What is a Marketing Project? ‘We don’t do ‘projects‘ in Marketing’, I hear you say. ‘We do strategy and conceptualisation; we uncover insight and manage brand equities, etc.’ Yes, that’s true. Ultimately, though, the purpose of Marketing is to sell more of your goods and services by giving the consumer (and the trade) more reasons to purchase your products rather than the competition’s offerings.
So, you develop New Products, you Repackage existing products, you develop Line Extensions and invest in various Branding techniques. You develop Advertising campaigns, Promotions, Sponsorships, Memberships Clubs and send out Email Newsletters. You’ll almost certainly set up a Website, you might highlight your Green Credentials to your target audience, you’ll definitely want to gain as much visibility as possible, whether that’s by Merchandising products in store or gaining Testimonials for your services. All great initiatives and all could be described as discrete pieces of work, or ‘projects’! Each piece of work has a defined beginning and end and it has constraints – Time, Quality and Budget – all of which sound very much like a project.
So, if marketers manage ‘projects’ on a day to day basis, then there are lots of helpful tools that can be used to improve the likelihood of success:
- Write a Project Plan, keep an Issues Log, anticipate the Risks and (very importantly), capture the Learnings at the end of the project
- There are several software applications to help you to manage your marketing projects, some very complex, some much simpler to use
To many marketers, this all smacks of ‘process‘, a dirty word which ‘stifles creativity’. This mindset should be questioned, particularly with the growth of Web2.0 technologies and Social Networking. You need to collaborate with your colleagues and this means that you all need to understand where you’re at with the project, which will not be the case if all of the details are logged firmly in your head!
Our society enables us all to specialise and work together. If we hadn’t evolved this way we’d still all be hunter-gatherers, struggling for our own survival each year. So why, when we get to work, do we often revert back to working for ourselves? We keep our own spreadsheets, manage our own work in our own ways and often do little to collaborate effectively. Why not share more and reduce the burden on ourselves? That’s how Facebook has grown into the phenomenon that’s it’s become – they encourage anyone to develop their own software to share with other Facebook members.
There is no doubt that a more ‘process driven’ approach to marketing projects will grow the bottom line of your business – less duplication of effort, fewer misunderstandings and smarter team working are obvious benefits. There are many more. A bit of process will not stifle creativity, quite the reverse. If you’re more organised, you’ll have more time for thinking. If you can’t stand the thought of increasing your own admin, maybe it can be centralised within the department – there will be staff members who enjoy it! Why have brands such as Audi, Cadbury, Heinz, Hovis and Persil and a host of others thrived? Apart from all the other things that they do so well, they believe in the benefit of using processes to manage their brands.
How much duplication of effort goes on in your business? (a ‘best guess’ will suffice). If you applied a more process driven approach, how much less time would be wasted? Worth pondering?
I had a rose named after me and I was very flattered. But I was not pleased to read the description in the catalog: – ‘No good in a bed, but fine against a wall.’
– Eleanor Roosevelt
The secret of a good sermon is to have a good beginning and a good ending; and to have the two as close together as possible.
– George Burns
Santa Claus has the right idea. Visit people only once a year.
– Victor Borge
Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.
– Mark Twain
I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.
– Groucho Marx
My wife has a slight impediment in her speech. Every now and then she stops to breathe.
– Jimmy Durante
I have never hated a man enough to give his diamonds back.
– Zsa Zsa Gabor
Rob Horlock specialises in helping the commercial side of businesses to review and map processes, manage projects ands improve individual and team working efficiencies. This also includes improving the effectiveness of your emarketing, particularly in the area of turning prospects into customers. If you would like to find out more, see http://www.ef-ef.co.uk or email: email@example.com