When we moved to agile marketing for our internal process, it changed the way we think. Instead of finding any resources that were available, we had dedicated teams that worked on a smaller number of clients. Instead of working against a 12-month marketing plan, we worked in 30-day Sprints to reach smaller, more attainable goals faster.
But most importantly, it changed the way we kicked off.
A client kickoff meeting is one of the most important aspects of your online marketing campaign. You set the tone and standards, learn about the client, and start formulating your strategy. Then, you have to keep momentum going.
We changed the way we kick off meetings, which has allowed us to learn more about our clients and prep us better for any project. We adopted a lot of this from our agile Web development teams and their 3-day Sprint Zeros that happened before we started building anything.
Here are some things to take into your kickoff meetings to make sure your project is set up for success.
We push for one to two days — depending upon the complexity of the project — at the client’s location. This gives us more time to dive in, and we get to see firsthand where they work. The basic things we cover include:
This is our time to talk to the key stakeholders of the company who we wouldn’t necessarily have access to on a daily basis. We want to get their thoughts about how they envision the company being marketed; but most importantly, we want to establish consensus among them so we have clear direction. We ask questions like:
This helps you identify risks and opportunities. You’ll see how to prioritize your marketing and what you should be looking out for that could hinder you.
You’ll have something that looks like this:
This helps you identify your client’s end users and their goals. If there are more than 10 people in the kickoff, break up into pairs. Get them out of their comfort zone to work with people they don’t typically interact with.
After this exercise, you’ll have an idea of keywords, objectives and goals to work toward and a vision of how the client plans to impact their end user.
Before we go into the kickoff meeting, we have a good idea of things we can do immediately that will get some quick wins, whether it’s results or blaringly obvious improvements. This helps build the relationship and establishing your credibility because it usually takes a long time to see the fruits of your labor in SEO and link building.
These quick wins could include:
What other things do you include in your kickoff meetings to establish your relationship with your clients? Let us know in the comments.