In today's keynote session at #MixWest14Â Duncan AlneyÂ (@firebelly)Â with Firebelly Marketing spoke quite a bit about a new model of marketing they've begun using at their agency. They've grown rapidly in the last year and have continued and expanded the Â amount of great work they do for their clients.
An "Agile" software environment is something you may have heard of before, but probably not in the realm of a marketing team. I won't spend any time explaining the Agile environment in software development, but will focus on what it means to a marketing team as shared by Duncan. Hiring a digital agency can take your marketing efforts to the next level so you should not hesitate in doing it.
The name really explains itself. "Agile" means moving quickly, quick response, quick changes, flexible:
|B-52 Stratofortress||Apache helicopter|
Within marketing world, and considering the context we're focusing on the digital marketing space, many people look at a marketing campaigns as a multi-year or extended months of effort with a single goal in mind. Once those campaigns have been developed and started there's a significant amount of inertia that's been created that makes it hard (or people are unwilling) to make changes once the course has been set. The Agile marketing strategy will instead look at a group of 12 30-day campaigns or efforts that collectively form the bigger unit. Now, during each smaller campaign, adjustments and tweaks can be made and that might end up changing out an entire month long campaign that was originally scheduled.
Another asset to an agency that's wanting to implement a more Agile strategy to their marketing efforts is to have a team of very skilled individuals in specific areas, but aren't unwilling to go outside of that job description they were perhaps hired for initially. As was shared in Duncan's presentation, one day your data analyst may need to work directly with the client and accomplish tasks related to project management or content creation brainstorming. Your project manager may need to switch roles and work on an infographic or write a blog post for the client. The key is that people need to be willing and cross-trained into other areas of the tasks that need to be done to accomplish great work in the campaigns and for the client.
That's where the A-Team graphic comes in. If you were an 80's child like me (and a few others of us at MixWest14) you immediately recognize the individuals in the photo above and the type of role they had in making the A-Team.
- Hannibal: He's the leader of the group, the brains, the strategist the motivator
- Face: the suave quick talker, convince anyone to do something, can get out of any sticky situation with class and style
- Murdock: the creative problem solver, perhaps the geek, the coder the fixer (the MacGyver to reference another great 80's TV show)
- BA Barackus: the muscle, the strength.. the guy you need to just break through hurdles and obstacles
Who are these individuals on your team? Do you have someone that fits each of these roles? Do you have additional specific roles you need to hire for or fill in your organization. And remember, hire people that are willing to be flexible and explore tasks and accomplish those tasks outside of their specific strength or mindset.
And now, a reminder for you. There's a ton of great information shared at these MixWest events every year. Make plans to attend next years event. Stay tuned as I'll update this post with dates for next year's conference.
UPDATE: The dates for next year's MixWest event (#MixWest15) will be August 6-7th, 2015. It will be year number 8 for this event and I can tell you this... you won't want to miss it. I've been to this event every year and every year I walk away with something new to do or try on a website or with clients. It's a great resource right here in Indianapolis.