Being a marketer isn’t easy. Marketers must deal with difficult clients, juggle countless marketing campaigns, stay on top of never ending email threads, and meet tight deadlines. On top of all this, marketers must also make strategic decisions, analyze data, and come up with creative ideas. However, it’s hard for marketers to focus on these critical tasks when they have so many other things on their plate.
There is a solution to this problem: marketing project management. Just like project management, marketing project management involves the use of certain skills, processes, and methods to effectively plan and manage projects. In other words, it helps marketers keep their marketing efforts organized so they can spend less time on keeping track of their work and more time on the work itself.
Here’s what you need to know about using marketing project management to streamline your marketing efforts:
Key Points About Marketing Project Management
Every marketing team has their own working style and every marketing project may require different resources. Because of this, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to marketing project management. But in general, there are some key points that are true about all marketing project management efforts, including:
- The outcome of a marketing project is a deliverable. The purpose of every marketing project is to produce a client deliverable. Examples of client deliverables may include a new website design, blog articles, social media posts, or optimized landing pages.
- Every marketing project must be broken down into smaller parts. An important part of marketing project management involves breaking a project down into tasks and sub-tasks. This makes the project more manageable for everyone involved. It also helps the team understand what works need to be done in order to complete the project as a whole.
- A project management tool can help. It’s very difficult to manage multiple projects manually, which is why marketers rely on marketing project management tools. These tools are designed to help marketers communicate, collaborate, and keep track of projects with ease.
- Every marketing project involves research and data. Research is often used to guide a marketer’s decision when developing a marketing plan. Data, on the other hand, is used to evaluate the success of the marketing strategy once it has been implemented.
What Are the Four Phases of the Marketing Project Management Process?
Even though every marketing project is unique, each project generally passes through four phases as it moves from concept to completion. The four phases of the marketing project management process are:
- Initiate the Project
- Plan the Details
- Implement the Plan
- Evaluate the Results
Initiate the Project
Every project should begin with a meeting involving the client and marketing team. The entire team does not need to attend this meeting with the client, however a marketing project management leader should be present.
During this meeting, the client should explain what they want to achieve by marketing their products or services. The marketing team can then translate this into clearly defined goals and objectives for the marketing project.
It’s also important to discuss the client’s budget during this initial conversation. It is the project leader’s responsibility to speak up if the client’s budget is too small to achieve their goals. Calling this out ensures that the client does not have unrealistic expectations about what can be done with a limited budget.
After this meeting is over, make sure to put everything in writing and send it to the client so they can sign off on it. This way, the marketing team and client are on the same page regarding the client’s objectives, goals, and budget.
Plan the Details
Now you know what goals you achieve and how much you can spend to meet them. The next step is figuring out what needs to be done to get from point A to point B. Or in other words, identify the marketing efforts that can help you reach your client’s goals without exceeding their budget.
For example, say the client’s goal is to generate more online sales. You believe you can increase online sales by driving more traffic to your client’s website. You know the best way to drive traffic to your client’s website is to create content that targets specific keywords, which will improve the site’s ranking in the search results. Therefore, your plan should outline the details of these marketing efforts, including how often you want to post content, what keywords you want to target, and what topics you want to address.
You should also break down your project into smaller tasks to help your team understand what needs to be done. A content creation project may be broken down into these tasks:
- Create topics
- Assign topics to writers
- Write content
- Edit content
- Add links/images
- Get client approval
- Publish content
- Monitor performance
Once your project has been broken down into smaller parts, determine who is responsible for completing each of the tasks. Then, set realistic deadlines for each task to ensure the project stays on schedule.
Implement the Plan
At this point, everyone on your team should know what needs to be done to complete the project and reach the client’s goals. Every member on your team should also understand what role they play in the project. Now, it’s time to put the plan in action.
The project manager is responsible for assigning tasks to the appropriate parties and keeping track of the tasks to ensure they are completed on time. The project manager should also be available to address concerns, solve problems that arise, or answer questions from the team as they work on their tasks.
The project manager should keep a close eye on the project’s budget. If the project costs more than expected, the project manager may need to adjust the rest of the plan to make sure it doesn’t go over budget.
The project manager should focus on the deadline, too. If one person on your team is taking longer than expected to complete their task, this could affect the entire team’s ability to complete the project by the due date. If this happens, the project manager may need to use additional resources to make up for lost time.
Evaluate the Results
The project is complete once the team finishes all of their tasks. However, the project manager’s work is not over yet. The final step in the marketing project management process is evaluating the results of the completed project.
Evaluating the results is a crucial step in the project management process. If you don’t look at your results, there’s no way to know whether you were able to meet your client’s goals.
For example, say you have just completed a content creation project for your client. Once your content has been published, it’s important to monitor its performance. You may want to look at a number of different metrics, including traffic, click-through rate, impressions, positions, and conversions.
Analyzing this data will help you determine if you were able to increase your client’s position in the search results, drive more traffic to your client’s website, and convert more users.
When to Use the Marketing Project Management Process?
Marketing involves many different activities. Fortunately, the project management process can be used to manage most marketing activities, including:
- Pay-per-click advertising campaigns
- Email marketing
- SEO (website audits, technical SEO, link-building, keyword research, etc.)
- Content creation
- Social media management
This is not an all-inclusive list of marketing activities. You can take the marketing project management approach to nearly every marketing activity.
What Are the Benefits of Marketing Project Management?
There are many benefits to taking a marketing project management approach to your marketing activities, including:
- It’s easier to keep track of projects, so nothing will fall through the cracks.
- It ensures everyone is on the same page and working toward the same goals.
- It can improve your team’s productivity.
- Planning your projects in advance allows you to use your team’s resources more efficiently.
- It keeps marketing efforts organized, which makes it easier for each person on your team to take on more work without feeling overwhelmed.
- It helps your team prioritize their work so they know what can wait and what needs to be worked on right away.
- It improves your team’s collaboration, communication, and coordination of efforts.
What is the Best Marketing Project Management Tool?
Using the right tool is one of the keys to successfully managing your marketing projects. There are countless project management tools out there, but none that can compare to Gryffin.
Gryffin was built for digital marketers by digital marketers, so it has all of the features that a marketing team needs to complete their work efficiently, including:
- User-friendly dashboard
- Customizable templates
- Automated workflows
- Editorial calendar
Gryffin can also pull data from various third party tools, including Google Analytics and Google Search Console. This means you can manage all of the different aspects of your marketing campaigns in one place, so you won’t need to switch back and forth between multiple tools or spreadsheets anymore.
Learn how Gryffin can help you streamline your marketing efforts by starting your free 14-day trial today.