How to Measure Your Print Ad’s Effectiveness

Last week, FEI marketing whiz Marka gave the tribe some tips on creating print ads that get results. This week, the tribe learns how to measure those results. Remember, fire = print.

Marka sat on a bench in the lobby near FEI’s main entrance. Behind her loomed a wide fountain consisting of three gorgeous marble sculptures: Org, Org’s father Autho, and Org’s grandfather Prometheus—three generations of FEI leadership. The three sculptures stood side by -side, with steady streams of water gushing from their mouths into the aquamarine pool below.

Zoot joined Marka on the bench.

“I’m confident our print ad will help drive sales of our new matches,” Zoot said. “There’s just one problem.”

“You’re wondering how exactly we can determine conclusively that our ad’s performing well,” Marka surmised.

“Bingo,” Zoot exclaimed. “If we run this ad, and our sales grow by 10 percent next month, that’s great. But I want more. I want a rock-solid connection between our ad and specific match purchases.”

“Agreed,” Marka said. “There are a few ways we can determine precisely how well our ad is working.”

[Marka pulled a stone tablet from her purse and began writing on it.]

• Track referral source of all job opportunities.

“Our CSRs, estimators and all other customer-facing employees must be trained to identify and track what gets our customers—especially new customers—to pick up the phone and call us,” Marka explained. “We start by asking them one simple question: ‘What prompted you to call us today?’”

“But that information is useless without a process to make sure it’s captured,” she continued. “That’s why we must create a foolproof system that allows our employees to easily record this data and store it in a master database that anyone at FEI can access.”

Zoot was following Marka’s train of thought, and remakes, “I see. After three months, we might look back at this data and find that we can connect the print ad with $40,000 Drachmas of sales. Hello, ROI!”

T.J. Tedesco is a sales growth, business strategy, marketing and PR consultant operating at the intersection of clear vision, compelling content and effective outreach practices. For nearly two decades, T.J. has been an independent consultant and sales growth team leader. Previously, he sold commercial printing, graphic arts machinery and supplies, and finishing and bindery services. T.J. helps North American companies with content development, Web and print design leadership, nurture marketing programs, sales coaching, sales team alignment and business strategy. Since 1996, T.J. has worked with more than 100 clients on retainer, 80 percent in the graphic arts industry. T.J. is author of "Win Top-of-Mind Positioning," "Playbook for Selling Success in the Graphic Arts Industry," "Fire! How Marketing Got Hot," "Direct Mail Pal" and four more books published by PIA. He can be reached at (301) 404-2244 or
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