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The 4 am Report

Oct 2, 2019

Just in time for National Small Business Month, here’s a very relevant episode of our micro podcast, The 4 am Report.

We’re tackling the unsexy side of marketing: how small businesses can best measure ROI on their various marketing activities.

Numbers, data, analytics. It’s easy for small business owners to get bogged down in all this. It’s difficult to know where to start.  

This is definitely the case for this week’s guest, Tracey Bissett, president and chief financial fitness trainer at Bissett Financial Fitness. In fact, Tracey points out an interesting paradox about herself:

“I know how to help my clients think about return on investment, but how do I do this for my own marketing?”

This led to an interesting discussion. What if you were to approach establishing your marketing ROI as if you were establishing the ROI on financial investments?

Susan, Will and Tracey bring some cool hypotheses to life and discuss what an investor lens might look like when you assess your marketing investment. They also talk about what ROI looks like beyond just vanity metrics and data.

Set your marketing goals

Susan talks about how it's important to set overall goals. 

Is it sales? In that case, is there a certain number of dollars that need to come in the door? Then that becomes a measurement factor. If it's a question of increasing lists, then again quantifying the goal from something vague to increase the list by 20%. Get into that discipline of numbers at the goal stage. 

Awareness is a big goal for many people. That as well needs to be quantified. Does awareness mean you want more people to come to your page? Does it mean you want more people to be calling you? So quantify what the end result of those things are. 

The importance of doing a full content audit (regularly)

Will and Susan talk about why doing content audits is essential to fully understanding how your content is performing.

Cataloguing content and measuring it against the 2 - 3 metrics you’ve already chosen is the only way to see what’s working and what’s not.  

If you’re looking for a guide on how to do a small business content audit, get it here.  

Can we approach establishing marketing ROI in the same way we’d approach it with financial investments?

This is where Tracey and the hosts have a little fun.

They look at three factors that Tracey says help her establish ROI for her clients:

  • What’s the risk profile of the investment
  • What fees are involved?
  • And are we comparing apples to apples?

Susan and Will talk about how low risk marketing is doing what you’ve been doing. You know your audience consumes it. But it’s not getting you a jump in numbers/engagement.  

Enter the higher risk marketing. Everyone wants to be a disrupter and get that 5X results. But it’s not easy to predict what’s going to gel with your audience.

Some areas of marketing that are higher risk but are proving to be rewarding for some brands?

Taking a stand on an issue. Newsjacking. And mindset marketing.

The two tiers of measurement

To keep you from the overwhelm, Will explains there are two simple tiers of measurement.

The first tier is vanity metrics. Obviously that's the likes, the shares, all those things that make you feel good right away. 

The second tier is engagement or behaviour related. Things like where on social is the traffic coming to your web from? Or is it coming from emails? And looking at how long people have spent on a page gives you some indication of what they’re reading, watching or listening to.

Are they clicking to go elsewhere on your site, staying within your site? Are they putting something in the cart? All of this helps with tweaks to your UX.  

How using The Anchor Theory of content creation can help ease the volatility of your marketing portfolio

(Look, another investing analogy)

Susan explains that if you're investing time and planning a 2500-word lead magnet or a 45-minute podcast, you're putting a significant amount of effort into creating that content. 

So you wouldn’t just throw some money in an investment and pull it out after a month. We need to look at our content creation that way. 

The c+p digital team call this ‘anchoring’ your content and then spinning it off into bite size pieces, giving it as much exposure as possible. It's not the idea of duplicating content necessarily, it's just creating it in multiple formats. 

For a great visual on what The Anchor Theory is all about, check it out here

How do we measure the success of The 4 am Report

Susan talks through how c+p digital measures the ROI on this podcast. It’s a mix of traditional metrics but then she explains how going beyond the data can give you the true picture of overall worth.

One key thing is the value of the relationships that are being built with podcast guests. This means and expanding network and new business opportunities.

Will and Susan have also seen an actual impact on the industry (i.e. micro is where it seems to be at).

If you want to read a case study on how The 4 am Report has been one of c+p digital’s best marketing investments, check it out here

Tracey then shares some of that same ROI she’s encountered from her podcast Young Money, including reaching an international audience and being asked to appear on a popular podcast in Australia.

We end with a plug from our guest

To help entrepreneurs who have cash flow concerns, Tracey has created a master class called, Can I Afford It? How to be certain of what you can and can't afford in your business in five minutes or less every time. To check out the details for the master class, go to

About Tracey

Tracey Bissett is the President and Chief Financial Fitness Trainer at Bissett Financial Fitness. She is on a mission to redefine the economic future of the world by addressing financial literacy of young adults and entrepreneurs. She does this through her weekly podcast, Young Money - the advice show for millionaires in the making, teaching and delivery of courses, coaching and consulting.