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July 11th, 2010, 04:36 AM #1Project Planning
Good morning ladies and gentlemen.
I've never been one to plan (however my wife loves planning every single situation no matter how remote it is!) however I think this needs to change. I've always dealt with a situation as it comes which sometimes can bite you on the bottom as it may leave you unprepared and cause unnessecary stress.
Now I want to start planning my next Affiliate Marketing project, starting with the website development then moving onto marketing strategys. Planning seems fairly easy in just writing down things you believe you need to do and then just working towards them, but anything that seems easy usually isn't.
Can any of you experiences folk please give me advice on how you plan your next project and if theres any mistakes/things that work you have found over your time?
July 11th, 2010, 06:51 AM #2
- Join Date
- January 17th, 2005
I was not a super organized person either, but looking back, certainly it has been a long way.
When I start a business project, and if that area is new to me, I try to read as much as I can. There is no substitute for experience in determining how long a plan should take, but at least by understanding the scope of work, I am able to notice some of the "details" that are more time consuming. Just like when you said things usually don't appear as hard as they are.
If you have options to hire others, that would also be helpful. For example, while I can design web pages, it probably takes me 3-5 times as long if I outsource or hire. That is how I keep up when I am running late on a project. But of course, budget is something I have to consider very carefully.
Even with all the experience, I know many project managers who multiple the estimated time by 1.5 to 2, allowing some flexibility and other "incidents" that may happen along the project. I found this is especially true when you work alone. (I tend to procrastinate a bit)
Adopt a system. I use slight modification of GTD to suit my work flow. Gantt chart and other complex tools are not my cup of tea. I spend more time beautifying the chart than working.
And one thing that I think most important of all, if you feel overwhelmed with all the plans, just do it. A pilot project is always the hardest... Next time you can adopt and adapt and things would surely be much faster.
July 11th, 2010, 07:12 AM #3
July 12th, 2010, 02:48 PM #4
July 12th, 2010, 03:47 PM #5
I used to do this in another life, and they were pretty anal about it, so I've had some experience.
Like you said, you need to first define what the project is. It sounds simple-build a website. But, what will the website do, what will it have, what should it accomplish. For example, you may make a site dedicated to promoting furniture. Will it use datafeeds? If so from whom? Will it have articles or how-to guides, etc. you get the idea.
You may want to divide the tasks into categories and set timelines. What needs to be done and who will do it and when should it be complete? Are there dependencies, one task that can't be done until another is done?
You can make this plan very detailed or simple but the one of the most important things to keep in mind are goals. Without them a simple project can take forever and stray way off course.
July 14th, 2010, 12:20 PM #6
August 17th, 2010, 03:27 PM #7
- Join Date
- June 22nd, 2010
- Seattle, Wa
Use Pivitaltracker.com to track your milestones and tasks. It’s a free program that I use all the time.
You can sort by priority and dependencies. You can assign tasks and milestone ownership. You can assign length of time to completion of each task and pivotal tracker will tell you how long it will take to complete the project and even adjust automatically.
Decide on what’s called the “minimal viable product” to get your site up and running fast. The minimal viable product is only the features that will help you make money over the next 30-60 days. After that you can start adding other features that you think will help you get successful in 30 day sprints.
Outsource with 99designs or elance.com instead of learning new skills and getting bogged down.