There’s so much going around in a marketing team that things can easily get chaotic unless there is a system in place. Whether it is content creation or graphic designing, there’s so much creativity and intricacy involved at every level that you need to have a meticulously planned process for getting things done. Without one, everyone’s efforts could easily come crumbling down.
This is where workflows come into the picture. Marketing teams need to have a clear vision and structured process to bring the best output. The best way to achieve this is by creating a go-to workflow for your marketing team.
Why Is It Important To Structure A Workflow?
When you are working in a team, you are bound to develop a natural habit of doing things in a particular way. This is how a workflow naturally develops. The problem with a naturally developed workflow is that it is inefficient. The reason why it is inefficient because:
- There’s no certainty about who’s doing what
- Everyone assumes their roles
- There’s no order to follow for the tasks
- Poor communication
The result of all this is that a lot of time is wasted in figuring out things, tasks don’t get completed on time, there is complete chaos. And, you end up having a highly unproductive team. With a well-structured and meticulously planned workflow for your marketing team, where all the things are clearly defined and visible, you can mitigate all these challenges.
Having a workflow in place means you have a well-orchestrated pattern for your team’s activities with systematically allocated resources. This implies that you have everything in place to transform your plans into actionable results.
In simple words, workflows are the easiest way to get work done from people as everyone follows a pattern and knows exactly what they are supposed to do and when.
How To Structure A Workflow For Your Marketing Team?
Identify the tasks
There are several different tasks that marketing teams have to perform. Right from the ideation and content creation part to graphic designing, feedback sharing, client communication, and seamless execution of all these into one concrete plan. Each of these tasks can be further broken down into subtasks and so on.
The first important step is to identify the most important elements of these tasks. For instance, content creation is an umbrella term that could further be subdivided into content curation, article writing, social media content creation, guest blogging, platform-specific writing.
You need to identify the various tasks that your marketing team performs regularly in its projects and create a list of those tasks to add in your workflow.
Identify the best person to do the task
One of the important things to keep in mind when creating an articulated workflow for your marketing team is that it should focus on the natural abilities of your team members. To achieve this, you need to gather information about your team members.
A simple way to do this is to fit different people into different tasks. For instance, a content writer who has a creative eye but cannot write technical content must be assigned tasks according to his or her skill. Similarly, you need to segregate designers, and other marketing people based on their natural ability to perform a particular kind of task.
This way you have the best person to do the job, which is ultimately going to do a world of good to your overall marketing process.
Set realistic time frames
Accountability at the individual level is an important factor in developing a successful marketing team. And the best way to make teams accountable for the work they are supposed to do is to set a realistic time frame for the tasks.
The keyword here is realistic. You cannot just set deadlines which are too tough to meet without discussing with the person assigned to the task.
To achieve this, it is important to get together with the team members and discuss with them. Share your time expectations and see what they have to say about it. Based on their response and the requirement, set a timeline that is comfortable for them and is also in sync with the speed of the overall progress of the project.
Create a communication channel
Effective communication lays the basic foundation of a successful marketing workflow. You need to make your teams capable of connecting easily. To do this, you need to give them access to the right tools that make communication effortless.
You might use emails for project-related communication, a chat app for casual conversations, another tool for reviewing, and more. However, it is recommended to bring all these aspects of communication together at one place.
Juggling between multiple apps for different purposes could lead to a lot of chaos and things slipping to the cracks. To avoid this from happening, you can use a project management tool.
Gathering all the pieces of a puzzle together is one thing. But putting them in their right place is another. Now that you have defined the four parameters of a successful workflow, it is time to put them into practice and see how effective they are.
Overseeing the process, therefore, becomes imperative here. Keep a keen eye on the defined processes and see it is being executed effectively. If not, what are the changes that team members are facing? Why are they facing those challenges?
Once you know that you need to iterate the processes accordingly until you reach a stage of harmonic balance in the way your marketing team is working. After all, finding the most effective way to get things done right and on time is the ultimate goal of structuring the workflow.
The only way to conclude whether you have managed to successfully create the most effective workflow for your team is to measure results. Define a certain set of parameters and measure the results accordingly.
List down the challenges that your team was facing before the workflow was put into practice and how effective it has been to mitigate those challenges. For instance, considering the time taken to complete a task now versus time taken before the workflow was put into practice could be one factor. A lag in communication could be another.
Every team can have its own set of challenges, you would be the best judge of what you are trying to accomplish for your team. Based on the factors you have decided, measure the results, and proceed further.
The success of your marketing efforts does not lie solely on putting together the best team or giving them the best tools to do their job. The defining factor is to give them an environment and a workflow in which they can do the job assigned to them to the best of their abilities. This is the reason structuring the right workflow for your team becomes so important. It gives your team members a structure and vision to move in the right direction instead of just working haphazardly. Most importantly, it inspires them to remain productive and give the best at their job.
Vartika Kashyap was named one of LinkedIn Top Voices in 2016, 2017 and 2018. She is also a contributor to Business.com, The Next Web, YourStory, and HuffPost, among others. Her articles mainly revolve around productivity, leadership, and common workplace events. She also loves to read and travel to new places.
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