How to Implement Scrum for Digital Marketing

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Marketing always strives to be bigger and better, one step at a time. Strategizing for too long a time period will make you fall behind and wondering where it all went wrong. The fast-paced nature of the world today has led to a need for a change in the way we function and organize.

Agile marketing is not a new buzzword or flavor of the month. Agile marketing is not a new or trendy concept. If this example seems too familiar, don’t get discouraged. Most businesses are dealing with the same issues right now.

What a Non-Agile Team Looks Like:

These are the defining features of a non-Agile team:

What Is Agile Marketing?

If you want to improve your team’s performance, it’s important to have a good structure in place. This will help you to better organize and operate your team. There is always a learning curve with any changes, but Agile Scrum will become second nature quicker because it makes sense.

What makes a team non-Agile? Let’s take a look at Agile and how it can enhance your marketing results.

In agile marketing, teams work together on high-value projects and activities, measuring their impact and then improving the results over time.

With Agile, businesses can adapt their marketing quickly to changes in their industry or marketplace.

It changes over time instead of being defined by campaigns that take a long time and require a lot of effort.

The principles of Agile are being used in many different areas.

Being agile in marketing means having the ability to change and adapt quickly, as well as being able to deliver what is asked of you. The Scrum framework provides a straightforward way to implement Agile marketing principles and is the foundation of our Digital Marketing Programs.

What Is Scrum?

While Scrum was originally designed for complex software development projects, it can also be useful for delivering innovative digital marketing strategies. Scrum is a framework that boosts transparency and adaptability. When everyone on your team is able to produce great work on a regular basis, it makes it easier for the team as a whole to be successful.

In the real world, Scrum is a collection of tactics that work together to create a focused efficiency for your marketing. Scrum can help you focus on what’s important, get your work done more efficiently, and avoid letting small issues turn into big problems.

In order to effectively use the Scrum framework, a team must build certain events into their work structure.

Developed in the early 90’s by Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber, Scrum is:

The Scrum framework can be adapted to the problems a digital marketing team faces.

This guide is similar to the original Scrum guide, but it is adapted to align better with the slightly more casual nature of marketing and optimization work.

Don’t reinvent the wheel: Stick to the framework

The Scrum framework consists of Scrum Teams and their associated roles, events, artifacts, and rules. While it can be tempting to only use some of this framework, it is best to stick as closely as possible to the framework for the best results.

Successful use of the framework does depend on a certain level of maturity and alignment around a few core values:

If your team is willing to commit to these principles, it is worth learning how to implement this framework, which is effective and collaborative.

Basics of Scrum Framework

The basics of the Scrum framework fall into 3 categories:

Scrum teams are known for their high-quality output, which is made possible by the unique roles played by each team member. The Scrum framework is based on five repeating events. The team uses organizational tools, such as sprint backlogs, to work efficiently and with as much self-organization as possible.

Roles on a Scrum team

The roles that need to be filled are a manager, an accountant, and a marketing specialist. A smaller team may find it helpful for a team member to wear multiple hats, such as being a Developer (Individual Contributor) as well as taking on Scrum Master or Product Owner roles.

The Product Owner

The Scrum Guide says that the Product Owner is the only person who is responsible for managing the Product Backlog. This includes:

The Product Owner roles is likely to match well with the responsibilities of a traditional Project Manager at an agency or a Program Manager. The Product Owner is responsible for managing work requests, scheduling deliverables, and communicating with clients and stakeholders.

The Development Team

The members of the Development Team are those who actually do the work of creating client/business-ready deliverables for the Scrum Team. In a digital marketing context, someone who is in charge of digital marketing may have a job title like Digital Marketing Manager, CRO Manager, or PPC Specialist.

In a Scrum framework, everyone is simply a “Developer” who contributes their strengths and weaknesses to the team to deliver the goals of the Sprint, regardless of their previous job title.

The Development team is responsible for managing their own work and organizing themselves. Breaking down the barriers between marketing teams helps them to get more work done.

Per the Scrum Guide, Development Teams have the following characteristics:

An important thing to keep in mind is that the development team should be cross-functional. Although it would be ideal, it is not always possible to do this in a marketing context.

The Scrum Master

The Scrum Master’s role is to be a spiritual leader and coach to the Scrum Team, teaching and motivating them to follow the Scrum framework. The role is responsible for optimizing and implementing the Scrum framework.

The Scrum Master is a servant-leader for the Team. They provide an explanation of the Scrum process to people who are not part of the Scrum Team, so that they can understand and follow it. The Scrum Master is responsible for helping the organization get the most out of the Scrum Team in order to create maximum value.

The Scrum Master services various stakeholders by helping them understand and enact Scrum and by ensuring that the Scrum Team adheres to Scrum.

Scrum Master service to the Product Owner

The Scrum Master serves the Product Owner in several ways, including:

Scrum Master Service to the Development Team

The Scrum Master serves the Development Team in several ways, including:

Scrum Master Service to the Organization

The Scrum Master serves the organization in several ways, including:

Scrum Events for Conversion Rate Optimization

The Sprint

You’ve probably heard of a “Sprint” before. It’s definitely the most well-known Scrum Event.

A sprint is a period of time, usually one month or less, during which a team creates a “done,” usable, and potentially releasable product increment.

This concept has already been adopted outside of the software world, with books being written about it.

You can use the same concept for your marketing team with only a few minor modifications. We may need to adjust the time from the original one month time frame in the Scrum framework, or at least be creative in how we chunk tasks to fit that time frame.

Sprint planning

The Scrum team needs to run a sprint planning session before a sprint goal can be established.

In this session, the whole team will work together to figure out what needs to be done and what the goal for the next sprint should be. The time allocated for sprint planning should not exceed 2 hours per week of the sprint. This means that a two-week sprint should have a maximum of four hours of planning time before it begins.

Sprint planning answers two key questions:

  1. What can be delivered in the upcoming Sprint?
  2. How will the work needed to achieve the sprint goals be completed?

The Daily Scrum (Standup)

Although daily standups are already commonplace among many marketing teams, the Scrum method may still be new to some. According to the Scrum Guide,

The Daily Scrum is a 15-minute time-boxed event for the Team to discuss what they did the previous day, what they plan to do the next day, and any impediments to their work. The team inspects their work since the last Daily Scrum and forecasts what could be done before the next one. The Daily Scrum should take place at the same time and location each day in order to keep things simple.

During this meeting each team member answers three key questions:

  1. What did I do yesterday to help the team reach the sprint goal?
  2. What will I do today to help the team reach the sprint goal?
  3. Do I see any roadblocks ahead that will interfere with my ability to meet the sprint goal?

Debrief & Share with the sprint review

Hopefully, the team was able to work efficiently and flexibly in order to hit the sprint goals. The sprint has ended and it is time for the sprint review. This is the team’s chance to demonstrate their work to the stakeholders.

This meeting lasts for one hour each week and is used to discuss the sprint.

According to the Scrum Guide, the sprint review includes the following elements:

Scrum “Artifacts” for Agile Marketing

In Scrum, there are three structures designed to provide transparency and accountability into the team’s work:

There are a few key things that are necessary for Scrum teams to be able to work iteratively and efficiently. They’re necessary for facilitating agile marketing in organizations.


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