Marketers should move away from a system where they measure success or failure purely by numbers. It should be about more than the numbers, but also about ‘the feeling’ that is created. This was the consensus reached during the inaugural Apurimac Media Marketers Roundtable event, co-hosted with HWB Communications in Cape Town recently.
“We invited senior marketers from three local companies and organizations to sit around a table and discuss issues that were topical in their fields of work,” said CEO Will Green. “We all work hard while we rush to meet deadlines; this means we don’t get the chance to meet with our counterparts from other companies and share insights.”
Attending the event was Courtney Ellis (brand manager, RisCura Solutions), Andrea Erwee (Centre manager, Cape Quarter Lifestyle Village) and Marc Zandhuis (founder and managing director, CapeTownMagazine.com).
Facilitating word of mouth, said Zandhuis, is ultimately what’s worth its weight in gold. “It is all good and well that you see your name printed in the glossy magazine that your target market reads, and you can calculate the number of eyeballs that might have read a story on a website. But, how does one measure and value the spontaneous referral or endorsement of your company or product when friends talk to one another around a dinner table,” he asked. “With online at least, rankings, retweets, shares and likes give a better sense of engagement and are key indicators of potential word of mouth.”
All delegates agreed that any business that hoped to be successful had to ensure that it built a relationship of trust with its audience. The honesty and integrity of any brand and how this is aligned to the values of the audience played a major part in whether you would still be trading three months from now.
The yard stick for the measurement of success also appeared to vary wildly between different industries. A shopping centre (such as the Cape Quarter) and a lifestyle online publisher (such as CapeTownMagazine.com) could easier quantify its successes by either the increase in feet through the door, or the higher number of unique browsers. But in financial services, an organization such as RisCura would have to also be measured against other yard sticks, for instance the number and quality of relationships and interactions with industry peers and clients.
“The fact that the yardstick varies so much again proves the importance for education – for your marketing team, your senior management team, in fact any stakeholder in your organisation,” said Green.
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