What is the best marketing project management software to keep your agency running smoothly?
Creative agencies, in-house digital teams, and studios all have one thing in common: pumping out the best creative work. But what marketing project management tools can you use to produce better work and stop people from getting tied up with painful project administration?
Check out our list below to find the right marketing project management software to free your creative team from miscommunication, siloed work and project failure.
Looking for a project management solution to help you manage projects in your marketing department, digital marketing agency, or creative studio?
We decided to take a closer look to find the best creative agency project management software and agency project management tools on the market and see which ones deliver the goods.
Criteria For The Best Marketing Project Management Software
The perfect marketing and project management software tool should be more than just a one-trick pony—it should help replace the slew of other SaaS tools you rely on. You’ll have complete control over your work management system while also streamlining workflow by reducing the number of tools you and your team members use.
Think about how many subscriptions you’re paying out each month. I bet you’re using:
- time tracking tools like Timesheets
- project management tools like Wrike
- project communication tools like Slack
- file sharing tools like Evernote
- and finance tools like Quickbooks.
You’ll pay thousands of dollars a month for these tools—and they often don’t work together well, requiring copying and pasting of the same data across different tools. Having one tool might be a good idea—but are any of them any good? If you’re looking for one project management tool to rule them all, you need a tool that you can use for everything.
So, when I reviewed the marketing project management software out there, I not only looked at their user interface, usability, and integrations but also the following functionalities:
- Time tracking and expense tracking – from quoting to keeping track of hours spent on a project through timesheets
- Project management – enabled with task management and team collaboration features such as message boards, as well as tools for adhering to project timelines, such as Gantt charts and Kanban boards
- Reporting dashboards – easy to see where a project (and the agency) is at with budget, timelines, and invoicing
- Resource management – making sure you’re not understaffing or overstaffing one area of a project
- Invoicing – turning project reports into invoices and estimates
- Customizable – allows you and your team members to customize the software to your specific project needs
- Real-time updates – includes notifications for and instant updates on project statuses, deliverables, and changes to task lists
Note: if you’re looking for marketing software (tools that help you manage your marketing campaigns themselves) instead of marketing PM software, look here: 10 Best Marketing Software Tools of 2021
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15 Marketing Project Management Software Tools
The Best Marketing Project Management Software Overviews
Below, we review the best marketing agency project management software that we’ve come across.
monday.com is a great marketing project management software because of the way the tool has done away with a lot of the trimmings of typical management tools and focused on simple, visually intuitive layouts that help clarify the sequence of work.
monday.com features for managing marketing projects include resource and project management modules with some great collaboration tools. For example, users can upload and attach files to cards, make comments, mention teammates, and more. It also offers a great project reporting dashboard that can collect data from multiple boards, allowing better tracking abilities of progress. And while monday.com doesn’t offer a complete set of tools for project accounting and invoicing solution as other tools, you can use monday.com to track hours, timelines, and invoices.
Overall, it’s a highly customizable tool that lets you work in whatever methodology—Kanban or otherwise—that fits your project and team. You’ll also find some useful workflow tools for automating parts of your process.
monday.com’s integrations include project management apps like Slack, Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar, Jira, GitHub, Trello, Dropbox, Typeform and many more, accessible via Zapier.
monday.com costs from $17/month for two users. The company’s customer support is available 24/7 by phone or email.
Smartsheet - A work execution platform with content collaboration features, forms to collect data, multiple permission levels, and dashboards to keep marketing teams in sync
Smartsheet’s online project management tool checks off a lot of the boxes I’ve laid out in the criteria for an advertising agency project management software. It doesn’t really offer much in the way of expense or invoice management features, (check out other tools if you need those features) but it does have a ton of content collaboration features that are especially useful for marketing teams, as well as customizable dashboards that can be made to display specific project data for each of your marketing clients or campaigns, which is pretty cool.
Let’s start with the “Forms” feature, which offers the ability to create and customize forms to collect essentially any data from anyone in a structured format—you could use it for collecting information, including images and files, from clients in order to make briefs, for example.
Team collaboration features are great—members get notified of critical changes in real-time, and the tool provides shared views, detail history, activity logs, automated alerts, reminder, and status reports to keep everyone aligned and informed. There are content collaboration features like pinned feedback, approvals, and annotations that make it easier to collaborate on creative work.
There are lots of project management and resource management tools, which I consider to be fairly standard among marketing project management software—it’s a good set of tools for scheduling, assigning resources, tracking work, tracking budget, etc.
