Marketing workflows: Avoiding burnout and finding a sustainable approach

Finding a crisis-ready but sustainable workflow has become an imperative for marketing teams during the COVID-19 pandemic, with team burnout now commonplace.

With the world upturned by the coronavirus pandemic, it’s hardly surprising that the response of many businesses was a switch to fire-fighting mode. This caused problems, however, from burnout induced by back-to-back video calls, to brand plans hasti

For marketing teams, workflow management is about prioritising time and effort spent on specific activities and operations. It’s about understanding the varying impact each action, or response, will have on a business, in order to ensure greatest effort is put into those elements that will deliver the biggest, positive impact. This is important at any time, but especially so during times of change – whether crisis-related or not. Typically, a marketing workflow gives the team a clear outline of the information they need to do their work, i.e. the inputs; what they should do with this, in other words, the required transformation; and what they must produce, otherwise known as the outputs. Ideally, this means each business function acting as a reliable cog in a well-oiled machine; ensuring that processes are up-to-date and adjusted to meet the needs of a new situation. The ability to step back from the day-to-day and view the bigger picture is important, too, especially when the inevitable response in the early months of the pandemic was to fire-fight – involving a focus on immediate rather than long-term challenges. The companies that fared best had previously built flexibility into their plans, systems and processes. A growth mindset is one that is suited to overcoming obstacles. It sees challenges as opportunities and crises as a catalyst to innovate. These three approaches are closely interconnected. Each works to its best effect when deployed as part of an integrated strategy and, done right, will impact positively on marketing workflow management. These steps help optimise innovation and invention by enabling a powerful and effective always-on response not just to a crisis today but also looking ahead to inevitable, on-going change.