Every. Single. Action you take as a business, should have an ROI (Return On Investment). Especially when you’re starting out, time and money are not resources you have to waste. Ensure you know how to track marketing ROI, before you spend any marketing budget on advertising.
Your marketing ROI should not only take into account the amount of money you invest, but the cost of your time. Your time is a finite resource, and should be treated as such. Evaluate how many hours you spend on each type of activity and factor that cost in when evaluating how much you spend on different activities vs. how much you get in return.
It’s often tricky to measure ROI in marketing activities where you aren’t in control, or if you have a long sales cycle, or if there are multi ‘touch-points’, ie. your customer may have come into contact with your business many times before purchasing. In this case, it’s important to be thorough when investigating what you’re investing into.
Depending on the types of campaigns, there are a few ways to identify (prior to getting started) if the ROI will be worth it:
Influencers + Brand Reps
Using influencers and brand reps for social media can be a fun and effective way to generate new sales for your business. But before you jump in and send off some freebies to internet strangers, ask them for some insights into their followers to gain a better grasp of if this is the right partnership for you.
A great example is that of a female health + fitness blogger. While the account may have 20k followers and her content very closely aligned with your brand, her followers may be majority male, from a completely different target audience to what you’re after. Asking for Instagram analytics, will show more information on the demographics of this account’s followers, and help you to make a better decision.
Collaborations / Competitions
Similarly to influencers, brands often work with other companies to run a competition or promote their products. Before doing so, it’s helpful to have an understanding of their target audience, and even more so, who they will be promoting to.
For privacy reasons, you can’t have access to their email list for example, but you may be able to request to see their social media analytics on demographics, or some of this information (without names and contact details), for their email contacts. Keep in mind, you may be asked to do the same, so it’s important to be able to provide this.
Many businesses are asked by event organisers to contribute to events by way of product donations, speaking slots, direct funds, or vouchers for services. While some of these may seem to be low cost for you and your business, and may align very well – event organisers are generally asking from a point of view of the benefits it will have for *them*.
As a business owner, you need to consider; how many attendees will be at this event? Do they fall within your target audience? Is the event a similar theme to what you offer at your business, or will they be completely uninterested? If the event is for charity, is it something you and your business align with? What are the organisers offering you, that will help you increase your ROI?
Business owners often spend a LOT of time focusing on how many followers, likes and comments they have across their social media accounts. These stats are often known as vanity metrics – and for good reason. While having higher numbers across these areas *can* mean more sales and bookings, it’s not always the best indicator and strategically speaking, may mean nothing at all.
Much more importantly, you should be delivering relevant, targeted content with strong calls to action, to a targeted audience. Are you taking the time to grow your account in a targeted way? These are important factors to consider to help increase conversions from social media perspective.
When there are so many possibilities using digital marketing, it can be a lot more expensive to go down the route of traditional advertising, and sometimes not as effective. Although in saying this, direct mail marketing still works!
If you do decide you’d like to give it a shot and that it’s the right decision for your business, it’s vital to research the audience who will SEE the ad, and ensure that the ad itself is exactly on brand, delivers a strong message, a call to action, and helps the audience take the next step.
We’d love to know how you research a campaign before investing your marketing dollars! Pop a comment in the box below or send us a message!