Gone are the days where the marketing department operated on a "wing and a prayer." Data is now available on every marketing tactic imaginable. That's good and bad. It's good because now ROI can be calculated more accurately to justify campaigns and shape future initiatives. However, it's also bad because there is literally so much information now available it can be a struggle to know how to sift through it all and compile the best data points to develop your business case for cross-channel marketing efforts. Additionally, as more options are included in the cross-channel marketing effort, the ability to analyze and assess the ROI can become complicated.
Here is a way to frame your justification for the cross-channel marketing strategies you have selected for your organization.
There are many types of ROI an organization can achieve. To build a compelling business case, you will need to know what type of return the organization expects. For example, your cross-channel marketing objectives should reflect the desired success factors. The type of ROI might be an increase in sales (online, offline, or both) or loyalty, or it could focus on improved customer engagement and retention.
You may find these within the data analytics software you use. Disseminate them in your marketing plan. Once the ROI is specified, also include a quantitative amount for the ROI.
What often happens is that marketers create a plan and execute on it but do not use it as the basis for presenting their results. While it may seem obvious, there can be a disconnect between the formal document and marketing team's actions. However, putting these together creates a compelling picture for your leadership team.
Put the specific objectives, messaging, and tactics in one column while another column has the data points that illustrate the result from each of those. It connects the dots and clearly shows whether or not you were on the right path with your marketing strategy. Additionally, it justifies your marketing budget by connecting each action to a measurable result — that's the ROI.
Your business case will come from a number of data sources, especially since this involves a cross-channel marketing strategy. This means collecting paid (search engine marketing, sponsorships, social media ads, etc.), earned (SEO, blogs, social media, etc.), and owned (page views, email, surveys, website visits, etc.) metrics. You will need to pull this data from many places. This includes any creative agencies you partner with on your cross-marketing program as well as your marketing systems, reports, and platforms.
Bringing all the data together into one place ensures you haven't forgotten any important information that could justify how well the cross-channel marketing initiatives are working. The CEO and CFO are going to want to see evidence that what you are doing is working. Putting all data in one place can also illustrate to them how the initiatives are working across channels to drive greater results versus focusing on one channel.
This is not something quickly made on graph paper. It requires the assistance of highly sophisticated modeling software. This technology can take all compiled data and distill it into a measurement score. This score is a number to use against the quantitative ROI you previously developed. Your leadership team will like seeing this number since they mostly work with that type of information versus the often intangible marketing results of the past. These scores will mean something to the CEO and CFO when you present them for your paid, earned, and owned tactics.
This also allows you to diversify your business case by presenting different perspectives on what the data means. This includes statistics about specific campaigns, audience segments, a marketing channel, and other filters. You'll be able to quickly compile a range of information and include it. This ensures you have provided the most comprehensive picture possible.
The more clearly you draw a picture of those ROI results for your team, the better the reaction will be. That means developing a dashboard that is user-friendly for scanning the information and reaching a conclusion on what it means. Use numerous visual analytics to simplify the information.
Also, put details around specific areas that are important to your audience and that drive your case. This includes a progress-toward-goal approach related to financials, customers and leads, operations, and campaigns.
Keep in mind that everything you can build into your business case about the ROI will generate ongoing support. It may also assist with funding (and, perhaps more funding, if the results meet or exceed expectations). From there, momentum will result in more leads and sales and greater brand awareness. Other benefits include a higher rate of customer retention and increased ROI. These can also help you stay on top of any changes in preferences and behaviors. Responding to the shifts you find in the data can also speed how you pivot and maintain that expected ROI.
Proving the ROI of your Cross-Channel Marketing doesn't end with your most recent success. Make sure you're staying on top of the best insights and inspiration, moving forward. Check out the 7th Annual Lookbook today!
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