Data Is Gold
Usually the first thing someone thinks about when talking about marketing for a small business is advertising. There also tends to be a lot of buzzwords involved. What different campaigns are you running? Are you doing print or display advertising to increase brand awareness? What about radio, television, and video advertising? Your competition are doing these things, so you should too. Right? Not necessarily. I like to ask for more specifics. What is your ROI on your “brand awareness” campaigns? What percentage of revenue are you spending on them and what are they giving back in terms of leads and jobs sold? If you don’t have this information, how do you know if they are being effective?
Many advertisers prefer to sell their campaigns with an upfront or a reoccurring cost because it guarantees them revenue regardless of the performance of your campaign. Sure you may get a few more phone calls or a couple more jobs sold, but what does that really mean in terms of the money you are spending to advertise?
First, you need to make sure you are getting the referral source from every lead that comes in. It might not be the first place that they came across your brand, or they might name something you’re not even involved with, but having that data gives you a starting point for the insight of advertising effectiveness. This process involves incorporating a CRM (customer relationship management) program to track your clients from the first point of interaction to the last at the time of sale. Many CRMs can automatically track and calculate the worth of an advertising campaign by analyzing the data you collect.
Using these reports, you can figure out if your radio advertising campaign has been worth the $20k per year you have been spending on it. If you haven’t seen any ROI from it, why would you still continue it?