While project management has still not quite managed to establish its place in the marketing industry, when done right it can give you and your company an edge that is difficult to doubt. The marketing industry can be exceptionally competitive, which means that you need to take advantage of every opportunity to turn a concept into something tangible. If you’re looking to streamline your project management and produce the most effective result, here is some guidance for you to take on board.
Define Your Goals
The first thing you need to do before you start on your project is acquire a clear understanding of what needs to be done, why it needs to be done, and what steps need to be taken to achieve success. When you look at a goal the first thing you need to do for the sake of yourself and your team is to break it up to smaller, more concise and more manageable goals. Leaving your goal as a vague objective – such as ‘increase customers’ – is not going to give anyone taking part in the project the information they need to get to work. Whether you strategize alone or confer with the rest of your team, take the time to create more measurable and specific goals that can be achieved.
Effective planning is the first step towards successful project management. An organised framework can keep you and your team informed an on track to achieving your goal. The best way to start your project is with an efficient step-by-step plan of your project. With this in place, once a task is completed you and your team can immediately move onto the next and keep a stable level of progress throughout the project where no one is scrambling for things to do.
In order for your plan to be effective, however, you need to stay organised throughout the project. This includes an organised system of communication between all parties involved, organised file and information management, as well as organised risk management. If your project is somehow derailed, use a checklist of what to do and in what order to do it to quickly bring the focus back to the task at hand and put the project back on the path of success.
You need to be making the most of what you’ve got, whether that’s software tools, communication platforms or talent. You need to use everything that you have available to its full potential in order to get the best possible results. This means that there is going to be some time that you need to dedicate before the start of the project to get to know your resources. If there is a piece of software that you haven’t used yet, practice it; if you have a new team to work with or you take on board new talent, take the time to get to know their strengths and weaknesses as well as their personalities in order to
When you put on blinders and focus only on your project’s goal, there is a lot going on around you that you might be missing. Even if marketing is your speciality, having a well-rounded view of what’s happening in your company can offer surprising clarity and give your perspective on your projects a bit of an edge. Collaborating with other departments and external partners is the best way to collect insight and information. For example, conferring with the sales department might provide you with feedback on which marketing aspects are helping to drive aspects and which contribute to the closing of deals. Information such as this can help you in active as well as future projects and drive you towards more targeted goals as well as direct your decisions to make your team more efficient.
One of the major responsibilities of a marketing project manager is ensuring that you have up-to-date knowledge of your industry and contemporary marketing strategies. The marketing industry in particular can be incredibly volatile and changes can happen overnight. In order to implement the most effective strategies you need to have the right tools and knowledge. You can do this by attending seminars, catching up on the activities of your company’s competitors, and researching your own resources.
In regards to your role as project manager, you may benefit from getting a PRINCE2 qualification if you want to focus on your management skills. PRINCE2 is a project management methodology which will help you manage your team more efficiently and adopt a more organised approach to project management. This course will provide you with excellent skills that can help you develop a consistent approach, improve communication, manage deviations, and review you progress in such a way that you can make improvements in the future.