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Marketing Project Management

4 Reasons Why Marketers Need To Think Like Project Managers

May 3, 2013

Marketers — Think like Project Managers!

What comes to your mind when you think of a project manager? An organized and adaptable worker with great communication & people skills, right?

Well, as marketers, we’re not too different from project managers ourselves. In fact, every successful marketer should think like a project manager in order to market their brand successfully online.

Let’s take a look at some of the characteristics that marketers should adopt from project managers and a few resources to help you get started.

Highly Organized:Project managers work on a number of projects involving various stakeholders and objectives, everyday. To be able to function effectively, they’re highly organized (sometimes obsessively so!) and rely on the latest tools and techniques to make sure they stay on top of their work. They’re also constantly trying out different productivity hacks to meet deadlines as well as manage manpower and resources efficiently.

Marketers too, have to juggle a variety of campaigns, mediums and metrics everyday. Whether it’s SEO, content marketing, PPC or social media, marketing managers have to accomplish a multitude of objectives to gain more leads and convert better.

Therefore being organized and using the right tools can help marketers perform better and be more effective.

To help you get started, here’s my pick of 5 productivity blogs that can put you on the track to better organization:

  1. Zen Habits
  2. Dumb Little Man
  4. 99U
  5. Lifehacker

Brilliant Data Collectors and Interpreters:Project Managers collect and analyze tons of data. They’re great with spreadsheets, gantt charts, trend analysis and a whole lot of other data interpretation techniques. This basically gives them the power to make sound decisions with the help of data and move their projects further.

Marketers, also work with an immense amount of data. Be it Analytics reports, social media engagement reports, email subscription numbers, conversion percentages, a/b tests etc. — there’s no end to the amount of data marketers need to collect & analyse.

Thus, learning to work with numbers and making sense of raw data is an essential skill for marketing professionals.

To start you off, here are some of my favourite analytics and data blogs:

  1. Occams Razor
  2. SEO Takeaways
  3. Online Behaviour
  4. Mixpanel Blog
  5. Kissmetrics Blog

Adaptable & FlexibleA project by its nature is an ever changing beast! Project managers must be well equipped to handle missed deadlines, changed requirements, short-staffing and any number of other obstacles. Knowing how to deliver tasks on time is the single greatest skill a project manager can have.

Marketers also must be as flexible and adaptable to change. With frequent algorithm changes, differences in consumer behaviour, marketing trends and social media, marketers need to be ready for anything. Content marketers, specifically need to stay on top of trends to be able to deliver timely and relevant content (Remember, think like publishers!).

While flexibility can’t really be learned, here are some all-in-one marketing blogs to help you stay updated on all the latest happenings:

  1. Hubspot
  2. Unbounce
  3. Blueglass
  4. Marketing Land
  5. Quicksprout

Innate People SkillsA project manager answers to a variety of stakeholders in a company. They need to manage employees, contractors/freelancers, clients and more. This could easily mean switching from speaking to a technical team to a business team. They must also be able to communicate objectives, progress reports, delays, changes and results.

As you would already know, marketers too need to communicate with different departments and act as a link between consumers and the organization. Marketers also need to coordinate with design teams, tech and sales teams to achieve their campaign objectives. Phew! It’s definitely not easy.

To help you become better leaders and people managers, here are my top leadership blogs:

  1. Both Sides Of The Table
  2. Personal MBA
  3. Seth Godin
  4. Jason Seiden
  5. Derek Sivers

In what other ways do you think Marketers are like Project Managers? Do you know of any other blogs and resources that can help with the tips mentioned above? 

Sahil Parikh

Building Brightpod, playing golf 🏌🏽 and traveling the world 🌏

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