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How Do I Know My Marketing Efforts Are Working?

The most well-executed marketing campaign can’t succeed unless it begins with a specific definition of what success looks like. Marketers too often start with ambiguous objectives like, “I want to increase leads or phone calls,” “I want to increase revenue,” “I want more brand awareness in the market,” or “I want to improve my businesses social media presence”.

On the surface, these look like rational business objectives. But they are not clearly defined goals. Because there’s no clear definition of success, it is nearly impossible for your business (or any of your marketing partners) to be able to judge the effectiveness of your marketing efforts with any degree of certainty.

  • For example, if your objective is to grow leads year-over-year, start with defining a specific number or percentage increase to establish your goal. This goal needs to be rational:
  • Is your goal for new leads attainable?
  • If your leads increase by the desired amount, will your team be able to manage those new customers while still delivering the same level of quality service?
  • Will you need to add more employees to handle these new leads if they convert to booked customers?

Once you’ve clearly defined your goal(s), you can develop the most appropriate marketing strategy and budget to achieve success. While a natural first instinct may be that to increase leads YOY, you need to increase your marketing spend, that’s not always the case. And even if a greater investment is necessary, how do you know to what extent your budget must be increased?

This is where an evaluation and audit of your current marketing efforts can yield significant data points to guide you on how best to proceed. For instance, perhaps your marketing spend does not need to be increased, but rather you need to make changes to your strategy or tactics.

There are several key areas that should be analyzed as part of your marketing evaluation.

Online Reputation

When a prospective customer is searching for you online, will they find glowing five-star reviews or a bunch of unsatisfied one- and two-star reviews? On average, 68 percent of consumers research local businesses online before making a purchasing decision. If you lack a reputation management process to monitor and improve your online reputation, you may be missing leads you’re already reaching through your outbound marketing.

Analytics and Tracking

Are you using UTM parameters, and do you have analytics, as well as conversion tracking properly set up on your website to evaluate your marketing tactics? More than half of small businesses don’t have conversion tracking set up in their analytics, so they are missing out on a vast amount of data. Often when prospective new clients reach out to us at St. Gregory, we uncover that analytics was not set up properly during our evaluation and discovery phase. In these situations, while you may have some theories as to which marketing tactics are working or not, it’s nearly impossible to say with certainty because your marketing team doesn’t have the right information to apply.

Website Performance

How is your website performing, particularly the pages you are driving visitors to? If your website suffers from slow load times or lacks a well-designed user experience, it may not be your drive-to-site tactics that need to change, but rather your website.

Response Time

How much time does your team take to reply to new customer inquiries? Are you driving quality leads to your website but failing to convert them effectively? Customers hate waiting, in fact, 90 percent of consumers say instant customer service is very important. If a customer has to wait more than 24 hours to receive a response from an email/website inquiry or more than three minutes for a live chat, you likely are missing out on converting leads. This is especially true for any business providing urgent-need or emergency services, such as HVAC, pest control, or water restoration.

Just like no journey can be successful without a clear destination, it’s impossible for even the most detailed marketing planning and execution to succeed without a clear objective. If it’s not clear that your marketing results are building your business, or you’re simply seeking an independent perspective, we’d be more than happy to talk about your marketing strategy. Give us a call at 513-769-8440.