Leveraging Technology for Marketing and Creative Production

Leveraging Technology

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Byline:  David Capece, CEO of CROOW

The modern marketing landscape is evolving quickly, forcing agencies to pivot and adjust faster and faster. We have known for years about the shift towards digital, and it has accelerated with an estimated 46% of all ad spend in 2021 going to digital. Client expectations and increased competition are colliding to pressure margins and return on investment.  Now, it’s more important than ever for agencies to operate more effectively to deliver projects on time, and on budget, while maintaining a healthy work culture. So how can teams accomplish this and avoid burning out their team members?

Many agency leaders are turning to technology for solutions. According to SoDA research, marketing agencies are seeking a single platform for project management and overall agency performance that possesses the capability to integrate the resource plan with revenue forecast, provide an overview of resource availability and skills, provide forecasting reports, and send automated alerts when a project goes over budget. To achieve all of this today, many in the services industry rely on multiple fragmented platforms. This means that email and low-value tasks are still the central part of employees’ workday, with 28% of time spent answering emails and 19% gathering information.

To really get the most out of available technology, agency leaders need to get smart with their resource planning. There are a few steps an ad agency can take to automate, organize, and maximize their output.

Step 1: Automate Your Workflow

There are certain processes and tasks that are routine to any marketing project or campaign you take on. Things like processing client requests, collecting important assets, and iterating versions of designs will always be steps in the project workflow. As much as you can, it’s important to automate these routine tasks to reduce project friction and the endless back-and-forth of emails.

To work towards automating these processes, you’ll first want to identify which tasks are the most repetitive for your team. From this list, you can determine what can be automated, and what will continue to need individual oversight. Tasks that lend themselves to automation are those where data collection, social media management, analytics or reporting are involved.

Step 2: Collaborate Smarter

Once repetitive tasks are automated and out of the way of your team, it’s time to increase efficiency in collaboration. Particularly if your teams are hybrid or fully remote, meaning you have members who are not all located in the same physical space, it’s important that you find ways to collaborate that are organized, standardized, and intuitive. There are a number of platforms you can use where teams can upload their designs and content, and then tag one another to ask questions, request approvals or additional assets, and share feedback. By utilizing tagging, you’re also taking this communication to each user, rather than forcing them to go looking for work they might need to do.

Step 3: Utilize Comprehensive Reporting

As you adopt automation and improved collaboration practices, it is critical to understand if these adjustments are helping your business outcomes. That’s where smarter, automated, comprehensive reporting comes in. There are a number of ways to measure the results of these strategies. Some KPIs you might consider are things like on-time project completion, average task completion time, and increased bandwidth (i.e. hours of work employees are completing each week). There are also more subjective outcomes you can keep track of, like employee and client satisfaction. This can be “tracked” via surveys and one-on-ones.

The best way to implement all three of these strategies is to find an all-in-one platform that supports each approach within the same tool. Selecting a project management software that integrates creative collaboration and extensive analytics can go even further in saving you time, because reporting on the results of your streamlined workflows will happen automatically within the tool.

Technology continues to push the envelope on what’s possible in every industry. For marketing agencies, innovative software can help your teams to hit deadlines, cut out the clutter of low-value tasks, and strengthen client relationships by staying organized and collaborative.

About the CEO, David Capece

David Capece is an innovative leader who founded the INC 5000 award-winning digital agency Sparxoo. David is making his future mark as Founder and CEO of CROOW. CROOW, which has been named one of the most innovative growing software companies, is a next generation platform designed to help companies unify teams, automate processes, and deliver profitable work. David has over 20 years of digital leadership experience, including posts earlier in his career as head of marketing for ESPN.com and brand strategist at Interbrand. During his career, David has led strategic digital and innovation projects for Dr. Pepper Snapple, JP Morgan Chase, Tech Data, Comcast and NBC.

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