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6 Is Your Marketing Producing the Results You Expected

Image:One-Fat-Man via Flickr CC

The poll question above is a bit loaded and, not that I want to skew the results, the answer for most lies in the fact that they don’t really know what results they expected or what result they are actually getting. Mostly they know the results aren’t what they had hoped for, but that’s another issue.

Setting expectations

One of the simplest, yet most effective, things you can do is set expectations or goals for your marketing. You can create overall revenue goals, campaign goals or more product or service specific goals, but either way, simply defining a target number will prove to be one of the best first steps.

Goals are like magnets in a way. If we define them and measure our results towards achieving them, they can produce some pretty dramatic pull.

I know this is an obvious bit of advice, but experience tells me that few businesses actually set real, tangible and meaningful targets. How many widgets do you need to sell this month? How many press mentions do you want to add this quarter? How many newsletter subscribers, webinar attendees or trial evaluations must you complete this week?

Measuring results

Once you define your marketing expectations you must define and track the most important indicators that will tell you if you are on track.

You can make this is a simple as a weekly sales total or as complex as the results of multivariate ad element testing, but the key is start measuring something and sharing the numbers.

If you’re not measuring anything, break a few key numbers down and figure out a way to produce a weekly spreadsheet that you use as a guide and also use to share with team members. Then start looking for ways to add key indicators to the list so in addition to simply measuring results you can start measuring individual effectiveness.

Add Google Analytics to your web site and pick up a copy of Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity
by Avinash Kaushik.

If you’ve been measuring key indicators and you’re comfortable with a tool like Google Analytics, consider looking at a more advanced form of measurement from the use of a tool like KissMetrics. This tool can measure so many things that it can also overwhelm, so don’t start here unless you’ve mastered the basics.

26 Analytics

Analytics from a Really Smart Guy

Marketing podcast with Avinash Kaushik (Click to listen, right click and Save As to download – subscribe now via iTunes

Avinash Kaushik, author of Web Analytics 2.0 is one of those rare people who can take a somewhat dry and mathlike subject of web analytics and make it sound easy and even fun. I got to spend a few minutes with Avinash for this episode of the Duct Tape Marketing podcast for some tips about this important, but often overlooked topic.

Web Analytics can seem like a scary subject, but it’s essential, so like brushing your teeth, just do it. You’ll be so glad you did once you get the basic reporting tools in place. Once you have a baseline you can start to do what Kaushik calls “controlled experiments” to start breaking down everything you do with an eye on making it better and stop doing the stuff that your customers don’t like.

Analyzing how many people come to your website and trying to figure out what got them there was the 1.0 version of tracking I suppose. What Web Analytics 2.0 attempts to do is also measure what they did there and why through the use of tools like surveys that engage individual users.

Here’s the Web Analytics tool set for the small business (there are paid tools for each of these steps, but these are free)

  1. Google Analytics – install this free site analytics tool to get the base data collection going
  2. 4Q – this is a free exit survey tool that asks people who come to your site four questions about their experience – this is akin to getting people to tell you why your site sucks – hello! – it’s the first step.
  3. Google Website Optimizer – Another free Google tool that allows you to easily set up a/b tests to start taking what people tell you from 4Q surveys and start experimenting which of your changes is getting a better result.

GoToWebinar is the presenting sponsor of the Duct Tape Marketing podcast.

209 Win a Social Media Marketing Library

In a fit of collaboration goodness I would like to gift one set of seven awesome books to the person that most creatively answers the following: I get the biggest return for my business using social media when I [fill in the blank]

I’m the only judge and I’m going to pick the answer I like the best. But, here’s what you’ll get if you win.

One personalized (meaning signed to you) copy of these seven books: Trust Agents by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith, New Community Rules by Tamar Weinberg, Six Pixels of Separation by Mitch Joel, Web Analytics 2.0 by Avinash Kaushik, Duct Tape Marketing by well, me, Whuffle Factor by Tara Hunt and CrushIt by Gary Vaynerchuk.

whuffle factor

And, you’ve got several chances to win. These bloggers are also giving this set away, so rush on over and see what they’ve got planned to enter to win: (keep checking if they haven’t posted yet.)