Your online marketing strategy is important to running and maintaining your business, but are you optimizing its efficiency as much as you do in other departments?

When it comes to applying an agile philosophy to your company, don’t overlook your online marketing department.

Here’s our tips for successfully applying the SCRUM methodology to your online marketing team.

What is Scrum?

Originally created for software development projects, the methodology behind scrum is applicable to many industries and teams. Scrum is essentially a framework to organize teams for quicker performance and greater creativity. With a small team, you set up “sprints,” which is a finite period of work towards an objective or a project.

This short timeframe helps you not waste valuable resources and hours working on non-mission critical tasks.

The scrum framework is therefore structured using 4 main Scrum components:

1) Sprint Planning: The sprint for a marketing team could be completing a small marketing project, creating a tutorial video for clients on specific topics, or developing a short Twitter campaign for a new product. Or it can be all of the above, rolled into one: because marketing teams usually have various projects going on, the sprint might mix various projects together.

In order to complete the sprint, the time-boxed objective or project needs to be carefully detailed with tasks by your team, and your team must have a complete definition of what makes the sprint “done” and finished.

Often a sprint is planned as part of a large “backlog,” or list of tasks that need to be achieved by the team but have been ignored or mishandled previously.

2) Daily Scrum or Daily Standup: The daily scrum or daily standup is a mini-meeting (15 minutes long) dedicated to the sprint, and its goal is to have team members briefly discuss what was done the day before, what needs to be completed today, and what obstacles might stop the team from reaching the goal.

The daily scrum helps team members not only recognize their progress, but also make them accountable for what they have done and will commit to doing today. It also helps the entire group by identifying what might be in the way of the goal, and how they can work together to find solutions or at least know why something didn’t happen.

Just implementing this portion of the scrum framework into your daily work routine can have amazing results.

3) Sprint Review: At the end of the sprint, a collaborative review occurs. This is when the team looks at the sprint and reflects on what was completed on the backlog, and what needs to be revised for completing the backlog in future sprints. Overall, the members of the team share what worked, what didn’t work, and how they solved problems or completed tasks. This helps move the team along into the next sprint.

4) Sprint Retrospective: Unlike the sprint review, the sprint retrospective focuses on the members themselves. It allows the team to talk about people, processes, and relationships that helped get the task done, and what needs improvement. It’s a good way to allow for accountability, and will help further organize people and tasks for the next sprint.

What Makes Scrum Different in Online Marketing

At first it can be hard to see where scrum can be applied to online marketing, especially when considering the definition of “done.” For marketers, “emailing,” “blogging,” or “social media engagement” can’t be done: they are all ongoing processes that keep needing revising, and don’t necessarily have a completed deadline.

For online marketing teams, the sprints therefore make prioritization a major goal. This way, tasks that might be repeated in the future (such as a marketing campaign) can be tackled in order of importance on a day-to-day schedule, streamlining everyone’s work towards a better overall strategy.

In addition, agile marketing and the scrum method also encourage improvement over time, and see revision as a necessary factor of growth as well. The agile framework necessitates that your marketing team sees their strategies in smaller components and grouping tasks that can be finished in a sprint, and all the sprints culminate in a fast pace, efficient experience.

Overall, the scrum method can be applied to your online marketing team, and allows for adjustments as you improve your sprints and your day-to-day work. T

o learn more about how you can implement agile marketing strategies, contact us.