Marketing

With nearly half of our clients running an enterprise in-house marketing agency, we get to work with a lot of strategic marketing leaders. While no martech stack or processes look identical, I often hear these three questions: 

  • How can we accelerate marketing and sales?
  • How can we see what content is working best? 
  • What’s the best way to prove marketing value to sales?

 

In this three-part blog series, I’ll address each one of these topics. 

How can we accelerate marketing and sales in a new remote work environment? 

In these Covid-19 times, my clients are seeing even more pressure to accelerate marketing content production while strongly contributing to sales. Finding ways to leverage strategic technology is often the answer. Many of our clients are relying on Seismic, an industry-leading marketing and sales enablement platform, because of these key enabling factors: 

  1. One place for approved, curated content
  2. Recommended content based on audience and popularity
  3. Ability to quickly and easily personalize with variable content
  4. Content tied to CRM shows marketing influence on sales
  5. Metrics on content shows what is being used, what works and what no one ever used, enabling companies to reallocate or reduce marketing spend

 

Financial Services Use Case: 

One large financial services company is enabling their sales team to request digital sales materials, personalize them, and then send using Seismic to track engagement. By leveraging Seismic, the sales team can view content activity across sales stages and how it is impacting deals. It provides visibility into how this content in each deal stage performs by creator, user, documents, group, and even close date. 

What is the benefit of this process? 

  • Both sellers and marketers can see what content is performing best throughout different phases of a sales cycle and then adjust and swap content accordingly. 
  • Delivering the right message at the right time is critical within the sales process to create buyer confidence and to drive relevant conversations. 
  • Being able to access a platform that recommends content automatically based on audience helps drive a smoother sales cycle and keeps buyers engaged the entire time. 

 

Even better – sellers can use this content confidently knowing that it is pre-approved with the latest marketing messaging. They never have to skip a beat or waste their time finding the appropriate content for their sales opportunities ever again. 

In our next blog – we’ll bring to light how to tell what content is working best and where to find it.  

To learn more about how to leverage the LeapPoint & Seismic partnership, click here.

LeapPoint and Seismic have established a strategic alliance designed to help enterprise organizations streamline and integrate their marketing processes and technologies to enable sales efficiencies. Seismic, the recognized leader in sales and marketing enablement, equips global sales teams with the knowledge, messaging, and automatically personalized content proven to be the most effective for any buyer interaction. LeapPoint will provide managed services for Seismic, making it possible for organizations to deliver more effective marketing initiatives, greater sales productivity and a greater return on technology spend.

Seismic offers unparalleled capabilities in syncing content between integrated technologies to ensure marketers and sellers have access to the right materials and information wherever they work. Unique to the sales enablement market, however, is the level to which Seismic incorporates data and functionality from integrated technologies to help sellers be more productive.

“Our marketing clients focus heavily on strategic planning and work management,” said Nicholas DeBenedetto, CEO of LeapPoint. “Creating that streamlined user experience to enable the use of this strategic content will be transformative. Seismic’s powerful content intelligence and analytics will demonstrate marketing’s impact on the bottom line, focus on what is delivering revenue and providing the ability to look at future investments more strategically.”

“LeapPoint is widely recognized as a trusted provider of strategic technology services to top global brands, and this alliance will help Seismic to expand our reach into new markets,” said Preseetha Pettigrew, Global VP Strategic Alliances at Seismic. “Organizations are consistently being asked to deliver more with less, and aligning process, technology, and change management to ensure clients are successfully deploying their resources in a way to quickly deliver value and ROI is imperative. Together with LeapPoint, we’ll be able to incorporate data and functionality from integrated technologies to ensure marketers and sellers have access to the right materials and information wherever they work.”

As digital transformation takes hold across one business sector after another, there are more ways for customers to interact with companies, products, and services than ever before. This shifting consumer landscape is prompting new concerns about data security and privacy. A recent study sponsored by Seismic found that there is a direct correlation between sales enablement maturity and a company’s ability to meet and exceed revenue goals. The largest difference between those who achieve their revenue targets and those who do not, outside of talent, is insights. This finding illustrates that providing better insights to sellers and marketers is critical for revenue goal attainment.  These companies also experience larger order values and more cross-sell and upsell opportunities. It’s not surprising: Collaborative teams that are more effective at creating, accessing, and delivering personalized content will deliver better experiences to their buyers — and ultimately win more business.