Finally, reporting is a strong feature of this tool, with editable summary reports that you can easily export to Excel.
The one thing this tool is missing for an advertising agency setting is client management features, such as prospect management, billing and invoice features. While there are ways to manage clients and share your portal with clients through various permission levels and dashboards, there isn’t a way to manage the full client management process, so you’ll want to integrate with another tool like Salesforce (see below) for that.
Smartsheet integrations include Microsoft and Google apps, as well as development essentials like Jira, and useful business apps like Salesforce, servicenow, Slack, Box, and Tableau. The platform is extensible through a REST API and webhooks.
Smartsheet costs from $7/user/month, with a minimum of 3 users and a maximum of 25 users. They also offer a 30-day free trial.
ClickUp is a marketing project management software for managing marketing tasks, campaigns, docs, and clients in one place. ClickUp makes it easy to collaborate with your team, work with clients & contractors, connect your data, and create dashboards to gain data-driven insights from any workflow.
ClickUp’s highly customizable views allow users to visualize marketing campaigns and accounts on lists, Kanban boards, Gantt charts, calendars, and more. Task management features include task checklists, subtasks, and task templates, as well as the ability to filter, sort, search for, easily reorder, and view tasks in the manner most convenient for the team.
The tool includes reporting features, the ability to create custom dashboards, and six built-in report types for team reporting. Team members can track time natively within the software or through an integration.
Design custom forms to collect client info, get approval, and distribute information from a single place. Custom statuses and automation enable users to establish an efficient intake system for affiliate sign-ups, client onboarding, co-marketing collaboration requests, and more.
ClickUp also features proofing and annotation capabilities for proofing, marking up, and approving files. Users can assign comments for requested changes and approve them in real-time.
ClickUp offers native integrations with Slack, G Suite, Dropbox, and many more tools, as well as over 1,000+ integrations through Zapier.
ClickUp’s free plan is robust and includes all primary features. The unlimited plan starts at $5 a month per user and offers additional functionality.
Screendragon is a marketing project management software used and loved by Fortune 500 companies and global agency groups like Kellogg’s, BP, Keurig Dr Pepper, TBWA, and McCann World Group.
It combines an easy-to-use, visual user interface with robust functionality. Screendragon is an end-to-end solution covering all aspects of marketing project management including SOW creation and project planning, work requests, project management, visual proofing, review and approval workflows, resource management, budget management, reporting, and more.
Screendragon offers a lot of flexibility with customized options including a custom branded UX, smart custom forms, personalized dashboards and advanced permission levels, which is ideal for large global teams. Users can also leverage a wide range of templates for projects and processes and take advantage of artwork automation capabilities. Task management allows for even more flexibility with visual Kanban boards, interactive Gantt charts and list views as options for interfaces.
Screendragon has a team of process experts that can provide customers with best practices for change management, getting leadership buy-in, developing training plans, and more.
Screendragon provides deep integrations with leading ERP systems such as SAP and PeopleSoft. It offers thousands of integrations with popular apps through Zapier like Jira, Trello, Slack, Box, Google Drive, Office 365 and Microsoft Dynamics. It also has an open API, enabling custom integrations with any system.
Screendragon starts from $20/user/month and a free demo is available.
Celoxis is a project portfolio management software and work collaboration platform that has been successfully adopted by brands like HBO, Rolex, Virgin Care, Adobe, Staples, LG, and Deloitte.
Celoxis includes comprehensive resource management capabilities that allow users to allocate resources based on skills, roles, and availability as well as view cross-portfolio resource workload to optimally utilize team members. The tool also offers a cross-project Gantt chart.
The tool also includes features for capacity planning, demand management, and project requests, as well as for tracking project financials. Users can get cost/revenue estimates from plans; track budgets, costs, and profits in real-time; and plug billing leaks by invoicing clients in a timely manner.
Celoxis reporting features let you slice, dice, and visualize data in ways that work best for you and your team. View aggregated information about your projects with fully customizable portfolio dashboards. Celoxis comes pre-built with common workflows to help with bug/issue tracking and risk management, and which are adaptable to your organizational processes.
Celoxis integrates seamlessly with hundreds of popular business applications through integration connectors and a web-based API. This includes platforms like Jira, Salesforce, QuickBooks Online, Excel, Slack, Google Apps, and more.
Celoxis offers both SaaS and on-premise deployment options. Celoxis costs $25/user/month with additional commitment discounts.
