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What metrics will help to find the efficiency of Marketing function in a software company?
The secret of successful management – Evenness of mind
Re: Marketing Efficiency
This is another post that I was curious to see how people responded to in that I want to see how much QA permeates the whole organization, including marketing. In any event, and to answer your question, brand performance is one major metric. This is number of sales (as dollar revenue), market share gain, profitability metrics, gross margin, brand loyalty measures (relative to defined target markets), brand awareness and customer satisfaction. Markting process efficiency is another metric. This is lead time to achieve key milestones in terms of marketing goals, speed of sales uptake, and time to market relative to promised features.
If you get into strict metrics in this sense, you have to consider accessibility (not just for the disabled; this is more an overall measure that is contextual to marketing and has specific connotations). There is also brand perception and message recall metrics that can be used as well as brand adoption and switch-over rate that can be very important in a highly-competitive market. You will also have relative measures that are more or less obvious: dollar sales relative to the operational profile of the product, dollar sales growth relative to the target market growth, dollar sales relative to financial analyst's expectations, sales as a percentage of the organization's total revenue, sales as a percentage of total market size, sales relative to the marketing resources and costs allocated to the product, sales growth relative to competition, and the contribution of sales, gross margin and profit growth to the organization. In terms of things like service-based venues or strict Web environments, you can consider visitor acquisition cost, customer/affiliate acquisition cost, conversion rate (for sales/lead effectiveness measures), customer retention rate, and penetration rate. Some of these can be applied to non-service based as well.
This is often an area that QA practitioners barely consider, assuming they are aware of it at all and that is ironic given that it is one of the driving forces of most organizations that directly impacts on the effectiveness and the competitiveness of the organization. Kudos to you for looking for these kinds of metrics.