Whether you handle your marketing yourself, have a dedicated in-house team, or work with an expert agency, your marketing will take up a significant portion of your available resources: both money and time (or perhaps more significantly your attention). This means it’s well worth taking the extra effort to track the results and making sure that your marketing is having the desired effect.
It’s especially important in industries driven by significant innovation – like health and wellness brands, or online retail.
If you’re offering people new solutions to old problems, you need to know you’re communicating the value of your new approach in a way they understand and find persuasive.
Quantifying the Answers
It’s important to make sure your tracking (and your targets) are quantified: they need to come in the form of objective, measurable numbers, not vague aims and aspirations.
Set a target for your marketing before you start, turn what you want to achieve with it into a number you can refer to and check against the results.
“Generating sales” is the aim of all marketing, but for you to know if your campaigns are truly working you need to either estimate the number of customers you’re trying to gain or put a figure on the revenue increase you’re looking for.
Performance marketing is an approach that takes this seriously: you define the actions you want to see and only pay when they’re achieved.
That means understanding the whole list of actions you could be looking for and focussing on a balance between the ideal outcome and your budget: are you more prepared to pay for clicks or conversions, for example?
From the way people talk about brands, you’d think they’re ethereal things, resistant to being measured or cataloged.
In reality, you can measure and put a figure on both the value your brand brings to your business and how that changes in response to your decisions.
Brand uplift is the measure of the value your brand adds. If you launch two digital ad campaigns to small audiences, one with your brand, one genericized, you can see how many more clicks and sales your brand generates. This a clear measure of the value the brand you’ve built imparts to the products you sell!
You can also track how your decision-making affects customers’ perceptions of your brand (which is just a long way of saying ‘your brand’: a brand is your customer’s perception of your business, built out of all the interactions they have with it) with brand tracker surveys.
These are offered by most market research companies to help you see where you stand in relation to your most important rivals and how this changes over time.
These measures can tell you if your marketing is working: if it’s creating the outcomes you need for success, both in the short term and in the longer term where brands fail or thrive.