Leveraging SCRUM, retrospectives and two-week sprints to fine-tune agile marketing processes

Leveraging SCRUM, retrospectives and two-week sprints to fine-tune agile marketing processes

In part 1 of this 3-part blog series, I spoke with Ryan, Director of Marketing at Planview, about why marketing professionals are embracing agile marketing.

At Planview, benefits of the agile transition have outweighed the challenges. Work is now broken into smaller segments and can be done in phases for better collaboration, visibility, and prioritization. In Part 2 of our series, Ryan and I discuss change management and agile methods that work.

How did you get started with the transition/change management of agile marketing?

Ryan Doherty: “From a change management perspective, it was helpful that our Marketing VP and our EVP of Products were supportive of this change effort and helped to communicate the importance of the adoption of this new initiative across marketing. We also conducted research into different elements of agile and brought in an agile development expert to discuss basic agile methods and how they might be implemented into a Marketing organization. We discussed options and made a cross-team decision. We implemented agile with two-week sprints and had our review, retrospective, and planning meetings every two weeks. We also scheduled daily SCRUM meetings, which helped to keep priorities in order and spark better communication.”

How did you adjust the process along the way?

The retrospective was our central point for process changes. We would go over the previous feedback to determine if we had addressed all issues. After reviewing the last sprint, we would go around and give everyone a chance to speak on what went well or didn’t go so well. How could we improve? What processes needed to change? With a passionate group, we had some strong opinions and lively discussions, which ultimately made our team function better as a whole. As time passed and sprints ended, each retrospective became shorter and shorter. There were fewer issues and everyone was saying “this is really working well”, because it was.”

So, how did agile marketing evolve and what are some of the benefits?

We started out with a more “formal” agile process and developed into our own style. The team would make suggestions and give input on changes. We now have greater visibility into the total team workload. We can set and adjust priorities to meet changes easily. Our workload has actually increased but the stress level and emergency firefighting has gone way down. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

What technology is the team using to make agile marketing a reality?

“We tried a couple of online tools. Some were good for small things but we quickly outgrew them. We use Projectplace for managing our projects, status updates, and Kanban boards to run our agile marketing practice now.”

Stay tuned for part 3 in our series, Getting started with agile marketing and project collaboration. You can also download, Project Collaboration: Use Cases for Marketing to learn more collaborating for success.

Has your organization tried to implement agile marketing? What technology are you using to support this effort? Share by leaving a comment below.

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