Marketing campaign dates vs project dates

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I am trying to improve our understanding of Project start dates and campaign launch dates, not necessarily, project end dates. We have been operating under the assumption that we can produce a campaign with a two-week lead time given the quantity of campaigns our marketing team is producing at any given time. However, we know some campaigns take longer than others to launch. For the past year, we have been using Project end date as the campaign launch date, but we have found that we need to update the project end date to the due date of the final task in the project. The campaign launch (originally project due date) is the first iteration of our deployment tasks, but the project has not ended as there are still many tasks to track.

I am thinking that we'll want to create a few new project date fields to help us understand exactly how long it has been taking to produce a new campaign from project start date to campaign launch date. Here are the fields I am thinking of adding in addition to project start & project end dates:

  • Existing: Project Start Date
  • Existing: Planned project completion date
  • Existing: Actual Project Completion date
  • Existing: Project duration: [Actual Project Completion date] – [Project Start Date]
  • New: Planned Campaign Launch Date
  • New: Actual campaign launch date
  • New formula: Campaign Launch Delta: [Actual campaign launch] – [planned campaign launch date]
  • New formula: Campaign duration: [Actual project completion date] – [Actual campaign launch]

Hopefully, by adding these new fields, we'll have a better understanding of how long it takes to produce a campaign from project start to campaign launch & incorporate that into our project forecasting.

For those using Wrike for marketing campaigns, have any of you found any other way that works for your team in understanding campaign lead times?

For those who aren't in marketing, would you recommend another way of approaching this perhaps by using subprojects or subproject campaign item types?

Thanks in advance!

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6 comments
Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

Hello Zach - it does seem like you have solid solutions mapped out above - I think combining some elements of both:

  • Create Custom Field dates for elements that don't exist
  • Since it's more a "portfolio" of work you have in a large campaign - creating subprojects will give you the ability to have specific "finish" dates to associate with individual projects, in relation to the larger project
  • Also, while I havent used custom item types - that might give you the customization to create "campaign" items that have the dates - to calculate the formulas needed too!
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Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

Thanks Sherrie Besecker. I like the idea of using a campaign subproject & controlling the dates separately from the overarching project itself. On the CITs, I've been remapping all the CITs I put on the account to the space level. Hopefully, I can obtain better insights from the CITs. 

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Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

Hi Zachary Dilworth,

I do not use Wrike for marketing but for the date reports I have some experience. We are using custom fields for milestones to store e.g. the initial due date (via a bot in the background we are filling this field automatically when the project changes to a specific status). This date is frozen as it represents the initial plan. We have a second field which is updated automatically by the bot everytime the due date is changed. The advantage of this custom field is that you have a history, while the due date in Wrike does not have a history you can extract. Then we are extracting all data we need via API. At the moment we are implementing PowerBI to make automated reports from the data.

The problem with Wrike is that it does not give the functionality of analyzation we needed. So we extract all numbers and make it outside. Perhaps today their are other possibilities with Wrike analyze to make this reports.

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Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

Zachary Dilworth, I think Sven Passinger and Sherrie Besecker have given you great advice. We have implemented Wrike Analyze for reports which has moved us away from excel and PowerPoint. There are history change fields that Wrike Analyze that could help you, but you could also try the API with Tableau.

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Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

I do not do Marketing projects but in our department we do have weekly roadmap meetings. Project space has custom fields for fiscal quarters and milestones. We have a dashboard that tracks all milestones using custom widget that will filter specific task's due date and status. For example, the last task that Engineering is responsible with is the Customer delivery date, however that is not the last task to complete the project.  I created a status called "Milestone - Cust. Del. Date" so it will show up in the dashboard. I also use the same status in our blueprint so it will automatically show in the dashboard. I hope this helps.

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Spot On Innovative Approach Stellar Advice

I think you have a lot of great suggestions here and your initial post really does seem to cover your options.
One thing to think about is that occasionally you may need to track segments of a project separately and then combine the overall data to get the big picture. For example:

We had trouble with projects going on and on and on because of the ways different teams worked as well as changes in global logistics. I ended up breaking product development and product marketing launch into two separate projects and I even built a Marketing Space and a Product Development Space to keep the focus on the work. It was easy to be distracted by schedule creep which was essentially out of our hands.

We had to insert a hard stop at Product Manufacture, then a gap where product samples came in and were signed off on. It was sort of "cheating" the system, but with the insecurity with factory production due to COVID followed by the logistical nightmare situation in the shipping world, we had to isolate the work that we did from the rapidly changing production/shipping phases.

When product samples came in, we started the Marketing Launch for established campaigns and we loosely tracked the "projected" against the "actual" there. Marketing has an entirely different goblin which is projects that arise from opportunity. This will often rearrange priority in the flow of tasks, so we gauge the success of the overall Marketing Launch by sales mostly. The only schedule I tended to track closely there was how well the Creative group got the hot opportunity designs out to the team.

We will start moving the projects back together with our 2024 product line, so I look forward to seeing how these new fields work for you! Good luck!

 

 

 

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