I often wondered why marketing measurement is thought to be so important when not all-important things are measured? I find this question to be quite intriguing. Marketing teams are asked to “measure” nearly every possible thing they can with the hopes that the data they uncover will be helpful. We all know that data acquisition is very important. The outcomes that help define customer behavior, process and procedural efficacy and many other important digital marketing initiatives can be significant. However, is there a point at which too much data measurement is too much? As a marketer, how do you know when your measurement process may be impeding your everyday workflow? Hmm.
Customers Can Be Tricky
When was the last time you discovered when one of your customers purchased your product or service because: They saw your social media post last Tuesday at 3:15pm? Your email last week at 8:00am? Your video on YouTube that they watched today at 6:30pm? Or your mobile ad or coupon that appeared at lunchtime? I venture to say that a high percentage of marketers do not know this answer and if they think they did, the data may not be as accurate as they think.
Consumers are very smart, but what they can’t do is recall 100% of the time the absolute marketing initiative that caused them to purchase. Typically they remember the last touch point they had with the company, the most memorable one or the instance in which the company appeared over and over again to create multiple impressions over time. Regardless of the customer answer, the marketer’s data will be inaccurate for these reasons alone.
Not Everything Should Be Measured – Right?
Nearly everything in a business can be described as playing an important role in marketing, however, is it true that not everything should be measured? As a career marketer I have learned to navigate how to craft a marketing strategy and media mix that can be measured. I have also learned that not every detail that can be measured should be measured. If you’re spending time gathering data to put into a report just so you can look good in front of executives, maybe you should be honest with yourself and report numbers and trends that actually matter. This can be difficult because the most important numbers are not easy to obtain unless you have people and technology to help gather that information over periods of time.
Create A Measurement Plan
Before you begin measuring anything, you must create a plan that clearly outlines what is important, otherwise, you will end up spending time trying to measure everything, and most of it will not be as helpful to you as you would have hoped. Don’t fall into this trap that I like to call “manic measurement.” Here are 6 simple questions to ask yourself that will help you create a measurement plan, that doesn’t seem like manic measurement is happening.
- What data do you want to measure?
- Why you want to measure it?
- How do you plan on measuring the process?
- How often do you need to capture and measure?
- If your measurement plan is successful, what must happen?
- Once you have the data, how do you plan on using it for an immediate plan of action as well as for long-term trending analysis?
Can every marketer measure EVERY piece of content all the way through to ROI? Marketers know the value of their content extremely well. They wouldn’t be producing the content if they didn’t see that it has value. But, can we all honestly say every piece of content we create can be tracked all the way to ROI? – I don’t think so. However, if you have a measurement plan, content has a much better chance of being measured so that it will be determined if it is valuable or not – That’s the goal.
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Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/scott-macfarland/
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