What Is Project Prioritization?

Project prioritization definition:

Project prioritization is the process that helps you take on the work that will influence your marketing goals most effectively.

Brainstorm Your Marketing Project Ideas

Your marketing project backlog is a list of every idea you think will help you reach your marketing goal most effectively.

The easiest way to begin your project backlog is to dedicate 30 minutes to ask one simple question:

What projects will help us reach our marketing goals most effectively?

For now, don’t limit yourself. Don’t even think about the marketing tactics you defined as part of your marketing strategy in Chapter 6.

Write down every idea; the following exercises will help you prioritize these projects further.

Use A Marketing Project Prioritization Matrix To Take On 10x Campaigns

The most important project prioritization criterion is determining which ideas have the largest potential for providing 10x growth toward your marketing goal.

The 10x versus 10% framework will help you understand which projects to take on, and which projects to drop. Think of it like this:

  • 10x ideas often provide the most value for the largest amount of your target audience. These provide repeatable, long-term growth toward your marketing goal. These ideas have the potential to boost your results 10 times over.
  • 10% ideas often provide little value to a small amount of your target audience. These may include small optimizations, “low-hanging fruit”, and projects that won’t help you actually reach your marketing goals ten times faster than if you simply didn’t do them at all.
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The easiest way to visualize which of your ideas are 10x and which are 10% is to add your sticky notes on a project prioritization matrix you sketch out on a whiteboard.

Draw an X/Y chart, labeling the vertical Y axis Value and the horizontal X axis Target Audience. I’ve found it helpful to draw arrows at the ends of both axis to visually indicate Most is at the outermost ends of the matrix.

Marketing Prioritization Matrix

Now review each idea and stick it on the project prioritization matrix where it fits best.

10x opportunities lie at the upper right part of the matrix (providing the most value to the largest amount of your target audience), whereas 10% ideas are near the lower left (providing the least value to the smallest amount of your target audience).

Marketing Prioritization Matrix 10x Projects

Grab the sticky notes in the upper right part of the project prioritization matrix and type them in column A (starting at cell A4) in the Project Backlog tab in your marketing strategy template.

While the ideas are fresh on your mind, use column B to document a Description of each idea. Simply explain why the idea will help you reach your marketing goal and what you’d do.

Rank Your Campaigns With Marketing Project Prioritization Criteria

By this point, you’re only taking on projects that will have the biggest impact upon your marketing goals. So it makes sense to knock out the easiest projects first to reap those long-term results as quickly as possible.

Here are some additional marketing project prioritization criteria to weigh each idea against:

  • 10x: Is this idea a 10x growth opportunity or a 10% improvement? While you already did this, it’s helpful to remind yourself to only take on 10x campaigns. Now’s the time to get projects off the backlog that aren’t 10x.
  • Marketing Tactics: Does this idea complement the marketing tactics you’ve chosen to use to execute your strategy? If not, it might mean revising your marketing tactics or downplaying this project idea.
  • Effort: Will this idea take lots of your team’s time, require outside help, or need other teams involved? If the level of effort is extremely high, this might be a project you’ll want to take on after you knock out the quick wins.
  • Maximize: Does this idea maximize content you already have? If so, it’s probably an easy one to knock out quickly.
  • Maintenance / Ongoing: Can you publish this and reap lots of long-term benefits with little ongoing effort? Less maintenance = more productivity into other 10x projects, which is a good thing.
  • Credibility: Will this idea establish you as a major player in your industry? Yes = absolutely a good thing.
  • Audience: Does this idea target the right kind of prospects? You want to attract your marketing persona, not just a large number of people.
  • Cost: Is this idea cheap or expensive to create and maintain? Expensive doesn’t necessarily mean bad, but cheap to create may be an easy win.
  • Partnership Opportunities: Does this idea give you opportunities to connect with influencers? Collaborations can help you reach a larger audience who may not know anything about your business, which is a good thing.
  • Expectation: Does your target audience simply expect a business like yours to do an idea like this? For example, it’s common practice for businesses to have blogs, so if yours doesn’t, that idea is likely a high expectation from your prospects.

These are just some of the project prioritization criteria you can use to rank your ideas. There obviously may be more (or fewer) criteria for which you’d like to weigh your ideas against. Use these as a starting point.

In your marketing strategy template, the Project Backlog tab has all of these prioritization criteria listed in columns C-L.

At this point, you can rank each idea against the criteria. The template is designed on a scale of 1-5 for each of the criteria, with 5 being best and 1 be worst.

For example, if your idea will take very little Effort, rank that a 5. If your idea will take lots of Maintenance, rank that a 1.

The template will automatically calculate the sum of each idea’s total score in column M. You’ll want to prioritize the ideas that have the highest score. So, highlight all of the ideas from row 4 to column M and down, then go to Data > Sort by column M > Order Z to A.

The idea in row 4 is now the one you should knock out first, row 5 is second, and down the list you go.

Congrats! You’ve just prioritized your marketing projects! Continue to Chapter 8 to create a marketing budget plan. Sounds super fun, I know. ;)