As we all know, there are many ways to measure a business’ performance - whether you’re simply looking for a return on investment or brand awareness. Whatever you’re hoping to achieve, it’s important to set out a plan, so you can track and measure your performance, as you (hopefully!) head towards your targets. Let's have a look at some of the ways in which you can measure - and improve - your business' output:
In most businesses today, data is king. You’ll be familiar with the phrase - but maybe you've never thought about how true it is: data on your customers and clients is essential to how you market, sell and manage your relationship with customers. Finding effective ways to measure data is crucially important for monitoring business performance, and with the right knowledge, can also help you improve it. We know, we know -this is all sounding like jargon. For a bit of clarity, we’ve got some steps listed below of ways you can measure and improve your performance, with some helpful tips on the tools you can use to help.
Step 1: Clarify your goals
When measuring your performance, the most important step is to clarify your end goals. Whether it’s increased conversions, sustainable growth, revenue-based goals or customer service targets, it’s vital to identify what you as a business hope to achieve. Of course, these goals will inevitably change over time as your journey continues- but it’s vital to set down where you’re going and what you’re aiming for. Goals, whether they’re customer-focussed, revenue-focussed, performance-focused or growth-focused, always provide a target for your teams to focus on and work towards, which can, in turn, refine your efforts in marketing, sales and customer relationship management.
Once you have your goals in mind, you can begin to consider how you will track success. If you’re looking for brand recognition, for instance, this metric can be tracked through website traffic, email sign-ups and social media impressions. If you’re looking for sales, you’ll be looking at leads generated rather than just website traffic, and your social media will be rated on your ‘click-through rate’ (known as CTR) from your social ads. Different goals will naturally impact how you measure success and therefore will have different methodologies, strategies and solutions.
Step 2: Choose your tools
Now that you know what you are trying to achieve, and what you’re measuring it’s time to use the tools that will help you collect the data you need and reach your goals. In marketing, near everything is content-based, so the best place to start is with a CMS. Using this tool ,you can automate emails, blogs and social media, and track the performance of each one without having to use different software for each. This multi-disciplinary method allows you complete oversight of your content output without getting lost in several platforms, timeframes and content strategies.
Fortunately, social media also offers a lot of tools for posts and advertising. These tools are great for boosting the impact of a well-performing campaign and tracking the difference between your paid ad impressions and your organic impressions. Facebook’s advertising software is particularly good, with lots of options to refine your target audience by including location, age, gender, interests and more.
If you are trying to follow the customer journey through your business, a CRM can be really useful. (Yes, we do like a CRM here at Ultimate). As you'll know, if you've caught our latest blogs on the topic, a CRM allows you to track customers as they progress through the three stages of the customer journey: awareness, consideration and decision. By collecting data on the complete journey, you can see where customers drop off, and what the quality of the leads brought in by marketing to sales are. A CRM therefore allows your company to line up the targets of each department to match the goals of the company as a whole, allowing the whole process to run more efficiently.
Step 3: Collect and analyse
Now that you have the right tools to measure your performance, and the actual KPI’s you want to measure in mind, you can begin to collect and analyse your data. This is the step that will take the longest, as it will require lots of tweaking and experimenting to get enough information for you to actually start making decisions on how to measure and improve your business performance. If you are trying to perform better in, for instance, lead generation, your strategy may involve different social media channels, emails and blog strategies, which are all tied together in a content strategy.
By monitoring changing formatting, style and the channels you use to promote your content, you can begin to find the platform that most of your leads use and what content they are most interested in. This will naturally increase your performance in lead nurturing content plan, as you’re able to build on this information.
Data and technology are really changing the way that businesses track their performance and it is important to keep up to date with the best technologies to stay at the cutting edge of most industries. By constantly using data like a CMS and CRM to track the output and performance of your campaigns, you can always make sure you’re getting the best performance for the goal you want to achieve.
If you want to know more about how technology can help you measure and improve the performance of your business, get in touch with us at Ultimate today. We have decades of experience using different technologies to help your business achieve a huge variety of goals. If you would like to learn more, check out our case studies here.