Marketing ROI: Measuring the Effectiveness of Your Budget


Creating a compelling marketing campaign is vital for building and growing a successful business. That’s why, in recent years, businesses have spent between 6% and 12% of their total revenue on marketing efforts. However, with that kind of financial commitment, stakeholders expect to see a proportional return on the investment.    Achieving a good marketing return on investment (ROI) isn’t just good for a company’s finances. It also indicates whether a marketing campaign is effectively swaying consumers and whether or not marketing spent the budget properly. Read on to learn more about marketing ROI for your business.  


Understanding Marketing ROI

ROI in marketing measures the profitability of your marketing efforts. This is a metric for how much money a company makes back for every dollar spent on its marketing efforts. Think of it as a report card for marketing strategies. 


Marketing ROI also indicates budget effectiveness and proper marketing resource management (MRM). A high ROI indicates that the money spent on marketing campaigns was properly allocated, and a low ROI signals that adjustments must be made to meet campaign objectives. Regularly assessing ROI is vital for a well-managed budget that can adapt to market trends as they change. As an added bonus, demonstrating a strong ROI can also help justify an expanded marketing budget.


Setting Clear Objectives

A successful marketing campaign with a high ROI must align with the business’s overall strategy. To begin, you can create individual objectives that act as stepping stones on the way to achieving your big-picture goal. 


From there, you need to know if you’re achieving your objectives. This is where it pays to employ the SMART criteria for setting goals:


  • Specific: Define what you want. For example, “Increase the email subscription rate for our newsletter.”

  • Measurable: Quantify the goal, such as, “Achieve a 30% increase in social media engagement.”

  • Achievable: Create a challenge but stay within the realm of feasibility.

  • Relevant: Set goals that are pertinent to your company’s overall business objectives. 

  • Time-bound: Set a timeframe for objectives. For example, “Increase the customer base by 15% in the next six months.”


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Implementing Tracking Tools and Technologies

Tracking tools that measure various marketing analytics data points are vital in discovering insights into marketing ROI. These analytics tools assess the effectiveness of marketing strategies and help teams make appropriate adjustments. Modern tracking technologies also offer real-time data, enabling marketers to make quick, informed decisions to help meet marketing objectives within the timeframe set by the SMART criteria. 


To effectively integrate tracking tools for accurate ROI measurement, using an MRM tool that offers analytics in addition to spend tracking is best to make sure marketing ROI stays on target. 


Calculating Marketing ROI

Calculating ROI is a basic formula. First, you’ll determine the net profit made from a marketing campaign. This is done by simply subtracting the marketing campaign cost from the revenue generated from a marketing campaign. Then, divide the net profit by the marketing cost and multiply the outcome to get the marketing ROI. In a mathematical formula, it looks like this:


Net profit = Revenue − Expenses

ROI = (Net profit ÷ Expenses) × 100


However, calculating marketing ROI is a bit more nuanced since different marketing ROIs are calculated based on the defined objectives. For example, let’s imagine a marketing campaign where the objective is to gain social media followers. One of the key values that needs to be determined to calculate the marketing ROI is the value of each new follower. 


In this case, the net profit would be the total value of all the followers gained throughout the marketing campaign minus the cost to gain those followers. Here’s an example:


Value of each new follower = $12.50

Total followers gained = 2,000

Cost of gaining marketing to gain 2,000 followers = $5,000

Net profit = (2,000 x $12.50) – $5,000 = $20,000


Just like before, insert the net profit into the ROI formula.


ROI = ($20,000 ÷ $5,000) x 100 = 400


Here, the marketing ROI is 400%, which is four dollars for every dollar spent.


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Optimizing Marketing Strategies for Better ROI

Optimizing marketing strategies to achieve a better ROI is an ongoing process. Whether you’re adjusting to marketing trends or checking the numbers to make informed adjustments, there are multiple options for getting the most out of your marketing investments. 


  • Market Research: Conduct thorough market research to understand your target audience, competitors, and market trends.

  • Segmentation and Personalization: Segment your audience based on demographics, behavior, or preferences and tailor your marketing messages for each segment.

  • Data-driven decision making: Collect and analyze data collected from your tracking tools to understand what aspects of your campaign are working well and what needs adjustment.

  • A/B testing: This strategy tests two different versions of your marketing materials to determine which elements work best and resonate with your target audience. A/B testing could involve testing different email subject lines, website layouts, or ad copy.

  • Customer feedback: Listening to your customers can provide valuable insights into how your products or services are perceived and how to improve your marketing strategies.


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