Even though we live in a digital world, collaborations between IT and Marketing are not always effective and able to produce stellar results. So what keeps these tandems from revolutionizing the market or even delivering on the initial promises?
In the article below, we look at 7 easy how-to steps to make teaming up between Marketing and IT successful. The following aspects of the topic is supported with examples from out practical experience that Itransition gained as a result of a long-term partnership with one of our customers, the West Coast based marketing automation ISV:
In partnerships, it is important to stay in one’s lane: IT should not act as a dictating expert vetoing Marketing’s suggestions, and vice versa. Marketing should do what it does best (e.g. forming business requirements) and IT should stick to its expertise niche (e.g. making sure it is possible to implement these requirements and suggesting an optimal way of implementation).
Sides should freely exchange ideas, pose and answer questions. They should closely communicate using time-tracking and project management tools, as well as analyst expertise to provide transparency of all the project parts.
Alpha and Beta versions of products should always be tested on target audience focus groups for getting important feedback (responsibility of the marketing department) that should be used to do the necessary tweaks to rework and complete the product (responsibility of the IT department).
Not all improvements are affordable, and it is vital to always keep the budget in mind, from both sides of the collaboration. The IT team should provide the marketing team with a list of must-have features that fit budgetary restraints that will end up in the final release.
The same people who began development, finished and installed the product are the people who can always pick up where the project left off. Knowledge can and should be retained for emergencies but there is nothing like a team that was on the job from A to Z.
The recommended list of practices and tools when developing marketing products (and other products as well) includes continuous integration, routine procedures automation tools, requirements management tools, issue tracking systems, SCM tools with multi-branching support and many more.
The key to long-term success in IT-Marketing collaborations is to keep the tools and solutions evolving, investing into continuous improvements and development of new modules to match the changing market, emerging technologies and new circumstances.