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Marketing is an ongoing activity that should be built into the DNA of your business. For your marketing to be the most effective it can be, it’s essential that you review what you have done and refine your future activities to build on your most successful strategies.
Unless you have all the customers you are ever going to want and experience absolutely no churn or are confident that you have a strong enough pipeline through referrals from your existing customers, marketing is an essential part of your business plan. Of course, if you keep doing the same thing, you can expect the same results; to get better results, you need to review your activities and work out what delivered best ROI for your business and what didn’t work quite so well (and why).
Digital analytics will give you good insights into your online activities, especially if you dig beyond the headline figures. Rather than just counting Twitter followers, explore which Tweets get the most engagement: is there a pattern to which ones lead to clicks and retweets? If you can establish what resonates best with your targets, you can create a more effective social media campaign, for exactly the same investment.
For offline activities you will need to track responses at each stage. You also want to measure the success against cost, to see which activities are the most cost effective for your business.
The aim of any marketing campaign is to deliver most customers or sales, so part of your analysis should be to track conversion ratios at each stage. This may mean looking beyond the scope of your marketing activity. For example, if your marketing has led to more visits to your website or more phone calls, but this increased interest has not led to more sales, you would then need to look at your website to see what you can do to increase enquiries or purchases, or examine the experience potential customers get when they call your organisation.
Every contact a customer or potential customer has with your organisation is part of their experience of your brand and will shape whether they place an order or bring you repeat business. Every external-facing activity therefore, ultimately, needs to be put under the marketing microscope to make sure it is enforcing your brand values and identity and consolidating the messages you want customers to understand about your business.
Reviewing your marketing activities will enable you to refine your strategy so it is even more effective, but this review should not be limited to your structured marketing campaign; it should be extended to all external-facing activities, so that customers get a consistent experience of your brand at every contact.