Marketing Analytics, Part 1: If You Can’t Measure It, It Didn’t Happen

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Christine Boehms HawkinsMy first exposure to comprehensive marketing analysis was in the mid ’90s when I worked in the marketing department for one of the country’s largest optical retail chains. The head of our department had a phrase he would often say, “If you can’t measure it, it didn’t happen.” The discipline to measure every marketing/advertising dollar spent is something I have carried with me throughout my career, even to small or early stage health care companies. Why do it? Because, you should. Why spend your time and the company’s money executing against a plan and budget without knowing the results?

Today, analytics is so much easier and cheaper to obtain due to the fact that so much of marketing is digitally based. In Part 1, I review the basic key stats and trends that every B2B marketer should track, no matter how small your company or staff is, as well as suggestions on how to go about it. Always track stats by month, quarter, and year.

  • Leads – If you don’t have a sales management and tracking software tool, such as Salesforce, than keep track of your leads (or referring physicians interested in your radiology services) via an Excel spreadsheet. When you understand lead flow, average contract value and average sales cycle you can do a better job of forecasting revenue, and imaging volume. Ask leads how they heard about you when they call/e-mail, or in your web site contact us form (include a drop down menu). Lead stats:
    Leads by source
    • Cost per lead
    • Leads by sales territory
    • Leads by service/product type
    • Leads by physician type
    • Total leads, qualified leads, expected close/contract date, contract value
    • Closed deals, closed deal value, close ratio, average sales cycle, average deal size
  • Web site – If your site doesn’t have tracking software set up Google Analytics (free). Cross-reference with your marketing activities calendar to see what is driving spikes in Web traffic. Key stats :
    • Page views
    • Unique visitors
    • Link referral sources
    • Bounce rate
    • Opt in requests (if applicable)
    • Contact us form submissions
    • Specific page or video views
    • Key downloads (white papers, brochures)
  • Online ad performance – If you buy online ads: banner, inline text, video, etc., look at the page views, clicks, and click rate.
  • Search engine ads – Google, Bing, and Yahoo, have reports to track campaign and key word performance. Key stats include: position, impressions, clicks, click through rate, and cost per click. You can integrate this with your Google Analytics to track web site conversion rates.
  • E-newsletters – Constant Contact or other tools like it have reporting features that let you track open rates and links that are clicked.
  • Brand awareness – Measure your brand awareness through an online survey conducted by a research company. This cost is approximately $10K - $20K. A lower cost option is a college/university research department.
  • Press releases – Distribute press releases through an online news distribution service, such as PRWEB or PRNewswire, and check on your press release views through their tracking tools.
  • Social media activity – Facebook and Twitter have reports and stats that display Likes or Follower counts.
  • Traditional Media – Track vehicles such as print, broadcast or billboards by asking leads how they heard about you when they call, e-mail or submit a web site form. Also, try promoting a unique phone number, e-mail address, or landing page URL in your ads to see how much traffic you drive through these vehicles.
  • Customer satisfaction surveys – There are many online tools, some free, some charge a minimal monthly fee that enable you to e-mail your patients and physicians a survey and organize responses for easy review.
  • Competition – Read competitors’ press releases, visit their web sites, call them directly to ask questions, and talk to their physician customers about their service offering, strengths and weaknesses.
  • Marketing ROI – Determine the ROI for specific campaigns/programs to uncover which have the greatest return. To figure the ROI percentage: take the profit (from revenue driven by the marketing program) minus the cost of the marketing program (include media and production costs) and then divide this by the marketing program cost.
  • Analysis Summary Worksheet – In Excel, keep track of all key stats/results by month, and include the message if an ad or press release.

Analyzing marketing results helps you pinpoint and maximize the most effective marketing campaigns, determine ways to