Agile marketing is becoming more and more popular in corporate level businesses and meshes incredibly well with our technology-driven culture and the growing flexibility in both the workplace and marketplace. It helps companies be more responsive to change and better at recognizing opportunities to innovate. But agile marketing isn’t just for big corporations; small businesses can leverage agile marketing methodologies with great success.
What is Agile Marketing?
Defining agile marketing can be a bit tricky since it’s more of a methodology rather than a specific strategy. It means focusing on flexibility, efficiency, and responsiveness rather than sticking to a rigid, long-term plan. It also means embracing change, which may cause many project leaders to shudder. But in the end, this approach fosters innovation, and creativity, and is oriented to the needs of the customer, rather than the project.
Agile marketing is basically the breaking down of traditional marketing work into smaller increments, putting greater emphasis on customer feedback, and responding quickly to both problems and ideas as they arise. An agile marketing team is constantly gathering customer feedback, interacting with one another, and problem solving. Agile marketing is team driven and customer focused, which, in these days where social media can turn the world on a dime, has obvious advantages.
“Ugh, another meeting!” Anyone working in a corporate environment has no doubt uttered this phrase (usually under his or her breath) while skulking into a conference room, resigned to an hour or two of their work day being lost.
Agile marketing teams have meetings too; however they are usually no longer than fifteen minutes and are often held standing up. These short meetings are razor focused on what is happening at that moment, what happened the moment before, and how to proceed to the next moment. And the meetings end with everyone having a small specific goal to accomplish. Just like the scrum in a football game.
And just like a football team, whatever is happening at the business at that moment is instantly assessed and addressed. The team becomes more responsive to the needs of the customer, and the business becomes more agile in the marketplace.
The Benefits of Agile Marketing for Small Business
You are probably already beginning to see how agile marketing can be an incredibly effective approach in today’s super-fast, customer-centric marketplace. But let’s go ahead and list some of these benefits out.
- puts the emphasis on customer experience.
- is more effective at timely problem solving.
- provides faster responses to customer issues and complaints.
- emphasizes improving results through ongoing assessment.
- moves at the speed of social media.
- encourages teamwork and participation.
- breaks up the monotony of larger projects and campaigns.
- engages part time and temporary help more effectively.
- encourages innovation.
Getting Your Business Starting on the Path of Agile Marketing
The reality is that most small businesses don’t have a big marketing team and many work with outside marketing professionals. So how could agile marketing be implemented in these situations?
For a small business with a sole marketing person, the agile team would consist of everyone working at the business. The agile methodology didn’t begin with marketing but rather came out of software design. The agile approach is excellent for every aspect of business.
Let’s say you have a small retail business – the scrum would consist of everyone on hand and would focus on every aspect of the customer’s experience both in store and on the web. The amount of feedback a marketing person would have to work with after a few minutes would be invaluable, plus all other aspects of day-to-day operations would be quickly evaluated and small tasks assigned to address them.
Businesses that work with outside marketing professionals have even more to gain from the agile approach. Beyond benefiting every aspect of the business, the scrum can provide outside marketing professionals incredible insight into the wants and needs of your customers. It is your responsibility, however, to either include a representative from the outside marketing team in the scrums or provide them a quick account of what problems were encountered and addressed. A customer’s needs are pure gold to a good marketing team.
Here at Blink;Tech, we’ve been using agile methodologies for many years and not only for inhouse work, but also in how we engage and work with our clients. We’ve even simplified it down into a cycle consisting of three components: Build, Promote, Evaluate. You can learn more about that here.
If you need help with marketing your business in our fast-moving, social media-driven business world, we can help! Call us at (941) 548-9950 or contact us below!