Archive

Monthly Archives: May 2015

This post is part of the ongoing series that defines different types of marketing and focuses on Agile Marketing.

The gist of agile marketing

I’ve followed in the tracks of Agile Marketing Manifesto and their inspiration from Travis Arnold to give you these defining points:

  • Validated learning over opinions and conventions
  • Customer focused collaboration over silos and hierarchy
  • Small adaptive and iterative campaigns over Big-Bang campaigns
  • The process of customer discovery over static prediction
  • Flexible vs. rigid planning
  • Responding to change over following a plan

To lean what agile marketing is, I did a lot of reading, talked to some people using agile marketing and went to a few events to listen to the experts.  To keep with the series format, I’ll cover the basics and then expand on each of the bullets below.

Which marketing situations does agile marketing serve best? “Agile methodology allows the Modern Marketing Team to adapt to fast-changing market conditions, respond to immediate sales needs, and prove ROI quickly and consistently.” (Source: HubSpot)

HubSpot's Presentation on Agile Marketing

HubSpot’s Presentation on Agile Marketing

What does a marketing team need to implement agile marketing?  Alligators or Crocodiles??

More on this soon – I’m waiting for access to a presentation by Keith Nottonson at Optimizely who presented at this Meetup recently.  If I haven’t posted anything yet, you can check here to see if it’s uploaded.

Keith Nottonson of Optimizely presents on Agile Marketing at Zendesk, 2015.05.20

Keith Nottonson of Optimizely presents on Agile Marketing at Zendesk, 2015.05.20

What’s an agile marketing case study, showcasing success?  Check out this article on Mashable.com that features examples from Carsurfing, Teradata Applications, and Cafe Press.

What’s an agile marketing fail?  There are actually two different points I want to touch on.

a) You’re right, sometimes agile marketing isn’t the ticket.  A lot of the agile marketing fails I’ve heard about relate to companies whose marketing teams got so caught up in agile marketing that they were missing the big picture.  As Michael Heinz of Heinz Marketing says:

“We have to be careful that we don’t let all this great activity that we’re getting done because of Agile Marketing lull us into thinking that we’re accomplishing our goals just because we’re moving so much from the Sprint backlog column into the done column.” (source: agilemarketing.net)

b) Anyone who is “doing” agile marketing is bound to fail – because that’s part of the process!  Jim Ewel explains AFLAC’s duck masot initially failed in Japan.  Due to the agile marketing approach taken on the mini test launch, the failure wasn’t fatal because risk was mitigated.  Also, AFLAC turned their fail lemons into lemonade using results from the mini test to adapt the brand appropriately and enter the Japanese market successfully.

What’s everybody else doing?  Check out this survey of CMOs discussed by Forbes that compares how many companies think agile marketing is important versus those that are using agile marketing – and more.

Definition Breakout: So what do all those points mean anyway?

  • Validated learning over opinions and conventions
    • This one seems pretty obvious, but a lot of people don’t realize how many decisions they make that aren’t based on data, or the more subtle – aren’t based on recent enough/relevant enough data.  Agile marketing relies on a constant flow of new results data and requires it to be used for decision making, not just reporting.
  • Customer focused collaboration over silos and hierarchy
    • A lot of this “constant flow of new results data” comes from your leads or customers.  It should be shared and compared with other internal data (like data from other parts of the sales/marketing funnel) which may require interdepartmental cooperation.  This is important for decision making.
  • Small adaptive and iterative campaigns over Big-Bang campaigns
  • The process of customer discovery over static prediction
    • Customers may not act within the boundaries of a marketing team-defined series of categories.  This is OKAY.  Customer discovery might help redefine or require new categories.  It’s better to understand your customers than fit them into a box right off the bat.
  • Flexible vs. rigid planning
    • If you’re running a campaign and glean actionable results from it, those results should be acted upon even if they go against the plan.
Advertisements

In school marketing is taught as encompassing price, product, place and promotion.  My professor added perception to the original 4 Ps.  Marketing has developed a lot since the copyright date on my college textbooks to include email marketing, Facebook marketing, and agile marketing.  This What is Marketing series touches on several different types of marketing whether it’s a marketing style, strategy or tactic.  At some point, I plan to put together some sort of map to visualize the relationships between each – that’s a project for later.

First up, Agile Marketing!