You have dreams of Tuscany. Sipping vino in a palazzo in the shade...watching the fashionable crowd stroll by. Cannolis, chianti and David are calling your name. You’re tired of dreaming in front of your computer, so you take the plunge and book a two week trip to Italy! Bellissimo!
You spend six months planning your visit, reading all of the best blogs and guides, downloading the best travel apps and researching the top reviewed hotels, museums, restaurants and secret small towns. For months you compile notes, ask friends and family for suggestions and map out the ultimate Italian dream getaway. This must be a trip of a lifetime, so you carefully plan out every single detail of each day, as not to miss a single must-see thing!
Time to fly
It’s here! Vacation day is here! You have carefully planned, diligently packed and prepared for every possibly scenario. Rain or shine, come hell or high water. You are going to live out this glorious dream you have so carefully planned.
But, wait a minute. What’s this? The flight is delayed? (cue record scratch)
That means that you won’t be arriving in Florence until four hours later than planned. Which means you won’t have time to unpack and rest before heading out to the cute place on the corner for a cafe and biscotti on your way to the Piazza Duomo to be there by Noon. You might have to go straight to the Duomo to start out on schedule. Two cafes will help!
After the Duomo, which took a lot longer than expected (you’re tired), you notice a delicious smell. After all, you’re starving. The pizza, the pasta the pastries! You decide to stop, just for 30 minutes for lunch. Two hours later (you’re in Italy), you’re still determined to visit the Galleria dell'Accademi before it closes. You were supposed to be there two hours ago (but that marscapone cheesecake was so good). It should only take about 20 minutes to walk there. Ten if you jog.
On the way, you notice a lovely market with fresh flowers, chocolates, artwork and jewelry. It’s just too tempting. So you stop to browse….just for a minute. Oh, how pretty! Your sister would love those earrings, and her birthday is in a few weeks. You have to get them. What’s this? No one speaks English? You do your best to mime your way through the conversation, with the friendly vendor Gusieppe, to find out how much they cost. No, you don’t even want to bargain - but he does. Or is he yelling at you? Oh, who cares! You hand over 40 Euros. He smiles a big happy smile and you’re on your way. Ciao Bella!
You make it to the Galleria twenty minutes before closing and try to take in some highlights.
It’s getting dark. Then, you’re done.
Day 1. Complete. But not exactly according to plan.
The Agile Approach to vacation planning
Things in life, they rarely go according to plan. Your carefully mapped out trip to Italy did not exactly go according to the meticulous plan you created six months ago. Why? Things change. Opportunities present themselves, ideas hit you as you look at a painting, and you meet people along they way who can inspire a whole new course of action.
If you’d planned your vacation in a more agile method, you would have made a master list (similar to our inbound marketing agency’s value points system) of all of the things you want to see and do in Italy. You would have still made a list, possibly mapped in a cool travel app, of ideal sights, and planned the approximate time it would take you to get to each location and how long you’d like to be there. But you might plan your trip for a day or two at a time, if you only had two weeks (similar to how we plan weekly for a month’s worth of goals), vs mapping out the entire trip in detail six months in advance. Planning that far in advance often doesn’t work, and is very stressful, because you just don’t know who you might meet walking down the street that can completely change your path, and likely make your trip even more memorable as a result.
An Agile approach to marketing
Similarly, in relation to inbound marketing, planning six months or a year in advance is just not feasible. Sure, you can try to create an annual marketing plan (find out why agile has killed the annual marketing plan). But, in today’s market, data-driven trends and technologies change so fast, it’s almost impossible to predict what marketing strategies and messages your customers will relate to that far ahead.
Agile marketing allows us and our clients to work more fluidly, more agile, planning a month at a time through a series of weekly sprints. We can focus on what will bring the most value to our clients to deliver the best results the fastest based on what’s happening now. By responding to change in your data, and paying attention to the content that your customers crave most, we can consistently deliver the strongest results for our client partners.
When you get faster marketing results, in the form of website traffic, social evangelism, content engagement, leads and conversions, you’ll also be able to plan that trip to Italy...and not stress about the details.
Ready to say Ciao! in 6 months?