Is Agile Worthwhile?

Agile marketing is one of the latest buzzwords (buzzterms?) in a buzzword-heavy industry.

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There's no question that marketing has undergone a massive shift in the past two decades - first with the advent of online ads, and with each passing year more targeted data and analytics-based marketing. What we learned 20, even 10 years ago in marketing class might seem quaint today. It's clear that the nerds have won.

And yet. Have they gone too far with "agile marketing"? With more jargon, don't they risk alienating their clients, those who are just now coming to terms with basic digital terms. "I was online. Then I went direct, and just now went digital. Now I need to be agile too?"

One agile marketing site promises that if you move from traditional marketing to agile marketing, you'll see a "3000x lift in performance and 30% rise in trials Qtr.-to-Qtr. purely due to agile processes." Bull*cough*hit.

Digging a little deeper, the entire premise of agile marketing is essentially:

  • getting more management buy-in
  • collaborating better with other departments
  • being more flexible and changing course when things aren't working
  • moving a little quicker and experimenting a little more

Which all sounds - and is - entirely reasonable. There's just no need to bamboozle clients with more snake oil terminology. 

Jeff Funnekotter