According to a 2017 survey by VersionOne, 98% of organizations say they’ve had success with an Agile project.
Despite these overwhelming results, only 37% of marketing departments are using an agile strategy, according to The First Annual State of Agile Marketing Report released last month by AgileSherpas.
When it comes to marketing, an Agile approach includes the deliberate, long-term application of specific methodologies and processes to manage and improve the way work gets done. It focuses on frequent releases, deliberate experimentation and a strategic vision of short-, medium- and long-term marketing plans.
“Marketers on an Agile team think about their work differently,” said Andrea Fryrear President and Lead Trainer at AgileSherpas. “They exhibit respect, collaboration, improvement and learning cycles, pride in ownership, focus on delivering value, and the ability to adapt to change. This mindset is necessary to cultivate high-performing teams, who in turn deliver amazing value for their customers.”
Organizations that implement an Agile Marketing strategy can realize various successes depending on their company culture and industry. But here are 6 benefits of an Agile Marketing strategy every organization can achieve:
1. The ability to change gears quickly
Agile Marketing methodologies include using flexible processes that can easily respond to change. It also entails running small, adaptive experiments based in such strategies.
This can help a marketing department be able to switch gears--or campaigns--quickly. For example, if something isn’t performing well, early insights make it easier to move on to something else quickly.
Such flexible, bite-size campaigns also offer marketing teams a learning opportunity about an organization’s brand, culture, and customers. The ability to quickly adapt to the evolving needs of these also can be a competitive advantage.
2. Enhanced visibility and transparency
Marketing requires close alignment with other departments, including sales and product management. An Agile strategy, however, requires marketing teams to look for ways to better collaborate with these groups, including giving them enhanced visibility into various projects.
For example, problems can arise when key stakeholders don’t know the purpose of specific campaigns or meetings, which can make it difficult for them to offer strategic input to projects. Agile marketing methodologies include clearly identifying the purpose of a campaign or meeting up front, which can offer all stakeholders a better opportunity to weigh in before a project is completed.
3. Higher quality of work and satisfaction of how work is managed
To become more agile, organizations must offer an environment where staff is encouraged to try new things and expand their skills. As a result, teams often have a dedicated employee who specializes in one part of marketing, but also has a strong, diverse knowledge base across all disciplines.
If a marketing team is built around these principles, individuals will become motivated and more trusting that quality work will get done. According to The First Annual State of Agile Marketing Report, 80.9% of agile marketers were satisfied with how their teams managed work and 47% say they have a higher quality of work as a result of implementing such strategies.
Further, an agile strategy can help improve other tasks, such as the quality of meetings, which also can affect employee work satisfaction.
4. Increased productivity
The report also indicated that 37.3% of marketers have more productive teams as a result of using Agile Processes and 31.7% have experienced more effective prioritization of work across the marketing department as a result of becoming more Agile.
Agile Marketing processes include frequent, small experiments with channels, audience segments, social sharing and other activities. They also require a constant pace and pipeline to sustain such experimentation.
As marketing departments continue to use these agile principles, they will become a natural part of how they construct a campaign. In turn, they will be able to push out numerous activities more quickly, resulting in a jump in productivity.
5. Better alignment with organizational goals and objectives
Agile Marketing teams are more transparent about their strategies and campaigns with other departments and c-level executives. Sharing activities and what they hope to achieve with them helps further customer-focused collaboration as well as ensure marketing is in alignment with organizational goals and objectives.
An Agile Marketing strategy also will result in additional enterprise-wide benefits if an organization’s corporate culture is supportive of agile methodologies.
6. Roadblocks and problems are identified sooner
By running frequent, small, low-risk experiments, Agile teams can more easily break activities down to better define where improvements can be made or what bottlenecks are detracting from further success.
Such detailed analysis can help determine which individuals or teams need additional resources, or which processes are no longer working.
If your organization is interested in implementing an agile marketing strategy to help achieve these and other benefits, it doesn’t have to be difficult.
Join Aprimo March 27 for an informational webinar titled “How to Go Agile without Going Crazy” to take a deep dive how a well-structured marketing organization is required to enable Agile marketing and how to get started. Join Andrea Fryrear at AgileSherpas and Carolyn Ghaie, Director of Activation Services at Aprimo.
About the Author
Ed Breault leads a team of marketing strategists and thought leaders who partner with top enterprise brands to navigate complexity, disruption, transformation, and change to the modern marketing organization. During his career, Ed has significantly contributed to the marketing operations business discipline, consulting for more than 100 marketing organizations around the globe and addressing marketing challenges within all industry verticals.Follow on Twitter More Content by Ed Breault