Marketing Project Management 101: What It Is and How to Nail It
Table of Contents
- What Is Marketing Project Management & Why Is It Important?
- Top 5 Marketing Project Management Tips
- Our Favorite Project Management Tools
- Final Thoughts
Do you feel like you've got too much on your plate as a marketer? Are you constantly chasing deadlines? It might be time to rethink your marketing project management system.
Here's an interesting insight from Forbes—not all marketing experts are gifted with project management skills. Be that as it may, you can find a more efficient way to manage your projects, so you don't have to chase after team members or try to beat deadlines at the last minute.
What Is Marketing Project Management & Why Is It Important?
Project management for marketing uses the same principles as any other project management task. It involves the planning, organizing, and overseeing the performance of certain tasks that are geared towards a major goal.
An effective marketing project manager should provide and be responsible for leadership in the following areas:
1) Enhanced Project Oversight
It's the project manager's job to ensure that every stage of project development is done efficiently and on time. That involves overseeing the flow of tasks, managing the employees' work, and developing a workflow that will lead to the overall goal.
2) Research, Research, Research
Research is vital to any marketing project management position as it will equip you with data that you'll use to differentiate a new product or craft a stronger marketing message.
For example, if you are planning to roll out a new product launch, an essential step of the project is to research customer segmentation. As outlined and detailed in this blog, there are four different ways you can segment your target market, and your research will tell you which way to go.
3) Data-Driven Approach
Data allows marketing project managers to make informed decisions that can impact results. In fact, data is the backbone of a successful marketing campaign.
It enables marketers to:
- Map out the working steps needed to achieve their goals
- Evaluate the current performance of their marketing campaign
- Determine if they're on track to reach their target ROI
Top 5 Marketing Project Management Tips
It pays to know the best project management tips as a marketer. Let's look at some now…
1) Start with Clearly Defined Goals
Goal setting should be a priority for marketing project management. The marketing industry is fast-paced, and it's easy to get sidetracked if you don't know which path to take.
Trends in marketing are constantly changing, too, which can make you steer off-course if you don't have your eyes fixed on a specific target.
By defining your goals beforehand, you can take quantifiable steps. This allows you to measure your performance throughout the project.
Just as you have to make your steps quantifiable, it is also important to write down concrete goals. Here are some examples to consider:
- Reach 10,000 mail subscribers
- Boost revenue by 10% in the next quarter
- Double the number of leads in my contact list
2) Follow the 5-Step Marketing Management Process
Effective project management involves 5 crucial steps. This is also important for a winning marketing strategy, one that is built on proven results.
Here are the 5 steps of effective marketing management:
- Research & Plan–All marketing project management starts with researching and planning. Use this step to collect crucial data, such as market data, customer preferences, and more. With the data in hand, plan what steps to take to achieve your goals and objectives. This will involve coordination and collaboration with every member of your team.
- Write, Design, Create–Deploy the plan! Set tasks in motion to create all content needed to support your marketing strategy and plan. Equip each team member with the resources and support needed to execute the vision efficiently. Also, make sure they understand the goals you want them to hit. Closely monitor all your teams to ensure the project is completed within the targeted time frame and on budget.
- Launch–Intentionally plan a launch and release of the campaign and/or content created. Refer back to initial research to help set targeting criteria and set campaign objectives. Make sure that each channel has a unique plan and defined role, so you measure their KPIs properly during evaluation.
- Measure–Monitor the project results closely, using several marketing metrics. A/B testing is the most common approach used to determine what type of messaging, visuals, and offers are driving conversions and hitting the set goals and objectives. Remember the role each channel plays, as this will inform you of what metrics to review.
- Optimize–Evaluating metrics does nothing if you don't use the information. Adjust your campaign accordingly to improve metrics, making minor changes each time to dial in what's making a true impact and moving the needle towards the goal. When you find something that is truly hitting goals, double down on what's working and drop what doesn't!
