Why Agile Marketing Resonates

Agile Marketing Speed
Image courtesy of Ernest Viernest

When I speak to audiences about Agile Marketing, it resonates. There is a hunger for a solution to what Rohn Jay Miller calls “the dysfunctional room that marketing lives in”.

I think there is no question that marketing has gone through more change in the last 3-5 years than at any time in the last 50 years. And many marketers are looking for something to help them cope with these changes.

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Interview with Scott Brinker, Chief Marketing Technologist

I recently sat down with Scott Brinker, one of the founders and CTO of Ion Interactive and the author of the Chief Marketing Technologist blog, which was recently chosen as the “Best Marketing Operations Blog” by the readers of Marketing Sherpa. Scott is one of my blogging heroes, and someone who was instrumental in making me aware of the possibilities of Agile Marketing.

His post, Ideas for an Agile Marketing Manifesto, was one of the first resources I came across when I began researching Agile Marketing, and it is still one of the best blog posts out there on the subject.

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How to Run an Agile Marketing Sprint Planning Session

Sprint Planning Meeting
Based on a diagram created by Mountain Goat Software

Agile Marketing teams that are using Scrum begin the Sprint process with an Agile Marketing Sprint Planning session. Sprint Planning, one of the four key “ceremonies” of Scrum (the others are the Sprint Review, Sprint Retrospective and the daily Scrum), establishes the baseline assumptions of the company’s approach to the market, the goals of the Sprint, and the list of activities which the marketing team will do to reach those goals. To say that it is important to the success of the Sprint, and to the success of the marketing team, would be an understatement.

So how does one run a successful Agile Marketing Sprint Planning session? What are the key agenda items? What are the inputs? What are the outputs? I’ll try to answer these questions and more in this post.

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People Trump Process

Photo courtesy of Vagawi

Sometimes it seems like Agile is all about the process: Scrum or Kanban or some ad hoc mixture of both. Particularly when you’re first learning about Agile, you can be intrigued or overwhelmed by the vocabulary related to process: sprints, ceremonies, sprint planning, sprint review, sprint retrospective, daily scrum, burndown charts, user stories, points.

But at SprintZero on Monday, I was struck by both the discussions and by the people involved, of the importance of attitudes, skill sets and trust. Agile isn’t all about the process; People Trump Process.

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The Making of a Manifesto

Agile Marketing Manifesto teamOn Monday, we held the first ever gathering of Agile Marketers at an event called SprintZero. There have been a number of wonderful summaries and recaps of the event (here for example). For whatever reason, I needed a couple of days to allow my own thoughts to crystalize.

Marketing at a Crossroads

Nearly all the marketers in the room felt that marketing is at a crossroads – we could continue down the well-marked road of big campaigns, clamoring for attention, shouting at our buyer’s like carnival barkers, or we could turn off on to the less-traveled path pointed to by scarecrows on a post like Seth Godin (Permission Marketing) and David Meerman Scott (The New Rules of Marketing and PR).

Old marketing is dead, but it simply won’t die. As Marty Smith said, when shouting doesn’t work, some just turn up the volume. We, Agile Marketers, will add our voice to the growing call for marketing to change – to become more attuned to customers, to become more permission-based, to become more transparent, and yes, to become more agile.

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