Now more than ever relevance is key for creating engaging content and products that propel your brand into the conversation. When audience behavior is shaped and changed in real time as events and trends unfold, agencies must remain agile to compete.
To that end, selecting the right software for your team can make all the difference.
Agile innovation has seized the software industry and has quickly reshaped the way marketers interact with audiences on the web. In order to strike at precisely the right moment and connect a brand’s content or products to a trending topic or event, marketing teams can’t be held back by dated review processes and rigid long-range campaigns.
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By joining the conversation where and when it matters, brands can create a deeper bond with their audiences. By engaging on the topics that matter to your audience, an alignment of interests is born and felt.
This alignment increases the chances of converting audience to customers. Empowered by the ability to quickly evolve, agile management gives marketing teams the authority to catch these waves before they crash.
Agile management for untethered teams
In general, agile management reduces production time, creates a closer connection to the customer, improves employee satisfaction, adapts to changing needs and creates measurable results throughout the process.
The most popular “scrum method” of agile management works as follows. Innovation teams consisting of interdisciplinary and highly collaborative individuals are guided by a process facilitator and overseen by an initiative owner. The function of these teams is to create and execute a prioritized backlog of key projects broken down into short-term working increments aptly called “sprints.”
The goal of each sprint is measurable, incremental results that can be considered complete by the team’s definition, approved by the initiative owner and tested rapidly, before further investment in the project.
At the onset, at intervals within, and at the conclusion of each sprint, the team reviews goals, progress, and results before moving onto the next project. Thus, even an unsuccessful sprint is helpful in determining what to avoid in the future. The usefulness of this management style for marketing all comes down to the ability to react in real time and execute at the right moment without being held up by traditional approval or implementation processes.
Agile campaigns create dynamic connections that adapt on the fly
The personalized effect and increased relevancy of agile marketing campaigns can hardly be overstated. Agencies must install agile management principles to empower teams to react and execute at the right moment.
Agile marketing relies on deep insights into your target audience, and the ability to respond to changes in opinions, markets, current events, user trends and web biorhythms in real time over following rigid longer-term campaign plans.
Instead of relying on Big Bang campaigns formed around conventions and opinions, agile agencies can quickly produce numerous adaptive iterations and look to testing and concrete results upon which strategy can pivot with ease. Adjustments are made around individuals and interactions instead of relying only on broad market trends tracked over longer periods. The collaborative nature of innovation teams under agile principles takes the various marketing components out of their silos and solidifies a more cohesive strategy adding wider group accountability.
Being agile begins with listening
From a management standpoint, any business looking to transition would do well to consider Harvard Business Review’s 6 crucial practices for implementing agile. For marketing in particular, the right social media monitoring software is a critical first step to gaining an edge for agile strategy.
While a number of social monitoring software options exist, Kairos has emerged as the leader of the pack in 2016, earning a perfect score in the Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Social Listening Platforms Report.
Kairos organizes consumer conversations around key performance indicators and provides deeper insights into target audiences and the reasons driving trends. Presenting this data into an accessible, highly tactical platform, Kairos allows agile marketers to strike at precisely opportune moments and track their results.
Kairos also adds a real-time campaign response feature that allows marketers to see the relationship between a campaign and its impact on core brand performance metrics. This provides agile marketers the ability to quickly optimize live campaigns based on how particular marketing elements are influencing consumer behaviors and perceptions in real time across major media channels.
Another powerful feature that sets Kairos apart is called “Pinpoint,” which provides brands the ability to analyze precisely what drives spikes in consumer conversations. Kairos takes this feature further than other software platforms through the ability to identify what unique dynamics are at work as compared to previous spikes on the same topic. This provides the power to understand how the conversation has evolved, and which posts in particular best represent the spike.
Open source keeps marketers agile
Despite the conveniences of a ready-made proprietary solutions, open source software may be a more suitable option for agile marketers. The basis of agile is adapting to changing needs an environment. By nature, open source software integrates with other software both now and in the future.
For that reason and more, WordPress, a free and open source solution has emerged as a leading choice for content management, now powering 27 percent of all websites on the internet. Boasting incredibly versatile and powerful features, WordPress equips agencies with the speed and agility needed build dynamic web experiences. Moreover, because the user owns their own publishing experience, quick changes can easily be made to the site to adapt to the evolving needs of customers.
From a social perspective, Socioboard is a great open source solution for social media management, analytics, and reporting.
Boasting a number of its own highly customizable features along with the tried and true social monitoring tools and reports, Socioboard adds the adaptability of open source software to prepare brands for the changing needs of their environments. Socioboard also integrates useful team collaboration tools, a staple of agile management.
In the area of team management tools, Trello and Asana remain favorite proprietary solutions for team task management with exceptionally clean interfaces well suited to scrum method agile management. However, a growing number of open source solutions exist, providing agencies a strong bet for staying agile and integrating with other software and evolving needs.
Opting for open source software makes it easier than ever to stay agile.
Agilefant supports Kanban and Scrum project management but also works with traditional approaches.
Orangescrum offers a clean minimalist layout based on the Google Material Design with the addition of Android and iOS mobile applications.
Lastly, Odoo is a multi-platform full suite of business applications. While it may begin as a project management tool, Odoo adapts to the changing needs of a brand as it grows, offering sales, CRM and reporting solutions, making it a fitting solution for growing agencies and small businesses.
Embracing agile at every level
Even with the best software, agile marketing teams can still face obstacles. One sweeping solution is to create an agile leadership team at the top of the firm. With every arm of the business in sync, operating from a central backlog of prioritized items, marketing teams can execute agile campaigns without obstacles to budgeting or implementation, and strike at the right times.
With deeper insights into your brand’s audience and interests, marketers have the ability to catch the wave of relevant trends and make their content and products a part of the conversation, increasing visibility and alignment with their audiences. With the right software and agile management principles in place, brands can make the right moves at precisely the right moment to beat the competition.