Are You One of The 8%?
By Laura Patterson is president and co-founder of VisionEdge Marketing, Inc.
Sunday, 1st May 2016

Time flies and we’re already into the second quarter of the calendar year, by now, whatever you had planned at the start of the year may have turned out to be only a pipe dream; 

You’re not alone, University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s resolutions. Why do only a tiny fraction of us manage to achieve our resolutions? 

Often it has to do with setting too many ambitious goals while trying to simultaneously juggle a number of competing priorities. As a result, we end up sacrificing the aspiration for what requires our immediate attention.

You still have time to realize your marketing resolutions. If you didn’t set one, review one of the 12 marketing resolutions we proposed in January.

Improve Your Odds of Joining the 8% With the Right Metrics

Connecting marketing activities to an outcome, and selecting an outcome-based metric.  John Norcross from the University of Scranton, says “vague goals beget vague resolutions.” To succeed you need to make sure your resolutions are bounded by rational achievable metrics.

Vague metrics are the seeds of failure. Similar to “work out more” as a personal health resolution, “generate more qualified leads”, “increase brand awareness”, are examples that lead to vague metrics. While it might be better to say workout Tuesdays and Thursdays mornings, it would be even better to tie your working out to a specific outcome and establish the appropriate metrics.

We can explore these two steps with this example. As part of your resolutions, you decide to work out every Tuesday and Thursday morning.  If you complete these workouts, you might declare success. But the real measure of success is the result " the outcome " produced. If the outcome is to lose two pounds per week, your metric may be to expend 300 or more calories in each Tuesday and Thursday morning workout. 

This helps several ways. First, if we are expending the calories but not seeing the weight loss, we can explore whether we’re sabotaging our efforts " perhaps by too much caloric intake.  By knowing this information, we could adjust by increasing the calories expended or reducing the calories consumed. 

And here’s why the connection to the outcome is so important. What if the outcome isn’t weight loss, rather it’s improving your cardio fitness as measured by VO2 (milliliters of oxygen per your body weight per minute that you can move or utilize).  Now even though you might still be working out every Tuesday and Thursday morning, your metric isn’t calories.

Let’s apply this example to marketing.  Rather than acquire more customers by increasing the number of qualified leads, you may want something more specific, such as produce 5 qualified inquiries per week for our new solution with 10% of these converting to proposal within 30 days.

To achieve this outcome, marketing decides to employ a persona based approach, and develop and implement a 5 touch multi-channel campaign. Perhaps you can see where this example is leading us. The metric isn’t click through, shares, or downloads. It needs to be something related to a number of contact us forms generated because contact us forms are more connected to the outcome and a more outcome-based metric.

Hopefully this example illustrated that the right metrics are pivotal to measuring marketing’s value, contribution and impact. If this is one of your resolutions, making sure that activities and outcomes are aligned is a critical first step.  These were the reason we created our Accelance® methodology and application.   Learn more about how you can employ Accelance®.

Laura Patterson is president and co-founder of VisionEdge Marketing, Inc., a recognized leader in enabling organizations to leverage data and analytics to facilitate marketing accountability. Laura’s newest book, Marketing Metrics in Action: Creating a Performance-Driven Marketing Organization (Racom: www.racombooks.com ), is a useful primer for improving marketing measurement and performance. Visit: www.visionedgemarketing.com       

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