- Excellent cross-project Gantt and resource workload features
- Free client portal
- Supports multiple billing models
- Overwhelming number of features means a steep learning curve
- Set-up can take quite a bit of time
- User interface and experience could be improved
Forecast is a marketing project management platform for project and resource management. It’s equipped with intelligent automation that can predict project delivery dates and forecast capacity needs, as well as with collaboration tools to help marketing teams work together.
Forecast’s auto schedule feature assists with project planning by automatically estimating task durations, assigning resources, and setting deadlines. Another great feature is the ability to automatically calculate utilization throughout an agency or org and see how team members are spending their time.
The tool’s pipeline allows users to view finished, running, and planned projects across a portfolio. Users can create tasks where team members can comment, share files, and register time. Also included is the ability to set up notifications for key progress updates.
Forecast also includes tools to track the financial progress of projects, whether they are based on retainer contracts or other types of contracts., as well as view profitable and submarginal projects.
Forecast integrates with mainstream project management tools, as well as with Jira, QuickBooks, Xero, and more.
Pricing starts at £29/user/month, and a 14-day free trial is available.
- Includes AI-powered auto-scheduling and time entry suggestions
- Easy to use, implement, and get up and running
- Highly flexible and customizable
- No browser extension for time tracking
- No asset management features
- Minimum of 10 seats
FunctionFox Simple online timesheet and project management tools created by an ad agency for advertising agencies, graphic designers, PR, digital, marketing firms and in-house creative teams. FunctionFox offers an affordable and powerful way to stay on top of essential administrative activities – one that is simple to set up, easy-to-use, and highly effective. Track all your projects accurately from concept to completion, collaborate on work, increase profits, and best of all – free up more time so you can stay creative.
FunctionFox is loved by small firms and Fortune 500 companies worldwide for being easy to use – and the 5-star service and free expert advice. Easily manage and track multiple jobs, budgets, and resources with on-demand, actionable reports. Boost your productivity and profitability. FunctionFox has a free 14-day free demo and starts at $5/user/month.
GoodDay is a project management software that offers native support for the specific needs and workflows of the marketing department, including marketing campaign management, marketing planning, editorial calendars, event planning, content development, and more.
The tool also includes a productivity suite that comes with personal work scheduling, group and private chats, meetings management, project & personal events, built-in documents & wikis, unlimited storage for files, and more. Another great feature is the action required feature, which allows team members to notify each other of when action is needed.
GoodDay is highly customizable to both sophisticated project structures and basic project structures. Users can create custom views, adjust the user interface, customize fields, and create custom task types, project templates, priorities, workflows, and more.
GoodDay costs from $4/user/month and offers a free-forever version for up to 15 users.
Kissflow Project - Best collaborative marketing project management software for non-project managers
Kissflow Project is an intuitive project management tool designed with a focus on collaboration, transparency, coordination, and productivity, critical for busy marketing teams. It’s not intended for overly complex projects (and it doesn’t do Gantt charts), so this is great fit for small-to-medium marketing teams who just want a easy-to-use platform to collaborate on.
Kissflow Project offers multiple views for projects including Kanban boards, list views, and swimlanes. The Project States function helps reduce the amount of tracking needed by allowing team members to mark tasks with one of three statuses — on hold, in progress, and done.
The tool allows users to share project plans, documents, and other files as well as discuss projects directly within its interface, required features for marketers. It doesn’t have time-tracking or invoicing, but it does have some essential project management features like reporting and notifications for team members as due dates approach.
Kissflow includes native Microsoft and G Suite integrations, and the platform offers a REST API and webhooks.
- Multiple views like Kanban, lists, and swimlanes
- On hold, in progress, and done states available for tracking progress
- Powerful reporting features
- No Gantt chart
- No ability to set up recurring tasks
- Not intended for complex projects
VOGSY helps marketing teams and agencies take control of their projects with a single, accessible platform. Built for Google’s G Suite, VOGSY’s intuitiveness helps teams get the job done without weighing them down. You can plan projects and resources, manage milestones and deliverables, communicate across teams, track time and expenses, manage contractors, automate invoice creation and more. With clearer visibility, you can deliver more projects on time and on budget.
VOGSY brings all project fundamentals under one roof and provides real-time insights across the business. It’s a breeze for executive, finance, operations, sales and project teams to get a 360-degree view of the business, streamline project management and drive desirable outcomes. At only $19 per user per month, VOGSY can transform your projects without driving up your costs.
