Agile Digital Marketing for Businesses Today
by Eliza Espino
The novel coronavirus pandemic is sweeping the world, affecting 213 countries and territories, as well as two international conveyances. As of June 2020, there have been over 7 million cases reported worldwide. The uncertainties and challenges brought upon by the pandemic disrupted lives, communities, livelihoods, and businesses around the globe.
In response, many business leaders were adapting to the changes and started going digital to maintain core business functions and cash flows. They are reshaping their strategies by incorporating agile marketing principles to deal with the downturns, recover from revenue losses, and survive through the crisis.
This is a more active approach for managing workflows, campaigns, projects, and prioritizing tasks based on the customers’ evolving needs. It’s the ideal strategy for Digital Marketing amidst coronavirus.
What is Agile Digital Marketing?
First off, let’s define what agile marketing is. Agile marketing is all about swiftly delivering campaigns and accomplishing tasks and delivering results in response to the fast-changing landscape, especially during challenging times like a pandemic or any unexpected crisis.
This involves streamlining your internal processes, fine-tuning your teams, communicating transparently and openly, utilizing adaptive strategic planning, and listening to the customers’ needs. In these trying times, companies will find it difficult to get by if they stick with old habits.
Moreover, the most critical aspect of this strategy is arguably adjusting your brand messaging and position according to the current situation. You must be sensitive, and you need to show social responsibility, empathy, consumer centricity, and humanity. Not only will this help your digital responses more empathic, but it can also help you gain a competitive advantage.
An agile marketing approach is less about working faster on different projects and more on applying proven workflows to carry out your team’s goals more effectively and efficiently. It helps businesses come out in good shape by embracing the unexpected and responding and adapting to the changes and demands of both your target audience and the industry as a whole.
Ways to Implement Agile Digital Marketing into Your Strategy
•Arrange a system for listening
Keep an ear on the ground where your audiences are. If you don’t set up a listening system, you’ll miss a lot of opportunities and customer sentiments that need immediate attention.
Consider investing in a social listening tool like Brand24 or Hootsuite to help you stay updated with trends, keywords, and sentiments from users. It also enables you to manage accounts easier. You can set up a Google Alert for your brand keywords, and set the recurrence to email you whenever it happens for monitoring.
•Get ready to respond fast
Naturally, the faster you respond to opportunities and setbacks, the better. This is an advantage to small businesses and startups since they don’t have to go through a hurdle of policies and even lawyers.
For instance, when a viral subject or a trend happens and you see an opportunity to react, respond as soon as possible. Doing so can make an impact or leave a good impression on your audience because your responses are real-time. Waiting for a few hours or a day later may still make an impact, but it wouldn’t give you as big of an exposure. With agile digital marketing, you have to be quick.
Make Real-Time Adjustments
Agile digital marketing is driven by real-time analytics and testing continuously to spot opportunities or answers to problems and working smarter in a shorter amount of time.
Typically, you would probably have to wait for a monthly or quarterly assessment to carry out necessary changes. But, when in dire times and running into some issues, you need to make real-time adjustments to refine your workflow more efficiently or run a better campaign.
7 Tips on How to Shift to Agile Digital Marketing During Business Dips
1.Build your agile team of marketers
Prior to planning, you must first build your core of agile digital marketing team members. You don’t need a huge team to start, though you need to have both creative- and critical-thinking members who can respond to tasks and projects faster and with more conviction.
This team of leaders should be able to adhere to your timeline, adapt to the changes swiftly, meet the determined objectives, be highly collaborative, and be responsive throughout the marketing process. This can be implemented into your existing digital marketing team structure.
However, you can allow your team to decide who they think would excel in the available positions. The right people should know how to work smarter, not just harder.
2.Plan for possible changes
To help you anticipate the possible changes, consider creating a collaborative spreadsheet where your team can input their change suggestions. Such changes may include team deployments, updating task and project checklists, approval processes, and more to conform to the limitations present in the current environment.
You can involve as many people in your team or company as possible to hear diverse suggestions and help you come up with a decision faster. Transparency and open communication are crucial in agile marketing.
3.Discuss marketing objectives
It’s vital to define your business priorities and objectives and to align them with your brand’s goals. You have to assess and understand your existing marketing strategy and see how it is performing. Often, an agile team of digital marketers can identify their marketing objectives within a specific time and focus their collective efforts on these projects.
For instance, customers look for products with intent. If the objective is to be where your customers are in the buyer’s journey, you must be present at every touchpoint. You have to reach them at their key moment of intent, especially when they are actively looking for their options and when they are ready to buy, whether through mobile or desktop ads, or local SEO efforts.
4.Improve business processes
The long-term goal and the bigger picture are all about improving your processes to deliver the best possible service for your customers. Test your marketing concept, assess the result of the campaign, refine and attune your strategy according to your findings, and repeat.
Additionally, take time to review and tweak your marketing automation campaigns and lead nurturing programs if necessary. Today, and with agile marketing in mind, you can’t accomplish everything with precision manually.
You need to take advantage of technological tools and advancements like machine learning for better data insights, analysis, and overall performance. This will also help you lean towards better marketing decisions.
5.Choose the right digital channels
Today’s consumers are getting more and more digitally savvy. You must demonstrate transparency across your digital marketing channels, whether it be through email, your website, content marketing and SEO, and social media.
Your social media channels can establish and boost your trustworthiness and online visibility. Social media is where feedback and criticism are commonplace. Thus, your brand messages should focus on a tone and angle that encourages and embraces relationship building. You must also be responsive to win positive experiences from your audience.
6.Produce relevant content
With agile marketing, it’s essential that you always read the room and stay updated with the current events to align your message. In content marketing, it should be your top priority to deliver content that offers real value to your target market.
If necessary, you should make changes to your scheduled promotions, content, and other campaigns on your website and other channels if they are rendered untimely and irrelevant.
Check if you have scheduled blogs, email marketing campaigns, or social media campaigns that may appear insensitive or out of touch with the ongoing affairs in your community, industry, or current events. You may want to put any inappropriate posts on hold, revise them, or draft new content relevant to your audience.
7. Maintain customer relationships
Ultimately, you must continuously deliver the A+ customer experience that you were able to uphold before any crisis, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, surfaced. Leaving your customers clueless about your new processes or policies can tarnish the healthy relationship you’ve built. It will also make it harder for your brand to sway them back if you unintentionally leave them in the dark.
Implementing the agile marketing approach means you should focus on your customer’s immediate needs and provide the answers to their questions. This could mean making adjustments to the content you’ve already produced to address your audience’s current needs.
Summing it up
Employing agile marketing practices can ramp up the speed, consistency, flexibility, and productivity of your business during challenging times, and it helps ensure business continuity. The marketing landscape is ever-evolving as it is; sticking to the traditional methods will only slow you down.
As you move forward with embracing the agile marketing approach, do keep in mind that it will take you some time to adjust to it. That’s why it’s crucial to have the right members in your core team to help you make sound and fast decisions.
Changing your marketing strategy can be a bit intimidating and overwhelming. However, deciding to go for the big switch may be precisely what your business needs to survive a crisis or stand out against other competitors.
September 6, 2021