There are five clear stages in the marketing measurement process of any company - where are you in the process?
1. Denial :
"There are so many marketing avenues that they can't be effectively measured. But the results will come - have faith!"
Marketing is a necessary evil. We do it because our competitors do it - but we don't see the value.
2. Fear :
"What happens if my marketing doesn't lead to an increase in revenue? Will I lose my job?"
Taking responsibility for your company's marketing is a double edged sword. Ignorance is bliss. As soon as you shine a light on what you're doing, the uglier it will look. Weak performance will be highlighted more readily than good performance - and other departments will be quick to point out the shortcomings. It's scary.
3. Confusion :
"I know I should be measuring the results of my marketing, but I don't know where to start."
Whilst basic metrics can be implemented : visitor numbers, conversion data, cost per lead, cost per sale, click through rates, ad infinitum - without a solid, holistic understanding of what it all means, the data simply piles up on the corner of your desk. It all looks very impressive, but what does it all mean?
4. Self Promotion :
"Look - a pie chart!"
Simply representing the data in a graph or a chart doesn't actually change anything. If you're looking to justify the activity - then this might be tempting - but at the end of the day the Emperor is still naked. If you are simply looking for the soft, marketing centered KPI's then you need to take another look and see how you can show how they impact on the "harder" indicators of revenue growth, turnover. Without this marketing will be seen as a cost to the company rather than a revenue generator.
5. Accountability :
"Revenue and growth have their origins in marketing."
Once we understand this concept, marketing finds it's place in the company. We are now able to make accurate projections for revenue growth and development. Suddenly, rather than being outside the management circle, we are invited to the "top table". All of a sudden we are able to make a contribution to the core decisions the company is taking. The transition is hard, but it starts with marketing personnel taking responsibility for their actions. If the marketing department is stuck in any of the first four stages, then they only have themselves to blame.