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Marketing Performance Management: An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Marketing performance management is a fairly new business practice that’s taking on a formidable task that’s plagued the business world for decades. That task is nothing less than measuring the effectiveness of business marketing strategies and optimizing them for maximum efficiency.
For businesses, of all sizes, that have struggled with getting an accurate sense of their marketing return on investment (ROI), performance management is something that’s definitely worth looking into.
Here is a quick primer for marketing performance management newbies.
Why Look at Marketing Performance Management?
Marketing as a whole has always been a somewhat nebulous practice whose scope can vary wildly from company to company.
At a smaller operation, the person who blogs once a week and handles company events could be a marketing manager. At the corporate level, a VP of marketing could be responsible for global campaigns worth millions of dollars.
The one thing these two marketing professionals have in common is need to quantitatively, and objectively, know how effective their efforts have been. That’s where performance marketing performance management comes into the picture.
What (Exactly) is Marketing Performance Management?
Marketing performance management is all about using today’s cutting edge analytic tools (i.e.: big data) to find out exactly which marketing dollars are earning their keep and which ones are freeloading.
For a more formal definition, we can find a pretty good one at the Gartner IT Glossary:

Marketing performance management (MPM) encompasses the technologies and services for solutions that support marketing’s ability to gain access to insights, analyze data, make predictions, and optimize marketing programs, campaigns and resources…At the strategic level, MPM provides role-based access to information and KPIs through dashboards, visualization, point-and-click analysis, modeling, simulation and optimization.

That’s all well and good for giant corporations that have deep access to big data, but what about the rest of us?
Marketing Performance Management for Small Companies
Though marketing performance management is well-suited for international corporations and big business as whole, that doesn’t mean that its concepts can’t be applied at to a smaller, one-man casino affiliate operation.
At it’s simplest, marketing performance management is all about deciding which metrics you need to follow and diligently tracking their effectiveness over time. This could be anything from the final cost of every social share you get to really sitting down and figuring out how effective each marketing technique you employ is over a specified period.
Once you’ve got the metrics, and a fair amount of data, you can figure out how it’s going to impact your long-term strategies. With some hard-nosed, objective analysis, these numbers should yield some good data for your upcoming campaigns.
Marketing Performance Management is definitely not a one-and-done kind of business project; it’s an ongoing process. But, like all ongoing processes, it’s one that will pay out major dividends over time as it helps you to build a more effective marketing machine.