Yesterday we talked about what to do with your down time – slow periods when you could be staring at the walls – and among our suggestions was evaluating your business practices. One area you might consider evaluating is your marketing performance and the metrics you use to measure your shop’s success. Here are a few ideas. [level-members]
First, it’s important to understand that in marketing, as in just about anything else, developing standards and goals is a key to success. If you’re aiming for nothing, as the saying goes, you’ll probably hit it. And we want to hit more than nothing.
So be sure you’re evaluating your marketing efforts for their effectiveness. That can mean a lot of different things, but ultimately any effort you expend should be generating new revenue. If it’s not, stop doing it and do something else instead. (And, not to beat the drum too loudly on this, but you won’t know if something’s generating new revenue unless you’re measuring …)
That’s not to say that interim metrics don’t matter, or that not being able to draw a straight line from an activity means it’s worthless. For example, you may not have an accurate way to know whether your email newsletter (or Facebook page) is effective in generating sales unless you constantly put coupons in those channels. (Which would be a bad, bad idea …) But you can measure click-through rates and other forms of engagement to see what kind of interest your content is generating.
Similarly, adding great content to your website can be a very effective means of generating new and repeat business, but not every person who has been impressed with your insights and perspective is likely to walk through the door telling you that. Very few people will even mention it. But if traffic continues to grow, that should tell you the effort is worthwhile.
Knowing that what you’re doing is working is also important from a confidence level. We simply don’t perform as well when we’re not confident. So take the time to set up goals and metrics and check in on the monthly to make sure you’re headed in the right direction.