the right team is critical. After all, this is a process based on collaboration.
Key players on an agile marketing team include the scrum master and development staff. The scrum master acts as a guide for the team and ensures everyone follows the agile approach. They must also address any issues that get in the way.
The development team consists of people like content writers, SEO specialists, and digital marketing managers. Basically all the essential components of successful marketing campaigns.
The scrum master needs to have the right certification. Many get their safe certification online or in a classroom setting. Members of the development team should either have certifications or understand an agile approach.
3. Data Analysis
One of the first steps in an agile project is to look at metrics. This provides valuable insight when determining how to reach and convert new clients.
In an agile environment, experimentation is encouraged. Once data is available, the team can start playing around with ideas. This allows them to find out if campaign strategies are worth pursuing.
Experimentation also lifts the veil on certain metrics. For example, a business site may get lots of visitors. However, this isn’t necessarily good if the site’s not converting them to customers.
Analyzing social media data is also critical today. The agile team needs to ensure a business’s social media presence supports its long-term goals.
Team members will report this analysis and experimentation to the scrum master. They’ll also present a plan of action and overall objective.
A process that’s unique to the agile approach is sprinting. It involves establishing and adhering to timelines.
In an agile marketing situation, things move fast. A sprint refers to how long team members have to finish a set of tasks. Using sprints is a great way to set a healthy pace for the overall workflow.
The scrum master starts by planning upcoming sprint goals. This process involves the whole team defining all tasks within a given sprint. Then, they’ll need to discuss what’s needed to achieve it.
A marketing campaign may contain several sprints. This is a good way to work on a project in phases and achieve more realistic goals. Sprints also set expectations and bring an element of accountability to the project.
5. A Scrum Board
Another tool unique to agile methodologies is a scrum board. This is a way for teams to keep track of tasks within each sprint.
A scrum board usually gets updated every day and each team member has access to it. It serves as a roadmap for the project and ensures everyone is on the same page.
Scrum boards promote collaboration and interaction. They can also help motivate key players to complete key tasks quicker.
The scrum master can use the board during meetings to set daily or weekly goals. It’s also a way for them to maintain a bird’s eye view of the current sprint.
Scrum boards can either be digital or physical. It all depends on what works best for the team.
6. Huddles or Standups
An agile approach doesn’t utilize the traditional idea of the weekly conference room meeting. Instead, teams engage in daily huddles or standups.
These are short meetings designed to get everyone on the same page without taking up too much time. They consist of examining individual objectives and resolving any issues. They also help strengthen collaborative efforts.
A standup is the same as a huddle, but everyone is standing up. This keeps people engaged and focused.
Scrum masters are usually the ones who schedule huddles or standups. They often occur first thing in the morning. Each team member needs to quickly go over what they accomplished the day before and what’s on their plate for that day.
7. An Agile Retrospective
At the end of a marketing campaign, the agile team has a meeting. This is called an agile retrospective.
These meetings allow everyone to discuss the campaign’s successes and areas that need improvement. This is a great way for a marketing team to evolve.
During an agile retrospective, each team member should be upfront about any failures they experienced during the project. This isn’t a time for criticism. It’s all about learning.
These meetings are a great opportunity for the team to celebrate a successful project. Doing so helps build relationships, which will make the collaborative process even stronger during the next campaign.
Implement Agile Marketing for Your Next Project
If your marketing initiatives have been falling flat, it’s time to change the way you do things. Consider agile marketing and bring a collaborative process to your operation.
Remember to include the elements discussed above and you’ll enjoy successful campaigns and a more fulfilling process.
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