The long tried-and-tested principles of project management fit like a glove when it comes to attaining marketing goals and objectives. From planning to delivery, a well managed marketing plan is 3 times more likely to see success, than one that is executed in a haphazard manner.
Most leading organizations swear by this approach, yet most small and medium sized businesses still stick to winging it with the hopes of attaining success. If your business has a marketing budget, no matter how small or big, you need to ensure certain project management best practices are in place to see the best possible outcome.
In this guide, we outline and provide a brief primer on how the boilerplate project management framework can be applied to marketing, both seamlessly, and effectively.
What Is Marketing Project Management?
Marketing project management, like all other types of project management, is the application of process, skills, methods, and resources to attain certain goals or deliverables for the concerned parties.
In the case of marketing projects, they are often spearheaded by a product owner, marketing agency, or the head of marketing at a large company. Based on the objectives or deliverables of the project, it is then broken down into smaller manageable chunks, which are then divided, and delegated to relevant team members.
Each of the chunks come with specific objectives, milestones, and timelines of their own, which the project manager remains on top of and takes stock of at regular intervals. Whether your project involves B2B content marketing strategies for tech marketers, or has a consumer focused strategy with a global audience, it can fall flat without the right planning and project management.
Whether for marketing or development, all projects broadly go through the following phases during the course of their life cycles,
When dealing with marketing specifically, here are a few key components that fit perfectly in a project management template.
1. Objectives & Analysis
As in the case with all projects, it starts with a clear understanding of the goals and objectives. The project owners should be able to define the end goals, or deliverables, along with the key metrics and indicators that will serve to ascertain performance.
These objectives, metrics, and end goals are then analyzed to ensure feasibility, along with identifying any gaps that exist during the planning process. This process is completed in close collaboration with various stakeholders to ensure everyone is on the same page, and know what to expect.
2. Resource Allocation
Once the goals are clear, the next stage is determining the resources required to achieve them, in the form of budget, manpower, and other assets.
The rate of utilization of these resources, along with the returns it manages to generate is a crucial metric for project performance management. Effective managers will aim to maximize utilization, and generate returns with as low a budget as possible.
3. Task Management
In this stage, the project is divided into manageable chunks, or small individual tasks that can be easily delegated and tracked.
Each task is a mini project, with its own objectives, timelines, and resources allocated, along with ownership assigned to a particular team member.
Dividing tasks helps clarify on the individual goals and objectives more clearly, making it easier to hold assignees accountable for accomplishing them. As a result, they are indispensable for large, complex projects with too many moving parts.
4. Monitor & Review
Once the project is on-course, it will start to generate copious amounts of data, with some matching the performance benchmarks set, and others showing variances. At this stage, the objective will be to take corrective action, and set the project back on track.
In the case of marketing projects, this might include the ROIs on campaigns, or conversions being generated. With the right tracking measures and changes, things can be brought back on course, before they can deviate or derail the entire project.
Taking a project management approach to marketing comes with a host of different benefits, ranging from higher efficiencies and better resource allocation, to even productivity improvements.
Given the wide range of tools and solutions available for this, getting started is fairly straightforward, with a much narrower learning curve, as compared to the past.