How do I measure the campaigns success?

I see from my crystal ball that you’re going to get a 0.5% response rate”……. It would be mad to base your campaign on the “average” response rates.  Instead you should look at building your own average response rates.  An average for each of the products and services you sell.  Better yet, the average for that product and target market combination.  Or if you send out a catalogue, the average response rate for mailing that catalogue to a key geo demo graphic target.  How marketing people quote a “typical” average response rate of 0.01% is beyond belief!  It’s completely irrelevant.

So your mailing has gone, the direct mail response rates are in.  You have closed the sales – it is time to determine whether the campaign was a success.
With appropriate planning at the beginning and setting clear objectives it will be easier to compare your campaign’s performance to the targets you set.

When assessing the success of the campaign, remember to:

  • Wait long enough for all responses to stop – some responses can arrive weeks or years (in extreme cases) after the mailing was sent!

  • Wait for all sales to close. If you are selling high value items it can sometimes take months to close the larger deals which can often mean the difference between a failed campaign and a highly successful one.

  • Consider the life-time value of an existing customer for the product or service.   They may have purchased some software that gives a profit of £1,000 initially, but if your customers generally stay with you for 3 years, their life time value to you is going to be £3,000 profit.  So what is the average life time value for each customer based on the product or service you sell?

  • Now work out how many sales you need to cover the cost of the mailing, and break even.

Can you improve next time?

Regardless of whether your campaign was a success or not, you should ask yourself “Can we do better next time?”

Look for answers to questions like:

  • Which sales proposition/ mailing pack got the better response?
  • Did the timing of the mailing affect the performance?
  • Which response method was most popular?
  • Which types of business/ consumer responded most?
  • Do responses vary by demo graphic or geography?
  • Did my call to action work – coupons, deadlines, discounts?

If you can answer these questions then you are in a great position to improve your direct marketing performance on the next campaign!

Summary Steps

  1. Establish how to collect your results
  2. Regularly monitor responses
  3. Analyse the end results
  4. Objectively review and report on performance
  5. Keep a library of all campaigns for reference
How do I measure the campaigns success?


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