What is Agile Marketing?
Agile marketing is an emerging practice in marketing that is starting to gain momentum. It has become a popular phrase and certainly one that lives up to the hype. The practice is still in its early stages but is beginning to alter the way marketing departments work with clients. In a world where organizations are competing in much faster markets than ever, agile marketing seems like the go-to approach for marketing departments who are looking to adapt to the changes in the marketing environment.
Internet, the storehouse of knowledge, defines agile marketing as a tactical approach in which teams classify and focus their energy and effort on high worth projects, complete those projects in the allotted time, track the effects, assess the results and continuously improve results over time. Organizations incorporate agile marketing tactics to aggrandize speed and efficiency. Traditional methods are losing ground and are on their way to becoming outdated. Swifter, fleet-footed methods have replaced these traditional methods. Methods which are renewing the way organizations spot and deal with customers. Marketing departments which are ‘agile’ in their approach enjoy constant growth.
An agile approach is an open-minded approach which embraces change as opposed to old-fashioned, rigid approaches. Continuous changes in the market conditions can make a set, tried and tested methods go awry. Being adaptive to change is the order of the day. An organization must be able and willing to respond to that change. This ability can provide the competitive edge all organizations are in search of.
Agile marketing is an iterative approach that derives its inspiration from the values of agile software development and replicates its methodologies. It is an iterative approach to marketing strategies. Agile marketing uses SCRUM development methods. SCRUM is a widely used fabric for agile development used for completing complex projects.
Agile marketing allows you to adopt the smart work methodology rather than the hard work. It focuses on major projects, projects it can aim to complete within a ‘sprint’ (brief, fixed periods of rigorous work, anywhere between one week and four to six weeks). Team members aim to complete the assigned project within a ‘sprint’. During this ‘sprint’, other projects take a backseat. Depending on importance, team members can stop, assess and consider working on another project if it pops-up. After the completion of each sprint, team members analyze the effect of the project and continuously work to boost results over time.
The old makeup of any marketing organization is broken down into many different silos. There are separate teams to deal with different aspects such as social media marketing, search marketing, email marketing to name a few. These silos work in an independent manner. Generally, different silos do not converse with each other. Agile marketing methodology promotes cross-silo interaction and makes sure these groups work together.
Technology has given numerous opportunities to marketers to work in creative ways to satisfy customer needs. But in order to exploit these opportunities, an organization needs to become agile. Agile marketing ensures there is a continuous flow of promising opportunities and solutions to problems using real-time data.
AGILE MARKETING PRINCIPLES
1- Customer Satisfaction
Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continues delivery of valuable service.
2- Requirements Management
We welcome and plan for change. We believe that our ability to quickly respond to change is a competitive advantage.
3- Timely Delivery
Deliver marketing programs and working outputs frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference for the shorter timescale.
4- Customer Involvement
Great marketing requires close alignments with the business people, sales, and developers.
5- Team Work
Build marketing programs and projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done.
6- Peer Reviews
The most effective and efficient method of conveying information to and within the development team is the face-to-face conversation.
7- Delivering Quality
Working software, working outputs, learning, through the build-measure-learn feedback loop, is the primary measure of progress.
8- Predictable Productivity
Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, promoters, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.
9- System Architecture
Continues attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.
10- Continues Improvement
At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.
BENEFITS OF AGILE MARKETING
More work, less time.
The concept of agile is to get maximum work done in minimum time. This ensures team members work in a much more focused manner as they are time bound to deliver results. Every member tries to go the extra mile which increases the success rate and produces expected results. Work which originally took longer to finish gets wrapped up quickly with agile.
Agile approach lets organizations get down to brass tacks and lay down the way to prioritize the worklist. There is so much work to do that sometimes it’s easy to head in the inappropriate direction. Focusing on wrong things will not provide expected results but agile approach allows organizations to begin with right things, things that will have the biggest effect on results. This makes sure team members donate their best to the things that come first in the work list.
Adaptive to change
Conditions change in marketing, more often than not in a very dramatic fashion. Being agile prepares an organization to respond quickly and take advantage of such a change. In the radically changing market, better preparation always yields better results.
Agile organizations realize the value of all the members. Team members are aware of their importance and where they fit into the organizational structure. This makes them happy and enthusiastic about their work. Working together as a unit develops a sense of amity and betters communication, both inside and outside the marketing teams. Daily meetings keep the members motivated and on their toes. The team members realize the success and failure of a project rest on their shoulders. In agile marketing, everyone is on board which builds strong teamwork among members.
Eliminate ideas that don’t work
There is definitely an element of risk involved in agile marketing. The possibilities of plans failing are more in agile methods in comparison to traditional methods as not much time is spent in making agile strategies. Team members can devise and execute a plan and it may or may not work. If the plan does not work, members can sit down and single out things that did not work, eliminate it and carve a new plan. Being agile allows them to put a different plan to test without wasting time. Agile marketing allows them to fail better.
Agile allows organizations to utilize opportunities presented by digital technology which lets them be creative. They can put to test different plans within a short timeline. They can try out plan after plan until they figure out what works for them. Since there are a number of brains working on one project and different team members can come up with different ideas. Being able to come up a number of ideas allows teams to be innovative and chalk out plans that they feel is rightly suited for the job at hand.
Being agile has become the single most important attribute in today’s marketing world. Agile methodology helps organizations to move with purposeful celerity. Although agile marketing is relatively new, it is definitely successful. It is about running ‘sprints’ rather than ‘marathons’. Agile marketing gives precedence to short time frames. An agile organization can run a number of programs simultaneously and multiple ideas every week. At the end of the day, being agile is all about enabling marketing teams to work cohesively with other departments. Agile marketing helps to get the more instant response to results and prioritize work accordingly which drives more growth for the business. Over a period of time, agile marketing can help marketing units, irrespective of size, become more efficient and transform their organization.