Implement MVP agile practices

Business Benefits

Use agile practices to run flexible marketing campaigns and manage a team.

Conduct daily stand-up sessions to allow team members to give small updates and ask for help on any blocking issues.

Ask questions like:

  • Am I blocked on anything? Do I need help?
  • What will I do today to move forward on strategic projects (not BAU)? The focus is only on relevant OKR-related projects that the team members are all aware of or working on together.
  • Have I discovered new learning or hack to share with my teammates today?

Write customer-focused user stories to help teams see their projects through the eyes of your customers.

The typical structure for a user story is, "As a [type of customer], I want [something] so I can [achieve some goal].

  • Strategic-level user stories are overarching, encompass large initiatives defined by leadership, and guide marketers in their tactical decision-making. A typical structure for a strategic-level user story is: “As a customer persona type X, I want PRODUCT X, so I can achieve goal X, Y, Z.
  • Tactical-level user stories break down strategic-level user stories into more granular, detailed pieces. For example, “As a potential online conference attendee, I would like a user-friendly landing page about the upcoming event, so I can get acquainted with the program, plan ahead which talks I want to attend virtually, and RSVP, so I can add the date to my calendar.
  • Internal team user stories are granular enough to give actionable directions to the team. However, their focus is not the customer; instead, they focus on the needs of the internal team during the work process. For example, “As a marketing team member, I would like a robust tool with heat mapping to measure how customers are interacting with new landing pages to help develop new hypotheses that I can test.

Run retrospective meetings at the end of a project to help teams figure out what went well, what didn’t go so well, and what they can learn for future projects.

There are two main formats that you can try:

  • Stop, Start, Continue, in which the team uses Post-its to brain dump some of their best and worst process practices.
  • The Sailboat Retrospective technique, in which the team maps out their anchors (what’s holding them back), wind in their sails (what’s helping them move forward), and rocks (potential risks they might face in the future).

Image of a boat on the sea breaking down the core components of the sailboat retrospective technique.

Deliver content to clients every 1-3 weeks to keep momentum up and inspiration fresh.

By adjusting how larger projects are developed and then released, marketers can collect feedback from customers as they deliver incremental value. The alternative—launching huge, expensive initiatives all at once and hoping customers respond well—bears the same risks as a radical redesign.

41% of marketers say they’re making use of more frequent releases by delivering smaller initiatives regularly to build up to larger campaigns, instead of going for a Big Bang.

Use Kanban boards (physical or digital) to visually represent tasks moving from stage to stage.

A crucial role of any marketing team lead is to monitor this area of the workflow and influence external stakeholders to meet their SLAs.

Typical columns for marketers are:

  • Backlog
  • In progress
  • Done
  • Accepted

Due to external dependencies, most Kanban boards also include a “Pending” (PEN) column. Tasks in this process stage are still visualized in the team process yet outside of the team’s control (e.g., legal or compliance review).

A simple development workflow on a Kanban board might look like this:

Marketers might also:

  • Use horizontal swimlanes to separate work by the business unit from which it originated (or type).
  • Color code cards to indicate work that should be treated differently as it flows through the process (e.g., urgent, deadline, maintenance).