Are You Making This Critical Marketing Mistake?

Are You Making This Critical Marketing Mistake?If you want an effective marketing strategy, then ensure you test and measure all of your promotional activities. And if you’re working to a limited budget, then this strategy is even more vital!

Marketing can be a risky business. You see, initially, we can’t ever truly know which marketing tactic will work best. For example, which call to action, headline or offer will resonate most effectively with our audience or elicit the best response. So to put the odds in our favour and ensure we garner the best return on any promotional activity, we should always test and measure our marketing approach to a sample, before rolling out an entire campaign. Believe me; this will save you a lot of time, effort and money in the long run!

I can almost guarantee that many of you reading this now, are using marketing strategies without ever truly knowing how successful they are. Or are you simply using the same marketing tactics because – well – you’ve always done it that way. Test and measure every form of marketing you do.

Let me give you a practical example…

I recently worked with a massage therapist. She had just started her new business and wanted to advertise locally through the use of a leaflet drop. I urged her not to simply send out a generic ‘menu’ of treatments, but instead to make a series of offers to a sample of her audience. This strategy was important for two reasons: not only would this allow her to directly measure the response to her marketing campaign in general, but to additionally see which offer gained the best response. This ‘winning offer’ could then be rolled out to her entire audience; as it might safely be assumed it would elicit the greatest response.

So here was our approach: firstly, I urged her not to simply send out 10,000 leaflets locally, which she insisted on doing. Instead I suggested she trial three different offers, to three samples of 1,000 households. Then, whichever offer worked best, should be sent out to the remaining 7,000 residents.

The reason why this strategy is so important, is because I’m not suggesting you to commit to an extensive and expensive marketing campaign, but simply to test your offering – to a sample – before rolling your campaign out to your entire database.

So how you can relate this to your business? Well there are many scenarios: Test and measure different headlines when communicating with your audience; test and measure different sized adverts, or simply test and measure different offers to your market place, as in the above example.

However, do not forget these two critical points: always ensure you include a call to action in your marketing. Don’t just create awareness – create and ask for a response, because this is what you will use to measure the effectiveness of your marketing. Secondly, do not change too many variables at any given time. In the above example the copy for the leaflet remained the same; it was the offer – the call to action – that changed.

So let me repeat, test and measure every form of marketing you do. That way, you will know what to improve… What to continue rolling out… And what you need to stop doing!

Andrew Ludlam is a qualified business adviser, marketing consultant and trainer, specialising in helping business owners position themselves as authorities in their field. To discover more, visit

Andrew Ludlam
Maverick Marketing Consultancy

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