How Effective Are Your Marketing Efforts?

147701039Staffing executives: Do you know where your marketing dollars are spent? Probably. But here’s a better question – what’s the return on that investment? And, more important, do you know how to hold your marketing team accountable for those results? Smart marketers will track activities and spend against those results. They will proactively schedule time with you on a regular basis to highlight how your investment in marketing is driving results. Just like you wouldn’t keep a sales person who isn’t producing results, the same applies to marketing staff.

Now I know you’re a busy executive and marketing is probably not your forte, so you’ve probably hired a marketing person to lead these efforts for you. Jointly you’ve probably decided to embark on tactics like social media, local trade shows and events, and maybe some email marketing or direct marketing campaigns. You know what you spent on those activities, but what have you received in terms of leads and new business? Not sure? Well your marketing person should be providing metrics for both direct and indirect marketing activities so you can use that data to make informed decisions going forward about where to spend money to grow your staffing business.

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When I ran the marketing department for a large RPO provider, my team closely tracked marketing activities and resulting ROI so I could report back to my CEO regularly about what was working, where we needed to invest additional dollars, and where we needed to reallocate dollars. Now you may not know exactly what metrics to be asking for, so here are a few suggestions to get you started down the path of stronger accountability for your marketing team.

  • First, ask your marketing staff to show you how actions taken by your prospects can be tracked through your CRM or marketing automation system so you can see progress through the sales funnel. If you aren’t using a CRM, you can still think about things in this context. How many people are you connecting with due to marketing activities? What did sales do with those connections? Trace the initial interaction with the contact through the sales funnel. Ideally they should be able to show how many inquiries were made on your site (via downloads or registrations for content), how many of those turned into genuine sales appointments, and how many of those then turned into deals. The point here is to get them to think about how the marketing activities drive activity for the sales team. sales team
  • Second, challenge your marketing staff to quantify results for every single marketing initiative and have them tie it back to the stages of the sales funnel. Going to a trade show or conference? They should report on the number of new contacts that were added to the database, the number of follow-up appointments scheduled and how many touchpoints it took to schedule that appointment. Sending out an email campaign? Outside of the traditional metrics they are probably providing to you (number of opens, number of clicks, etc.), have them show you how many people moved from contacts to leads as a result of the campaign.
  • Third, encourage sales and marketing to work closely together. As you can probably tell, this isn’t the job of marketing alone! Open dialogue and strong alignment between sales and marketing is crucial. While marketing can help drive leads, sales needs to contribute as well by sharing results and feedback with marketing. What messages are resonating with prospects, how quickly are people moving through the funnel, what deals were closed and where did those leads originate?

By tracking metrics closely for all of your marketing efforts, you will be better positioned to calculate the overall ROI of your marketing investment. Knowing exactly what you spent and the number of leads and amount of revenue generated from those investments will help you determine what activities to focus on and how much you’ll need to continue to invest in marketing moving forward. Taking the guesswork out of marketing makes you a better business owner. I’ve also found it’s helpful to keep a marketing metrics scorecards to review together. If you email me, I can share an example of something I’ve used in the past.

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Michelle Krier

Michelle Krier
Michelle Krier is vice president of marketing and digital solutions for ClearEdge Marketing. She can be reached at mkrier (at) clearedgemarketing (dot) com.

Michelle Krier

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