For those of you just joining the blog content this week… we have been writing, discussing, and arguing about the true value of non-measured marketing… I’m convinced there isn’t any true value. The beginning of this process started when I began reviewing budgets for media buys that had no “measured” return to the bottom line of a revenue stream. Yeah, they could see an increase in sales but they had no idea whether or not the increase came from direct mail, newspaper ad, or the billboard on the major freeway.

This isn’t meant to be a week of non-measured marketing bashing… but more a call to action for all the marketers in the world to quit screwing with ideas that are not measured! This may be a little out there but…

If you are a marketing, advertising, or PR firm that is not measuring or trying to figure out how to measure their services… you are going to be eaten alive by companies that can measure EVERYTHING. Your clients will find someone else and you will cease to be relevant.

There will come a time when the thrill of being placed in a magazine or having a name plastered on a billboard is going to lose its sexiness. There will come a time when business owners, executives, and marketing directors will demand measured results.

I was having a conversation with a friend of mine from college, Trevor Noel, on Twitter about this topic. We were going back and forth on the true value of an increase in brand awareness. This is what Trevor said that made me stop and contemplated whether or not I was a complete idiot:

Any billboard advertising a highly equitable brand increases awareness, share of mind and market share. Is that not effective?

And I do realize that effectiveness (resulting sales) are at best, approximations. I can’t say how effective.

I understand the argument of increasing brand awareness in a market by buying space on a highway, television, radio, or any other medium… believe me I get it. I just have an issue with making huge media buys on something that has no measurement. I’ve sold my share of flashy objects… and guess what… they gave no return other than a few fans or comments.

The true reason why people keep buying (without demanding measurement) billboards, newspaper ads, radio spots, banner ads, mass direct mail, and social media consulting is that they are afraid to do anything…


It isn’t the fact that they actually believe that the billboard is garnering them increased sales year-over-year…

It isn’t the fact that the salesman just conned them into spending $60,000 a year for eyeballs.

It is that they are afraid what will happen if they quit spending the same dollars… on the same things.

It is up to us… as marketers… to teach, sway, and coax our clients into measuring every dollar that is spent on marketing. It is up to Lamar, CBS, ClearChannel, Young & Laramore, my company and Burkhart (and every marketing, advertising, and PR firm) to figure out if what they are selling small to mid size businesses is actually making a difference instead of sapping money from their already thin pockets.