Digital Marketing

Measuring Success (and Failure) Online and Offline

By March 18, 2014 No Comments

I’m nearing my sixth anniversary at Callis, though it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long. Interesting projects and a fast pace make the time fly. Without having my start date marked on a calendar, I know I’d guess wrong about my time here. That, in a nutshell, is why you measure: real numbers provide an accurate read on a hard-to-read situation.

Measuring marketing efforts continues to grow both in importance and sophistication. Digital marketing has revolutionized measurement. Fifteen years ago, online measurement generally ended at total pageviews. Today, we can track visitors and which campaigns drive them to the website. We go on to track much more, including length of the visit, website navigation path, visitor demographics, and online sales that resulted from the visit.

Moving Measurement Offline
Despite the growth of ecommerce, websites don’t close most sales. Most purchases are still made offline. You may shop for a new car online, but you’ll seal the deal in person. So how do you track the effectiveness of a digital marketing campaign when it moves offline? New tools make it possible.

For example, we can present a custom phone number across your website for visitors who arrived by clicking on certain display ads. When those visitors call the phone number shown on your website, you’ll hear a pre-call whisper: “This call is from the display ad campaign.” When you can track that info through to a sale, you’ve just created a great new measurement tool. Is that important? If you’re struggling with the best place to put your marketing dollars, it might be very important.
photo for Chris blog post week of March 17

Adopting a Measurement Mindset
Can it be measured? Should it be measured? How will we do that? Those questions should be asked on a regular basis. Why not measure everything? Plenty of hurdles to broad-scale measurement exist – from technology to systems to budget. What technology is needed in order to implement the measurement tools? Can your online and offline systems adapt to track measurement through to the end? How much will it cost? Can you see an ROI? If the answers to those questions are all available and positive, move forward.

Don’t be afraid to measure for fear that you won’t like some of the results. You need to know when that happens. Remember: test, measure, refine, test, measure, refine…

You do have to measure properly, however. An online awareness campaign shouldn’t be measured by sales that are directly attributed to the ad, for example. So make sure the measurement fits campaign goals.

Is everything measurable? No. But the more you measure, the better position you’ll be in as you make choices about your marketing dollars. What marketing initiatives are you measuring today?

Author Chris Young

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