Measure your way to success
As a business, it’s often easy to do things and correlate them with any growth. Many companies find that unless they adequately critique their marketing activity, they remain in the dark with regards to what is or isn’t working and opportunities for further growth.
It’s important to quantify the impact
Sanj Badhan, Merranti Consultant, recalls working with a fintech start-up on trying to improve sales conversions from new prospects (registered visitors to their site). This particular business had previously invested in CRM capabilities and had for some time in place an onboarding email programme, specifically designed to drive up new member sales. These emails were on a one day lag from when customers registered.
The business was looking to achieve a significant improvement in customers transacting. Any success to date was attributed to the existing email programme, and the sales team was very sensitive to any changes made to it.
Sanj discovered quickly that no robust measurement processes existed within the business or their CRM capabilities/provider. The only way to substantiate the actual impact of the email programme would be to remove 50% of users to receive no emails to compare impact. Naturally, the business was nervous about removing so many customers but trusted Sanj to progress.
Sanj also undertook some in-depth analysis of how customers converted from first visiting all the way through to transacting, as well as customer research.
So what was discovered?
- Well, firstly the vast majority of sales conversion happened in the first 30 minutes. Rather than focus on emails, the issue existed within the website Improving the web journey would be the way to go.
- Research revealed customers comparing pricing and shopping around, equating to multi websites being accessed A stronger offer would convert them provided they received it in the moment.
- On the email programme, no uplift in any subsequent sales could be attributed to it. Customers were converting naturally at a specific rate.
What this case highlights, is how a failure to measure adequately can mean following the wrong path. In this case, this fintech start-up had spent over a year: implementing, working on and discussing a programme that was doing very little to help. Furthermore, the capabilities they invested in while giving them an email channel was wholly substandard in the area of measurement and reporting.
The longer you don’t measure the more endemic culturally things become the norm. It did hurt the sales team to believe their long-held assumptions were flawed, but at least now they can confidently march in the right direction.
Importance of a control
The above if anything highlights how crucial it is to have a control strategy in place, especially when it comes to BTL CRM related activity.
What is a control?
It’s simply a group of customers that don’t receive your communications. You essentially compare what they do with those who you have targeted.
Complexity comes in when you need to compare multiple campaigns with multiple outcomes. The best way to manage this is to have a multi-control strategy:
- Universal Control – this is a very small group who, from the day they register with you, never receive any marketing communications throughout their lifetime. Whenever you want to understand the impact of any marketing just look to this group.
- Programme Control – this is another group that you will exclude from a programme, like an onboarding programme so that you can understand the impact of it. They can still receive other applications, so you may send them loyalty rewards but exclude sales.
- Campaign Control – this is when you remove customers from one campaign or email, to isolate its impact.
Don’t be alarmed, while this may seem a lot, getting the above right means you’ll always be in the know. You should discuss controls with your CRM provider and your internal data/campaign analytics team (or whoever is going to manage reporting). It also makes sense to get expert help setting things up, especially when thinking about new CRM providers.