Measure a Marketing Program by Tracking Your Investment - dummies

Measure a Marketing Program by Tracking Your Investment

By Dayna Rothman

One of the first items you want to track and measure in your marketing programs is your investment. You want to think of marketing as an investment, not a cost. You don’t want to be seen as a cost center. When marketers talk about investment, they’re indicating that marketing is a department companies invest in. It’s an important distinction to make. So think investment, not cost.

To determine how to track the ROI of your programs and investment, you need to have a pretty good view of what you are spending and how you are spending it, which is actually relatively difficult for many marketers.

Did you know that 89 percent of organizations use spreadsheets to track their spending? You are probably nodding your head and saying, “Yes, I use a spreadsheet to track my spending.” This is a start, but consider how different technology applications can really help you track your investment.

Spreadsheets create some problems. You can’t track investment across different budgets and line items, and you don’t get as much visibility as you need to accurately forecast. That’s why many marketers do not have a clear picture on what they are investing.

There are many applications out there that can help you track spending to show what you are investing, budget versus actuals, and program alignment with investment. This means that with a budgeting application that syncs with your marketing automation tool, you can track important metrics like cost per lead and program ROI.