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I was reading this article the other day and was shocked by its statistics. The industry pressures dealers to advertise online, but this study really showcases a flaw of many people’s Internet marketing campaigns: they have no clue if it’s really working because they didn’t take the time to benchmark where they were when they started, and they aren’t using analytics to track the current status of the campaign once it’s in motion.
Before businesses decide to do anything aggressive online you must first determine what defines success for your online efforts? While this question sounds basic, it deserves some thought and attention. Is success increasing the number of unique visitors? Just getting consumers to call or submit information? Placing an order? Before even thinking about starting your campaign you need to know what success means in real, quantifiable language. Otherwise you, and your marketing partner, will be doomed to failure from the get-go.
This shouldn’t be new news – in fact, I’ve said it before, right in this very blog: Once your campaign is kicked off, you better be tracking it. While this sounds like common sense, the Media Post study says that less than half (47%) of marketing professionals say they currently use analytics to measure online campaign results. What’s the point of having all those “cool analytics” if you have no idea where you came from and where you are now, and where you plan to be tomorrow. You’ve got to have a documented benchmark in order to show measurable results.
I believe the lack of campaign ROI is because of these reasons stated above. I think businesses are finally realizing these issues with lack of planning and goal setting now, after jumping on so many Internet marketing programs that they forgot the fundamentals. As, businesses actually start to document their progress, I think we will see an increased ROI across the board.
Have you set your benchmarks?