First of all, it’s fantastic you have a strategy in place. Given I spend my career encouraging SMEs to do exactly that I’m very pleased to hear you’re one step ahead! And you’re quite right to consider the question ‘how to know if your marketing strategy is working?’
As with any strategy, without clear goals it’s difficult to guide the overall plan but even if you have goals in place it’s crucial you have milestones and metrics you can measure to see how progress is going along the way.
As I’ve alluded to their it comes down to metrics and data. Which in the sphere of digital marketing means tracking and analytics. Using tools such as Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Sprout Social etc. you can measure any monitor performance across the range of digital marketing channels.
These tools once have the basic setup in place will record data such as traffic to your website, where clicks come from and social media followers etc. But it’s the next level of measurement which gives you the really valuable insights.
And that is things like conversion tracking. You can set these up by using Google Tag Manager or you may need to get a developer involved, but it’s well worth the investment. Basically this is tracking things like lead form submissions, phone call enquiries, and online purchases. This is where you get the key data which tells you if you’re strategy is delivering results or needs a rethink.
One important thing to note is that there is a level deeper to be aware of known as attribution before you go making sweeping changes. For example even though organic search (SEO) may show as the converting channel for a new lead, their user journey may have included; clicking an ad, signing up to your email newsletter, landing on a blog from social media and finally searching your brand name and converting. So without looking into these ‘assisted conversions’ you wouldn’t know the importance of those other channels in making the conversion happen.
Ultimately, proving whether your marketing strategy is working or not comes down to return on investment (ROI). Does your investment in said strategy, including resources, advertising spend etc. return an equal or higher amount than you’ve spent. That’s why it’s so crucial to have the aforementioned conversion tracking in place to be able to prove that.
However, this is not the end of the story. There are other factors to consider (subject to your business’ goals of course), such as content, brand and social following etc. These things compound and depending on when you’re conducting your review may not have had the time to start to make their impact on the bottom line. They may be building nicely and possibly even about to crescendo to deliver considerable results but a snapshot at a given time may not show you this. This is why it’s important to zoom out and look at some other metrics such as growth in these areas even if it’s not started filtering through to bottom of the funnel just yet.
An effective marketing strategy is a dynamic one. Your strategy should be a live document which is regularly reviewed, tweaked and improved again as you gather more insight. Which is why everything mentioned above is so crucial to helping your strategy deliver your goals and also why it’s great you’re searching for these answers.
So it’s great you have a strategy, now it’s time to setup the accurate tracking so you can ensure you have the data and insights to be able to adapt and continiously improve your strategy as you go.
As always if you’d like help creating your marketing strategy you can request a consultation call with me today.