Data Driven: Coloring in the Lines
Step 4: Put Results in Context
Several years ago, the above test would have been sufficient to inform virtually all of your marketing investment strategy. But with so many channels now driving demand, it's important to put results in the context of all marketing efforts. Is there another marketing channel or program that could replace those additional contacts at a lower cost?
Consider the existing or potential scale of your other marketing programs; the downstream value of engaged, actively buying customers is the foundation for growth. A scattershot approach to profitable sales can be taxing on your organization and, in the long run, less efficient.
Step 5: Rollout Winning Results, Share and Repeat
After determining the winning results, incorporate them into future marketing efforts. Develop an action plan to roll out any new initiatives, share with all stakeholders, and communicate frequently to ensure that what is being implemented is consistent with the plan.
When the team is moving confidently in the right direction, return to the strategic objectives set out in Step 1 to identify the next testing opportunity. There are likely many tests to execute within the framework of the segmentation you deployed in Step 2. Consider special offers, creative elements, personalization strategies, product category expansion, to name a few.
By following these steps (in order) and maintaining a disciplined approach to testing and data analysis, you can identify that point of optimal efficiency in each marketing program and craft your plans accordingly.
Jude Hoffner is the senior director of marketing strategy and analytics at the Mission Kan. direct marketing agency J. Schmid & Associates, and he is a colleague of regular Data Driven columnist Geoff Wolf. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.