What if you’ve done a variety of marketing activities over the past year, but you did not establish any way to track the response? Now you don’t know what worked and what didn’t. Is there anything you can do now before you continue with your marketing efforts and potentially continue spending money on not-so-effective marketing activities? First of all, don’t beat yourself up. You are not alone. In fact, one of my biggest challenges as a marketing consultant has been to get my clients to track the effectiveness of their various marketing activities. The first thing to do is recognize the importance of tracking, and make sure that you have a plan in place to track all of your future marketing activities. The simplest way to track is to ask each new customer where or how they found out about you. You may also want to consider including a code on any flyers or brochures that you distribute, and providing a reason for the customer to bring that flyer in when they come to make a purchase. Reasons to return the flyer could be to take advantage of a special offer, or to get a discount or free bonus gift. You can also do this by phone or on the Internet if that is how your customers make purchases. Simply ask them to provide you with the code on the brochure or flyer that they are calling or ordering from. Make sure the code is specific to the location or group of people that you distributed the flyer to. If you are networking or speaking to a group and someone gives you their business card and agrees to receive your free report or e-newsletter, make sure you include a reference in your contact database of the event where you met them. As far as tracking your past marketing activities, consider asking your current customers how they found out about you. You could do a survey that includes a number of customer satisfaction questions, but also includes a question to determine how they found out about you. If you have a handful of clients that you work closely with and you really don’t know how they found you, pick up the phone and ask them. Either of these tactics should give you an idea of what marketing activities worked and which ones you may be able to do without in the future. If you’re still not sure, continue with all the marketing activities, BUT put tracking mechanisms into place so you won’t end up in the same boat next year. (C) 2005 Debbie LaChusa, 10stepmarketing Determining Marketing Effectiveness Even If You Didn’t Track
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