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Put the data you have uncovered to beneficial use.

Vanessa Hayes
Today's fortune submitted by:
Vanessa Hayes

Sydney New South Wales, Australia

Vanessa Hayes is a finance professional at State Street Currency Management in Sydney, specializing in currency portfolio management, product development, and strategic initiatives. Previously at Geode Capital Management, she holds an MBA and degrees in IT and MIS.

Measuring Your Marketing

I believe that if a campaign can't be measured, it's not worth doing. That statement is truer than true. I know because I've seen many campaigns that were not measured, and when the pressure was on, folks had no way of justifying their existence. Do you know what happens to campaigns that are unjustified? They are ultimately kicked out of the program and left to rot in the marketing bone yard. It's ugly. Unmeasured marketing, regardless of the channel, will eventually be viewed as a waste of time and treasure—and then killed.

In the early days, I was afraid to measure a campaign and to be held accountable for the results. For a few months, we might be okay... but eventually, the ROI question would always come along. They'd say, "How many leads did we get?" A question that is always followed by, "Were the leads any good?" If there is no answer to these basic questions, the campaigns are eventually cut out and sent down to the marketing bone yard... and I was sent down there along with them. Ewww! Whether I wanted to or not, I learned the importance of measurement.

Ignorance is bliss, but these are the big leagues now! Rather than not knowing what you didn't know, measurement brings you into the world of knowing. Be careful! You may not know what you think you see!! Sometimes the data is misleading or wearing a disguise. The real shame is that many orphaned campaigns that are sent to the marketing bone yard were actually healthy and working well, but poorly executed measurement had mis-marked them as a "bad egg," and they fell victim to the executioner's ax.

Oh boy. Having the data is one thing. Understanding what it means is the hardest part of the job! As a unified marketing agency, we measure everything. For example, we look at the top-line lead sources such as digital, direct mail, broadcast, events, etc. Then, we dive inside each channel, like digital for example, looking at lead attribution like social media, website, organic search, paid search, etc. Then inside social media for example, we look at the details like Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, blogging, etc. Then, we identify metrics such as Tweets-per-lead (TPL), Posts-per-lead (PPL), Likes-per-lead (LPL), etc... and on, and on, and on for each channel and tactic. At the end of the day, we know how many leads our campaigns are producing, across potentially dozens of channels, and whether it is in alignment with an acceptable cost per acquisition.

The numbers don't lie, but sometimes they hide. You may have to peel back the layers to discover the truth. Do it very carefully—and try to be honest—otherwise, the data will begin to tell the story you wanted to hear. Although we've built a process to feed what works and starve what doesn't, sometimes our ego or enthusiasm excites the numbers and we accidentally make mistakes. The best thing about the mistakes we've made, however, is that it has made us better—and smarter. Being smarter helps us put the data we uncover to beneficial use.

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Submitted by:

Vanessa Hayes

Unpackaged in: 

Sydney New South Wales, Australia

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