“The future of work is clear,” said Janelle Nash, senior director at LeapPoint. “Our clients want their technology investments to work together and make it easy for their teams to manage their work. Our alliance with Seismic helps us provide strategic guidance and services to organizations that need to measure marketing investments, strategically align with sales, and make sure they are investing their time and money in the right ways.”

LeapPoint offers a unique perspective and services for Seismic clients:

    •       Strategy and Roadmap: Ensure the most strategic work is prioritized, streamlined and delivers desired outcomes. Our experts come from highly regulated industries and understand the complex challenges that need to be addressed to achieve successful results. 
    •       Business Process: Whether designing new organization models from scratch or modernizing marketing or sales enablement teams, we enjoy helping clients think differently when aligning people to deliver on their most important work.
    •       Seismic Implementation: Maximize solution usability, scalability and drive operational efficiencies. Experienced LeapPoint consultants can walk you through the strategy and design of a Seismic solution that fits your needs, then configure, test and deploy using our proven methodology.
    •       Integrations and Development: Reduce manual effort and improve data integrity across solutions. Our large team of seasoned integration professionals can develop integration roadmaps, guide you through best practices, and do the hands-on work with API connections or iPaaS solutions like Workato, MuleSoft, DellBoomi and more.
    •       People and Change: Go beyond user adoption and achieve adaptation. With multiple bundled options, LeapPoint can help you get your teams trained on your processes, workflows and your customized Seismic system.
    •       Reporting and business intelligence: Improved decision making and business outcomes. Tell your story using data from multiple systems, delivered via visualization platforms like Tableau, Domo and PowerBI.

 

To learn more about how to leverage the LeapPoint & Seismic partnership, click here.

 

About LeapPoint

LeapPoint is a boutique consultancy founded in 2006 with a mission to drive enterprise change through the delivery of innovative solutions. Established by Big 4 alumni who sought more flexibility and agility in meeting clients’ most critical business needs, the firm has a long history of cross-industry experience across finance, HR, IT, marketing, and federal government teams. LeapPoint prides itself on its ability to deliver immediate and lasting benefits to its clients. Since its inception, LeapPoint has grown to a lean yet effective team of more than 60 consultants who encompass a diversity of backgrounds and bring a wealth of expertise from all levels of the enterprise. Balancing strategic business acumen with deep functional expertise, LeapPoint offers its clients the right combination of strategic insight and tactical support. For more information, visit leappoint.com.

About Seismic

Seismic is the recognized leader in sales and marketing enablement, equipping global sales teams with the knowledge, messaging, and automatically personalized content proven to be the most effective for any buyer interaction. Powerful content intelligence and analytics enable marketers to prove and improve their impact on the bottom line, revealing what is really driving revenue and what needs to be adjusted. The result for global enterprises like IBM, American Express, PayPal, and Quest Diagnostics is better to win rates, larger deals, and higher customer retention. Seismic is headquartered in San Diego with additional offices in North America, Europe, and Australia. To see how Seismic is being used by companies in your industry, visit https://seismic.com/

Understanding the type of DAM that is right for your team can be a challenge. Over the past few years, I have taken on a new role as a consultant. With my creative, marketing/communications, and project management experience, I have a fresh perspective when aiding clients in finding the right tools for their marketing and creative stacks.

Each client I have worked with endures similar challenges when evaluating their tools in their stack. Enterprises face difficulties with having too many tools and creating tools that are too proprietary – limiting growth and integration. They also struggle with user adoption. Picking a new tool for your marketing solution stack is not an easy feat. It is easy to get caught up in the details such as features of the tool while trying to balance buy-in from stakeholders (IT, security, VPs, and end-users), and balancing a budget. So how do you know where to start when you are evaluating Digital Asset Management tools?

