Why Most Marketing Agencies Are Agile in 2022


You can write about the benefits of Agile for marketers all day, but the real proof is in the actual usage on the ground. Today, that proof is there, clearly showing that Agile marketing has been on the rise in marketing agencies and departments around the world for years.

But while the growth of Agile in marketing is undeniable, understanding what's driving that growth is key to unlocking the value Agile marketing provides agencies. Below, we examine seven of the most important reasons most marketing agencies are using Agile in 2022.

Agile Marketers are More Satisfied and Confident

Confidence and satisfaction are two dramatically underrated metrics for marketing success. An agency can have a lot going right, but if their marketers are dissatisfied and don’t feel confident in their work, they’re simply not going to perform well.

The data gathered in this year’s State of Agile Marketing Report found that 92% of all Agile marketers are confident they can tackle any unplanned work. That included both remote and in-person marketers. Seventy-five percent of all marketers felt satisfied with how their work was managed, compared to just 50% of traditional marketers.

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Why would Agile marketers feel this way? The report gives some further insights.

For example, 72% of fully Agile marketing teams felt it was clear how their work contributed to the organization’s long-term success. That’s compared to just 43% of traditional marketers.

The picture as a whole is one in which Agile marketers simply feel better about their work, in large part because its value is clear.

Agile Marketers are More Prepared for Remote Work

Recent years have obviously seen a massive shift towards remote work for most marketing agencies. While some marketers are heading back to the office, remote work looks poised to retain popularity with marketing agencies around the world.

It’s no wonder, as one study from HiveDesk found, that 80% of marketing agencies felt remote workers increased productivity while a full 20% were fully remote. 

This has further fueled the move towards Agile. When marketers go remote, it often becomes more difficult to coordinate and ensure everyone is on the same page. Not to mention the increased difficulty of seeing how your work is contributing to larger goals.

Agile addresses this directly with common elements like daily standups and tools for workflow visualization like Kanban boards to empower marketers with the context they need.

All of this makes the kind of asynchronous and independent work that more marketers prefer far easier.

Agile Marketers are More Productive

The average marketing agency in 2022 has between 16 and 19 clients, not to mention the hundreds or thousands of customers they might deal with through those clients. It’s no wonder agencies are turning to remote work and Agile marketing to enhance productivity in order to handle those workloads. After all, the economic uncertainty of recent years made the ability to adapt and maintain productivity more important than ever.

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This year’s Agile Marketing Report showed just how true that is, with data showing that Agile marketers felt they were better at managing changing priorities, had better visibility into project status, were more productive, had better morale, and many more. Across the board, it was found that Agile marketers performed better than their traditional and ad hoc counterparts.

So, agility translated into marketers who both are more productive and feel more productive, even when handling a switch to remote work.

Planning Iterations and Speed Increase

Agile marketing is built around faster iterations to quickly identify and implement new ideas, but this extends beyond simple standups to how overall marketing planning happens.

This year’s report found that a full 82% of marketers who adopted Agile changed how they plan their marketing. In most cases, this meant moving from annual planning to something which evolves on a more frequent basis based on changes on the ground.

That speed increase has a host of benefits for Agile marketing agencies. It enables them to better adapt to changing client needs and priorities. It discourages wasting resources simply because they were allocated a certain way months ago.

Overall, by shifting to smaller and more frequent planning cycles, Agile marketing agencies are able to serve their clients more effectively and efficiently.


Agile Marketing Agencies are More Focused on Impact for Stakeholders

One of the biggest struggles any marketing agency faces is retention. It’s no secret that whether in a B2B scenario like a marketing agency or in a typical B2C one, retaining a customer is far cheaper than finding a new one.

If you want better retention, you need to clearly demonstrate your value to those clients. This is another area where Agile marketing agencies have a clear advantage. 60% of Agile marketers use effectiveness as the main metric by which they measure the impact of their marketing efforts. 

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In other words, instead of hearing about what was done, clients hear about what the effects were. This Agile-driven focus on stakeholder value as the primary way to measure marketing effectiveness is ideal for improving retention by consistently demonstrating value.

Agile Marketing Agencies can Attract more Clients

Seventy-four percent of Agile marketers think it would be easier to work with other departments if they also followed an Agile methodology. This strong preference also extends outwards, as companies which use Agile find it easier to work with marketing agencies that do the same. 

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But the reasons why Agile companies are attracted to Agile marketing agencies are just as important. Knowing that an agency shares a similar structure of work, focus on stakeholder value, and general mindset makes choosing that agency far less risky. It’s no wonder agencies prominently advertise their Agility when describing how they work.

Just as important is which sectors are more likely to use Agile. In particular, as Agile expands outside of its software development roots, it’s been adopted by more innovative and dynamic companies. For any marketing agency, these are dream clients, companies set to develop better products and services through a rigorous focus on providing value to their end-customers as opposed to companies stuck conducting business the way they did in the 90s.

The simple takeaway

There’s no getting around the advantages Agile marketing agencies have in today’s competitive global environment. From being more appealing to top customers to enjoy greater confidence and effectiveness, Agile is fast becoming a key ingredient in creating a successful marketing agency.

But getting there requires understanding the reality of Agile implementation and execution. That’s why Agile-curious and seasoned agencies alike should utilize real-world data and examples to drive their decision-making. Fortunately, the 5th annual State of Agile Marketing Report is full of useful data and insights are taken from hundreds of marketers around the world.


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