MRM 101: Marketing Resource Management for the Modern Marketer

Modern marketing is complex, requiring multiple teams with different complementary skillsets to come together to deliver an exceptional customer experience.  Further, keeping up with competition means that marketing must get content into market faster than ever before.

But today, most marketing organizations are still run on very manual processes which requires a lot of repetitive meetings, last second heroic efforts, or even in the worst-case scenario, poor marketing getting into market.  This taxes a team over time, with key resources leaving and the remaining workers becoming burned out resources.  It also keeps marketing from working on the stuff it really wants to get to because no one ever has time!  And worst of all, the marketing ROI is typically not measured, meaning the destructive cycle continues…

Luckily, leading practitioners have decided the status quo is not sustainable and have turned to Marketing Resource Management (MRM) solutions to support their marketing strategies and maximize the resources at their disposal.

But why invest in MRM? What actually makes up a MRM solution?  Well, let’s dig into these questions!

According to Forrester, MRM solutions help marketers and other teams it works with manage and optimize four key areas:

  • People resources
  • Budgets
  • Content
  • Brand or Intellectual Property

Within a leading MRM solution, it’s common to find the following capabilities, but as with most software, it’s important to understand if a company is simply listing a feature or if it can really do what you need it to do to accelerate your business.  While not an exhaustive list, here is a handy table you can use to better understand what is offered by leading solutions and what you should be able to do:

Capability So you can…
Ideation Capture the initial thoughts of a marketing project so they can be acted upon at the right time. For those that get postponed, the idea is captured in a central place and can be easily revisited and avoid being lost to other priorities.
Plan Development Successfully turn ideas into formal plans aligned to corporate strategies by asking a requestor the questions needed to prioritize work. It should be easy to identify which ideas are aligned and which are rogue marketing.
Budget and Spend Management Align dollars to the plan so all activity is accounted for in the overall budget to minimize those nasty budget surprises!
Calendar Once an item is approved, add it to your centralized calendar.  Allow you and your team to know when items are supposed to be in-market so there is no confusion or competing initiatives.
Workflow Ensure your work always follows the best (and approved) process, even if scope changes after the start of a project.
Task Management Assign work to the right person at the right step in the process with all the supporting information needed, so it can be done right the first time.
Review & Annotation Provide reviewers with tools that make it easy to mark-up content so it’s easy for designers and writers to understand and make the requested changes. Easily compare previous versions so you can be sure everything was changed.
Digital Asset Management Manage, enrich, and deliver content to the proper channel, ensuring only approved assets make it into market.
Agile Boards Show the status of projects and other work in an easy-to-visualize format that lends itself to updates across teams.
Insights & Analytics Measure valuable items like what work has been completed to support which strategies, content usage, time spent creating content, spend by strategy and even measure holistic content ROI down to the individual piece of content.

 

The benefits of a MRM solution are many and a common sampling used to justify the ROI of a decision include:

    • Alignment of work to corporate strategies saving misspent marketing funds
    • Shortened go-to market times with the same resources (sometimes even outputting more content if you apply agile marketing methodologies)
    • Content lifecycle optimization so that content is created and then fed back into the company for repurposing. This reduces one-off work and new marketing work costs
    • Optimized enterprise where teams and resources are intelligently applied so that the best resource based on availability and skillset is automatically assigned work
    • The ability to know at any moment, what’s going on in marketing, and what you expect it to do in market
 

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