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Are Your Marketing Campaigns Successful?

Nick Stevenson
19 January 2016
Are Your Marketing Campaigns Successful?

1. Clear marketing and business goals.

First are the businesses overall goals and then how the marketing goals (and ultimately activities) are going to drive all this. It is not enough to say "we want more ticket sales". Be specific - two thousand tickets sold is better. Two thousand tickets sold in 2 weeks is better again. You may also consider splitting your goals further, for example, one goal may be simply related to clicks, or email opens and the other related to specific sales. These goals should be specific to what you want to see happen, and goals that can be measured.

2. Ideas and research.

You and your team likely have a million marketing ideas, but how do you research each one, pinpoint the best one and then track its success over time? Software like Trello and Basecamp (both free), can help you manage each stage of your ideas. What's more they give you a one-stop shop for everything allowing you to track to dos, planning and strategy. The benefit here is to be able to see all your ideas in once place, and whittle them down to the ones that best fit your overall goals and strategy. Once your have your ideas clear, you need to validate them and be clear on results you expect.

3. Does the marketing activity you are planning impact your business and drive your ultimate goals?

This kind of sounds like step 1 - but after all those ideas and research - we need to reevaluate. Are we still on track? What needs to change?

4. Are we targeting the right audience? Through the right channels?

Now this one may seem obvious, but before you quickly answer 'yes,' let's explore this one for a moment. Let's take a direct mailer campaign for a specific show. Who is the target audience for the show? What is the best channel for communicating with them? Can we get them through another (possibly cheaper) channel? How is the direct mailer going to be designed? Are there elements that connect the campaign to other activities? In order to answer this and virtually every other question here, you need to consider your target audience every single time. Specifically what motivates them to buy or not buy? The more information about your target the better. Take a moment to consider all the channels at your disposal. Pick the ones most effective for your audience - and be ruthless. It is far better to have fewer more effective channels than loads of channels that deliver poor results. Keeping this in mind helps to truly understand and validate your ideas.

5. Test, test and test.

While there is some debate about how A/B testing needs to be conducted, this is more to do with test design, rather than the fact that testing is extremely important in understanding what works and what does not for your given target audience. Specifically testing landing pages for each campaign or promotion helps to drive home exactly what works and does not work for your target audience. Remember to include: unique value proposition (what's in it for me), hero shot, benefits, social proof and call to action - above the fold. Add a video here too for added impact.

6. Messages need to be consistent in look and feel, and communication must be clear, compelling and consistent.

Everything from your landing pages to your programme pages should have a consistent look and feel. This can be especially difficult at times, but even using some consistent imaging can help. Ticketsolve helps maintain a consistent look and feel for customers right through the buying process regardless of device or browser. Customers always feel they are interacting with your brand, which is very important for brand recognition and consistency in look, feel and messaging. In addition, consider how your messages can be used across multiple channels. Repurposing what you can saves time, but also ensures your messages are consistent.

7. Integrate everything - and double check everything.

Integrating your marketing campaigns takes a bit of coordinating effort. Ensuring direct mails, email campaigns, blogs, Twitter, Facebook are all working together will certainly get you more out of your marketing dollar - and make more sense for your customers. If you are promoting new season shows, it goes without saying that all the new season show details should be available to customers the day the campaign launches.

8. Coordinate agencies

If you do use outside agencies for some of your marketing activities, coordinating them with your in-house team is a must. You'd be surprised as to how many people leave agencies in the dark about their other marketing activities.

9. Track and analyse - everything you can.

Tracking and analysis are a must in order to see how your campaigns preform. Start with the basics if you are new to tracking, Google Analytics, Basic Mailchimp tracking and build up from there. You can move to adding goals in Google analytics and use URL builder to track a host of social media campaigns. The key here is to start tracking the basics, then add as you need to. We'll look more into the best tools to help you track your campaigns in a future post.

10. Fail - Fast.

Some of your campaigns will be resounding successes, and some will simply be "meh". Others will be abject failures. If you think of these failures as chances to learn, and improve future campaigns, the cost won't be that high. Another key is to try and fail fast. That is, if you see a campaign is failing (you are tracking and analysing all the time right?), then at least you can pull the plug of a failing campaign quickly.

But there is a catch. Some activities - for example SEO - take more than three months to really see results. Ultimately to understand if your campaigns are successful, you need to be goal driven, track and analyse and be willing to fail.

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