If a tree falls in the forest and nobody is around to hear it, does it make a sound? It’s an age-old philosophical question that equates to your marketing efforts in a way you may not have imagined. If a marketing campaign goes out to the world and you didn’t track it, does it make an impact? Maybe, but you’d never know it. That’s the importance of tracking your marketing efforts. If you aren’t sure where to start with analytics and tracking, check out the tips below, depending on the type of campaign you’re sending into the world.
Direct Mail Campaigns
Once your perfected mail piece leaves your hands and sails off into the postal sunset, it can be difficult to know what exactly happened with your campaign. Did it get lost in the mail? Did it get stuck between newspaper pages? Did they look at your mailer and set it off to the side for when they have the time or funds to follow through?
There’s one tried-and-true method to know for sure if your new business is a result of your direct mailer. Include a unique link and/or phone number that is specific to your direct mail campaign. That way, you’ll know exactly how many potential new customers to attribute to your mailings. Make sure to track how many hits the landing page acquires, or offer a form with a special offer so your audience provides their information.
As a reminder, it’s important for a successful direct mail campaign that your lists are up to date. If not, your hard work essentially goes in the trash before you ever reach your audience with your message. If you have low return numbers on your direct mail campaign, don’t forget to evaluate why. The cause may be a different culprit other than your creative.
Email Marketing Campaigns
You could send out emails and hope that they take the right path through the land of servers to your intended recipient. However, you know that a carefully tracked email campaign can help you make future decisions. It’s important to consider software that tracks who opened your email, which addresses may have been bad, and the types of links that were clicked. There are ample email tracking products out there, so do the research to find the best fit for your business. Then, don’t forget to track every, single email campaign you send. You’ll be able to start comparing and pulling reports.
Social Media Efforts
First, determine your goal with social media marketing. This will help you determine what metrics are important to track. For example, if you’re interested in getting your brand in front of more people, track the impressions. Impressions mean how many people saw your post. Think of impressions as your reach—how far did the post go? Maybe you’re focused on interacting with your audience. In that case, it may be helpful to look at how many people are interacting with content by clicking, liking and commenting on your posts.
Brochures and Flyers
Similar to direct mail campaigns, your best bet to track physically printed items is to include a unique url and phone number. Although it may initially be more time consuming, it’s important to include these separate calls to action on each piece. Your direct mail piece should have a slightly different URL than the flyers you distributed at an event, and so on. That way, you’ll be able to determine which of your printed materials is outperforming the others and where to invest your marketing dollars in the future.
Instead of hoping for the best, make sure you’re investing in the success of your marketing campaigns. Determine what works well for your business and stick to it. Often, a solid marketing campaign involves a mixture of digital and printed materials. Once you’re tracking your marketing efforts, don’t be afraid to experiment and try something new. You’ll know exactly what works and what doesn’t!