Most businesses understand the value of marketing, but often, they fail to realize the method to the marketing madness. Marketing isn’t just running radio ads or boosting Facebook posts, at least not “effective” marketing. Like any part of business, a strategy is needed and so is the ability to track its performance. As we say: “If you’re not testing, you’re guessing” and “If you can’t measure it, you can’t believe it.”
No doubt all marketing starts with knowing your customer, but effective marketing strategy also means identifying strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (aka a SWOT Analysis). A good SWOT includes both you and your competitors. It identifies what your marketing should focus on by highlighting ways to differentiate yourself.
For example, a SWOT may show your main competitor is more recognized or well-known. If that’s the case, then your marketing strategy should add some focus on awareness tactics to elevate your brand. Maybe your competitor constantly underbids you and pushes low-price in their marketing. Naturally you then should be focused on things other than price. Maybe you highlight your quality of service, or post-job quality assurance walkthroughs using thermal cameras or other testing. Whatever it is, there are customers in your market that will find value in it. Better yet, you’re selling a service that your competitor isn’t.
Whatever your marketing strategy may be, the next step is gauging its performance. Let’s start with the type of marketing we see most often. Awareness marketing, such as truck wraps, yard signs, radio ads, etc., aren’t actually meant to directly drive new customers to your business. Their goal is to get your message in front of as many people as possible. This not only increases the word of mouth of your brand, but also the likelihood that someone would think of your company when an insulation issue comes up later. Though this may not sound very effective, marketers have found it very successful in helping their business in the long run.
A Key Performance Indicator or KPI to measure success for awareness marketing is by the number of impressions you get (aka the number of people that saw your ad). Based on what channel you are marketing on, the term changes (impression, rating point, views, etc.), but at the end of the day success is based on the amount of people that saw your ads. An easy way to quantify this number back to your costs is by calculating the cpm (or cost per thousand impressions). This will show you how much money you paid to show your ad to 1 thousand people. It’s an easily comparable metric of how many people saw your ad versus how much you paid for it.
Then we have conversion marketing such as paid search (PPC), paid social, emails and more. These are often termed as lower funnel tactics because they are where marketing ends, and sales takes over. They are meant to directly drive leads to your business. The best way to measure conversion marketing, is comparing it to revenue brought in specific to that effort. If you spend $5,000 on a paid internet search campaign, you need to know how much revenue that $5,000 brought in. Revenue, however, is not the only way. Some businesses prefer to track their campaigns on a cost per lead basis. Unfortunately, this does not tell you the quality of the lead. While cost per lead is a KPI that still captures if you converted a consumer into a lead, it’s not as valuable as connecting your revenue to your marketing spend. That said, it’s certainly better than guessing.
At the end of the day, marketing is not a one size fits all effort. It takes some trialing to find what works best. If you have more questions regarding marketing or how an insulation contractor should be marketing, reach out to our business development team or sign up for one of our national insulation training classes. These classes not only cover marketing, but so much more to help insulation contractors grow and succeed.