Agile Practices to Make Marketing Smarter, Faster, And More Innovative
Hacking Marketing – It’s a fascinating time to work in marketing.
It’s also a somewhat dizzying time, with so much change
happening around us.
The world is becoming more digital every day, steadily reshaping relationships between customers and businesses in the process. Buyers have more information, more options, and more leverage in when, where, and how they engage with sellers. And their expectations are rising, as state-of-the-art, digitally native companies—from Amazon.com to Uber—push the limits of what is possible into what is desired and then demanded.
For some businesses, that may still seem like a far-off, foreign realm. Not many of us aim to compete with those digital wunderkinder. Yet every day, we see more signs of digital dy dynamics infiltrating the space between us and our customers, disrupting sales and marketing in a thousand small ways—and
not-so-small ways. We feel the tremors of our competitive landscape shifting.
On closer inspection, that realm is not so far-off after all.
The fact is that in a digital world, inherently, we are all entangled in digital dynamic.
“How did my business go digital?” With apologies to Ernest Hemingway, “Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.” Regardless of size, geography, or industry, the digital age is upon us.
The accelerating tempo and growing complexity that this brings—especially to marketing—is both exhilarating and exasperating. It is a whirlwind of obstacles and opportunities.
Marketing Management for a Digital World
My goal is to help you harness that digital whirlwind.
Many wonderful books have been published about the many new strategies and tactics of digital marketing—inbound marketing, content marketing, social media marketing, and so on.
But there’s a common thread connecting all of them that has received far less attention, yet is crucial to their success: How should marketing management evolve to best leverage these modern marketing methods?
Management is the orchestration of all those different strategies and tactics. It’s how we weave them together into a cohesive organization with a mission and the methods to achieve it.
The trouble is that traditional approaches to marketin management—classic marketing plans, designed and enforced in a siloed, top-down structure—are buckling under the pressures of the digital world. There are too many moving parts, spinning too quickly.
Strange interaction effects abound. It can feel like you’re driving at high speed with a broken steering wheel and failed brakes. At night. With no headlights.
But there is a bright, shining way forward.
But there is a bright, shining way forward.Marketing is not the first profession to struggle with digital dynamics. Before any other discipline found itself roiled by digital turbulence, software development teams ran into many of these issues first.
Continuously changing requirements. Rapidly evolving technology. Mounting complexity. And demanding stakeholders who had little appreciation for those difficulties.
Software developers have been the canaries in this coal mine. Through trial and error in millions of software projects, successes and failures, they have discerned some of the underlying patterns of what works and what doesn’t—and why – when wrangling the digital dragon. As a result, the art and science of managing software has matured tremendously.
So what does this have to do with marketing?
More than you might think.
The challenges of creating great software and the challenges of creating great marketing share increasing similarities in a digital world. They’re both juggling an explosion of digitally powered interactions in a tornado of constant change and innovation.
They’re both creative and intellectual disciplines that rely on human insight and inspiration, and a new kind of teamwork, to produce remarkable experiences in highly competitive environments. And as the world has grown more digital, the scale and scope of their responsibilities and influence have grown too—but at the cost of mushrooming complexity.
Given those parallels—and the head start that software leaders have had wrestling with these challenges—are there successful, digitally native management concepts from the software community that modern marketers could borrow and adapt to conquer their own digital dragons?
I believe the answer is yes.
This is not a technical book. It assumes no knowledge, or even interest, in software development. All it requires is an open mind to look at marketing management from a different perspective.
Don’t be alarmed by the title, Hacking Marketing.
As we’ll discuss in the first chapter, hacking has a very different meaning in the software community than it does in the media. It’s not about breaking. It’s about making.
The bad kind of hacking breaks into systems.
The good kind makes new inventions—in fast, fluid, and fun ways. It imagines what’s possible, figures out clever ways to realize those ideas within the tangle of real-world constraints, and above all, celebrates the courage to try, tinker, and learn.
Cross-pollinating management concepts between the realms of software and marketing is that good kind of hacking but on an organizational level. And in championing that, we’ll strive to bring a touch of kinetic hacker spirit to everything marketing does.
This book is organized into five parts:
I. An orientation on digital dynamics and the parallels between marketing and software.
II. An in-depth examination of agile and lean management
methods applied to marketing.
III. An exploration of opportunities and techniques for innovation in modern marketing.
IV. A collection of ideas to tame digital complexity and achieve
new kinds of scalability in marketing.
V. A closing chapter on managing marketing talent in this digital environment.
Read Much More Inside…
Part II on agile marketing is the most comprehensive, because that is the foundation on which digitally savvy marketing management must be built. We’ll thoroughly cover the rationale and key practices of agile management, specifically in the context of marketing.
Parts III, IV, and V cast a wider net, providing a helicopter tour of a variety of other concepts and frameworks from the field of software management that have become surprisingly relevant to the challenges of modern marketing. We’ll approach each of them in a pragmatic and nontechnical way through the lens of how they directly benefit marketing today.
Hacking Marketing aims to expand your mental models as a marketer and a manager for leading marketing in a digital world where everything—especially marketing—now flows with the speed and adaptability of software.
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