As I meet with area business owners and marketing agents we always end up talking about tracking the effectiveness of a marketing campaign. As a business owner do I run the same ad, message and/or loss leader across a number of mediums so that I have brand continuity? Or do I use different offers and devices so that I know what is worth my marketing dollar?

From this guy’s perspective when you are trying new mediums there is no question you should do everything you can to track the effectiveness of an ad campaign. We always talk about looking for a return on investment when “investing” in advertising. You wouldn’t hand an investor 50 thousand dollars and be satisfied with he or she telling you at the end of the year he or she “had a feeling” your portfolio made you money, You would expect to see hard numbers showing any gains or losses. You should treat new advertising the same way. It is an investment and therefore you should measure returns. This is not to say that branding does not have its place, but from my perspective that place is in line after a medium has proven itself for your business.

Often times the barrier to tracking an advertising campaign is the added cost of creating an ad that can be tracked or offering a loss leader so they mention your campaign. In some cases it is better to cut down on breadth of reach so that you can afford to create something you can measure If you are unable to create a marketing campaign that is track-able it seems like buying a car and refusing to put gas in it. It looks great parked in front of the house but it really doesn’t get you anywhere.

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