Make Marketing Performance Measurement a Priority in 2011

No doubt about it – strategic growth and improved financial performance are top priorities for health systems and hospitals in 2011, putting increased pressure on marketing leaders to deliver effective returns on marketing investment.

Where to start? Begin by establishing and gaining agreement on performance targets and metrics, and putting in place the mechanisms to track and report on progress against goals.

Marketing performance measurement and management (MPM) is the process of analysis and improvement of the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of marketing investments and activities. This is accomplished through alignment of marketing activities, strategies, and metrics with business objectives.

A marketing performance measurement framework can be a useful tool for developing those measures and metrics most relevant to an organization’s strategic growth goals.  Three categories of measures are often considered:

  • Enterprise growth: measurement of overall performance against business outcomes, growth goals and competitive sustainability; e.g., revenue growth, profitability, market position, brand leverage, etc.
  • Marketing strategy: measurement of return on marketing investment (ROMI) from core marketing strategies and processes; e.g., high-impact segmentation strategies, service line development, market expansion, portfolio diversification, retail innovations, clinical partnerships, etc.
  • Marketing activities: comparative measurement of effectiveness, efficiency and outcomes of specific marketing and sales tactics or programs; e.g., direct mail campaigns, web traffic, risk screening events, physician sales,

Some marketers use a marketing performance dashboard to monitor, manage and report results.  Marketing measurement systems can also be designed to report at health system, regional, facility and service line levels.

So what are the critical success factors for marketing performance management?

  • Making marketing performance measures, monitoring and reporting systems a priority
  • Targets and metrics aligned to strategic planning, business development and operations priorities
  • Decision support systems with timely access to performance data
  • Cross functional collaboration to set and agree on targets and metrics
  • Cross functional accountability for outcomes
  • Regular reporting intervals to review progress against goals
  • Timely adjustments to strategy and/or course corrections

A high-performance marketing operation requires outcomes accountability for marketing activities and expenditures.  A marketing management measurement and reporting system can be a powerful tool for building support and helping health leaders better understand the inter-dependency of strategy, operations and marketing in achieving growth and marketing goals.

What have been your successes and challenges in marketing performance measurement?

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