Most businesses launch marketing campaigns without knowing how to measure results. Did we spend our money wisely? How do we know if we were a success? What benchmarks should we be setting? The list can go on and on…However, knowing when and what to measure for each campaign is crucial. Campaign measurement is different for each marketing activity and needs to be looked at separately. The goal is to figure out which medium works the best for you and continue down that path. The big question that hangs over most business owners is “What Do I look at to see if my campaign was successful?
Here is the measurement breakdown per medium to help businesses improve their marketing communications:
Public Relations – I sent out a press release and want to track results. How do I know if it was published and/or successful? This is a common question from clients. The goal of Public Relations is to increase mindshare among your customers and prospects. What is mindshare? Mind Share = The amount of time or thinking an individual devotes to a specific brand, company, product, or service. To find out if your company mind share has increased…you can send out a survey to your in-house database. This will help you find out if people have seen you in the news. Also, if you are using on-line PR vehicles, you can track how many times your press release was picked up and how many people viewed it. These stats need to be looked at over time. Don’t try to track this too soon! The results will be skewed….
Email Campaigns– This is a great vehicle for lead generation. However, there are certain items you should be aware of when
tracking results. The first metric is the open rate. How many unique people opened my email? The average email open rates can vary depending on your industry and other factors. It’s important for you to look up the average open rates for your particular industry. Typically the average can range from 14% – 30%. If you consistently send out email communications, then your email open rate should continue to increase. However, if you have a huge span from the last email campaign, you will see a lower open rate. Some ways of increasing your open rate include testing subject lines, cleansing your in-house list, and purchasing outside lists. Other metrics for measuring results include click through rate and response rates. How many people clicked on a link within the body of an email and how many people actually took action and called our 800# or sent an email. These are all important metrics and should be reported on
Direct Mail – Another great lead generation tool is direct mail. However direct mail has one clear way of determining it’s success. It’s all about the response! The one metric used to determine if the campaign was successful is the response rate. How many people took advantage of your offer and responded either by phone or email. The average response rate for direct mail can range from 1%- 2% depending on the type of offer, company, etc. For both email and direct mail, marketers need to also look at the conversion rate to see who became a customer. The responses are important..however there has to be a high conversion rate in order to get your ROI on the campaign.
Advertising – The goal of print advertising is to increase brand awareness not generate a lead. Most CEO’s don’t understand this concept. How do you track brand awareness? There are a few ways..but most use a readership study. A readership study can be conducted by a magazine and includes a survey sent out to the magazine subscribers. The magazine sends out a list of question to determine the readers ad recall. They will usually provide a list of some print ads and ask the reader to rank them from worst to best. Also, asking which ad stands out is usually one of the questions. This helps the advertisers confirm whether their ad was memorable or not. Another way to track the success of your ad is to make it a direct response ad and have dedicated urls or special coupon codes within the ad. This way the company can track the responses by code. It’s important to inform your staff of the offer so they can be prepared when calls starting coming in.
The goal of all marketers is to make their marketing communications more effective. In order to accomplish this, it’s important to outline your key objectives for each marketing activity and set reasonable benchmarks. If your benchmarks are unrealistic and do not make sense for that particular medium…then you wasted your time and effort on a campaign. Keep your goals real and expectations reasonable so you will be able to continue on the marketing train!
About Monique Merhige
Infusion Direct Marketing's founder Monique Merhige has over 15 years of marketing communications experience with technology companies ranging from small service firms and equipment manufacturers to a 1.5 Billion dollar division of Motorola. Monique is an Adjunct Professor of Marketing at Dowling College in Oakdale and Brookhaven. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Marketing and an MBA in General Management.