The credibility of marketing has always been kept at low ebb. Rare are the occasions when the marketers and the marketing system are considered the part of the machine that generates revenue and profit. In order to take over fully the reigns of the revenue process, and build more respect and credibility for their organization's executives, marketers need to track the marketing metrics. There are soft metrics like brand awareness, GRP, impressions, organic search rankings and reach. Similarly, there are available hard metrics including pipeline, revenue and profit. Generally CEOs and boards only care about the burgeoning revenue and profits, open rate of executive's emails doesn't bother them. Therefore, marketing executives must keep a tab and measure the effect of all the chief marketing activities, hard as well as soft ones. If the executives communicate with CEOs and CFOs the quantitative language of marketing, they can better exemplify the value and impact of marketing.
It is important to learn the impact of each marketing investment. In case you are failing in finding which marketing activities are providing good financial returns, then the impact of the marketing investment can be limited, till and across your company only. Further it can also hamper your organization from composing the relevant and appropriate investment and also dampen your company's marketing credibility.
Marketing is a real cost center - To emphasize this fact, forecasting is crucial. If you report what happened in the pasts, that doesn't make you a good marketer. To be counted among the best ones, forecasting the result is important, not only the spending. Moreover, forecasts need to be quantified in terms of leads, pipeline and revenue. Eventually, you will have to collaborate the sales and marketing with revenue section in order to make out the highly accurate forecasts.
For marketing spending analysis, hard business cases need to be developed. After playing the forecast, the executive should formulate the cases for the resources for which results are required. For this, the executive must be aware of the amount of money, time and effort that it will consume in order to produce validated leads and convert into sales. Though there are less marketers who employ this type of methodology but who do it, are able to talk their budgets in the way of investments. Further, they are capable to measure the budget, and if needed, also defend it.
In today's digital world, there is no dearth of information; everything is sprawling across internet in websites and social networks. This universality of information has eased the research and transformed the buyers' behavior forever. This further has triggered a comprehensive transition in how marketing and sales team collaborate to squeeze out the revenue.
Since the information is now readily available, so customers avoid getting in touch with sales till the very last stage of purchasing process. Therefore, in someway or other, it does cast effect on marketing spending. For an effective analysis of marketing spending, the executives require to formulate certain marketing metrics.
Since the marketing domain is abounding; companies find it hard to compose and act upon those marketing metrics, so they usually go for outsourcing Marketing Spend Analysis.
I would like to congratulate you and your team on a fantastic effort with the 2012 forecast numbers.
Director, Investment Advisory Company, AUS