The Magic Of Measuring Your Marketing Investment

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By: Mary Beth Cowardin, Vice President Marketing & Member Engagement

Today, there are countless ways to measure your marketing effectiveness and take the mystery out of knowing which marketing efforts work best. Whether you are using basic measures such as the number of visitors to your website, or more sophisticated research and measurement practices, it is critical to establish your goals and objectives and know the “why” behind your marketing message. Are you trying to drive brand awareness, foot traffic, or revenue growth? Are you wanting to reward loyal customers, move aging inventory, promote a new variety or product, or grow your sales leads? A clear objective will lead to using the right measurements.

Here are five measurement tactics you might initiate to learn more about reaching your customer and driving your desired business results:  

  1. Use web metrics to gain customer insight. Tools like Google analytics help you see how your marketing messages drive website traffic by comparing the timing of marketing events with spikes in web traffic. Look at metrics like bounce rates, time on site, and % of new or returning visitors, amongst many others, to gain insights. 
  2. Measure social media reach and engagement. From Facebook shares to twitter retweets, Instagram likes and LinkedIn comments you can measure the reach and impact of your social media activity by tracking the number of followers, the number of comments on a post, or the number of times something is shared or re-tweeted. Vary the nature of your content to help you understand what content your audience finds more appealing and impactful.   
  3. Using offer codes or coupons to track marketing placements. Consider offering a different code in each marketing placement. For example, use a different code for each social media platform and use a different code in your print or radio advertisement and in your e-newsletter. Looking at the data associated with each individual code will help you understand which of these vehicles is best reaching your target audience.  
  4. Email forwarding – When you send out an email offer or e-newsletter, add a button to forward the message to a friend. If a lot of people are forwarding your email, you know your content and marketing message is enticing, and it may suggest you have a certain level of customer loyalty. 
  5. Ask your customers– Survey your customers about how they like your product or service, what they associate with your company or brand, and how they heard about you are examples of information you might get through a survey. You might issue a formal survey with an incentive for completing it, or you might ask a question and keep track of the responses each time a customer calls you.   

If you aren’t measuring your marketing, I encourage you to start, as you will undoubtably gain valuable knowledge of your customers. If you are already measuring your marketing, that’s excellent! Be sure to review the data on a regular basis to determine the most efficient and effective tactics to make your marketing plans and messages even more magical.  

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