2014 is in full swing and we all made our new year’s resolutions, but by now some of the novelty may be wearing off. How do you keep your marketing and sales goals from following the same path as that gym membership you bought? Yep remember, you swore this year you would go every morning before work. You’re still going, right?
Guess what, you’re not alone! Sticking with resolutions is tough.
Let’s take a look at what resolutions marketers have made for this year. In the recent study, 2014 State of Marketing from ExactTarget that polled 2.600 mid- to senior-level marketing managers across all industries. The study found that
- 98% of marketers plan to increase or maintain the amount they spend in 2014
- 67% of those surveyed, said their top priority is to increase sales directly tied to digital marketing campaigns
- 64% are focusing on increasing engagement with emails (clicks and open rates)
- 61% want to increase their return on investment
Do any of these sound familiar to you?
In general 2014 will be a more data driven year then possibly any before.
The top executives in most companies want to see the data that supports and justifies the money they are spending on digital marketing.
I bet that sounds familiar.
So it comes as no surprise that the area that most participants of the study reported they are planning to increase their spending is Data & Analytics (61%).
How can you make sure you follow through on your digital marketing and stay on track?
- Make a plan – If you haven’t already, you’re late… Do it right now!
Do you think Olympic athletes got there because of a New Year’s resolution? No! They had a plan to get to the fitness level where they can compete, and so should when it comes to your online marketing.
Lay out you plan for 2014, include a schedule for content creation, how you’ll respond to inquiries and questions, who will be involved and the best channels and platforms that work best for your company. Don’t forget mobile!
- Focus on your customer and what they really want.
I know this one sounds too obvious, but so many companies miss this one. The objective is to increase engagement. Whether that’s “likes”, followers, discussions or clicks and open rates, always think from the customers perspective and what they want, not what you want to give them. Think about personalizing
- Analyze the data and set periodic goals for throughout the year.
This doesn’t mean just set up website analytics and look at them every once and awhile to see how many visitors you have. You need to set up measurable goals and periodic milestones for throughout the year. To do this you need to define what a conversion is (a new client, a whitepaper download, a newsletter sign-up, a lead capture submission, etc.), define what each conversion is worth to you in real money and calculate how many leads or new visitors you need to achieve your goals. This is the only way you can truly understand the ROI of you digital efforts.
The good news is that if you follow these steps you will know exactly where you stand with your digital marketing goals, because you’ll have the incremental data that supports it.
Now, to apply this to my gym membership…