Measuring and tracking growth can be like watching water boil. I find that it can feel like an eternity if I stand around watching the water heat up and come to a boil before adding the pasta. I might as well sit there with a thermometer and record incremental changes in the water temperature as it begins to heat up. Time seems to fly by, however, if I’m setting the table, getting out the dishes, cutting up a loaf of bread, and opening a bottle of wine.
In the end, my family is going to judge me on whether or not the final dish is delicious or not, not the incremental measurements that are part of the process. It makes sense to have a similar perspective on marketing ROI.
Tracking marketing milestones are important, but true success is measured by growth over time.
Picking your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and defining your timeline is a first step. With this in place, measuring your marketing ROI becomes possible. You will need to find a balance between near-term success metrics (like water temperature) and long-term ROI measurements (the finished dish). Sticking with a well-developed strategy can be one of the hardest things.
If you try to calculate ROI too early, you run the risk of abandoning strategies and tactics that will produce real benefits over the long run. On the other hand, you need some directional data to inform your firm’s marketing efforts so that you can make the required adjustments to achieve true ROI tracking. Striking a balance can be difficult.
Marketing ROI can be messy.
Like cooking that pasta dinner for the family, it’s going to get messy and nobody will appreciate all the work it took to produce the final result. What makes a great pasta dish? Is it the ingredients? Or the preparation of ingredients? It’s all the above, plus a few intangibles which are hard to put into words.
It’s love, authenticity, patience, experience and passion combined with a great recipe that comes together in one flavorful and delicious dish that everybody loves.
Define your goals and work to accomplish them.
Sounds easy enough, right? In many cases, it gets complicated. Last year I wrote a blog post titled, Is Your Focus on AUM Ruining Your Marketing?. I would encourage you to read that post and use it to help define your strategy and ROI measurements. In a binary world of “ones” and “zeros,” measuring the ROI of your firm’s financial marketing efforts can be less than clear.
If you would like to speak with us to learn more about how we help firms grow their marketing, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at (518) 213-4767.