 

THE 4 P’S

I have found that the 4 P’s are crucial to not only selecting a tool, but configuring it properly, and ensuring user adoption for long term success.

Understand the PROBLEM you are trying to solve, the PRODUCT you are selecting to solve that problem, the PROCESS for which the organization works, and the PEOPLE that are using the new tool.

Problem

Tools should never be sold – they should always solve. From my experiences in both marketing and creative industries, I have understood the struggles first-hand that users encounter when trying to complete work. The first step to tool selection is establishing the problem you are trying to solve. Are you bogged down by spending time constantly trying to distribute files? Are you struggling to keep the most current files at your fingertips? Do you have too many places where files are stored? By clearly establishing the problem, it will remain a strong focus on selecting a tool that will be adopted long-term.

Product

Selecting a product is not easy. There is a lot to take into consideration when choosing the right product for your team. Keep in mind the identified problems to resolve, without setting technical limitations. While the DAM you select should have all the right features and functions, also consider what other tools you already have in your stack. What integrations are available for the DAM you are selecting? What other groups or teams may want to leverage the DAM in the future?

Considerations of cost are equally as important. Time is money, and the DAM you select should help reduce the overhead hours your team is spending searching, delivering, and modifying assets. Will other teams benefit from the addition of a DAM? Teams should be selecting a tool that can grow with the organization, and that can meet their needs. The bottom line is that the DAM you choose should work for you and your team, not the other way around.

Process

Often the problem comes, not only with a need for a tool but the need for understanding of where in the process each tool should sit. After recently attending a DAM conference with a room full of tools, I could see how attendees were overwhelmed. The challenge with “pitching a solution” is that you need to understand the organization and process first. Organizational assessments are vital in selecting the right DAM. It is essential to first understanding workflows and internal organizational structure to provide an educated recommendation that will meet your organization’s needs. Consider scalability. Selecting a solution that works not only for today but also for growth tomorrow. Naturally, organizations shift and change over time, so the tool implementation must be completed with a full understanding of the potential growth of organization and integration.

People

Understanding the organization from high-level executives, IT, and end-users is key to a successful roll-out. Top-down leadership and messaging is key when rolling out a new tool and will help drive user adoption. The most successful clients I have worked with understand that getting key stakeholders involved from the start will help drive success. However, the other side of the coin is involving end-users at all levels. Involving these users will help create champions among the team to ensure the new tool is well adopted. Get your teams involved upfront in part of the tool selection process, develop clear communication, and have a roll-out plan in place.

 

We would love to learn about where you are in your DAM journey and discover ways we can ensure your continued success. Contact our team of DAM experts today – email us at info@leappoint.com

DAM New York 2019 is now in our rear view mirror and it’s taken some time to fully process the experience. Attending as a sponsor requires a lot of preparation. It’s as if you’re throwing a party, cooking dinner, singing and greeting guests all at the same time. Still, we were excited to learn and collaborate with other DAM enthusiasts. Librarians, archivists, designers and more- we had a great time, met interesting people, learned lots and were absolutely ready to hit the ground running (after a weekend to rest). There’s a lot to unpack but here are a few observations after this event.

Useful AI in DAM is right around the corner

Artificial Intelligence is at the forefront of just about every technology gathering today. Gatherings such as the Henry Stewart DAM event are integral for the development of this cutting edge capability. We heard ups and downs of allowing AI to identify objects and tag content. In my experience, the most successful application is with a touch of machine learning (ML) and a hint of human intervention. The balance between AI/ML and human intervention is going to be a delicate one. A slight error can take the AI into a tailspin of poorly tagged content. Too much human intervention becomes counterproductive. We’re seeing machine learning take large strides to close the gap between what has to be trained and what’s ready ‘out of the box’. I’m excited to see how this technology develops. For now, I see digital workers playing a big role in augmenting the ‘human’ intervention as this application of AI is fine-tuned.

