Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Measuring Results in Marketing

So you blog ... daily. So you write a weekly newsletter. So you regularly post on social media. So you do speaking engagements. So you send proper follow-up marketing messages. So, so, so, so ... do you have direct sales results you can pinpoint? I have this question asked regularly. I'm going to give you a non-answer: no, but I know I have to do it. The basic formula is don't stop the machine because you can't define why you have a widget at the end. What will happen if you stop a machine? Will the widget still appear at the end? You know the answer -- no. Widget not made widgets not dispensed.

The underlining lesson: you can't stop making widgets and expect to have more widgets.

I'll put it clearer: can you afford to stop marketing just to see if your marketing works?

If you answer "yes" then you must have some great cash reserves set aside. Stopping the machine ... stopping marketing just to see what happens is risky business. I like to tell clients this: if what you're doing is keeping your shingle hanging, don't stop doing it. Better advice: if what you're doing is bringing you steady, increasing business: DO MORE OF IT!

Marketing doesn't always give you 1 + 1 = 2 results. I could you give 1 + 1 = 100 results (and that's fuzzy math). Can I directly tie my business success to my marketing activities -- only sometimes. When a client says, "I watched your Facebook posts for a year, and I liked what I read," then I know my social media activities work. Most of the time, it's a combination that goes more like this, "I read Facebook, I read your newsletter, I like your blog, let's do business." Did any one of those activities make the difference? No, it was probably ALL of those activities that made the difference.

Michelle Gamble, CEO of 3L Publishing, launched her start-up in 2006. For the last eight years, she has successfully run her company and made dozens of authors' dreams come true. She also does marketing consulting and public relations. For more information, send an email to

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