5 Things Not To Do In Scrum Marketing

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  • 5 Things Not To Do In Scrum Marketing

    Every marketing team eventually finds its own rhythm when it comes to working with Scrum.However, it does help to read about different perspectives and trials from other teams who'vealready been there.

    To help you get started with Scrum for Marketing, we put together a short list of common mistakesand how to overcome them.

    1. Partially adopting Scrum

    Although the original methodology in itself can seem complicated and full of foreign notions, it'simportant that you get the full picture and understand everything you can before starting to createyour own version. Because the "parent" industry of Scrum and Agile is software development, someconcepts may seem difficult to translate into Marketing. However, they all come together and theonly way to make it work is to fully understand how they are linked to each other.

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    Let's take a Sprint, for example. A Sprint is the timeframe in which you set-out to accomplish thetasks (Stories) in your Backlog. Without this time-boxed event, you can't organize your Backlog, youcan't follow-up progress and you can't conduct the essential Daily Stand-up Meetings.

    Not including an event or a concept can render the methodology useless. If you're just starting outwith Scrum for Marketing, it's best that you try to apply it following its original model, keepingtransparency and identifying opportunities to improve the Scrum process as you go.

    2. Disregarding meeting consistency

    Keeping in mind the previous example - Sprints - you need to ensure consistency and predictability

  • when it comes to planning meetings, daily stand-ups and Sprint retrospectives.

    This is the only way you'll achieve results with Scrum. Assign a Scrum Master that can keep theteam on track, make sure it follows the rules and that meetings are held. He/she will monitorSprints' structure and identify improvement points for the team.

    If you implement Scrum meetings correctly, you won't need other time-consuming meetings thatdrain your productivity.

    3. "Everything is a priority"

    Wouldn't that be great? Actually, no. If everything is a priority you're destabilizing both your teamand your workflow. There's a reason why a priority is a priority - to differentiate it from other tasks.You need to plan accordingly. Know how things fit in the bigger scheme of the Backlog so that youplan for your resources.

    Once a sprint is underway, the team must resist taking on any additional work. It's the scrummaster's role to prevent stakeholders from adding work during the sprint. I know, when it comes tomarketing projects this can be difficult, after all, everything is urgent.

    To prevent this,think about adjusting the timeframe of your sprints. With new clients we often runone week sprints, giving us the opportunity to find a rhythm and then stretch out the sprint length.Invest time in grooming your backlog - keep what you need, cut what doesn't need to be there.Prioritize critical stories that add value to your goals and remove stories that are no longer valid.

    4. Not having a common definition for "done"

    This is one of the most challenging aspects, 'done' can mean an idea, a draft or a published eBook.The definition of 'done' has to be a universally agreed-upon criteria that the team as a wholeunderstands. You can have different versions of 'done' for different stories, as long as everyoneknows what they are.

    For example, when publishing an eBook you can have a checklist that you can reference every timeyou create a new story:

  • IdeaContent DraftVisual MaterialContent Draft 2Publishing = Done

    Each story can have a checklist of its own so long as the team knows what that is and when it's'done'.

    5. Missing the point of Scrum

    Always analyze and adapt. Easy enough but it's really hard to stay true to this basic philosophy onceyou're under a pile of stories and tasks, team frustrations and many, many deadlines. Try to keep itas simple and as efficient as possible. As Agile as possible.

    Every event in your Scrum way of working should be governed by transparency and adaptation.Always look for opportunities to improve and increase efficiency.

    That's it from us. What's your experience with Scrum for Marketing and what would you adviseother marketing teams who are just getting started?

    Image credit: Sebastiaan ter Burg

    Author: Paula ClaponPaula is a content strategist at Emerge Studio, with a bigpassion for life and the pursuit of happiness. When she's not creating an eBook or tweeting the latesttrends, she's probably petting a cat or watching a movie.... View full profile >