If you’re still unsure about agile marketing, what it is, and whether it’s worth it — you better listen up. Marketing has fundamentally changed. I’m not just talking about ten years ago, but just recently it has drastically changed. Marketing today is in a constant state of flux. It’s different today than it was six months to a year ago and there’s no guarantee that what works for you today will work for you next week, month or year. The speed in which change occurs is only quickening and if organizations fail to adapt they will become history.
In the last five years alone, we’ve seen the impact of mobile on consumer consumption of content, the proliferation of social media tools, and the maturing of social channels in impacting audience sentiments about organizations, topics and decisions. According to a post by Senior Solutions Consultant, Joel Dixion, how organizations address this new reality is at the heart of why agile marketing can no longer be ignored.
Agility is no longer a “nice to have”, but a “must have” for your organization to succeed. Shifting from a traditional marketing structure to an agile one isn’t easy. If you are still unsure that it’s worth it, here are some reasons that should help convince you:
Shorter Marketing Campaigns
The traditional 12-18 month marketing calendar is important, yet not relevant to todays speed of business. Your target audience and communication channels change too quickly for you to wait a year before understanding the impact of your marketing efforts. Agile marketing focuses on developing shorter campaigns in order to maximize the marketer’s flexibility. This way, the marketing team can accurately measure the success of each campaign, which will inevitably affect the overall strategy and the immediate next steps.
Favor lots of small experiments
Agile marketing focuses on lots of small, inexpensive experiments versus fewer large-scale tests. The point here is that it’s ok to fail, so long as it’s a learning experience. Smaller, shorter experiments also make it easier for teams to look back and analyze what worked, what didn’t and iterate on the test moving forward. Dixon puts it best by saying “Do you really want to take a year of analysis to come up with the perfect marketing strategy only to discover you had the right ideas but you’re now a year too late? Or why bet the farm on the chance of a single stroke of genius?” Instead, it’s better to adopt the philosophy of “the best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas.”
Data, Data, Data
Part of the beauty of the last ten years is that there’s been an explosion in tools to help marketers test, and analyze their campaigns. Another reason why agile focuses on short execution periods is that they allow marketers to stay on top of campaign performance. For example, if a campaign only lasts two weeks, then marketers are constantly analyzing the data and have a very good pulse on what’s working and what’s not. This way there really is no disconnect between marketers and the data. Now, marketers can remove that “gut” feeling and instead when the boss asks why you ran that campaign you can sight data. Nothing settles an argument faster than objective numbers.
Remember that Charles Darwin once said “it is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”