Archive for November 2008
How to Measure Marketing Effectiveness in the Virtual World and Finding the Value in the Real World
How does one measure the value of engagement, trust and building the right relationships with your online audience? The Internet has far greater value and measurement available. Yet, how do we define the right metrics that make sense for marketers to validate their worth and provide them with information that is useful to share with other executives.
- Is it really just about the ROI?
- Why is it that marketers want to evaluate engagement across their brands?
- What tools are available today in the marketplace to define the level of engagement?
- How can we align our strategy for the future?
Measuring engagement across one’s products and services is the magic question for many these days. As more technology is developed, it allows greater use for executives to review the data in hopes to take away insights to make improvements to their products and services. When analyzing the level of one’s engagement it’s important to marry both the quantitative and qualitative data, in order to gain a better understanding of the audience, as well as different types of usage across one’s products and services.
Every marketer defines in their own eyes a level of engagement with their customers. For some it maybe brand awareness, for others, it maybe how many people recommend their services. The Net Promoter Score is a way to determine the value of marketing spend. How do we satisfy all the different types of goals for marketers and define what is an engagement index for measuring the effectiveness of one’s marketing efforts?
When evaluating click-thrus, it is a concern, because someone that clicks often on a particular page or decides to go deeper into the website, doesn’t necessarily really mean that individual is really engaged with your website. Perhaps this could be evidence of the individual having a difficult time to find what he/she had the intent to seek. One could go to your site with the hopes to learn more, but it’s important to realize the value of engagement should be measured on what warrants a person to come back and learn more (Retention). It’s important to identify where discovery had occurred and what keeps he/she coming back.
It’s funny how hard the online world is trying to replicate the real world and bring more people together and services through technology. People have gained skills in SEO to attract the search engines, experts have coached others how to craft email campaigns and subject lines to be viewed properly by email service providers, at the same time, we’ve tried our best to add the human element to this type of communication by personalizing the messages to drive actions. In essence people are craving engagement and connections with others and/or products as they have done so well in the real world trying to replicate a portion of that experience online. I believe that companies that can find the appropriate balance between the real world and the virtual world, that combine and understand how to best analyze the information gathered from these two worlds (the quantitative and qualitative) will best engage their audiences. It’s important for marketers to recognize those people online that take action with their product and/or service, use the data to make better analysis and reach out to those audiences through virtual means (social communities, links to blogs, partnerships, etc.), as well as traditional means of contact (interviews, phone calls, attending events etc.) to drive further engagement.
The day and age of building a website is not as easy as it may have been many years ago. As the competitive landscape increases online, more and more sites are vying for the same attention. One must have a distinct site with the right combination of content and an easy-to-use site to stand out of the crowd. More time, expertise and planning is necessary to get the desired results to attract audiences, as well as advertisers to a site.
Professionals from all areas including marketing, editorial, production and sales should always collaborate to optimize the revenue potential online, while communicate a clear message about the brand to the audience.
- Create the proper mission statement and tagline for your site to match the existing message in the magazine, or use new collateral to define your brand.
- Always use a common theme to communicate your messages from your magazine, to your event and website.
- Call to action clear messages, use organized placement and don’t be afraid to ask your audience for feedback.
Ask Your Peers. Speak with all staff members on a regular basis to brainstorm on future promotional ideas, events or special feature stories that make sense to promote online.
- What are the goals of the site?
- How am I going to capture my audience? How will the registration work, list growth, etc?
- What do you need from your advertisers and what interests do they seek?
- What is your competition doing? How can you learn or differentiate your site from them?
- What are some future trends occurring in the market?
- What kinds of promotions, or marketing considerations do we need to consider attracting advertisers, as well as the audience?
- Can I start to cross promote my new site on an existing site? Can I create a welcome page of my new site to begin registration for future announcements? Or, can I use other marketing collateral to attract a new audience?
Key Concerns for Planning The Strategy of A Website
Functionality: What are the business goals for end users to frequent the website? What does the business wish to accomplish and how?
Usability: The website must be simple and easy to navigate. End users should be able to easily accomplish their goals on the website.
Design: The website design must support the marketing communications strategy. Brand integrity and consistency must be maintained throughout the site. Make sure to check for errors with links, grammar, typos, etc.
Interactive Marketing: The website must be optimized for search engine performance and in conjunction with a cohesive online marketing strategy.