It’s not about the feature, it’s about the result

Yes, I realize my last observation was about a technology feature. At the end of the day, the technology we use is a tool to enable results. It’s a tough idea to completely embrace. Most people who attend a conference on Digital Asset Management are genuinely excited about where the industry is going. We get fixated on every new feature and all of the shiny new objects. This is the kind of passion that makes these events so much fun to attend. It can also be a barrier to adoption. Our users haven’t spent their professional lives understanding the impact of governance on scaling across the enterprise or why metadata matters in your archiving strategy and measuring campaign performance. Instead, our users have their own work to do and their own goals to accomplish. Unless we can show how it impacts the results, each feature is just a button that may end up skipped or worked around.

Governance without adoption is just a bunch of rules

During a panel session, someone asked me about how to actually get your users to buy into your governance model. In fact, this question was asked many different ways throughout the conference. The usual formula for implementing DAM is Scale = Structure + Governance. You figure out how it works on one team, document it and use those steps to bring on the next team. Rinse and repeat until you’ve taken reached every team and it’s instant scale, right? Well, that’s how governance grows. That’s how you grow the rule book. We need people to use the DAM to say we’ve really achieved scale. My response to gaining buy-in was simple: try to avoid saying “you have to”. To some extent, it’s really that simple. In practice, however, it’s much easier said than done. The reasons we face resistance vary greatly between groups and individuals. Sometimes it’s about understanding the bigger picture, other times it’s about enablement or awareness. There’s no hard and fast rule for making sure adoption happen smoothly. It’s a matter of understanding people and managing change. We’ll be exploring this topic in greater depth during a roundtable discussion at DAM Europe next month. I encourage you to stop by and listen to others’ experiences with this very topic.

 

If you won’t be in London or have comments/questions, reach out via LinkedIn or email me at nrashid@leappoint.com

Marketing has dramatically evolved in the last 20 years. The rise of digital marketing and the exponential growth in marketing technology solutions are just a couple of things that have brought a new level of complexity—and power—into the hands of marketers. But, as the saying goes, “With more power comes more responsibility.”

Chief marketing officers and their teams are facing greater expectations to demonstrate results across their organization. Marketing investments are under continued scrutiny and organizations are being tasked to perform at higher levels with the same or fewer resources. The bottom line:  today, marketing organizations must demonstrate steadily increasing ROI while achieving higher levels of innovation, and team and client engagement.

So what?

 

Marketing organizations need to bring their A-Game. They must take steps to evolve their stack, processes, and strategy to keep ahead of the curve – and the competition. Wherever you are in your digital transformation, you should ask yourself:

  • Can you demonstrate how your marketing organization is aligned to the company’s strategy and driving real, measurable value for the enterprise?
  • Do you have the means to communicate full cost and ROI transparency to the CMO and business lines, and drive informed marketing decisions?

 

If you’re not confidently answering “yes” to these questions, here are the six steps you can take to build and bring your marketing A-Game:

 

1. Thoughtfully create your marketing stack

The number of marketing platforms has grown at an exponential rate, and it can be hard to know what the right strategy and tools are for your organization. Assess your current stack with these questions:

  • Can you qualify the value you get from each of your platforms and tools?
  • Are there gaps you can identify within your existing stack?
  • Could you possibly consolidate the number of tools you are using?

 

2. Build integrations

Like most companies, you likely have multiple systems of record. But it’s not effective to plan in one system, execute work in another, and host assets and deploy in others. Your holistic marketing story and accurate ROI reporting are critically important. Power your organization’s collaboration with integrations that seamlessly connect your stack to unlock and unify the data that enables these stories.

 

3. Organize your data & insights

Your stack is creating ever more data to manage. But the problem isn’t the data itself; it’s how to organize it in a way that leads to actionable insights. Define a best-fit data strategy for your stack. And with the right visualizations, your organization will be empowered with the ideas to make smarter marketing, business, and operational decisions.

 

4. Examine your existing processes – and do it often

Organizations and your marketing needs will continually evolve. Being comfortable may lead to a miss on an important technological advance that your competitors are employing.

  • Review your processes regularly to re-engineer and optimize them and to ensure they’re as efficient as possible.
  • Refine your organizational roles to maximize new capabilities.
  • Look into custom development options to create new automation opportunities within your organization.