3) Break Projects into Smaller Tasks
Microproductivity is the process of breaking a big project into smaller tasks to make it more manageable. The University of Georgia offers some suggestions on how to break down projects into smaller, more manageable assignments:
- Completion time: Identify tasks based on the time they take to complete. This will allow you to prioritize the most urgent assignments. It will also help you manage longer tasks and allot enough time for each task to meet your deadline. This will help you maintain quality while avoiding unnecessarily quick turnarounds whenever possible.
- Dependencies: Ask yourself whether certain tasks correlate with each other. Are your tasks required to flow in a specific order? Refer to the 5 steps above and which step each task achieves. This will help you find your flow, tasks that correlate, and their dependencies.
This simple principle will save you a lot of trouble when scheduling tasks. Plus, it can help sort out problems with scheduling and workflow, too.
4) Use a Project Management Tool, Not Emails or Spreadsheets
If you're still organizing your projects with emails and spreadsheets, your productivity level is probably lagging. In fact, email might be one of the worst enemies for productivity.
Why? For one, you could easily waste several hours of your day browsing through your email to keep track of information. Meanwhile, failing to update spreadsheets in real-time can discourage efficient collaboration.
There are numerous tools designed to make collaboration and project management easier and more effective. And the best part about using a marketing project management tool is that they are accessible through a digital workspace for real-time collaboration.
5) Use Project Templates
Project planning takes more time than it might appear. Why waste your time managing projects when you can use it towards completing the tasks instead?
That's why having a library of templates to draw from for future projects is one of the best marketing project management tips. These templates will save you a considerable amount of time when mapping out the details of a campaign.
Our Favorite Project Management Tools
Building a marketing technology stack might intimidate most marketers. With too much on your plate already, will this add to your list of things to manage?
But if you choose the right project management tool, it can help ease your workload, not add to it.
Here are some of our favorites…
Asana is the go-to choice for many remote work teams and those who work closely together on marketing projects.
The most useful feature in Asana is its ability to break down big tasks into smaller, more manageable pieces. These tasks can be assigned to individuals or teams. It's no surprise that project managers love it. Asana is an ideal solution to boost effectiveness and track project progression with ease.
Slack is primarily designed for team communication and collaboration. However, it offers features that can also improve your project management capabilities.
Among these features is the ability to create, delegate, and update tasks right within the tool. It also facilitates easy integration with other tools for increased productivity and task monitoring.
Meanwhile, the reminders and task list management are bonus features that can help keep your project management efforts within schedule.
You can stay on schedule and on track with your projects when you use MS Teams. It's an ideal project management tool for small teams that makes assigning tasks to team members a breeze. You can also integrate task scheduling if needed.
MS Teams enables you to track task due dates and meet all project timelines. While it is primarily a collaborative hub, it makes for a reliable project management tool as well.
Monday.com offers the standard features you'd expect from a project management tool, along with visual illustrations of project schedules.
There's also a handy template tool available within Monday.com that allows you to build a repository of essential customer data. With its robust marketing tools, it's a recommended solution for marketing project management.
HubSpot CRM marries the features needed by marketing teams with basic project management capabilities. HubSpot developed this tool with marketing teams in mind—and it shows.
Some of its features, like email marketing, make it easy to organize and develop your marketing projects in one place. You can also access its template library and customize each template for a variety of campaigns.
It's an excellent tool to add to your 360-degree marketing campaign.
It takes a certain skill set to succeed as a project manager. Based on the guidelines of modern marketing, it pays to take advantage of a marketing technology stack to boost efficiency. The tools and tips offered in this article offer higher efficiency when it comes to marketing project management.
Are You looking for project management help?
Lacking a data-driven project manager is a common issue among small businesses. With ever-changing platforms, you need to find tools agile and focused enough to help you hit your goals and objectives, so you can rise above the competition and achieve growth.
To talk to a Viral Solutions team member about getting help with your marketing project management, click on the webchat in the bottom right corner.