Get the Most from Your Marketing Budget
By Donald Davidoff
Segmenting and targeting your audience and tracking the prospect journey are two good ways to maximize your marketing budget. But there are other steps you can take to ensure that you are operating at peak efficiency.
A marketer’s job has never been easy; but it seems like these days it is even more difficult. There are so many channels, the prospect’s journey can be so complex and senior leadership always wants to see us do the proverbial more with the very realistic less.
This puts a premium on working smarter, not just harder, with our marketing dollars. Here are a few ideas about how to do that:
Segment and target your audience.
John Wanamaker is famous for his quote, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half.” But he never met digital marketing. While far from perfect, digital ads can target people much more effectively than the mass media of his time. Doing so effectively requires you to know who your customers are, where they tend to shop and then the discipline to apply that knowledge to targeting your media spend.
Track the prospect journey.
The journey may be complex and involve both on and offline modes, but it can be tracked and understood. Are you using a contemporary customer relationship management (CRM) software? Do you do lead de-duplication using fuzzy logic to understand the multiple ways prospects contact you? Do you analyze varying modes of advertising effectiveness using multi-source attribution models? Do so, and you can be much more efficient in your marketing spend.
Always be testing. Be honest.
When was the last time you ran an A/B test on your website (or any other digital spend)? If it’s been a long time (or you haven’t done so ever), then I guarantee that you’re wasting marketing spend. It’s a well-known fact that prospects often respond to calls to action, color schemes and messaging differently than marketers initially predict. The only way to know what works best is to test, test, test!
Review and adjust regularly.
It’s amazing how quickly a week turns into a month, a month into a quarter and a quarter into a year. Establishing regularly scheduled reviews ensures that you conduct analysis and then act upon your findings, thus improving the efficiency of your spend.
The same basic material can be used on your website, in a blog, as a point-of-sale promotional piece and in other places. Rather than creating content from scratch, re-using content in different modalities reduce the “cost per piece” to create the content. It also has the added benefit of contributing to the consistency of message.
Implement email remarketing.
You’ve spent all that money getting the lead to begin with. Now what? It may not be sexy, but it works! Email re-marketing is a very low cost yet effective way to nurture leads. It acts as a force multiplier for your overall marketing spend. Don’t miss out by ignoring this.
Ensure your sales teams are effective.
One of my favorite sayings is, “Nothing kills a bad product better than good marketing.” If your sales and operations are not performing at their peak, then you’re burning marketing dollars creating leads that don’t convert as well as they could. Improve your sales team’s performance even just a little bit, and the efficiency of marketing skyrockets. Examine your lease-to-tour rates. A good rule of thumb is to expect leasing associates to lease at least once for every three tours. If your team is at all below this, there’s probably an opportunity to improve.
Marketing may be complex, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t put the above seven ideas to use. Do so, and you’ll see significant improvements in the efficiency and effectiveness of your marketing platform.
Donald Davidoff is President of D2 Demand Solutions.