There’s nothing worse than a talented team that gets bottlenecked by an inefficient approach to project management…
Am I right?
For many marketing teams, their struggles often lie in their workflow…
At the beginning of 2017, my team and I realized that the waterfall approach to project management was causing us many (many) unnecessary headaches.
It didn’t happen overnight, project management had been a strain for quite some time. At the end of 2016, we attempted to remedy our project management with the purchase of a robust project management software. If you’ve tried that before, you know, it didn’t work.
So, at the start of the year, we realized we were back at square one... Stuck with a great problem: a tremendously talented team that had a lot of complex work to get done.
After doing some research, we decided that Agile Marketing would be the best solution for organizing our approach to project management. To support the adoption of Agile Marketing at Elevator, I completed Agile for All’s Certified ScrumMaster training.
Throughout the impressive, two-day course, I was blown-away by the parallels of agile and scrum principles and our systematic, measurable marketing solutions. As of late, Agile and Scrum principles have supported our ability to generate highly qualified leads in five unique ways:
Agile Marketing Humanizes Lead Generation
A successful inbound marketer always remembers that the lead they are generating is a real-life, living, breathing human being. As we, inbound marketers, are finding success through automated marketing processes, it can be easy to overlook the human element of lead generation.
Fortunately, agile values privilege individuals, interactions, and customer collaborations over processes:
- Staying true to the original Agile Manifesto, we adhere to their values of “individuals and interactions over processes and tools” and “customer collaboration over contract negotiation”.
- As we take the mindset of individuals, interactions, and collaborations with our clients, we are better able to respond to the current digital environment. It is easy to latch onto contract deliverables. Yet, agile values ask us to value collaboration -- we are learning that it is important to build in flexibility into our solutions.
As we integrate agile values into our production, the practices have transcended to our lead generation process. We frequently pause to ask ourselves:
a) Who is the individual we are targeting?
b) How will this interaction be of value to them?
c) How can we make this a collaborative experience for the lead we are targeting?
Agile Marketing Teaches Us That Our Goal is Lead Generation, Period
Another important value we have adopted from the Agile Manifesto is “working software over comprehensive documentation”. For us, working software translates to highly qualified leads.
Therefore, our goal is simple: generate highly qualified leads.
I know what you’re thinking, generating highly qualified leads is not simple. And, you’re right. That’s why we have adopted the agile value, “responding to change over following a plan”.
At Elevator, our “plan” is crafting an Ideal Smarketing Funnel for each of our clients. As we build out our client’s funnels, we implement three Scrum Theories to respond to change as things happen:
Inspect the Plan
In an ideal world, we create smarketing funnels for our clients and they immediately receive highly qualified leads. Often times, this does happen! When it does, the first thing we do is an “inspection”. We review the campaign and annotate the actions that contributed to our lead generation success.
Nevertheless, sometimes it takes a bit longer for the leads to trickle in…And, when that happens, we do the exact same thing we do when our campaigns are successful, we inspect our efforts. To inspect:
- We review the plan we created at the start of the campaign and analyze the various components - we check our Google Analytics and our HubSpot dashboards.
- We identify where customers are getting stuck or dropping off their “journey.”
- Once we have identified our successes and potential weaknesses, we borrow from another Scrum Theory: adaption.
Adapt the Plan to Create Successes
In actual “Scrum World” adaption functions a bit differently than we apply it in Agile Marketing. However, for us, adaptation refers to changes we make based off the information we gather when we inspect the performance of our campaigns:
- When our inspection reveals successful insights, we adapt those insights to other clients so they, too, can benefit.
- For the weakness we have identified, we focus on adapting one piece of the campaign at a time until we see improvements.
At this point, you may wonder: What does success mean? Or, what constitutes an improvement? These questions lead us to our third Scrum Value: transparency.
Set Transparent Expectations - With Clients and The Internal Team
In Scrum World, transparency refers to the definition of “done.” For us, transparency and the definition of “done" refer to:
- The smart goals we set at the start of each campaign…
- The deliverables we send to our clients.
For our clients, we do not simply launch a campaign and hope for the best. We work with our client to understand their business goals; from there, we set transparent campaign goals that help accomplish our client’s objectives. At the beginning of each campaign, we have a transparent definition of what success means.
Furthermore, before we start working on a project, we gather as many details as possible and communicate what the final outcome will look like to our client. That way, the goal for the final deliverable is transparent to both our client and our internal team member working on production.
To conclude, we are new to Agile Marketing and we would love to hear what works for you!
However, we are experts at Lead Generation and we would love for you to join us for our online training event, Growing Your Organization: The Inbound Lead Generation Strategy That's Generating a 594% Average Increase in Leads, click here to register!