Five Ways to Get the Best Bang for Your Marketing Buck

According to award-winning marketing ROI researcher Rex Briggs, 40 percent of the average marketing budget is wasted each year. If your ads aren't generating leads or building brand awareness, you might need to change them up. Here are a few tips to get you started.

Figure out What's Working

We'd like to amend the old adage "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Our version is as follows: "Figure out what's broken, then fix it." We had a problem with more than just the grammar in the first version. If you don't know what's broken, you could waste valuable time and money fixing the wrong campaigns.

businessman frustrated with results on laptopWith an online analytics tool, you'll be able to see what path led a user to contact you. That information will allow you to determine what keywords and online ads are fine the way they are and which ones need fixing.

If a prospect calls in, there are an infinite number of places they could have seen your ad. To figure out which ads generate the most leads, you need a little something called call tracking.

Use Helpful Tools

Lots of detectives and crime-fighters like to fly solo. Marketers don't work that way; we've been working on teams our whole careers and we have a lot of tools as our sidekicks.

Toll-free numbers (TFNs) can be the Robin to your Batman if you let them. By assigning each of your online and offline ads a unique TFN, you'll be able to see which ads generate the most calls and revenue. Once you know what's working best, you can allocate more funds to those and toss out unsuccessful campaigns.

Beating the statistic of wasted marketing budgets will bring you more than just financial benefits. Allocating your budget more efficiently will ultimately save you time, because you won't have to blindly guess what's working best. You'll also have justification for throwing out the campaigns that are duds (nobody liked those anyway — good riddance!).

Respond to Leads Quickly

Over 50 percent of buyers say vendors can create a positive sales experience by responding quickly. That being said, it's a good idea to invest in an analytics tool that will update you the instant a lead responds to an ad so you can contact leads right away. Google AdWords is great, but it doesn't update you in real time, which can hurt your chances of landing a customer. Beat the odds and go with a tried-and-true dynamic call tracking tool.

Use Your Manners

Your grandmother was on to something when she constantly reminded you to use your manners. She knew that one day you would end up in a business where you constantly have to be polite to retain customers. Unfortunately, your grandmother isn't sitting at your desk to let you know to say "thank you."

Luckily you don't have to have a grandmother on your staff; you can just use a call scanning product. Intelligent speech-recognition technology will scan each of your inbound and outbound calls for words you specify. If you require your staff to say "thank you" at the end of a call, you can automatically be notified if it's not said.

You can also set your competitors' names as keywords, so you'll know how often you're being compared to another provider, allowing you to discover who your toughest competition is.

Keep Customers Happy

Even if you have top-of-the-line ads, you still need to put effort into converting leads and retaining them once they're customers. Three easy steps to maintaining leads effectively are to establish contact quickly, get to know your leads and add a personal touch. This will help you build relationships throughout the lead conversion process and will help them feel more satisfied as customers.

When it comes to improving your marketing ROI, these tips are just the tip of the iceberg (pun intended). Check out our e-book to get the full picture.