When analyzing the results of your efforts, it is important to not get distracted by very good—or very bad—anecdotal results or results that may be extreme but not directly related to success or failure. You can start by asking a series of questions.
1. What are our goals, and did we achieve them?
It sounds pretty obvious, but before analyzing any marketing results, it’s vital to remember and acknowledge what you were trying to accomplish in the first place. Again, a number of results have have occurred, but whether or not you achieved your primary goal(s) is of utmost importance. Did you achieve what you set out to do? Even if something else really good happened, make sure to stay focused on your goals and not be distracted by other information that may cloud your judgement.
2. What are the primary reasons we succeeded (or failed)?
As important as the last point is, it’s not enough to know whether you achieved your goals or not. You also need to be able to explain why you got the results you did. After all, if you did well, you will likely want to try to do more of the same, and if you didn’t do well, you want to know what to avoid.
3. Are there particular areas we succeeded with more than others?
Average or middling results of your marketing efforts may not always mean that you didn’t succeed in some respects. It may simply mean that in certain areas you were very successful, but in others your efforts failed to perform. For instance, this could apply to:
Times of day
Or many other variables
If your marketing efforts overperformed with professionals aged 35-44 in metropolitan areas, but failed to gain traction in the suburbs, unless you look granularly by audience segment, you may miss the opportunity with that first audience segment.
4. What are the industry benchmarks and did we exceed those?
It is great to exceed your own organization’s numbers from the last week, month, quarter or year, but it is also extremely helpful to understand what are the norms in your industry or on a particular channel. For instance, understanding industry-average email open and click-through rates can help you set the right goals for your own.
If you are well below the industry average, I recommend setting incremental goals to ultimately reach and exceed that standard instead of trying to change things overnight.
5. Are the numbers too good (or bad) and why?
Having wildly successful looking number is always a great thing, right? Not always, especially if a spike (or dip) is too extreme to be possible. This might be an indication that there is an error in your data collection, or something abnormal is happening.
While runaway success is certainly possible, numbers that are too extreme often point to something that needs further review.
6. What could we have done better?
Finally, when analyzing your marketing results, it’s essential to identify any areas of improvement. No marketing campaign is perfect, and there’s always room for improvement. Once you’ve analyzed your results, ask yourself, what could you have done better? What did you do wrong? What changes can you make to improve your future campaigns? The answers to these questions will help you identify areas of weakness and guide you in making necessary improvements.
There’s no doubt that analyzing your marketing results is essential to the success of any business. Asking the right questions will help you gain valuable insights into your campaigns, and ultimately guide you in making key decisions to improve your marketing strategy. Before analyzing any marketing results, be clear on your goals, define your target audience, track your campaign’s performance across multiple channels, analyze your content and identify areas of improvement. By doing this, you can continuously improve your marketing strategies while maximizing resources for better ROI.
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