Three measures of marketing success

The one thing marketing gives us today is data. And lots of it. This can be overwhelming for business owners that haven’t worked in marketing. Today we will cover off on the three most important measures that gauge your success.



Reach outlines the total number of people your message got in front of. In traditional media it might be the readership of the newspaper or the number of vehicles and occupants that drove past a certain billboard each day.

In advertising terms the value of ‘reaching’ customers can be given as the Cost Per Thousand or CPM (the M being from the latin for cost per milli). Depending on your industry you might pay anywhere from $1 to $100 to reach each thousand customers. Our job as marketers is to combine tools and channels to reach as many new and interested customers for the lowest possible CPM.



To know if we are reaching the right customers we measure engagement. If the right message gets in front of the right customer then they should respond to our content or advertising. We call this engagement.

For traditional advertising mediums you should ask customers how they heard about you and count the leads generated by each source. In digital advertising we can measure the exact number of users that loaded your advertisement on their mobile phone or PC. You can even track their specific activity all the way through to purchase or enquiry.

Engagement typically involves a user clicking on your content or advertising and landing on your website. But in social media it also includes commenting, sharing or liking your brand profile to follow your brand ongoing.

To calculate your engagement simply divide the number of customers that ‘engaged’ with your message by the total number of customers that were reached by the message. Typical engagement levels for an article or advertisement are around 1 – 2% of the total reach. If you have a small following be sure to take out friends or family that may skew your result, and look to improve this figure over time.



Perhaps the most important metric of all is our actual conversion rate. From the users that are engaging with our content we want to record which of these lead to the best volume or value of sales. Depending on your goals a conversion might be an actual purchase, or it could be a download, registering for an event or sharing content on social media.

Calculate your conversion rate by the number of people that ‘converted’ divided by those that were reached.  It is difficult to suggest the typical conversion rate as it varies for all clients, offers and market places. The key here is to track what yours is as a baseline and keep working on improving this over time.

Using these three basic measures all business owners and marketers can monitor which mediums, messages and market places deliver the optimal results. No matter what base you are coming from in customers or knowledge, your job as business owners and marketers is to learn faster than your competitors the approaches that are contributing the most to achieving your business and marketing goals.

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Online Marketing Strategy Brisbane

Mark Jones is the Managing Director of Your Digital Solution. A specialist business Strategy, Marketing and Technology consultancy in Brisbane.

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