Delivering the right marketing message at the right time is crucial to being successful.
The agile and waterfall approaches to project management have long been associated with IT and are now becoming more and more popular in driving marketing programs and plans.
A 2013 report by Forrester Research, for example, stated, “The traditional annual planning routine is ripe for extinction, as 69% of our B2B marketing leaders say that conditions change too quickly to keep plans current. Accelerating the test, revise, and run cycle on campaigns can help marketing compare planned activity with actual results better.”
Waterfall Marketing Pros
The waterfall concept results in a plan and a vision that is comprehensive and clear. The detailed upfront planning allows for much faster launches and a higher degree of accuracy in both timetables and budgets, which defiantly help please clients and senior management.
It also allows schedules to be set with deadlines for each stage of development so the product can proceed through the development process.
Waterfall Marketing Cons
The nature of the waterfall creates an approach that is rigid and inflexible. It leaves very little room for revision in the event that requirements or need were not well thought out at the planning stage. This drawback is compounded by the fact that feedback and testing are typically deferred to later stages of the project.
It doesn’t make Waterfall the best choice for projects where needs are likely to be evolving. Nor is it ideal for dynamic companies that are adept and nimble at responding to a rapid pace of change.
Agile Marketing Pros
The agile process is a lot less rigid. It is flexible in its approach. This makes it ideal for projects where the end-goals are not clearly defined or are a work in progress.
The Agile process allows for much faster production at a lower cost. It’s ideal for dynamic businesses.
Agile Marketing Cons
There are drawbacks to the lack of structure compared to the waterfall process. Without the same structure projects are far more difficult to predict. Also because of the lack of definition and planning, the end result may end up completely different that what was originally anticipated, and budgets can run over if not properly managed.
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