Since I became interested in direct and database marketing 15 years ago, I have been on a quest to continually improve the effectiveness of direct marketing methods. A common theme holds as true today as it did 15 years ago -- it’s all about the data and measurement.
Analysts have continued to make this the hot topic. Marketers are being judged and are going to continue to be judged on their ability to measure their direct contribution to the revenue of their company. Forrester Research and Vtrenz are presenting a webinar on the importance of ROI reporting and the best metrics to use to measure marketing effectiveness on August 7. Click here for more information and to register.
We have always said that in order to do ROI reporting correctly, you need to have one platform that allows an organization to manage, execute, and measure all of its marketing activities. CRM systems only allow for management of campaigns, not execution. The problem with this approach is that measurement becomes a manual process. Manual measurement processes are flawed by the nature in which the data is collected, processed, and reported on, and thus the accuracy of the data can be questionable. Additionally, top-level executives generally have a very skeptical view of marketers conducting manual self reporting. Anybody can make a spreadsheet and percentages look good!
But in today's highly competitive marketplace, marketing automation is critical and provides the metrics to prove ROI. On-demand solutions that allow for both the management and execution of marketing campaigns to be done on the same platform allows for non-biased collection of responses, impressions and lead sources. Demographic, psychographic, and behavioral data can all be collected in real time, free from human error or interpretation. Solutions like this deliver insights into the true and proven value of marketing campaigns. The technology is the enabler to truly align sales and marketing and revenue is the driver for both departments, just as it should be.