 

5. Make change personal

Tools are only effective if you know how to use them and know why you’re using them. Equip your team with proven approaches and tools that affect lasting change. Discover methods that will influence behavior and allow your staff to understand the value of new capabilities. By encouraging your team to embrace change, you’ll drive operational excellence and create a model for the rest of the enterprise to follow.

 

6. Recruit an expert or find a reputable partner

Ultimately, bringing your marketing A-Game is complicated. It takes time, strategy, investment, and the right guidance to ensure you will have an ecosystem that positions your organization to win. In this process, don’t be afraid to recruit an expert for that industry or employ a technology partner to make strategic recommendations. Create a roadmap that aligns with your objectives, prioritize your specific initiatives and create the ideal marketing ecosystem for your organization. Your team will be able to focus on creativity and innovation, and you’ll watch your ROI (and credibility as a leader) soar.

 

Are you ready to bring your A-Game?

Through multi-city workshops, LeapPoint will provide senior marketing professionals a solution set that enables their organizations to align with corporate strategy and effectively and efficiently deliver value to the enterprise. We’ll showcase how to achieve these outcomes via a robust, intelligently integrated, set of best-of-breed cloud applications that holistically provide for this capability with effective governance.  All with the added benefit of actually making the end-user experience more efficient and effective.

Learn more about the marketing A-Game and register for an A-Game Workshop in a city near you at leappoint.com.

 

 

In today’s marketing landscape, relying on your gut feeling doesn’t work. Instead, sound marketing requires data-driven tactics to make strategic and informed decisions. You can achieve this when you integrate analytics into your marketing. Here’s how:

1. Know your basics

Understand key marketing analytics terms so you can apply vital metrics to reach your marketing goals effectively. Some key marketing analytics terms to learn include:

Leads generated. This is the number of sales leads you produce with your marketing efforts. Sales leads are individuals who are interested in the goods or services you offer and can potentially lead to a paying customer.

Sales growth. This is the rate at which your sales increase over time based on your marketing strategies, such as lead generation.

Conversion rate. This is the percentage of your leads who transform into paying customers.

Web analytics. These are the different types of metrics and data that specifically measure online activity from various platforms, including email and e-commerce. You use web analytics to understand how site visitors use the web so you can optimize your web content. Some key terms include:

  • Click-through rate (CTR). CTR measures the percentage of individuals who clicked on your digital ad or call-to-action (CTA) in comparison to individuals who only viewed it.
  • Traffic. Traffic measures the number of visitors that come to your website.
  • Engagement. Engagement typically measures the rate at which individuals interact with your online content and the way they interact with this content. The pages per session, bounce rate and time on page are a few of the several data points that constitute engagement.
  • Open rate. This metric measures the rate at which recipients of your email campaign open the emails you send.

 

2. Push your metrics further with insights

Without drawing insights from your data, it’s challenging to understand their value. Accomplish this by assessing how specific marketing activities impact different metrics. For instance, you can measure the performance between two different CTAs by comparing the changes in the CTR for each CTA. If you notice the first CTA garners a better CTR, then it may be ideal to use the first call-to-action to drive traffic.

3. Track lead sources

You can better integrate analytics into your marketing by tracking the source channels of your leads. This is especially useful for tracking social media sources. Review the source of your leads by measuring the CTR. This can help you better determine where to focus your marketing efforts.

4. Improve the user experience

You can use data to also enhance the site experience users have when they visit your website. For example, you can monitor changes in your bounce rate before and after making a technical change such as removing images that slow down site performance, to determine the effectiveness of the change. If it decreases your bounce rate and keeps visitors on your site longer, it can mean that it’s enhancing the user experience.

5. Craft your strategy around insights

You can’t maximize your data’s potential if you lack effective strategies. It’s not uncommon for marketers to limit their data’s potential by using it to support pre-made decisions. However, it’s key to leverage the potential of data to drive action. You can do this by crafting your strategy around insights. Consider using these tips to build a driving strategy with marketing analytics:

  • Make marketing analytics accessible. Make sure your team has access to your insight and discuss how analytics impacts your marketing goals.
  • Get help. Get a different perspective and ensure you’re capturing data from different angles by leveraging the help of an expert or partner.
  • Test your tactics. Perform tests to determine if the theories or tactics you have are working based on your analytics.

