Every 90 days you should conduct a marketing review in order to measure and track your marketing effectiveness. By reviewing your results quarterly, you can determine what is working and what is not. You will become able to quickly see what you should continue doing and what you should be eliminating.
If you wait a year to review your marketing, you can waste a lot of money and time on things that aren’t working or you may miss opportunities that can positively affect your business.
Unlike a complete marketing audit, a review is a simplified assessment of your activities and how they are helping you achieve your goals. A marketing audit takes a deep-dive look at all of your existing marketing assets and activities to determine how well they are serving your business.
Those marketing activities that are working stay the course. Those that aren’t, you may be able to adjust the campaign and test for another quarter or eliminate completely and add something else that may work better.
Once you set up the marketing review process, you can conduct this yourself each quarter in a short period of time, looking at how your marketing has helped your business grow.
5 Steps to a Simple Marketing Review
1. Review your marketing goals
All of your marketing should help you achieve your goals. Your goals should have a measurable outcome such as number of leads generated. Organize your marketing activities around each goal so that you can see if each is contributing to the outcome.
Some of your marketing may be used to create visibility and awareness in order to create brand value. These activities are a bit harder to measure but you could use search engine visibility as a metric. Make sure you balance both so that you have the revenue you need to stay in business while developing your reputation or brand.
2. Determine which marketing activities resulted in revenue
When prospects contact you, you should ask them how they found your business. When you collect this information, you now have some data to track your results.
Make sure your website asks the question on the contact form. Train whoever answers the phone to ask the question, “How did you hear about us?”. Most people will tell you and you may just be surprised by their answers. By asking this question, you get a better understanding of where your clients look for your types of services.
3. Calculate how much you spent on each activity
There are some marketing dollars that you just need to invest. You absolutely need a web presence, therefore your website and any money you spend on setting up and maintaining your social media profiles and citations are something you truly can’t eliminate.
For the different types of marketing strategies that you may want to execute, you need to determine the cost to implement and the revenue derived from each. Types of marketing activities that you could implement include:
- Inbound marketing
- Content marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Social media marketing
- Direct marketing (both email and direct mail)
- Online paid advertising (Facebook, Instagram, Google Ads)
- Traditional paid advertising
- Networking and referrals (memberships in BNI / Chamber of Commerce / Better Business Bureau)
- Events (seminars, webinars)
Each of these activities should be able to be measured with respect to the goal it supports. If you aren’t tracking results, it is difficult to determine whether or not to continue the activity or not.
4. Determine which ones gave you the highest return
Depending on the goal it supports, you may want to determine the ratio of revenue to expense. For example, if you are running a Google Ads campaign, it should support a revenue goal. You have tools to determine how the campaign is converting and whether you are increasing your top line revenue from that campaign.
Ideally you want at least a 3 times return or better or the campaign may not be worth your time and effort. In addition, you may want to use the money on something else.
If you are running more inbound marketing campaigns, you need a way to track how many leads are generated and whether those leads are converting into customers.
If you don’t have the data, make it a goal to start collecting information for each marketing activity you run. This is data can help you determine why your campaign isn’t working and whether there is anything you can do about it. This is where you may need to bring in someone who can determine may be missing that is preventing you from executing a successful marketing campaign.
Look at each activity and measure it against how it is helping you achieve your goals.
5. Analyze the data
Now that you have a good idea about how your marketing has performed, you can determine what marketing you will continue to invest in. Look at each activity and ask the following questions:
- Which activities were the most successful?
- Do they make sense to continue?
- Which activities were marginal? Do you know why? Could they be improved?
- Should I invest the money somewhere else?
- What new activities should I look at?
Just remember that some marketing campaigns like inbound marketing, will take a little time for them to begin generating revenue. But watch your website analytics for increased traffic, leads and hopefully in a couple of quarters, you will begin to see the fruits of your labor.
If your marketing is working, keep doing what is successful, eliminate what isn’t, and leave some room in your budget for unexpected marketing opportunities if they should arise.