Marketing, as a creative field, is sometimes quite challenging to manage. On the one hand, we’d want to give as much freedom as possible to encourage creativity in the marketing team. However, when not managed in a structure, too much creativity can be a problem and can cause various issues like missed deadlines, projects being over budget, scattered works, and more.

This is why project management in a marketing agency is actually a very important function to ensure a balance between creativity and structure, and this is where the importance of the project manager role comes in.

Project Manager in a Marketing Team


A marketing project manager, simply put, is a manager who oversees and manages projects in a marketing agency. The project manager is responsible for managing the execution of tasks that must be accomplished to finish the project, as well as the people working on these tasks.

In its day-to-day operations, marketing agencies typically must execute different projects for different clients, for example:

  • Social media campaign project for client A
  • Product launch campaign for client B
  • Website development for client C
  • Advertising campaign for client D

And so on. The project manager’s role is to oversee, lead, and manage these projects. Each project typically will involve these typical phases:

  1. Brainstorming, ideation, and research phase after receiving a project brief from the client
  2. Content development or design
  3. Execution/launch of the project
  4. Monitoring and controlling
  5. Debriefing, reporting, and evaluation (closing)

The marketing project manager would supervise the project through these four phases, carrying out the vision of the marketing manager/director on a granular level. Depending on the nature of the project, the project manager might also be required to supervise third-party vendors and outsource companies.

Role and Responsibilities of Marketing Project Manager

Based on the different phases of marketing projects above, a marketing project manager has the following responsibilities:

1. Brainstorming/research phase

    1. Identifying stakeholders of the project, planning stakeholder expectations
    2. Developing a project charter based on the collected ideas
    3. Defining and managing the scope of the project
    4. Creating schedules
    5. Planning and estimating budget
    6. Identifying human resources needs
    7. Risk management, identifying potential risks, performing risk analysis, and preparing risk mitigation strategies
    8. Planning and identifying required procurements

2. Content development phase

    1. Directing and managing all work related to content/design development
    2. Managing the project team
    3. Managing collaborations and communications
    4. Procurement management
    5. Managing stakeholder expectations

3. Execution and launch

    1. Managing the approval process until the product is ready for launch
    2. Performing all aspects of managing quality
    3. Managing the project team
    4. Managing collaborations and communications
    5. Procurement management
    6. Managing stakeholder expectations

4. Monitoring and controlling

    1. Monitoring the execution/launch and managing any necessary changes
    2. Validating and managing the project’s scope
    3. Controlling timeline, ensuring project stays within the deadline
    4. Quality management of deliverables
    5. Managing collaborations for team and stakeholders
    6. Controlling procurements
    7. Managing stakeholder expectations and engagements

5. Closing

    1. Evaluating the project’s results
    2. Closing all phases of the project and project procurements
    3. Billing the client

Important Skills for a Project Manager in a Marketing Agency


To be effective, a project manager needs more than being knowledgeable in marketing technicalities, but would also require leadership, strategic business mindset, team building and teamwork, and conflict management/resolution, among other key skills.

Here is a basic overview of the important skills for a marketing project manager:

  • Leadership: the ability to effectively lead the marketing team members, maintaining positive morale, and directing the team in accomplishing the project.
  • Communication: communicating with team members, stakeholders, higher-ups, clients, vendors, freelancers, and more. A very important skill for any manager to master.
  • Marketing: a keen understanding of marketing technicalities as well as technical knowledge for specific marketing channels related to the project (i.e. SEO, social media marketing, PPC, and more).
  • Resource allocation: assigning roles and responsibilities, as well as other resources. Managing structure of the project while also allowing agility and creativity.
  • Analytical thinking: data-driven problem-solving skill, the ability to use marketing analytics tools to allocate resources and maximize the result of the project.
  • Decision-making: managing conflicts, solving problems and high-pressure situations, making decisions on a tight deadline
  • Deadline management: the ability to accurately estimate deadlines and ensuring the project stays within a realistic deadline. Can involve managing many deadlines across different projects simultaneously.
  • Scheduling: manage and delegate different tasks into a functional schedule, planning the timeline of each project carefully and effectively.

Marketing Project Manager Certifications

Most marketing agencies hiring for the role of marketing project manager will require the candidate to have earned at least a bachelor’s degree in marketing, business management, or communication. Advanced degrees are often preferred. Coursework in marketing is typically an important criterion, as well as experience with marketing project management tools (more on this below).

Becoming a certified project manager can also be very valuable for finding more career opportunities. There are various institutions offering project management coursework and certifications, with Project Management Institute (PMI) being the most popular.

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) and Project Management Professional (PMP) are also great institutions offering widely-recognized project management certifications. There are also various free project management courses that, while might not be recognized by employers, can help improve project-related knowledge and skills.

Tools for Marketing Project Managers


Due to the potential complexity of the project manager’s role in overseeing many different aspects of the marketing projects, an advertising agency project management software from is a necessity so the project manager can be more efficient in managing many different moving parts of the projects, managing and allocating resources, sticking to a budget, meeting deadlines, and ore.

Marketing project management software like Function Point can provide project managers with a bird’s-eye view of the whole project from start to finish, facilitating seamless collaboration between clients, team members, and other stakeholders while allowing the project manager to more efficiently manage the whole project.