There are significant reasons why marketing metrics are critical. If you don’t know what works, what doesn’t, what’s weak, what’s healthy, you’re lost. How can you get to where you are going without markers along the way to ensure you’re going in the proper direction. You’re missing out on pertinent information when you don’t use them.
Take Direct Mail
Direct response advertising through snail mail is one of the best examples I can immediately address because we’ve prepared and mailed more than 1 Billion (that’s with a B) in my career. Not bragging, just fact.
If you are not A/B testing until you find the control (the one that works best), you have no idea how your campaign might function. These small samples sent to a fragment of your list represent the average you can expect when you produce the entire mailing. The same thing goes with every media you select. Change the headline until you find the control, then move to another aspect of the messaging. It may be the font size, graphics, etc. If you measure each iteration, getting approximation will make your boss feel better about the investment in the campaign underway.
Things like delivery rate (measured by returns in direct mail, non-opens in email), wrong address, response, the time delay between mail hitting, and order received. Of course, there are other metrics, this is just a primer on some basics.
Most of all, you need to know the projected Return On Investment. Don’t bother measuring spending, it means nothing (unless you are under orders or a tight budget). CEO’s and CFO’s want to know a few things, revenues, ROI, Shareholder value. When it comes to marketing and advertising, you had better have a handle on projected ROI and overproduced. That’s why pre-testing, milestones, benchmarks, and revenues generated on a per campaign level are so important.
You don’t simply measure and analyze to have info at hand when the boss yells for an update, you’re performing this exercise on every marketing effort to learn and grow. You complete the task of metrics so you know your ROI, what works, what doesn’t, and how you can do it better next time.
It’s the same with every marketing activity performed for lead generation, reactivation of former customers, sale of a product or service, and so on.
If all we were charged with were cranking out marketing messaging and had no handle on what works and what needs tweaking, we’d soon be in a world of hurt. How could anyone justify the expenditure without knowing what that expenditure produced in outcomes?
We’re active in direct mail and have been for many years. But we still use all the best practices direct mail requires. Markets change, messaging must be engaging and pertinent. The only way to find out the success or failure of an activity is to measure.
Marketing metrics are critical to every organization, regardless of size. Otherwise, you’re gambling. You’re headed into the deep, dark woods without a compass, flashlight, or map. Before you know it, you’re lost.