The process of benchmarking, or measuring behaviors against a baseline, is recognized across many industries. Its value extends into marketing, where measuring target audience awareness, opinions, behaviors, etc. toward the goals of your marketing campaign before, during and after its execution can provide insights into campaign successes and areas for improvement.
There are thousands of combinations of metrics that companies may prioritize and almost as many ways to measure them. Some of the most common include tracking through: surveys, advertising conversions, web traffic, social media engagement, sales growth and many more.
No matter what you determine will best benchmark your brand’s marketing results over time, here are a few tips to consider:
- Be intentional. Don’t just measure for the sake of measuring but rather set your metrics with purpose. Tracking results is worth the investment, but in-depth monitoring can take a significant amount of time, whether it’s your team’s time or your target audience’s (as in the case of a survey). Put your resources toward what really matters when it comes to reaching your stated goals.
- Make everything repeatable. Don’t get too specific about the here and now. As your campaign evolves, you’ll want to be able to ask as many of the same questions and measure as many of the same metrics as possible over time so you can truly see progress.
- Run timely reports. Measure early, measure often and extract actionable insights as soon as results are available. The sooner you have meaningful information, the sooner you can correct course.
- Get it on the record. Make notes on the strategy behind why and how you measured what you measured. This helps transfer knowledge seamlessly if you choose to benchmark down the road and can promote consistency and reliability if other team members take the reins next time.
It’s never too late to start tracking results. Ultimately, the more information you have, the better you can evaluate where you’ve been and plan strategically for where you’re going.