Being an effective prioritizer is one of those marketing skills that doesn’t get talked about enough, but plays a huge role in the success of your team and content. The Asana marketing team uses a project labeled “Content Opportunities” to which anyone in the company is highly encouraged to contribute ideas. In our experiences at Buffer and Asana, the most successful marketing teams coordinate on two important levels: Messaging: Ensuring there’s consistency in what is being said across channels (blog, website, social, etc. We’ve found that having effective collaboration tools in place makes all of the difference. Let’s say we wanted to increase Buffer blog traffic by 10% in one year (goal). We’d then prioritize ideas based on impact (Warren Buffett Framework / ICE Scores) and begin testing. )” Asking good questions, when it comes to data and marketing analytics, is an invaluable marketing skill to have on any team. But where do you start on your learning journey as a marketer? We’ve found that having a framework in place allows us to identify opportunities for growth. Then, we suggest forming habits around the marketing disciplines you’re most excited about: If you want to get better at data analysis, try taking a course on Udemy or Skillshare to expand your skills If you want to dive into video marketing, experiment with creating a video in Animoto or take a free Adobe Premiere tutorial on YouTube.
In speaking with thousands of marketers and businesses over the past several years, we’ve learned that marketing has an incredible potential to impact people’s lives.
In fact, the American Marketing Association defines marketing as:
“The activity, set of institutions, skills, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.”
I love that. We as marketers are benefiting society at large!
But marketing skills and career growth don’t come easy in a field that moves at the speed of light. It seems like every week companies are demanding an evolved skill set out of their employees – giving rise to a new era of marketing roles such as the Full-Stack and T-Shaped Marketer.
Brands that can successfully bring a variety of people, marketing skills, and unique perspectives together have a huge advantage when it comes to providing value.
That’s why we’ve partnered with the incredible marketing team at Asana, a leading work management software, to break down the top 7 invaluable marketing skills that help some of the greatest brand teams on the planet produce consistently great content.
Let’s dive in!
7 invaluable marketing skills for teams
As Sujan Patel writes on his blog, “the modern marketer has to be familiar with a lot, good at many, and master of a few.”
Having a variety of skills and tools not only provides ultimate flexibility as a team to create a variety of successful marketing campaigns, but it also allows each marketer to shine as an individual.
These 7 high-level marketing skills will help to ensure your team has ultimate flexibility and individuality.
There seems to be a general belief that marketing has always been about storytelling – and that marketers have always identified as natural storytellers.
But that may not be the case.
LinkedIn found that just seven years ago the number of marketers listing “storytelling” on their profile as a skill was obsolete. It didn’t exist at all as a respected marketing discipline.
Today, however, between 7 percent and 8 percent of all marketers on LinkedIn worldwide identify themselves as storytellers based on their profile descriptions and list of skills.
As a marketer, storytelling doesn’t just mean telling your audience what your product or service does or what it has done. Effective storytelling involves a deep understanding of human emotions, motivations, and psychology in order to effectively communicate with them in an authentic and engaging way.
During the writing of this article, Asana CMO Dave King told me: “The best marketers are problem solvers and storytellers. Content creators should ask ‘what problem is this piece solving for my audience.’”
As marketers, there are endless ways to tell a story.
One of my favorite ways to develop a compelling story is to use “The Story Spine” formula created by professional playwright and improvisor Kenn Adams. Over the years, Pixar has won countless awards by using this formula, including 13 Academy Awards, 9 Golden Globes, and 11 Grammys.
Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
I encourage you to practice this formula for your own own brand, products, or services.
Let’s give it a shot with a brand we might all know of: Nike.
- Once upon a time there was a passionate shoemaker that wanted to get his shoes into the hands of runners around the world.
- Every day, he worked on perfecting his shoes so that these runners could perform at an optimum level.
- But one day, this shoemaker realized that supplying shoes to thousands of runners around the world was no easy task.
- Because of that, he worked harder and harder to ensure that he had the supply of products needed to be successful despite what critics said.
- Because of that, his shoes continued to improve and more and more athletes started to wear them in prestigious competitions.
- Until finally, it wasn’t just about running anymore. It became about something bigger – finding your inner champion doing what you love in gear that makes you feel great.
As Ken describes, “The Story Spine is not the story, it’s the spine. It’s nothing but the bare-boned structure upon which the story is built. And, that’s what makes it such a powerful tool.”
It’s up to us as marketers to fill in all the little nuances of the story.
As many marketers know all too well – there is always something to be done.
Being an effective prioritizer is one of those marketing skills that doesn’t get talked about enough, but plays a huge role in the success of your team and content.
Producing consistently great content means saying yes to a handful of awesome content ideas/opportunities and saying no to many others.
The Asana marketing team uses a project labeled “Content Opportunities” to which anyone in the company is highly encouraged to contribute ideas. Then, when their marketing team is ready to take action on a piece of content or campaign, they add it to their Editorial Calendar project.
This management of ideas, projects, and initiatives is what allows them to be super focused and productive on a consistent basis.
So how can you develop prioritization as a marketing skill? And how can you prioritize content and campaigns that will perform at a high level?
That’s where the importance of goal-setting comes into play!
Today, our marketing team is using two types of goal-setting methods depending on the scope. For long-term planning and strategizing, we use a modified Warren Buffett Framework, and for short-term (experimental content), we use a framework called ICE.
The Modified Warren Buffett Framework
My colleague Hailley has long admired the original framework for setting goals from Warren Buffett – a method where you write down 25 things you want to accomplish in your career, and from that, pick the top five as the focus and put the other 20 on an “avoid at all costs” list.
We’ve since adopted a modified version of this goal-setting framework. Here’s a quick overview of how it works (with a real-life example goals from one of our 6-week cycles):
Step 1: Choose 10 goals
Brainstorm a list of 10 goals related to your work on the team that can be accomplished in a certain, predesignated timeframe.
Remember to focus on goals and not tasks. A good way to remember this is that tasks describe how you spend your time, whereas goals are your results.
Step 2: Assign a “tag” to each goal
Next, go through and add a tag to each goal with the category that it falls into. The tagging system should be unique for each person.
Come up with your tags, and assign them to each of your 10 goals.
Step 3: Pick three goals to focus on (P1s)
This is the most difficult portion of the exercise! Refining the list from 10 to the three that you will focus on during the specified time period.
Pick one goal for each tag that you have on your list.
Then, add a P2 and a P3 to prioritize the rest of your goals within the list.
That doesn’t mean you have 10 goals all competing with each other at the same time.
It means that as soon as you complete a P1 in any one of the categories, you then (and only then) move onto your P2 and P3.
ICE Score Framework
“ICE” stands for Impact, Confidence, and Ease.
Below is a description of each element directly from the creators of the ICE Score Framework at GrowthHackers:
- Impact: The possible impact the idea could have on the business if considered a “win
- Confidence: This relates to how confident you are in whether it’ll result in a wi
- Ease: This relates to how many resources, and what kind, are needed to implement the idea
For each idea, give each factor a…