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The #1 Marketing Ops Team Challenge & How To Solve It

Earlier this year, we conducted a marketing operations survey and learned something we probably all knew: Good email marketing takes a lot of time.

A strong majority of survey respondents (68%) named email marketing as the most time-consuming of all marketing tactics, ranking it no. 1 or no. 2, just behind analytics and reporting. In many cases, this is attributed to companies still using an antiquated and cumbersome email creation process. Sound familiar? Let’s explore why your email creation could be taking so long.

1. Every team is different, and there’s no standardized process for moving things along

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There are a few key players usually involved in email creation: copywriters, designers, developers, and marketers. Add a couple of managers and curious stakeholders and you can see how a single campaign can get stuck in limbo.

A lack of process means that best practices for email creation can be hard to find and even harder to implement. When working with one team, you might use long email chains to get approval on multiple drafts. For another, they might walk over to your desk to talk it through.

Some companies also lack a marketing operations function, which can be a huge boon for managing the email marketing stack and finding efficiencies. Even when there is an operations team, its role and purpose is probably still taking shape—survey respondents listed close to 50 different job titles when asked about their team members, indicating a lot of variation within teams.

2. There are multiple departments involved, and they’re busy

‍‍‍Image by Paul Bence on Unsplash

Emails aren’t made in a bubble. To get the job done, it takes teamwork.

You may need approval from your marketing manager 2,000 miles away, require creative assets that only your graphic designers have, or need the development team to insert link tracking codes. This can make it hard to stick to your deadlines, especially since you’re not the only one asking other teams for help.

This back-and-forth coupled with departments’ other priorities (email is only part of their jobs) can bottleneck production and slow down reactive email marketing to a grinding halt. Beyond learning to design and code themselves, marketers are often at the mercy of their creative and tech-savvy colleagues.

3. Your tech stack just isn’t built for a global brand

‍‍‍Image by Slava Bowman

You might be using Slack or Asana to delegate tasks, but email creation requires a step further for collaboration.

Your chosen process and tech should work together to cut down on time and back-and-forth as much as possible. If you’re not taking that into account, you have a problem.

Go back to square one with your marketing operations team—it’ll take a close look at how the moving pieces fit together and will look for ways to optimize. Aim to automate as much of the creation process as you can: HTML generation, link checking and email responsiveness, to start.

Another good question to ask: Does your tech stack and creation tools make it easier or harder for global team members to collaborate?

When it comes down to it, email creation doesn’t have to be a complex process with so many moving parts. There are many benefits to centralizing creation within a single platform, the biggest being more time back on your plate.

You want to focus on more pressing initiatives? You got it.

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