If you are unable to associate leads and sales with the specific marketing efforts that generate them you have no way of knowing what is working as an effective marketing mechanism and what is not.
The money you invest in marketing your company is precious. In order for you to maximize your marketing dollars you need to know the results individual marketing efforts generate. When you know the results of your marketing tactics you can make intelligent decisions about how to better allocate your marketing budget.
For instance, if you concurrently run a direct mail campaign, a search engine advertising campaign and weekly ads in industry periodicals without some method to discern results you will not know which effort generates the lions share of any new business.
If you don’t know that your direct mail campaign yielded 90% of your revenue with a 2% response rate, you are powerless to make the wise decision to reinvest in the direct mail campaign and make changes to or drop entirely the other campaigns. What’s more, if you can figure out how to double the response rate of your mail campaign, you can nearly double the revenue your marketing campaign without spending money on search engine marketing and periodical advertisements.
Measuring your marketing results will help you save money by allowing you to eliminate unproductive marketing tactics and at the same time, will help you make more money by allowing you to reinvest in productive marketing tactics.
Do you have a method for measuring the effect of your marketing?
Here are four tips for gathering the information you need to make wise marketing investment decisions.
Use a Database
Start by designing a database to keep track of individual marketing efforts and the leads and sales they generate. Make sure you include fields to track the dates of your campaigns, campaign descriptions, the number of leads generated and sales made. Once you have a central storage location for this information you will be able to make queries to glean the information you need to make wise marketing decisions.
When you or your staff speaks with a prospect on the phone make sure you ask how they heard of your business; was it a referral or an ad in the local newspaper? It’s such simple way to gather valuable information many small business owners overlook it.
Be sure to ask your prospects how they heard of your business.
Make It Easy for Your Prospect to Help You
Make it easy for your prospects to properly identify the marketing piece to which they respond. If you have multiple phone lines into your office you can easily accomplish this by assigning a unique phone number to individual marketing efforts. This way, you or a staff member can ask what number your prospect dialed or, if you have the right phone system you can look at the phone to see which line the call is on.
Data Entry Should Be Easy Too
Once you or a staff member have garnered the information you seek from your prospect, make it as easy as possible to have this information to be entered into your database system. If you employ a staff, make certain everyone is up to speed on your latest systems. Training is a must.
Move Your Marketing Forward
The idea is to gather as much information as you can about which marketing mechanisms generate the best (and worst) response, who is responding and why they chose to respond.
What are some other steps you can take to measure the effect of your marketing efforts?