Knowledge is Power! If you don’t know where your leads and customers are coming from, you can't improve your marketing ROI (return on investment).
Analyzing your marketing results is a crucial step in effective marketing, one many small business owners don’t spend time on – and as a result they end up investing too much money with a poor marketing ROI.
The purpose of this is article is to provide an easy guide to help you track and measure your marketing spend and improve your marketing ROI. To get it into persective, lets review the Inbound Marketing Methodology.
In an excel sheet list all your marketing channels in column A. For example: website traffic, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, email marketing, trade publication, Google Adwords – and wherever else you market your business.
In column B list the monthly spend for each of these channels.
Title column C as “# leads”.
Title column D as “# customers.”
Repeat columns C and D for each month.
2. Set up a system to track results
I use a software program called Hubspot – which tracks all my marketing results – easy. However, if you don’t have Hubspot you’ll have to set up another system. A free option is Google Analytics, it's not as efficient as Hubspot but you can set up lead conversion tracking and see where your traffic is coming from, so it's not a bad place to start if paying for Hubspot is not an option.
More than likely, you also have internal systems that track leads and customers. It may be a CRM – internal software where you keep a record of inquiries. Or inquiry forms where you write down phone inquiries. Whatever you do in your business – get in the habit of tracking not only the inquiries but also the source – add this to your CRM or inquiry forms.
3. Monthly reporting
If you use Hubspot, a CRM or Google Analytics you should be able to export your data to excel (or run a report) and add that to your tracking sheet. In the event you have a manual system you’ll have to add them up manually. If you get a lot of inquiries, especially if its manual, you may want to do this weekly or daily – it will take 5-15 minutes and won’t seem so huge if done regularly.
Once a month say the first week of the month, review your results from the previous month. Add each month to the same excel document so you can see how each channel compares month to month. And over time see which channel performs better.
4. What to look for
Rather than looking at absolute numbers, add in a column to track conversion rates – I find this a better measure. If you see a channel consistently getting higher conversion rates then you’ll know to investment more time and money in this channel. And of course looking at customer conversions is the number you really want to focus on. If one channel, say Facebook is getting twice as many leads but no customers then you need to either forget that channel or review your marketing message.
5. How to use this data to improve your marketing
Firstly, run your marketing for at least 6 months, 12 months is ideal – especially if you have seasonal trends.
Then, look for trends over that period. Was there a consistent growth in one area and not another?
Next, review the marketing tactics that may have influenced peaks and troughs. Did you stop publishing content, stop an advertising campaign, change wording, improve your social media presence?
Finally, write a short summary on what was driving leads and customers, and what was not. Then list out your marketing tactics for the following month based on what you know will improve results. Do you need to pull funds out of one area that is performing poorly to get better results from a channel this is getting high conversion rates? Do you need to review your marketing message?
If you would like to speak to a marketing professional about your marketing, and how to improve your results. Please email me directly at: Stacie[a]theinboundmarketingcompany.com.au.