Part II: Top Considerations for Mastering Digital Marketing ROI

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Calculating the ROI of digital marketing activities is a challenge facing many organizations. For instance, how can marketers justify the benefits of a video “share” or a social media “like” to executives who only evaluate activities based on quantitative benefits?
Recently, we looked at top considerations for effective investment and measurement of mobile and search marketing efforts. This week, we delve into display/video, email and social.
Define the metrics: Advertising with video ads and display/banners ads can be a powerful way to connect with prospective customers at different stages of their decision path. What becomes difficult is measuring exactly how they impact your bottom line, as they often do not appear effective by solely measuring their results on a last click. Measuring view-based conversion, assisted conversion, unaided awareness, purchase intent, impact on search, impact on direct to site visits, and impact on average order value can add to your display/video scorecard to make sure its full value is being attributed.
Programmatic buying: This is when a buyer uses an algorithm-based software interface to stipulate a set of criteria for ad inventory he wishes to buy to display his ad. Publishers with large amounts of high-quality traffic in demographics that maintain a high desirability are likely to see a noticeable increase in advertising revenue with programmatic buying. That’s because they’re reaching audiences globally, can finely target and optimize for audiences, and measure quickly. Programmatic buying offers marketers long-awaited transparency, the ability to use their first-party data, and the ability to connect with any audience at any time.
Personalization: According to the Direct Marketing Association’s National client email survey, 77 percent of ROI comes from segmented, targeted, and triggered campaigns. That should come as no surprise in this relationship era of digital marketing. Consumers want convenience and a sense that brands are engaging with them in their best interests. Brands looking to get started need to understand consumers’ priorities when it comes to personalized experience. Studies show that consumers buy more from brands when they send them personalized emails. Brands that can tap into this relevance reap a major benefit: repeat, satisfied customers.
Delivery: It’s very important to understand the causes of an email delivery failure (bounces, malware attacks, SMTP issues, etc.) in order to ensure all your messages reach their destinations.
Timeliness: Marketers maintain that certain ‘send’ times garner additional opens and conversions than others. For example, some marketers have found that open rates are higher on the weekend once email traffic is lower. Companies are more successful if they utilize their own analytics to trace the time when their emails are opened, and designate future send times consequently.
Set conversion goals and assign monetary value: Measuring social campaigns requires a thoughtful approach, including making the business case to enable regulated users to use social media, creating a social media working group to identify and mitigate the risks, crafting polices and processes, evaluating and selecting third-party vendors, and creating a pilot program. However, different companies and campaigns set different goals, from downloading a PDF, signing up for a newsletter, making an online purchase, or completing a contact form. Track the actual conversions with metrics such as reach, customers, traffic, leads, and conversion rates.
While the quantitative measurements of social ROI are important to a company’s overall goal setting and marketing success, qualitative results are often overlooked. Those who overlook them are missing valuable opportunities. Even just sending a snapshot of feedback from customers on social to the product or marketing team will give them insight into what’s working and what’s not. Marketers must find a way to take those stories and relationships, pull them out, and show how their company’s presence on social made an impact.

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