Four Tips to Simplify Marketing Orchestration
Marketing Orchestration is complex. Keeping it simple is the best approach we've found in our work. We'll dig into four tips to help you keep it simple!
By Brenna Lofquist, Senior Marketing Consultant / Client Services Operations at Heinz Marketing
We’ve all heard some variation of “simple is always better” or K.I.S.S (keep it simple, stupid) and this has been a common theme in our work lately, especially when it comes to Marketing Orchestration.
It’s so easy to overcomplicate a process which can lead to many issues, confusion, etc.. When I find myself in those situations, I try to remind myself to take a step back and go to the beginning – what are we trying to accomplish?
Marketing Orchestration is complex, there’s no way around it. There are multiple go-to-market (GTM) teams, each of which likely have their own processes, maybe even their own tech (depending on the size/structure of the organization). The list goes on.
So, how do you simplify the process? Here are a few things I’ve learned recently from developing Marketing Orchestration workflows and processes.
Remember the Goal/Objective
The goal or objective should always be in your view and kept in mind throughout the development and maintenance of Marketing Orchestration. It’s so easy to go down rabbit holes and lose sight of the purpose.
A few months back our team came up with weekly mottos for each client. It was a way for us to remember the main priority for a given week. For one client in particular, we were helping develop a marketing orchestration process for campaign planning to execution. Their motto was “Get to testing”. It kept us focused and kept the goal top of mind. When we started to stray away or get side tracked by an issue, it was easy to reference the motto and get back on track.
It almost helped create a mindset, where I found myself not having to remember the objective. It was second nature.
Another way we at Heinz Marketing keep the objectives at the forefront of our work is to include deliverables. One of the main sections included in every deliverable we use is “What do we want to accomplish?”. This is specifically for outlining the objectives. This varies sometimes depending on the deliverable. You can do it however best works for you. Whether that be to include the objectives of the entire project or the deliverable itself, it’s helpful either way.
Identify the Inputs and Outputs
This is somewhat related to remembering your objectives because it paints a clear picture of what’s needed throughout Marketing Orchestration (aka MO). I recommend identifying the outputs first because then you can work backward to figure out the inputs. This works whether you are starting from scratch or you are optimizing an existing MO workflow.
After you’ve identified the outputs, determine who is responsible for the output. They are your starting point in figuring out the inputs and then you can consult with the GTM teams. You want to make sure everyone contributing is able to provide feedback and insight.
For one of our clients we created a workflow diagram to map out their current process. Once we were further into the project and at a point where we were ready to train the teams on the new workflow, we broke down the process into slides and each one included the inputs and outputs. This was very useful because it provided a clear picture of what’s needed at each step for the workflow to progress.
Create a RACI
If you don’t have one already, I highly recommend creating a RACI. If you aren’t familiar RACI stands for Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, and Informed. Check out my post last month where I go into more detail. It’s a simple template (email me if you want a copy of the one we use) that provides clear roles and responsibilities. We found it helpful to breakdown the RACI by the steps in the Marketing Orchestration workflow. They don’t have to be 1:1. You can get as granular as you’d like, however I would recommend not going super high level. There could still be confusion if there’s multiple tasks within a high level step, especially if different people have different roles.
Once created, the RACI should be shared with all GTM teams and leaders so everyone is on the same page. Once in alignment, the RACI should be used as a reference if it’s ever unclear what someone’s role or responsibility is for a given step or task. One of the key objectives of a RACI is to set clear expectations which in turn, should keep things simple.
This is an important step in keeping things simple. Create a feedback log. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, we typically use Excel. Add a few columns such as process (where in the process/which step), date, feedback, status, and notes. Pretty simple, right?
The feedback log can be used in a number of ways. One way we used it was after we developed the MO workflow and accompanying documentation, we got to a point where we weren’t going to make changes so we could test it out. Any feedback after this point was added to the log and would be up for discussion later. Since the new MO workflow hadn’t launched yet we received feedback based on the current state and throughout weekly meetings we were having with the client, based on feedback they were receiving from others in their organization.
For example, we launched two tests with a client because we had two different flows in the MO workflow. There were weekly syncs with the Project Manager for one test and weekly syncs with the project team for the other test. Any feedback, questions, concerns, etc. discussed in these meetings were added to the feedback log.
Having a feedback log helps you stay on track because you log the issue and move on. Don’t get bogged down talking through “what-if” scenarios or spending too much time on an issue.
The last key thing with logging feedback is ensuring everyone knows the process and how it works. Mainly, you want to ensure everyone who can provide feedback knows they will be heard and how their feedback will be addressed. If you log issues and they are never dealt with, that’s not going to look good and people will stop offering feedback. The process is likely to fail.
To Sum it All Up
Keep it simple 🙂
Maybe that’s your new motto for Marketing Orchestration. Either way, remembering these tips on how to keep things simple will go really far when working through Marketing Orchestration. Like I said, it’s complex. There’s no easy way around that.
I hope these tips help you in your Marketing Orchestration journey. This is a topic I’m passionate about so if you’re working through an issue or just want to talk shop, feel free to reach out (email@example.com).