This is part 8 of an 8 part series.
The Eight Essential Steps To Successful Internet Marketing
Step 8: Analyze & Refine Strategies
So far, we've discussed seven different ways you can get more results from your marketing strategy.
- We talked about creating a keyword strategy and how to work your keywords into your content in a way that appeals to humans, not search engines.
- We discussed simple tips you can use to help your website get found, because if they can't find you, nothing else matters.
- We talked about why you should create a blog and run campaigns (and how you can manage a content calendar without losing all your hair in the process).
- We dove into the crucial role social media plays in your marketing strategy.
- We discussed the best way to convert traffic into leads.
- Then, we came up with a solid game plan to nurture those leads into customers using marketing automation, the second element of the Business GrowthStack.
- And last week, we discovered the importance of optimizing your website for mobile viewers so you can connect to customers where they are.
By now, you have all the pieces in place. You have people coming to your site. This shows up as increased web traffic. You have people becoming leads. The lead count keeps climbing. You have people going further down the sales funnel and showing more interest by re-converting for more offers.
Now is the time to start making adjustments to find what is working and what is not.
Let's look at some metrics you should be monitoring and get some suggestions on how to refine your Internet marketing strategy.
How To Analyze And Refine Internet Marketing Strategies
1. Get An Analytics Program In Place
Analytics tools help you gather key measurements that show how well your marketing efforts are really working. The software ties into your customer relationship management system. It will give you a great deal of information on traffic and leads. It will also track new customers coming in through various channels and campaigns. One example of this kind of software is Google Analytics. There are other packages available as well.
2. Identify the Next Opportunities
As you go through your marketing analytics and activities, look for areas to improve. Do you want to increase your blog traffic? Do you want more leads? When something hits you, make a note of it. You can put it on your next steps list. When you're plotting out your strategy for the next quarter, always think about your next steps and what you need to improve.
3. Set Goals for Success
It's not enough to make a goal. You gotta make it realistic. When setting a goal, be sure its quantifiable and has a solid timeline. Let's say you want to increase traffic, your goal might be "Increase new visitor traffic by 20 percent by the end of the 2nd quarter." A good rule to follow is to set SMART goals. No, I'm not saying your goals have been dumb up to this point. I'm saying your goals should be:
- Specific - Don't just say, "I want to grow my business." Make it specific, like, "I want to schedule more sales calls."
- Measurable - On that note, "more" or "fewer" aren't easy to measure, so include a specific number for your specific goal.
- Achievable - Chances are, you're not going to get 500 leads in a week. Keep your goals realistic, or you're bound to be disappointed.
- Relevant - Your short-term goals should be relevant to your long-term mission. Focus on a goal that makes sense for where you're going.
- Timely - Pick a time frame for your goal. Otherwise, you won't know whether you've hit the mark or passed it.
4. Refine Your Programs
You have programs in place. But if they aren't doing their job properly, what's the point? Check how they are performing and make changes. If your intention is to achieve your goals, you need to do more of what works and change what is not working. Are you not getting enough leads? Are your leads dropping like flies when they reach your sales team? Chances are, there are holes somewhere in your process. Once you fill those, everything will fall into place.
5. Evaluate The Performance Of Your Goal
When you set your SMART goal, you made it measurable. Now, you should find out if you are going to meet that measurement. If you are, you have made a positive change. If you are off track, what can you do to change that? Making changes will help you meet goals and keep your business growing. Monitor your ongoing progress short-term and long-term.
6. Follow The Right Metrics
Certain metrics will give you critical information on how well your changes are doing. Before looking at making improvements, you need to understand what these metrics are and what they stand for. For example, if you're looking at your sales team, check the number of sales calls you make a week, how many leads fall through the cracks, and the percentage of leads converted to customers.
Here are other metrics to consider:
- Traffic - Traffic is critical for measuring how many people are visiting your site. Which channel has the largest volume? Which one has the least? You now have a blueprint of what is working and what is not. You can make changes and launch campaigns to increase traffic numbers
- Leads - How many of those new visitors decide to become leads? You should see a healthy volume of lead generation. Which of your channels are generating the most leads? Which ones are not?
- Customers - Every customer you get came through a particular channel. A particular campaign drew them in. You want to know which campaigns and channels are drawing the most sales. How many sales did you get this month? Are you improving over last month? When you see a growth trend, you are on the right track. You can tell which campaigns and channels are giving you the best ROI.
- Keyword Effectiveness - Back in the first section, we looked at keyword strategy. You now want to know which keywords are getting people to come visit. Google Analytics makes this easy. Which keywords are getting you traffic? Which keywords ended up with the highest lead generation? Which keywords ended up with the highest sales?
- Cost of Acquiring Customers - All marketing efforts count towards the bottom line. You want a low cost of acquisition in comparison with the amount of money a customer can spend. So, how much are you spending to get a single customer? Outbound marketing is expensive with direct mail, pop-up ads, and PPC campaigns. Inbound marketing is lower in cost and should yield a very low cost for each new customer.
- New Visitor Count & Repeat Visitor Count - You want to attract both new and repeat visitors. New visitors show that your marketing efforts are attracting fresh people to your company and message. Repeat visitors means you have given those visitors a good experience and they want to get more. You want to find the right balance. Some suggest that you need about 15 percent repeat and 85 percent new. But, your company may be different.
- Channel Effectiveness - Keep an eye on your channels. Which ones are sending you the most traffic? Look at this metric long-term. Some channels will get a spike on occasion. Also, look for referring sources. Are some external links bringing you a significant amount of traffic?
- Social Media Metrics - Like you watch search engine traffic, you need to check your social media traffic. Which social media channels are giving you the most visitors? Which ones are getting you leads and customers? Add more to the successful channels and change your performance in others
7. Suggestions for Improving Your Results
Here are a few suggestions to improve the results you have seen so far:
Keywords - You can add new keywords or try new versions of your keywords. Each web page offers an opportunity to use a different keyword. Add a new web page with new content and a new keyword. See how much traffic hits it.
Landing Pages and Conversion Forms - Make a change to a landing page. Try a new image on a conversion form. A simple change may make a big difference in the amount of opt-ins you see. Just be sure to keep your channels consistent in message and look.
Use Different Types Of Content - If you have followed the strategies laid out, you have a variety of content for visitors. Look at what people are visiting the most. You might have a video or webinar getting traffic or your blog articles may be tops. This tells you that you need more of that content and you need to adjust the other types of content.
Email Marketing - Experiment with your email marketing strategy. Try sending emails more often or less often. Change your CTAs. Keep making changes and measuring the results.
Take Your Marketing To The Next Level With The Golden Toilet
Getting results from your marketing can feel like an impossible goal. But, when you break it down step by step, it's not as complicated as it seems. You will see results. The information provided here will give you a solid foundation on which to build your business.
Now you know the fundamentals of building a keyword strategy, optimizing for search engines, getting traffic to become leads, nurturing contacts into customers, and how to look at the entire structure for improvements. All you need now is to put it all together!
Master these concepts and apply them to your existing strategies or create new strategies based on these fundamentals. You will not only see immediate results but will conquer the mysteries or at least the perceived mysteries of successful internet marketing.
And if you still aren't sure how to get results from your marketing, pick up a copy of my book, The Golden Toilet. You'll learn which marketing tactics move the needle and which ones are nothing more than shiny golden toilets.