Why an Online Marketing Audit is Important for Your Business
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Business owners, like you, need to make sure that your current marketing strategies are effectively working to achieve your marketing goals. Carrying out a thorough marketing audit works to ensure this regardless of whether you use traditional or digital marketing. In fact, it is necessary to conduct an audit to avoid wasting dollars on marketing campaigns that don’t even produce results.
To help you get started, let’s take a deep dive on what marketing audit is and how it can be utilized for the success of your business.
What does Marketing Audit Mean?
A marketing audit is an extensive review of the marketing strategy and marketing performance of a business. It involves setting up an effective action plan tailored to make sure that the goals and objectives of the business are met, as well as to minimize the time and money spent.
What is a Digital Marketing Audit?
Even if your business employs digital marketing, the marketing audit definition actually remains the same. However, it can be referred to as a digital marketing audit since it is a detailed analysis of your digital marketing efforts. This may include a website audit, analyzing clickthrough rates, going through your social networks and others.
Is Marketing Audit Important?
Marketing audit is important for businesses of all types and sizes because it helps determine if their marketing activity is working or not. It enables marketing teams to gather data that are essential in their next marketing planning process. The benefits of a successful marketing audit can be substantial for the business in the long run. Learn more about this below.
Reasons to Conduct a Marketing Audit
There are many reasons to conduct a marketing audit. Aside from the fact that it provides marketing data that can help develop a business plan, an effective marketing audit provides the following benefits:
Identify Strength and Weakness
When you perform a market audit, you can utilize a SWOT analysis. A SWOT analysis stands for Strength, Weakness, Opportunities and Threat. It can assess your marketing strength and weakness, along with the internal and external factors influencing them. This allows you to be aware of the assets that you have and that should be used in your marketing campaigns. A SWOT analysis in a marketing audit also helps you identify opportunities and prepare for threats from the external environment based on data analysis.
Restructure Your Marketing Efforts
A comprehensive marketing audit enables you to reassess your marketing activity and business goals. Since you’re able to identify what’s working and what isn’t, you can restructure your operations effectively in a way that meets your marketing objective.
In digital marketing for instance, Facebook ads provide you with useful insights about the performance of your marketing campaign. The key performance indicators are readily available, and when the results are not doing well, you can immediately optimize the paid advertising accordingly.
Provide Better Customer Experiences
With the marketing data that you collected during your audit process, you will be able to analyze your target audience more accurately. You have the opportunity to learn about their interests, behavior, and even their demographics information. This will help your advertising and marketing departments to devise a promotional environment that will boost your conversion rates. Additionally, giving better customer experiences helps improve the image and reputation of your business.
Undertake Competitor Analysis
In your marketing audit, you can perform a competitor analysis, which is also known as a competitive analysis. By doing this, you are able to compare your business with other brands and learn about their marketing strategy. Having a complete understanding of your competition will help you improve your marketing effort, which will result in the development of a better and effective business plan.
Create a Powerful Marketing Plan
Using the information you collected from the market audit, you can now easily devise a powerful marketing plan for your business. It will be easier for you to establish a new marketing strategy for your goals and objectives. All you have to do is ensure that these business goals are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound, otherwise known as SMART goals.
From these benefits, it is clear that a marketing audit is a necessity for businesses. They can gain insights just from data collection, allowing them to improve their marketing effort. Aside from this, businesses can also prepare ahead of time for opportunities and even threats which may arise.
Types of Marketing Audits
Take note that marketing audit is a broad term and the types listed below are actually those identified and are available.
- Marketing environment
This type of marketing audit focuses on the external factors that can affect the operations of the business. Marketing efforts may include competitor analysis and consumer data collection. Most of the time, social trends are also taken into account since it influences the marketing performance of a business.
- Marketing strategy
This market audit is a comprehensive analysis of the marketing goals and objectives of the business. In a marketing strategy audit, business goals are examined to determine if they are realistic and attainable. It also checks whether the current marketing plan is effective at achieving these goals.
- Marketing organization
In a marketing organization audit, the company’s human resources or its hierarchical assets are evaluated. The company’s structure, its employees and its labor or manpower are all taken into consideration.
- Marketing system
This type of market audit analyzes the business’s information systems, planning and control system. Basically it’s a systems audit, hence the name. Marketing system audit examines the company’s data collection and control capabilities in marketing activities.
- Marketing productivity
Marketing productivity audit focuses on the effectiveness of the current marketing strategies and the profit it brings to the table. It examines the products and markets in order to improve the cost-effectiveness of marketing efforts.
