marketing performance
March 21, 2015

Is your true Marketing performance eclipsed? Results from our poll

By Paul Laughlin

Hope you saw the last eclipse, or to clarify, enjoyed it without looking directly at the sun. Quite an event to celebrate the first day of Spring (Vernal Equinox).

Whilst reflecting on this spectacle, I was reminded of the interim results coming through from our recent poll on how you measure your marketing performance.

Perhaps some of you feel that the benefit of your targeting efforts or insights are being obscured by inadequate measurement or big Marketing egos?

Here are some thoughts on what people have shared so far:

Q1: How do you measure your marketing effectiveness?

This one has a clear winner so far. 40% of leaders shared that they just measure ‘conversion of responses to sales (% and value). Although conversion clearly matters, this leaves Marketing open to the accusation that the reason responses didn’t convert as well was because the leads provided or response achieved was from poor quality prospects. Conversely if they do convert well, or do so purely online, other functions like Sales or eCommerce can claim the credit as to why.

But, perhaps most importantly, this only covers part of the overall Marketing spend, with investment to achieve movement in other parts of the Purchase Funnel (e.g. awareness, consideration, preference) left unaccountable.

Some of you clearly do have more sophisticated Marketing performance measurement in place. 20% shared that you have ‘proven BTL marketing delivery of sales revenue’ (with control groups & comparison ratios). A further 40% stated that you have either ‘holistic measurement of ATL & BTL marketing‘ or ‘active tracking of marketing ROI/ROME‘.

That is good to hear and confirms my experience of hearing a number of other customer insight leaders share your experience at events this year. In those chats, a number of you confirmed a real polarisation between companies with advanced and embedded marketing measurement and others where work on this has hardly started.

Q2: How commercially accountable is your Marketing team?

Pretty positive answers here, although less of you felt able to answer this question. The votes are split 50:50 between ‘very accountable‘ and ‘somewhat accountable. In conversation with a few Customer Insight Leaders there seems to be an impression that Marketing teams these days are commercially held to account, but Customer Insight teams would benefit from more commercial understanding to help marketers measure what matters.

Q3: Which one thing would you invest in to improve Marketing Measurement?

A clear winner here too. 40% of you selected ‘Culture work (coaching/mentoring for a collaborative, commercially accountable culture)’. That tallies with the demand I’m experiencing for team workshops and for leadership coaching. Your approach makes sense too as so much of sustaining a measurement approach appears to be down to a mindset that is culturally embedded.

Three joint second choices (all at 20%), are: ‘Proper experimental design for BTL Marketing‘, ‘Better marketing reporting‘ and ‘Customer Insight team training‘. Although each of these areas can always benefit from improvements, I suspect that these choices again reflect that polarisation mentioned earlier. It really does seem that in the race to measure all your marketing payback, there is a pack out front & a good number of businesses bringing up the rear.

Whichever situation you find yourself in, I do encourage you invest in this area and seek out best practice advice. Over a decade of leading a team to do this well, the benefits were both an insight team that was respected as commercial astute and marketing spend that was accountable.

Being able to see clearly which Marketing Performance is generating a strong return and which media mix should be stopped, is so value. Without it there is plenty of assumption & bravado to eclipse what may or may not be brilliant work.

Have a great weekend & do keep sharing your votes.