Is Your Marketing Producing the Results You Expected

Image:One-Fat-Man via Flickr CC

The poll question above is a bit loaded and, not that I want to skew the results, the answer for most lies in the fact that they don’t really know what results they expected or what result they are actually getting. Mostly they know the results aren’t what they had hoped for, but that’s another issue.

Setting expectations

One of the simplest, yet most effective, things you can do is set expectations or goals for your marketing. You can create overall revenue goals, campaign goals or more product or service specific goals, but either way, simply defining a target number will prove to be one of the best first steps.

Goals are like magnets in a way. If we define them and measure our results towards achieving them, they can produce some pretty dramatic pull.

I know this is an obvious bit of advice, but experience tells me that few businesses actually set real, tangible and meaningful targets. How many widgets do you need to sell this month? How many press mentions do you want to add this quarter? How many newsletter subscribers, webinar attendees or trial evaluations must you complete this week?

Measuring results

Once you define your marketing expectations you must define and track the most important indicators that will tell you if you are on track.

You can make this is a simple as a weekly sales total or as complex as the results of multivariate ad element testing, but the key is start measuring something and sharing the numbers.

If you’re not measuring anything, break a few key numbers down and figure out a way to produce a weekly spreadsheet that you use as a guide and also use to share with team members. Then start looking for ways to add key indicators to the list so in addition to simply measuring results you can start measuring individual effectiveness.

Add Google Analytics to your web site and pick up a copy of Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity
by Avinash Kaushik.

If you’ve been measuring key indicators and you’re comfortable with a tool like Google Analytics, consider looking at a more advanced form of measurement from the use of a tool like KissMetrics. This tool can measure so many things that it can also overwhelm, so don’t start here unless you’ve mastered the basics.

This Is a Message from Your Heart

I had a heart scan the other day – mainly because I’m old and my spouse is convincing in the most loving way.

a4gpa via Flickr CC

If you’ve never done it, it’s a pretty incredible experience to get to watch the awesome mechanical miracle that is you heart spray blood in and out through a series of valves, tubes, chambers, levers and doors that any engineer would be challenged to recreate.

More often than not the heart is the subject of poems and songs about romance and love but in addition to being a physical masterpiece I believe it is a formidable business tool.

The idea of love as it relates to business is a tricky one. People talk about loving or not loving a business or the products and services of a particular business, but rarely is love looked at as a strategic way to run a business or lead a team.

The heart is seen as weak and squishy and emotions like love have no place in cold hard world of commerce.

But, here’s what I think. It takes incredible courage and strength to lead with your heart, but it’s actually the most natural and freeing way to do so. The heart isn’t all sappy and bending at all, it’s a ridiculously appropriate and intuitive decision-making tool.

May I suggest that you lead with your heart.

Heeding the mind body connection that comes with following your heart is how you fill your business with passion and purpose. It’s how you make the decisions in every instant that are right for you and most likely right for others involved.

Try this – get up and walk across the room and focus on leading with your heart – literally taking steps with the mind to push your heart out in front with every step. As physical as this action seems you’ll find that it also creates an immediate emotional sense of confidence and well-being.

Running coaches and yoga instructors alike frequently urge their students to lead with their heart as they perfect their form and move gracefully from pose to pose.

When it comes to building your business, tapping your passion, brining a sense of higher purpose to your work, making decisions that determine the outcome of a situation that impacts your life and the lives of others – lead with your heart.

Your heart – or at least that sensations that you receive as you ponder a decision – will instantly tell you the right choice to make, if you only pay attention.

But let me warn you, lest you think this is simple pop nonsense – making a decision out of love is much more difficult than making one out of fear.

Have you ever made a decision or taken an action in the heat of the moment, maybe in a moment of doubt or fear, only to regret it or overturn it when you regained some sense of calm and you thought more about it? That was your heart regaining the wheel.

Have you ever experienced that “something about this doesn’t feel right” kind of moment and then learned later that you’re instincts were dead on? That was you listening to your heart.

The heart is good for business because it cherishes

  • Love over hate
  • Faith over doubt
  • Hope over despair
  • Light over darkness
  • Joy over sadness
  • Passion over indifference

Leading with the heart is good for business because it prefers

  • Giving over receiving
  • Lifting up over tearing down
  • Teaching over dictating
  • Abundance over scarcity
  • Understanding over telling

People frequently advise that you must find something you are passionate about in order to succeed and, while I believe there is merit in that advice, I further believe you can fall in love with whatever you do if you choose to lead with the heart.

The opportunity to lead with your heart is the absolute best part about doing what you love.

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