Digital asset management (DAM) software gives businesses a platform for storing, retrieving, and sharing digital content such as videos, photos, audio files, presentations, and images. Instead of keeping files on different computers, businesses can use DAM software to create a centralized library that gives everyone access to the content they may need.

 

How DAM Software Can Benefit Your Business

Before you purchase DAM software, you should learn about some of the ways it can help your business. You should also learn about some of the most popular software options and the features they offer.

 

Organize Your Digital Media

Without DAM, your business doesn’t have an easy way to organize digital media. At best, you can try to keep certain files in one folder. Given enough time, though, people will forget where they saved files. When they need to retrieve them, they end up wasting a lot of time searching for the files they want.

DAM organizes your files in a central location, so you can quickly find the items you need. You can even add metadata to help you find content. Instead of losing your assets, you organize them in a convenient place that the whole team can access.

Improve Workflow

Since everyone involved in a project has access to the files stored in your DAM software, you can reduce redundancies that slow your workflow. The best DAM software has built-in workflow management features that let you track a project from beginning to end. The smoother your workflow gets, the faster you can bring your projects to market.

Manage Rights and License Agreements

You may not own all of the digital media that your company uses, so you need to keep track of each asset’s rights or license agreements. It’s very difficult to manage rights and license agreements when you store media in folders.

When you use DAM, though, the software remembers all of the rights and license agreements for you. That way, you never mistakenly use content that could get you sued for copyright infringement.

DAM Software Scales to Your Needs

Digital media files can take up a lot of space on your computer, especially when you work with audio and video. Cloud-based DAM software can scale to meet your current needs. If you need more memory today because you’re working on three videos, then the software can accommodate that. Tomorrow, when you work on one video, the software automatically scales down.

Once you find the right DAM, you have all of the memory and processing power that you need to finish your projects.

 

The Top 3 Digital Asset Management Platforms

Make sure you review some of the most popular DAM software options so you can choose one with the features that matter most to you.

Bynder

Bynder excels at giving users access to templates that make it easier for designers to complete projects. Since Bynder uses the AWS cloud, the software can scale to your immediate needs. As your business grows, the software will grow with you. Finally, Bynder has a built-in, customizable workflow feature that lets you improve efficiency and track each step in a project’s progress.

Aprimo

In addition to storing digital media, Aprimo can automatically approve each step of a project. Assuming that the software approves terrific content, you should see your efficiency improve significantly. Aprimo also benefits from its ability to connect to other systems, including Adobe Creative Cloud, eCommerce, and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)

Adobe Experience Manager Assets

Adobe Experience Manager Assets makes it easier for colleagues to collaborate. The collaboration feature should help improve your office’s efficiency. Adobe Experience Manager Assets also stands out for its AI insights. The software will review your content and tell you where you get the best ROI.

Many DAMs will let you try a demo before you purchase. Explore your options, find one that works well for you, and get your DAM life in order.

Recently, Adobe announced its 4.75 billion dollar purchase of Marketo – an investment that should move Adobe into a B2B marketing leadership position. Already a powerhouse in the marketing industry, Adobe Experience Cloud is setting the stage for domination with this purchase, but the real question remains – will you benefit?

Adobe Experience Cloud

Adobe’s Experience Cloud was launched in 2017, with the company rebranding its Marketing Cloud as one of three sub-clouds – the other two being Adobe’s Analytics Cloud and Advertising Cloud. Some of the most impressive features of Adobe Experience include the Visitor ID service, which is vital to core operations and integration ability, Dynamic Tag Manager, which supports tools for Adobe functions as well as Nielsen and Google, and Device Co-op, which is a device graph that promotes understanding of customer behavior. Adobe Experience Cloud is relatively new but has already established itself as a competitive player in cloud computing.

