Measure your Marketing

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Well, if it’s one thing I’ve been getting drilled into my head about marketing, it’s that it needs to be constantly measured.  What do I mean by that?  simple.  You need to know what works, what is driving new leads, new customers, and ultimately revenue.  If you’re sinking a lot of money into marketing for “brand recognition”, or if you’re told that you can’t put a value on the current approach you’re using, well, then you’re probably throwing your money away.  If you’re a big player, maybe you can afford to throw money at fancy ads and random billboards, but if you’re like the rest of us…  if you sink $5k into something, you better see some returns.

I’m currently at a crossroads with one of my current marketing approaches.  I really like the company, I like the people.  But ultimately, it comes down to results.  I’m 4 months into a campaign, and I can clearly see how my “audience” has grown.  The problem is that I have this huge audience of people that aren’t in my industry, will never buy my products, and likely only want to sell ME something.  The initial pitch was dead on.  You need to get quantity to get quality.  I can buy that.  It’s all about finding the right connections, and sometimes you need to take a round about approach to get there.  The problem is that after 4 months, I have 0 new prospects, most of the people at the conference still aren’t connected to me, and I’m $5k in the whole.

In order to help me gauge a little better, I just spent the night doing a little prospecting of my own.  First, I picked a company that I wanted to target.  I found all the people that might want to hear my message, hear more about my products, or might benefit from my blog posts.  All in an effort to find out if I could work my way up the chain to someone with the checkbook.

My second experiment was to work my way through the list of people I met at the tradeshow.  I have full names, emails and companies.  So it should be pretty easy to reach out to all of those.

Depending on the results I receive, will directly determine if I can afford to keep my hard earned marketing dollars flowing, or if I end up taking over this responsibility myself.  A prospect I certainly don’t want…  but ultimately could be outsourced to pretty much anyone if my instructions are clear enough.

The good news is that I don’t regret the money I’ve spent.  However, I’m really questioning the value going forward.  Especially if I can carve out 1 hour a week, and I can find the same contacts, or perhaps, I look to other ways to find my prospects.

The moral of the story.  You have to measure your marketing.  Don’t take for granted that it’s working.  Obviously, things like adwords are easier to measure, but at the end of the day, prospects, customers, dollars.  If you aren’t getting them, you’re wasting your money.

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