Why doing less is more in agile marketing
For years marketers have been scrambling to produce more content, leads and events. However, this excess mindset often leads to burnout with minimal business success. The teams that really nail agile marketing do less work with more focus on outcomes.
“Busy-ness” doesn’t equal business value
When numbers are soft, it’s natural for panic to set in and to respond with the need for more marketing. However, more marketing doesn’t necessarily mean sales numbers will fall in line. In fact, if marketers are pressured to produce more, quality often suffers, and the business results are worse, not better.
Companies that can take a step back and treat their marketers as consultants, not just executors, find that less output is needed to achieve the same business goals.
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Collaborate from the beginning
A Collaborative Planning Workshop is used in agile marketing to bring together the stakeholders requesting a project or campaign and the marketing team responsible for executing the work. By gathering all of the team, not just leaders or strategists, everyone can gain shared alignment on what outcomes are desired.
This workshop should begin with the project’s business owner coming to the team with goals or metrics that the company is trying to achieve. The two parties should then form a shared Guidepoint, a success metric around the work that aligns with the larger business goal.
From there, everyone should do a creative brainstorm on which tactics would support the Guidepoint, generating as many creative ideas as possible without limits. After idea generation, the group works together to see which ideas are most likely to align with the Guidepoint and agrees to work on a minimally viable subset of work first. All other ideas may come at a later point in time.
Stop the floodgates
To do less and get more business value with agile marketing, you need to look at how work gets requested in the first place, and if anyone can submit work for the teams to work on, you’ve opened up the floodgates. So what do successful organizations do to manage the madness? The best companies that I’ve seen don’t allow work submissions to happen without conversations around business goals. It shouldn’t be automatically considered if work comes in through a workflow management tool. It’s best to avoid these automated processes altogether because they overwhelm teams. However, if you don’t think that’s possible and work comes in via the creative brief, have those submitted only as extra supporting documentation following a Collaborative Planning Workshop, not beforehand.
Empower teams to stop low performing work
The teams closest to the marketing should have full authority to stop marketing that isn’t acheiving desired results. Teams must have the time, space and access to gather performance data and discuss it. Then, they should be able to cancel low performers without needing external approval. This allows teams to double down on the work that will give better outcomes and not just execute something because someone put it in a brief.
When we stop overloading marketers, give them a seat at the table from the beginning and allow them to stop low-performing work, we can build a culture of doing less work and gaining more value with agile marketing.
Many marketers struggle to apply agile marketing in a way that adds value to team members. Learn how to break that pattern in this free e-book, “MarTech’s Guide to agile marketing for teams”.