Measuring Your Marketing Efforts
Using tracking tools and creating metrics to analyze your campaigns are powerful ways to ensure that you adapt and refine your practices according to how you communicate with your constituents. Below are three types of metrics that will help you evaluate your organizations success.
Using web tracking software, you can generate periodic reports and charts that will show you how many people are coming to your site and when, what websites and search engines are driving them there, what pages they view and how long they stay. If you are doing a marketing campaign or placing banner ads, you may consider creating a special URL to see exactly what source a set of users came from. By analyzing a combination of web metrics, you can determine a campaign’s success, make educated business decisions, enhance content and make improvements to a user's experience on your site.
Email Messaging Statistics
One of the greatest benefits of email campaigns is the gratification of being able to measure results more precisely than direct mail. These include open rates (how many people viewed the newsletter), click-through rate (what embedded links people click through in the emails you send and how many clicks per URL) and the number of views. You can use these statistics to measure which articles or links generated the most interest, if your from and subject lines entice people to view your newsletter, some email tools even help determine if you have a quality list based on the number of bounces and unsubscribes. Compare these metrics against other email campaigns that you generate and learn what type of messaging and send days/times work best for your unique audience.
Whether you are corresponding by traditional mail or online via the internet, it is important to create a set of benchmarks and goals BEFORE you launch a campaign and identify the methods and tools that will allow you to track supporter interaction with your organization. Questions you may wish to ask: Was there an increase in giving following an annual appeal, if so, how much? How many people donated/signed up to volunteer for the first time? What program goals were met as a result of this campaign? Was there an increase in high dollar donors?
Also consider segmenting your supporters by various criteria such as interests, ways that they support your organization and how much they give. By targeting and measuring these segments separately, you can generate more dramatic results.
In general, metrics will help you identify patterns of behavior, effective methods of follow-up, and actions that your supporters took as a result of your outreach. Not only do they help you internally, they give you success metrics you can share with potential funders and board members.
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