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How to decide where to spend your marketing dollars

I have met with small businesses for many years to talk about how a fresh web design can increase their business.  I will often spend time pointing out how easily a website can pay for itself if used properly.  However, when I ask most small business owners if they have had much success with their current website, few are able to answer that question.


Why?  Because they have no measures in place to keep track of what is working.  


You should be tracking all your marketing efforts, whether it costs you money or just effort.  By doing so you will be able to better understand at the end of the year (or more often) where you should be prioritizing your budget dollars and effort in regards to marketing your business effectively.


It doesn't matter if you use high tech methods or just a scrap piece of paper, as long as you do it.  I recommend creating a spreadsheet that you have handy on your desktop that is broken down by month and by lead type.  


Here is a list of ideas that you could use for your tracking of lead types:


  • Cold Call
  • Direct Mailer
  • Email Newsletter
  • Facebook Page
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • Google Plus Page
  • Google AdWords
  • Google
  • Bing
  • Other Search Engines
  • Networking
  • Referral
  • Company Website
  • Repeat Client
  • Seminar
  • Walk In
  • Radio Ad - (break it down further if you have multiple)
  • TV Ad - (break it down further if you have multiple)
  • Magazine Ad (break it down further if you have multiple)

Every time someone calls in, make one of your first questions, "Do you mind if I ask where you heard about us from".  Then mark it down on the spreadsheet right after.  Notice, how the list above is more specific then just "Social Media" or "Search Engines".  You should be as specific as you can.


Once you start gathering data, you will be able to easily see what is actually working for you and allow you to make better decisions on where to spend your funds and your effort.


Taking it one step further, if you can find ways to track which of those leads turned into a paying client/customer it will allow you to make even better decisions.  For example, you are likely to see a much higher rate of closed sales opportunities in the "Referral" category then most others.  If someone recommends your company you will typically have a much better chance at securing them as a new customer.  Therefore, that might be an area where you begin to find ways to give incentives to people for getting you business.  


People often assume that they know in their heads what is working for them but when you start tracking it, you might be very surprised.


If you are looking at ways to make your website a more effective lead generation tool please give me a call at 519-884-4111  x 111 to chat.


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