When it comes to marketing, the proof is in the pudding...or more accurately, the KPIs.
What Are KPIs?
Key performance indicators, or KPIs, allow you to measure the success of your marketing against your goals. In order to create valuable KPIs, you need to define your goals so you can determine whether your marketing strategies bring you closer to achieving those goals.
The goals you choose for your KPI should be SMART, not smart...uhh, what? SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely.
SMART: Generate 10 new inbound leads from Catalog e-book downloads by the end of Q3 2020.
Not SMART: Get more catalog leads ASAP.
See the difference? SMART goals allow you to see very clearly how your efforts are performing and if they are helping move the needle toward what you've defined as success. As you come up with SMART goals for your marketing strategy, don't forget to pay close attention to the M in smart. While you can come up with what feels like an attainable number, that number means nothing if you don't have the analytics tools in place to track it.
What Are Analytics?
Marketing analytics are how you measure your marketing performance and determine if your current tactics are paying off. Analytics are essential for ensuring marketing dollars are going into effective campaigns. They also provide data needed to make adjustments to current campaigns to help them perform better.
Despite their critical importance, many businesses fail to use analytics to their full advantage. In the age of digital marketing, analytics are both essential and easier to collect than ever before. .
At the end of the day, marketing is a numbers game. By knowing which numbers to pay attention to, you can create marketing campaigns that produce stellar results and increase your return on investment (ROI). Marketing analytics are designed to show you the value of each piece of marketing you create, so you can determine what works and what doesn't.
So, Is My Marketing Working?
Before you launch your next campaign, make sure your analytics are in order. Your tracking system should be ready to roll at the same time as your campaign, so you are collecting the data you need from the get-go.
Is My Customer Segmentation Completed?
Customer segmentation gives you accurate information about which customers tend to respond to certain marketing tactics. Customer groupings can be broken down into the following categories:
- Demographics: Include age, gender, location, income level, education, etc.
- Psychographic data: This enlightens you on what drives your customers to make purchases, such as their desires, fears and interests
- Behavioral patterns: This information lets you know how and when your customers tend to make purchases
Once you have your customer segmentation in place, you can create various customer personas that allow you to target your marketing to specific portions of your audience and record how they respond.
Are My Customer Personas in Place?
Customer personas are fictitious customers who use your product or service. They are based on the data you collected during the segmentation process and help you target your marketing to the customers that are most likely to buy from you.
Think about it like this: If you're a college, you're going to market to parents differently than prospective students. That's where personas come in handy. What motivates a potential student? They may be concerned with what's going on around campus, what residential life looks like, and the types of programs offered. A parent may be more concerned with safety procedures on campus and tuition rates. Sending a parent marketing info that shares the clubs and events on campus isn't going to stick like it would with a student.
By understanding your personas, you can tailor your marketing to the person most likely to engage with it.
Do I Know What To Track?
Marketing costs time and money. When you know what metrics are important to your business and can see how your marketing generates those metrics, you don’t waste either one. When your marketing strategy brings you a lead, have the tools in place to know exactly where that contact came from. This information allows you to continue to invest in the marketing tactics that are getting results and eliminate or tweak the ones that aren't.
Some common tools and metrics to track include:
1. Conversational marketing/bots
Real-time conversations with chatbots allow businesses to develop relationships with potential customers from the get-go. Targeted interactions using intelligent bots engage your customers right away, increasing your retention and conversion rates. Leads are converted faster, leading to happier customers and a healthier bottom line.
2. Form submissions
Adding a form to your website that interested visitors can complete offers instant lead tracking. These forms provide you with basic information about a customer and open the door to future transactions. A customer who has connected with your business will be more willing to receive additional messages from you.
3. Call tracking
A call tracking system provides valuable information about how a customer finds your business, which can be used to hone your marketing efforts in the future. Precise information gives you the data necessary to pinpoint your marketing efforts to the specific practices of your customers. Call tracking can also help provide insights on hard-to-track offline efforts like mailers.
4. Online scheduling
Once you have generated leads, make it easy for them to book an appointment with your business with online scheduling software. New customers are more likely to take that next step to meet with you in person if they can do it on their time and terms.
5. Email response
Studies have indicated that many customers are not satisfied with their email interactions with businesses, which leads to the question of email response times. While most customers want a response within 24 hours, a significant portion expects a response even faster. Establishing a system to respond to emails promptly allows you to track and capture leads efficiently.
Link tracking is hugely beneficial to capture data on how a lead behaves before they convert, or give insight as to why they didn't. Using tracking links on a page will reveal what copy or button design resonated with a certain lead that enticed them to click vs what fell short.
Using a little data digging can also unearth opportunities to improve landing pages and form submissions. If your initial link to your landing page got people to click but then fall off before converting on a form, you can start to test variables to see what made them lose interest from the initial action.
You're Off To The Races
Once your research is completed, your SMART goals are set and your tracking tools are in place, it’s time to launch your campaign. Now, you can sleep soundly knowing you can track where your dollars are going and if your efforts are paying off.
Defining your success is necessary so you can measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. If you feel stuck and want to stop throwing money down the drain, we're here for you. Start a conversation or call (614) 837-1998 and let us help you.