Project prioritization is the process that helps you take on the work that will influence your marketing goals most effectively.
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.
Write down every idea; the following exercises will help you prioritize these projects further.
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:
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.
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).
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.
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:
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. ;)