Measuring the Success of Your Online Advertising

If you’re not an online advertising expert, there’s a lot to learn to avoid making costly mistakes.  Targeting ads to qualified customers, and the ability to measure results makes this a very attractive alternative to traditional media. Many advertisers are fixed on impressions and clicks. While these numbers matter, there are many variables that drive results.

Online campaign measurement is a core benefit of online advertising. Because such detailed data is so readily available, advertisers can tweak online ad performance in near real time. Some advertisers will dissect data to infinite levels, and still not use it to improve response. Many however prefer not to look at all. Maybe it’s just too confusing, maybe the results are just too painful. Today’s marketing has become so results focused that you can’t afford to leave it to chance. The upside is that with analytics and ad data, you don’t have to.

The downside to all that data is that it’s not always being utilized until after campaigns have run. If you want to insure more sales and exposure, Review analytics daily to see any changes or opportunities for better results.

Now comes a huge influencer, often overlooked: Ads and landing pages. Before you run your campaign, honestly evaluate how effective and creative they really are. If they aren’t either, fire your nephew and reach out to a competent ad agency or freelancer for help. The same goes for landing pages. They need to close the deal, and should be well designed, clean and easy to understand. (That means your homepage of your website probably won’t work)

Here are a few considerations to boost results in your online advertising efforts:

•  Measuring just clicks doesn’t measure sales. Set goals. Are you getting social media engagement? email sign ups? Are people downloading coupons? These are goals as well.
• Factor things like keyword relevancy, targeting parameters and even what times of day your ads deliver will affect campaign performance.
• Limiting yourself to just one channel limits campaign effectiveness. Delivering ads across across search, display, facebook and mobile will drive much more response than any single channel.
• Bad ads and landing pages do not convert. Engaging creative, good design, great offers and a solid value proposition, (why should I buy?)  make a huge difference.
• Utilize Ad analytics (Think Adwords) during the campaign. Tweak your targeting, keywords and bids to increase results. Use Site analytics (Think Google Analytics) after the campaign. This will reveal things like time spent on site, types of audiences, mobile vs PCs and tablets and a host of other valuable data that can be used to boost results.

If you pay attention to the data and act on those results you’ll see improvement in your efforts and ultimately more sales for less marketing dollars.

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