I should have been more scrappy. I fell into the process I knew from working with larger companies (and larger budgets). Start with a blue sky approach, and custom design an interface and process. Unfortunately, this leads to a need to have a custom developed solution.
When it comes to the marketing website we stood up, we didn't need custom design. Frameworks were already in place, and developing the site using existing design frameworks would have been just as effective, and much cheaper and easier to manage.
In hindsight, focusing on process and product and using existing marketing site templates would have saved time and energy without sacrificing outcomes.