ROI is the bane of every marketer’s existence. And with increasing budget cuts, it’s more frustrating than ever. (According to Gartner research, 44% of CMOs faced budget cuts in the wake of the Pandemic.) Improving ROI is always a priority, but with limited resources and increasing pressure to perform, how do you make headway?
Having experienced these challenges with our clients and within our own content marketing operation, we know the pitfalls of chasing ROI. But we also know a few ways to improve it, and today we’re sharing them with you.
Analyze your sales data
Someone needs to be paying attention to the trends and metrics of your company’s sales activities. Before you can do this, you must figure out what kind of data you should be tracking and the tools you should be using to collect it.
This may require the help of a professional. If you are a small business owner, you may be too close to the situation to see the big picture.
Talk with your sales team
Besides collecting and analyzing data, talk with your sales team. They are the ones in the trenches, and they may be able to give you insights that you never considered. Remember, your sales team is motivated by sales since they need to meet their quotas. They want to increase your ROI as much, or even more than your company’s leadership.
Ask your top salespeople to share their strategies. Find out why those particular people are succeeding in finding new prospects and closing the sales.
Struggling salespeople should receive guidance from sales managers on how to improve their sales pipeline.
Streamline the sales process
If you are a small business venture and you don’t have a team of salespeople, analyze your sales process to see what changes may be necessary.
For example, whether you are a brick and mortar store or an online venture, evaluate your checkout process. Do you lose customers because of long lines? Do customers leave because of being ignored?
Do people click away from online carts because they are forced to register at the beginning of the sales process? Do you ask too much information from your customers? Is your website difficult to navigate? Is your website slow?
Analyze your online content
Every savvy business strategist knows the importance of creating and publishing online content to bring people to your website. It may feel like a waste of time, especially if you don’t receive much feedback or shares. Hopefully, one thing that will happen for your trouble is that you will be increasing your Google ranking, and we all know how important that is.
You are already creating online content for your business’ website, but to increase the ROI from it, you need to learn how to repurpose it. For example, you have an idea that you want to share with your customers. You write a long blog post about it, and you post it on your website. You include internal and highly-valued external links.
Don’t stop at that. Create an infographic, photo essay, or meme with that same information that is easily shared. Create a series of easy-digestible snippets from the longer content and post them on your company’s social media platforms.
Learn how to track your progress. Find out which keywords receive the most traffic. Analyze which articles are driving the newest leads. This may require the help of a content specialist, but if your Google ranking improves as a result of this expenditure, that is an excellent return on investment.
Limit the number of contractors and vendors
When you searched for suppliers when you opened your business, you were probably looking for companies that would provide the best product for the lowest price. While this business strategy made sense then, does it make sense now?
How much time is spent interacting with a multitude of contractors and vendors? Would you increase profitability by limiting the number of companies that you interact with on a given day? Ask your current suppliers if they would give you a discount if you purchased more products from them.
It’s always an excellent strategy to shop around periodically to see if you are getting the best deals that you can. This is true in your personal finances as well as your company’s finances.
Pay attention to your social media presence
We know we already discussed the importance of offering new, unique, and helpful content on your company’s website, but do you have someone dedicated to examining your company’s social media presence?
Is your Google Business page accurate and helpful for customers? Do you have a presence on all social media websites? If so, is there a reason for this?
Do you allow customers to connect with you via social media? If so, how quickly do you respond to those customers?
Finally, how do you respond to online reviews? Do you ignore them and hope they will go away, or do you reach out to dissatisfied customers to learn how you can improve your product or service?
Pay attention to your company’s culture
Happy employees work harder. They are more loyal, and they tell others about it. Harder working employees result in an improved return on investments.
Think about the expense of finding, onboarding, and training a new employee. You might not have needed to go through the cost and time to find a new employee if you had used those resources to treat your previous employee well. A high ROI isn’t the only reason you should focus on the happiness of your employees. It’s also the right thing to do.
The Bottom Line
Maximizing your return on investment is more than just the latest buzz word. It should be an integral part of your business’s daily strategy.