Used by over 20,000 companies, Teamwork Project has all the project management functions you would expect plus features keyed-in to specific marketing needs, like quarterly goals and reporting, task list templates for oft-used marketing items, and automated approvals.
Teamwork Projects excels in levels of collaboration that any marketing team will find useful, like task-specific communication channels, social media content channels, real-time activity logs, and “notebooks” for additional data compilation.
Integrations include Gmail, Hubspot, Slack, Float, Numerics, Automate.io, timeBro, Userback, Easy Insight, Integromat, Chatify, PieSync, and hundreds more through Zapier.
The user interface can be intimidating compared to alternatives, which may be difficult if you need to onboard a variety of external clients. Additional graphics or more digestible data on the dashboard, for example, would be welcome. This lost them a few points in the UX category of the review.
Teamwork Projects costs from $9/month and has a freemium version of the software for up to 2 projects and 5 users and paid plans also offer a free 30-day trial.
DoneDone is the no-nonsense marketing project management app for teams that want to get things done.
Users access a sleek dashboard that displays all projects, tasks, docs, files – and most importantly – statuses and due dates. Marketing teams can keep track of ad campaigns, website projects, SEO campaigns, video creation, events, and just about anything else you can dream up. You can even create Custom Workflows and Statuses to save you time and energy while creating recurring tasks.
You can assign and reassign tasks to anyone within a project. DoneDone also has a mobile app and pre-built integrations with other applications such as Slack and Glip.
Create projects and unlimited tasks manually in a few simple steps. Tasks can also be automatically created by external parties via DoneDone’s “Mailboxes” feature. Mailboxes automatically create tasks in DoneDone when your customers submit web forms or send emails to an email address of your choice (such as email@example.com). This is great for gathering external feedback.
The app has just about everything most teams need for day-to-day marketing management, yet DoneDone is still known for its simplicity. It’s robust enough to handle complex projects and simple enough that it can be used by non-technical employees.
DoneDone starts at $5/user/month. They offer a 20% discount for annual plans.
Ravetree is a full-featured work management software platform used by agencies around the world. It includes best-in-class project management, resource planning, time & expense tracking, digital asset management, and CRM. Agencies benefit from having a single source of truth from which they can optimize their operations and easily see the big picture.
A full array of advanced features are offered including granular permissions roles, customizable notifications, automated alerts, project budgeting, Gantt charts, custom fields, custom tables, powerful filtering, and much more. One thing that sets Ravetree apart is the highly intuitive interface that allows users to easily find information, whether it’s project managers, executives, or team members. Additionally, Ravetree has a 5-star customer support rating, and takes pride in being a customer-focused company, as opposed to being sales-driven.
Workfront is online project management software designed for agencies, IT teams, service teams, marketing teams and for collaboration between these, internal and external clients. The software allows for full project management, client service, task tracking and prioritisation.
The platform also provides for use of custom data to track projects and related information. Workfront is quite layered, and takes some time to explore all the various aspects. This complexity, however, gives it incredible flexibility. Choose Workfront for an all-in-one solution.
Function Point is a project management software tool built primarily for the needs of digital agencies and the creative industry. Function Point is used by more than 600 agencies including Ogilvy and gives you a good overview of what’s happening across your team and tasks.
Function Point covers off all of our functionality requirements fully with a tool that includes an all-in-one cloud based workflow for project and task management, traffic and resourcing, project accounting, analytics and insights, and collaboration tools, making it a complete all-rounder. The collaboration tools are excellent, with creative project management, comments and changes happening directly on the platform. Choose Function Point for its slick interface, full features and simplicity of use (including mobile apps) but beware that it doesn’t support integration with other systems.
Summary Of The Best Marketing Project Management Software
It’s easy to be overwhelmed by the baffling array of marketing project management software tools out there. Below, we’ve put together a reader-friendly table neatly summarizing basic info about the tools described in this article. We’ve investigated the pricing and availability of free trials and demo versions for you to make a side-by-side comparison that much simpler.
Other Marketing Project Management Software
If you’ve checked out the list of marketing project management software above and not found anything that works for you, we’ve found a few other agency project management software solutions you might want to check out.
From simple tools that provide a few quick solutions to complex products that take some time to fully explore, marketing project management software options are plentiful, which can make choosing one complex.
Our suggestion? Look carefully at each product’s features and work out which one has the Goldilocks factor for you. Where there is a demo or trial available, we recommend booking it to make absolutely sure the product works for you.