Do you know what digital marketing strategy can give you the highest return on investment?
No! It’s social media marketing!
Says who? It should be content marketing!
SEO is the answer!
But what about those influencers?
Huh? Haven’t you heard of pay per click (PPC)?
Okay. Calm down, people.
The answers above are all marketing channels. But the question is which strategy (if any) can give you the highest ROI.
MARKETING STRATEGY vs. MARKETING CHANNEL
Marketing strategy is a well-detailed plan to market your product, service, or your brand. It includes all the nitty-gritty details of each aspect of your marketing plan. It should also have everything you need from your brand identity, voice, audience, and unique selling point (USP). A sound marketing strategy should meet your goals, objectives, and results you want to achieve.
Marketing channels serve as a way of communicating. Options like social media, email marketing, content marketing, among others are all marketing channels.You use them to communicate your marketing strategies to your target audience.
Marketing strategy is a blueprint for success.
Just like the old saying goes, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Very true for digital marketing.
After laying your marketing strategy, now you can choose the best-fit marketing channels.
Now, are you ready to know what marketing strategy yields the highest ROI?
Before we dive into the answer, let’s first answer what is ROI or return on investment.
According to Investopedia, return on investment or ROI directly measures the amount of return on a particular investment, relative to the investment’s cost. ROI can be shown as a percentage or in ratio.
You simply have to look at two things: the cost (expenses) and the outcome (income) generated.
Why is the return on investment important?
Because in marketing, ROI answers the question, “Is your marketing working?”
Business owners, clients, and investors want to know if their business is profitable.
Moreover, you, as the business owner, are also concerned about things like sales funnels, awareness, searches, site traffic, and much more.
You need to track your money and where it is being spent. You have to be financially wise. You hope your business will have the longevity to last past your next life.
Going back on ROI, if you spent $1 on marketing, how much income should you expect?
Using the definition above, we can calculate ROI this way:
Income / Cost = ROI
Hmm. Looks simple? Not really.
Let’s break it down a little bit more.
When you say “income”, what is it? Is it the income for one product or for one marketing campaign? Is it the sales of one product or all products in your shop?
Next is your “cost”. What is really your “cost”? Is it the cost of the marketing strategy or the person doing the strategy? If you’re using one marketing strategy for all your products, would you divide the cost equally?
Now, it’s becoming tricky.
Figuring out what specific part of the sales is directly attributable to one marketing strategy can be complex. However, if you want to go ahead and do this, well, I won’t stop you. But let me warn you — measuring ROI this way takes time, patience, and access to the company’s financial statements.
Measuring ROI this way isn’t always realistic.
This is where revenue to marketing cost ratio (magically) appears!
Being a ratio, it shows the revenue for every dollar spent.
As a rule of thumb, a good marketing ratio is 5:1. Meaning for every $1 spent on marketing, you should earn $5.
You can wish for a 10:1 ratio because it’s possible. But don’t make it a benchmark.
You can always change this ratio depending on your industry and cost structure.
Why is this a good ratio?
Because this covers the cost of making a product and marketing it.
So, what’s a marketing cost then?
Marketing cost is any additional cost incurred to complete a marketing campaign. This includes media spending, outside marketing and advertising fees, pay-per-click spending, among others.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON ROI
Calculating revenue from marketing activities is difficult. Strategies like SEO, content marketing, and social media are used way before the actual sale takes place. There are some marketing software platforms available that you can try.
Knowing your return on investment is very important but is also complicated.
And remember, numbers are not everything!
There are some marketing activities that you can’t measure perfectly BUT is worth considering.
Marketers should always look at connecting dots between activity and revenue. Technological advances are always present and can provide better insights over time.
Remember, marketing is about generating revenue.
Marketers should be serious about associating activities with revenue at all times.
So, to answer the original question of which marketing strategy gives the highest return on investment…
The answer is: IT DEPENDS
In reality, digital marketing strategies work!
Yes, people, all of them work!
The results, however, depend on how you maximize each marketing channel and lay well-planned strategies on the table.
There’s no one size fits all when it comes to digital marketing.
To help raise awareness of your brand and product, you have to create content, apply SEO, and use social media. Or send emails. Or go for a paid advertisement.
To sell your ideas, you can do webinars and send emails. Or directly do a product launch. Or SMS blast.
To pitch for the sale, you can create a sales page or a sales letter. Or create a Facebook or IG or Twitter page. Or look for influencers and ask for a partnership.
Always use each digital marketing channel to your advantage and strategize well based on your current business goals.
Remember: Digital marketing channels will give you optimal results – given you utilize each and never stop learning, analyzing, and strategizing.
You just have to tie up your marketing efforts to your ultimate goal – generating revenue.