Are you aware of which marketing activities generate engagement, leads and customers? Using relevant data to measure outcomes ensures that marketing budgets are spent where value can be added…
Your internal or outsourced marketing team is paid to conduct a variety of marketing activities, some strategic and some tactical, but do you know what works and what doesn’t?
Data predicts that UK businesses will increase year-on-year Ad spend by 10.4% by the end of 2021. It is, therefore, vital to know that marketing spend offers value. Our latest blog explores what needs to be in place to ensure your marketing efforts generate returns.
Measuring the Impact of your Marketing
As a strategic marketing company, our clients want results. As such, we have to channel our efforts into marketing activity that proves effective at delivering their goals. As an outsourced solution, we also need to demonstrate that our marketing services add value.
It is imperative that the input metrics – what our team do and how much it costs our clients – are outweighed by the output metrics – the results we achieve.
Marketing Goals and How to Evidence Success
For us, the process starts by identifying our client’s current position and their quantifiable goals. This helps us to plan a marketing strategy that focuses on achieving those goals. It also informs the key performance indicators (KPI) that we use to measure progress and success.
If the KPI show that we are effectively working towards the goal, we continue. If the results are below expected levels, we either adapt or ditch that marketing strategy. A successful outcome is achieved when we can evidence that the goal has been met or exceeded.
As we have many longer-term clients, we use the knowledge gained and data gathered from one marketing campaign to inform the next.
Current Position and Business Goals
The first step to identifying the impact of marketing activity is to identify the current position of the business. Whether it is a new enterprise or an established company, there is information that you can draw on, such as:
- Average monthly leads
- The conversion rate of leads
- Monthly profits
- Website analytics
- Keyword rankings
- Newsletter click through rates
With the current position mapped out, it is possible to identify what you want to achieve. Your goals must be realistic in terms of your budget and marketing resources.
Monitoring Marketing Activity
According to HubSpot research undertaken in 2020, increased lead generation is the top priority for most marketing campaigns.
If lead generation is your objective, it is important to know where your leads are coming from and what percentage of them convert to customers. What attracts them and what barriers stand in their way? How many interactions are needed to build consumer trust? Armed with this data, you’ll be halfway towards a successful marketing strategy.
What Metrics to Use as a Measure of Marketing Success
The HubSpot research identified that total sales and web traffic analytics were the most common ways of measuring online content marketing success. This is far from headline news; businesses are always very good at monitoring their sales. However, most are less aware of how these sales have been achieved.
The good news is that digital marketing tools offer countless metrics. Email marketing software, website analytics and Google Ad campaigns offer a wealth of data to monitor progress. In fact, there is so much information that it can become a little overwhelming.
Rather than ploughing through reams of stats, it is important to filter out the data that is most important to your business goals. Is the number of unique website visitors important or should you focus on the time spent on a specific product or service page?
By monitoring, measuring and analysing the right data, it is possible to know what marketing activity is meeting your goals and which is ineffectual.
Ditch that which is off-target. You may love the concept and favour the format, but if it’s not achieving your desired goals, it is wasteful. Instead, channel maximum efforts and resources on messages, platforms and strategies that reach, engage and convert your target audience.
Measuring non-Digital Marketing Activity
Not all marketing activity is digital and when it fits the brief, Alison Page Marketing champions a mix of media via an integrated campaign. For magazine advertising, flyers and other print media, campaign-specific codes, vouchers or tracking numbers can be used to monitor response rates.
Training your teams in the importance of monitoring the source of enquiries is also key. When answering the telephone, responding to social media enquiries or emails they should ask ‘How did you hear about us?’ This should be coupled with a simple process for reporting the information shared, so it can be collated and monitored.
In all forms of marketing, AB testing (using two variations of a marketing theme) is widely used to trial variations on the same message. This is easier with digital marketing but can be implemented on other mediums if all other parameters remain equal.
Monthly Marketing Reports
Your marketing team should provide clear evidence of how their actions are working towards your goal. This is often presented in a monthly report or dashboard. Avoid jumping to a conclusion about the effectiveness of marketing too soon. Competition is high and, as a minimum, it will take several months to hone and optimise a campaign.
Viewing and comparing data over a period of time can be insightful. It should highlight trends, seasonal peaks and troughs, as well as the impact of targeted campaigns.
Internal resources can also aid progress reviews. Feedback from the Sales team may confirm better quality leads, or customer service representatives may report an increase in bookings. Financial records and monthly sales stats can also provide insight.
How Much Should you Budget for Marketing?
We are often asked about marketing budgets. There is no fixed answer – it can be a percentage of turnover, determined by available funds or based on a competitor’s activity. Ideally, the budget is calculated using an analysis of the results of previous marketing activity.
What are your objectives and what does the data suggest you need to spend to achieve them?
Is a monthly budget of £1000 too high? Maybe, but if it leads to 10 new customers with an average spend of £5000, then it’s a worthwhile investment. By measuring results, you can determine the financial value of your marketing activity.
Local Hertfordshire Marketing Agency
Does your company need assistance with goal setting, marketing strategy and planning? Alison Page Marketing has a proven track record for delivering tangible results. Contact us to discuss your requirements.