- Marketing function
This type of marketing audit is a comprehensive evaluation of the company’s core competencies. It includes a full analysis of the marketing mix of the product; product, price, place and promotion, otherwise known as the 4P’s marketing mix.
While these are the types of marketing audits, the scope of each differs from company to company. Businesses can always utilize a marketing audit depending on their preference and needs at the time.
How to do Marketing Audit
As mentioned earlier, businesses conduct marketing audits in different ways. Plus, it may be quite different if you’re employing digital marketing, which is covered in the next section. Nevertheless, here are a few simple steps you can take to get started in marketing audit.
- Determine who will perform the audit.
The marketing audit can be done by the company’s own marketing teams or chosen employees from a different department. However, in order to find an unbiased opinion in the audit process, it is usually carried out by an auditor from a reputable marketing agency. It is up to you to determine who will conduct an audit, and it is best that you do so before you jump into the process. You can then decide what happens next. He or she can take the next steps based on your choice.
- Identify scope of marketing audit.
Figure out what you want to include in your market audit. If you need to focus on a specific marketing activity at the moment, then that is okay. But if you’re planning to do a complete audit on your business, it would be better to include everything. This may include brand marketing, search engine optimization, social media and so on.
- Data collection and analysis.
Gather the information you need for the market audit. This may come from the external environment, internal environment, or from the current marketing strategies of the business. You can also conduct further research into marketing data that can be useful in the audit process.
- Review marketing goals and objectives.
Assess whether your marketing efforts have achieved your goals, otherwise consider starting over or restructure your plans. Take note that when you create new marketing goals, make sure that these are SMART goals; specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound.
- Review your marketing mix.
Understanding your marketing mix will help you make profitable decisions and be more competitive. It can be identified as 4P’s; product, price, promotion and place or 4C’s; cost, commodity, communication and channel.
- Do a competitor analysis.
Performing a competitor analysis will give you a chance to explore marketing strategies that you might be able to integrate into your business plan. Aside from this, knowing how your competition works will help improve your performance as you learn the ins and outs of the business.
- Evaluate and analyze data gathered.
Once you have completed the previous steps, evaluate and analyze the marketing data collected to get a clearer picture of your marketing performance. Also, identify your strength and weakness and prepare accordingly so that you can be ready for anything that may come your way.
- Create an action plan.
When you are satisfied with the results of your marketing audit, proceed to marketing planning. See to it that you develop a powerful marketing strategy that can resolve any issues found during your audit process and can enhance the overall marketing performance of your business. Be sure to keep your marketing goals and marketing objectives in mind when creating your plan.
The process of creating an effective marketing audit will take time, however a thorough one will result in better marketing performance for the business.
How to do a Digital Marketing Audit
Digital marketing audit can be done in the same way as the section before. However, there are certain media channels and digital marketing efforts involved. For a general overview of how to do digital marketing audit, we will divide it into three components and cover the following – seo audits, social media audits and content audits.
Your SEO or search engine optimization audit can help you determine how well your online presence is performing with your existing digital marketing strategy. An ultimate SEO audit should be comprehensive, so that you will be able to identify issues and optimize specific areas like onpage seo, offpage seo, technical seo or any concerns regarding user experience.
Social Media Audits
To ensure that your social media marketing tactics are effective, it is essential to perform social media audits. It includes reviewing various key metrics to assess growth and to identify areas that need improvement. Similar to other audit processes, data collection is a good place to start. You can easily gather data from every social media platform you use and evaluate them. If you want to take a deep dive on this, a quick search on Google will provide you with the ultimate guide that you need when doing social media marketing audits.
No matter what, quality content will always be the King. Your content marketing strategy should also be audited to guarantee its performance. Begin by conducting market research and listening to your audience. Knowing their interests and demands allows you to determine the content types they are likely to enjoy. In this way, you can create a content strategy that is more effective for your business. With that said, investing time in content creation and content marketing will pay off for you in digital marketing .
Remember, if you want someone else to handle the auditing process, you can reach out to a marketing agency, or if you have any employees whom you can trust, you can ask them to do so.
Take note that there is a lot more to consider in digital marketing audit. The three components above are just some of the major factors that are associated with it. These can, however, help you kickstart the audit process.
Digital marketing audit, or simply marketing audit, is definitely important. It helps determine whether issues need fixing and where improvements can be made. Most of all, marketing audit enables you to create powerful marketing strategies that can greatly improve the marketing performance of every business, which results in more sales.