Can marketing agility really be put into practice?

Ross Miles - 20.12.2017

The marketing industry is abuzz with the latest craze — marketing agility. But what exactly is it? Dun & Bradstreet notes that it isn’t just about doing things faster; “It’s about being adaptable to abrupt shifts in customer needs and industry developments.”

Unlike other passing fads, marketing agility is about survival in the fast-paced consumer world, rather than finding a strategy to implement and incorporate new technology.

The Drum recently argued that “agility is not an option” in 2017, with reputations “lost in a tweeted heartbeat.” But can agility truly become a marketing reality?

While it may require organisations to fundamentally change how they work and leave traditional campaign cycles and processes behind, Marketing Tech believes agility can be achieved.

The driving force

Every industry is facing disruption, with new technologies increasing the competition. But the biggest factor for marketing agility stems from the customers themselves.

Marketing Tech notes that we are now in the ‘experience age’. The extent of technology and information at customer fingertips places them firmly in the driving seat, giving them the power to decide when to engage, and what channel they choose to interact on – and they expect a seamless and personal experience.

This has also led to consumers wanting more from brands than just products; they want to buy into brands that stand for something more.

To meet the expectations of this new marketing era, marketers need to do more than simply implement a customer experience platform. Changing the culture and work of the organisation is essential, and learning how to be agile will be a worthwhile stepping stone.

How to embrace marketing agility

The Drum argues that agility can be learned. So, what exactly does it take to become not just an agile marketer, but an agile organisation?

It requires a fundamental and cultural shift across the whole organisation — your agility in the marketing department will be limited if the rest of your business is stuck in traditional ways of working.

Part of this shift will necessitate brands to invest in technology adoption, not just in the tech itself. It is one thing to purchase the tech, but without investing time and money into ensuring the adoption of that technology, you’ll never fully reap the rewards.

While marketers have often worked on a big launch, agility will require smaller launches, that are quicker, in-line with current customer behaviour, and haven’t taken up the whole budget. Delivering one or two big launches a year will mean you’re constantly playing catch-up with customer expectations and purchasing influences.

And, of course, to know what those behaviours are, agile marketers will embrace data and ensure customer experience platforms deliver real-time insights. Marketers will need to look at the customer journey as a whole, and this will require data silos becoming obsolete. Again, brands may need to refocus and restructure how they deal with data, to ensure it is driving agile practices.

At Fireworx, we think disruptively, to help brands make an impact and ensure they keep pace with changing customer expectations. Get in touch today to see how we can give your marketing an agile edge.