Marketing project management: definition, tools and benefits

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 4 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Marketing project management helps with the efficient running and completion of marketing projects in companies and businesses. If you're aiming to create and implement a successful marketing campaign, you're likely to utilise some form of project management. By incorporating a project management framework into your marketing strategy, you provide your clients with a cohesive plan that gives them a competitive advantage. In this article, we discuss the definition of marketing project management, its benefits, phases and tools you can use for effective project management in marketing.

What is marketing project management?

Marketing project management is a technique that relates to the efforts and activities related to developing, pricing, promoting and distributing new products or services. Companies often use it to manage a large project or portfolio. They incorporate well-defined objectives, clear roles and responsibilities, a defined set of processes, tools and templates. As competing costs grow, many companies focus on delivering value through innovation rather than basic improvements. By working closely with the marketing department, teams develop a better overall understanding of their needs. Project management covers a variety of activities necessary for a project's success. These activities include:

  • public relations and advertising

  • website development

  • search engine optimisation (SEO)

  • social media marketing

A skilled marketing professional can properly execute these tasks for desired results. If you want to optimise the benefits of project management in marketing, remember that activities such as identifying risks, engaging stakeholders, managing budgets and measuring your team's progress are integral to your success.

Related: Project management skills and how to improve them

Benefits of project management in marketing

The following are the benefits of project management in marketing:

  • helps marketing teams allocate their time, money and resources in a way that optimises their work

  • allows managers to track progress better and reward teams for reaching milestones rather than only when they've finished a project

  • helps projects take full advantage of marketing resources while delivering measurable short and long-term results

  • leads to increased efficiency, proper management of human and financial resources, improved planning and communication among stakeholders

  • helps ensure that projects get done on time and within budget

  • allows you to focus your efforts on what matters most and put all your resources into areas where they can do the most good for the company

  • helps a business get the desired results, customer satisfaction and market share

Phases involved in project management in marketing

You can achieve your project management goals by tracking progress throughout different phases. These include:

1. Initiating

Project managers examine if a new project is viable and practical during this phase. The project manager and project team review the project's design to determine its profitability and then decide if they want to accept or reject it based on their findings. At this stage, you may assign team members and any required subcontractors, create proposed methods to manage risks and begin gathering stakeholder input. You may also allocate resources and execute any other initiatives unique to this project.

Related: How does project planning work? (With steps and FAQs)

2. Planning

During this phase, the marketing leaders outline the project's resources, budgets, the end-to-end scope for each stage of the process and a clear timeline for completion. They also assign specific tasks to the members of each team. The project's complexity determines which tasks each team handles. Once you establish the project goals, the group can agree on a project budget and determine the deliverables. A deliverable is anything the project works towards and produces intentionally, the most frequent of which are marketing campaigns. The project begins when all the significant parties sign the proposed documents.

Related: 8 types of project deliverables (definitions and examples)

3. Executing

Executing is all about following through on your plan. Throughout this time, you keep everyone informed of their responsibilities and manage time and resources to achieve your own goals. Breaking down each project task into sub-tasks and assigning them to different groups within the organisation can make it easier to track progress and increase efficiency. Throughout the execution phase, it's good practice to measure the effectiveness of each team and each initiative to gather data. This data can help you to make projections in the future and make alterations to teams to improve outcomes.

Each member of the team completes their assigned tasks during the execution phase. The project manager works closely with teams throughout this time. You keep track of their task progress, report this information to stakeholders, establish new tasks and remove obstacles that prohibit the completion of assignments. You can loosely summarise these responsibilities as the following:

  • personnel management

  • project execution monitoring

  • dissemination of project information

4. Monitoring and controlling

This step involves reviewing what the team has done and how things are going compared with the plan(s) and determining if things need a change. The project leader checks with team leaders to measure and improve the performance of each aspect of the project. This ensures that the team delivers on promised time, quality and costs going forwards. Evaluating analytics can provide insights for future marketing programmes and allows you to assess your own performance.

5. Closing

During the closing phase of the project, you prepare a final status report documenting what you and your team members accomplished. The report also outlines if any team members learnt any lessons that they can use in future projects. You compare the results that you gather in the final report with the documents you put together in the initiating phase. By documenting the process throughout, you get a clearer idea of how effective your project management strategies were.

The team may then gather feedback from stakeholders and clients on the project's outcome and any areas they would like the team to improve. If there are no follow-ups, the marketing team sets targets for the other following project to improve.

Tools for effective project management in marketing

Handling large-scale projects can be challenging, especially if there are lots of tasks to be done, as there are many moving parts within an organisation and you can't always predict external factors. To minimise risks to a project's success, organisations may rely on robust processes and tools. Some of these tools combine marketing and project management functions, allowing the marketing team to work more efficiently. They primarily use these tools for scheduling, task management and timetable management. Some tools you may use in project management within marketing include:

Basecamp

Basecamp is a project management software that can help break the tasks down into manageable portions. Trying to keep a schedule using only email and spreadsheets is time-consuming, especially if you make updates every time something changes. You can adjust your work schedule according to unforeseen circumstances much more effectively with this tool. Splitting tasks into manageable portions makes it easier to prioritise and delegate tasks as well. This takes some of the pressure off you and allows you to plan your days with the most important tasks first.

Hubspot CRM

Hubspot CRM combines marketing and project management software. Customer relationship management, or CRM, is inclusive here. This software collects information about clients and automates operations, such as sending emails. Hubspot CRM provides a free basic version of the program and an email and communication template library.

Monday.com

This programme includes project management tools for marketing, such as bulletin boards, Gantt charts and project schedules. These are useful in the project management process. Monday.com also features a CRM that gives customer data and assists the marketing team in better understanding their target audience. This application integrates with other marketing-related software, meets project management and marketing needs and is simple to use.

Airtable

This programme has project management and marketing skills integrated into it. It features CRM tools that conveniently supply client data and an email newsletter template library. Airtable also includes a to-do list and team communication capabilities, including integrated chat messaging and budget reports. With integrated marketing software and graphic task management styles, this can make task execution easier, especially with market initiatives.

Related: What are project management tools (with 15 examples)

Hive

Hive is a project management tool that offers a variety of project views to help you see how the project is progressing. It has a CRM that provides customer information and sends out newsletters via email. Group messaging and cloud collaboration make it easier for the team to communicate, and many subtasks can help the group perform better.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organisations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

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