Marketo

Marketo is a SaaS marketing automation platform that B2B marketers find essential in building campaigns and making sales strategies operational. Sales reps use the system to understand business prospects’ behavior, while marketing executives use it to link marketing investments to the sales process and revenue generation. Marketo offers software features that allow lead management, lead scoring, mobile marketing, and website personalization, among other features. Marketo has positioned itself as a leader in B2B marketing automation, a position that Adobe Experience Cloud can only enhance.

What’s in it for you?

Since Adobe acquired Marketo rather than a company with their own CRM to push, you will continue to be able to connect any significant CRM to the platform. This means that users will benefit from having all the Adobe tools at hand without being forced to make a major, and possibly disruptive, CRM switch. Joining the Adobe Experience Cloud adds powerful, advanced capabilities to Marketo. Leveraging the market-leading platform allows Marketo to enhance its strengths in mobile marketing and personalization while taking advantage of industry-leading analytics- an area in which Marketo customers have felt frustration in the past. Marketo’s B2B users will also benefit in several ways, including through its personalization engine. These Adobe tools will particularly help B2B shops that have some B2C features in their business. Marketo was already working to strengthen this aspect of their business, the Adobe purchase immediately sends them to the head of the class, leapfrogging over their competitors.

The purchase of Marketo by Adobe Experience Cloud promises better service for users of both services. Adobe Experience has the B2C market handled with numerous easy-to-use tools that can only enhance Marketo’s B2B prowess. The combination of these marketing powerhouses means that you can have the best of both worlds, keeping your favorite functions while gaining even more effective marketing features for your clients’ use.

Only time will tell the exact impact of this purchase, but you and other people in the industry have every reason to expect better service all around. The combination of these two industry leaders promises to give you groundbreaking platform power.

Unlike the traditional or “waterfall” method of software development, the agile approach does not treat analysis, design, coding, and testing as discrete phases in a development project. Agile has quickly become the standard methodology as businesses see the many advantages of adopting a more flexible approach to software development.

With testing integrated into the development process from day one, agile development often leads to higher quality products, as well as reducing risk. However, making the switch from waterfall to agile can be tricky. Many development teams end up awkwardly straddling the fence between the two approaches, which can make it difficult to effectively manage resources.

To root out any bad habits that carried over when your development team made the switch from waterfall to agile, look out for these warning signs that your team isn’t as agile as you think.

1. No sprint retrospectives

sprint retrospective is a meeting that occurs after a one-month development sprint. Usually held once a month, this is an opportunity for teams to discuss what worked well in the sprint, what could be improved, and what the team will commit to doing differently in the next sprint.

If your team does not hold sprint retrospectives, you are missing out on a valuable opportunity to change work processes in order to improve the quality of the end product. Holding no sprint retrospectives means that problems persist throughout the development process, exposing your business to the risks of waterfall methodology.

2. Long stand-up meetings

Many people resist adopting agile methodology because they think they will spend too much time in meetings. While it’s true that agile development involves a daily stand-up meeting, these should be kept short to avoid eating into everyone’s work time. In fact, the name stand-up comes from the idea that people should literally stand during these meetings so they have an incentive not to let them drag on too long. To avoid stand-up meetings overrunning, have someone with good facilitation skills lead the meeting.

3. Improper product backlog management

product backlog is a list of all the work that needs to be done for a particular product, ordered to prioritize the most important tasks. Sometimes, backlogs can become so large they are difficult to work with. In that case, you need to break the backlog down into short-term and long-term items to make it easier to manage.

4. Failure to deliver product increments after each sprint

One of the principles of agile is that working software is the primary measure of progress. If your team does not deliver a product increment after each spring, that is a warning sign that you are slipping back into waterfall methodology.

5. Urgent tasks that interrupt workflow

When you use the agile approach, your workflows should be regularly adapted to prioritize the most important tasks. If urgent tasks frequently come up and throw your workflow into disarray, that is a sign that the team hasn’t done enough planning to anticipate the upcoming demands of the project. This might be because they are hanging onto waterfall ways of working, such as setting out a roadmap at the beginning of the project and failing to reassess it often enough during sprint retrospectives and daily stand-ups.