Tracking Offline Marketing Campaigns
Offline marketing in the digital age faces stiff competition from marketing online, losing out on a number of counts, including cost and accountability. That said, it nevertheless remains an integral part of any marketing campaign and its use is absolutely essential to penetrate more difficult, broader markets. With online marketing so amenable to tracking and testing of responsiveness rates, how can you get your offline marketing strategies to offer the same level of flexibility and accountability?
Building in a component of tracking into your offline marketing campaigns can pay real dividends. It’s an common question for businesses of any size and in any sector – how exactly do you track the response of your flier campaign or your print ad and how can measure its effectiveness? Especially for a small business, it’s essential to know the exact return from your marketing efforts and the money that you invested. In order to be sure you’re spending your resources to the greatest effect and getting the most from your money, it’s critical to ensure there’s some tangible way to make sure you know exactly where any additional sales are coming from.
One of the easiest and quickest ways to make your marketing more trackable is through the use of coupon codes and discount offers. Take again the example of a direct mail campaign – by including a coupon code on a flier that is distinct from other codes used elsewhere, you can identify which sales resulted from that particular mailing campaign, rather than some other element of your marketing efforts.
Using different coupon codes on each offline campaign gives you a basis on which to measure its overall effectiveness and even test response rates across multiple campaigns. By changing one variable – say, to stick with the previous example, distributing fliers within a more affluent area – it can become much easier to figure out the most effective methods for your business. This strategy that will ultimately make you the best return on your spend.
Alternatively, using different phone numbers can be a good way of tracking, although this does have pitfalls of its own. If you have the ability within your business to use more than one telephone number at a time, you can track how many and which calls are coming through in response to your offline advertising by including a number other than your primary business line in the ad or flier. Of course, it’s advisable to keep all of these extra phone numbers as long as possible to ensure repeat business can still come through, but this is nevertheless a quick and easy way of building in some form of accountability to your offline marketing.
While the increased use of online marketing methods shows no sign of slowing down, its still important to utilize various offline tactics to reach a broader list of prospects. Either way, it helps build sustainable marketing systems within your business that can be tracked, tested and tweaked to maximize the delivered return on your investment.