Content marketing secrets

Get ready for 2020: Five ways to measure your marketing impact – insights from Spark conference

By 18th November 2019 No Comments
Spark Conference 2019

Spark conference 2019
Image credit: Falcon.io

The tools are out there, the know-how too. Yet many B2B and B2C companies have trouble measuring the real impact of their marketing actions. Here are some insights on how you can take control of your marketing ROI, shared at digital marketing conference Spark 2019 in Copenhagen. 


Does it seem like half the money you spend on marketing is wasted, but you don’t know which part? You are not alone. Many marketers feel that they are lacking insights into the impact of their marketing actions and ROI.

“The tools for getting this knowledge are out there. You just have to find a new way of working,” explained Bram de Jonge, Senior Account Relationship Manager at AdRoll Benelux, when he entered the stage.

Below are Jonge’s insights into using marketing to accelerate growth for all types of companies.

Insight #1 – Get a new mindset

Marketers want to change, that is a fact. Understanding the customer journey, optimising the digital marketing mix, and justifying the marketing spend is often high also on the CFO’s agenda.

But according to recent reports by Forbes, Deloitte and Forrester, marketing departments focus too much on operations and short-term goals and too little on revenues. Marketers also tend to rely on instincts rather than data and lack the tools to get new insights. The result: it is hard to link marketing to financial performance.

So, there must be a shift in mindset, going from incremental to exponential thinking when growing a business. The latter takes time – patience and the right expectations are also essential for a successful change.

Insight #2 – Content is still king. But…

Today, content is everywhere and everything. But heading towards the 2020 marketing landscape, companies should keep some things in mind, Falcon io’s CEO Ulric Bo Larsen stressed at the Spark Conference.

1. It’s a trend to wear many hats. And this not only applies to fashion. During 2019, marketers had to wear many hats in their daily work. This trend looks set to accelerate entering the next decade. So be prepared and excel in what you do best by learning new tools and optimising your work with the help of new insights.

2. What goes up, must come down. Marketing has a history of being the canary in the coal mine. After booms, there might be a recession. Thus, be aware of how an economic downturn impacts the industry and adapt quickly.

3. Ask yourself: If content is king, why is the tool stack for content still not good enough? Use the right tools to excel in your marketing, and to support your business goals.

Insight #3 – People first, you feel it?

Mingle at Spark Conference
People mingling at the Spark conference.
Photo credit: Falcon.io

Don’t forget that your customers are people, too. There are always hearts and souls behind all titles and company setups.

McKenna Taylor, Global Brand Manager at Skullcandy Inc., presented one of the headphone company’s successful inhouse-produced campaigns, 12 Moods, which aimed to monthly celebrate how music makes people feel.

“Remember that social media is the face and voice of your brand. We learnt a lot about our customers’ behaviour by communicating in different channels and with funnel-adapted content,” Taylor said on stage.

Curious about what Skullcandy’s 12 Moods campaign looked like? Here is a sneak peek:

Insight #4 – Create brand fairy tales in social channels

Tankin Kropp, Social Media Manager at Nordic Choice Hotels, knows what it takes to create a digital brand story. He compares building social media traffic to a city planner’s way of efficiently getting traffic in and out of a city.

“Getting people to your website through social media engagement can be tricky. But if you succeed, your brand fairy tale will come true,” he said and showed how Nordic Choice Hotels increased YoY traffic from organic social by 400% and drove revenue by 30%. This was done using the following nine steps:

9 tips for creative fairy tales

  1. Be clear and specific. Have a thread run through your storytelling – don’t mix messages.
  2. Be true to social media platforms. Use them for the right purpose.
  3. Do. Learn. Repeat. Do even more and take the time to understand what works and not – then do it again.
  4. Test all new things. E.g. filming a live setup of a Christmas tree at your office and posting it on your social media channel. It will often create more engagement than you think.
  5. Drive traffic to your own store. Social media is only the shopping window for driving traffic to your brand site.
  6. Tailor your message to the channel. Customers behave differently and have different expectations for different channels. Adapt!
  7. Be aware of analysis paralysis. Social media is not the Holy Grail. Learn how Facebook and other social channels are scoring communication differently on their platform.
  8. Choose one direction and implement. People get so used to how a brand communicates in successful campaigns, that in the end, you don’t even have to show the brand logo.
  9. Go big on the things that work the best.

Insight #5 – Supercharge your storytelling with data

Are you a storyteller obsessed with images and text? And are data and maths like your greatest enemies?

Well, a lot of marketers don’t use data to paint the full picture in campaigns – although there is a lot to win by doing so.

“The so-called truth of dividing the brain into left and right is not true anymore. The brain is complex, and acting as one, the brain halves become a stronger unit,” said Lee Benecke, Head of Digital Engagement on Wavemaker, at Spark Conference 2019.

According to Benecke, the two most essential skills in marketing are:

  1. Being able to understand data.
  2. Telling a good story.

Relying on these two skills, you will be able to supercharge your marketing. So, get going and paint the full picture with data.

Summary from Spark Conference 2019

Let’s summarise:

Will 2020 be the best time to be a marketer? It’s hard to say. But it sure is crunch time for marketers who want change and work in new ways.

Just remember, changing your mindset, getting used to new tools, and creating successful content that supports your business goals take time. The rule is that it takes between six and twelve months to get new processes and systems in place.

When it comes to seeing the real impact of branding content, you often have to be patient for 18 months or more. And all good things come to those who wait…

Hang in there, your brand’s marketing fairy tale will eventually come true.

Want to know more about digital marketing trends?

Don’t miss our popular breakfast seminar about digital marketing trends.  After full houses in both Gothenburg and Stockholm, our next seminar will be at Media Evolution City in Malmö.
Tuesday, December 3rd, we will talk about trends in digital marketing, and how to put them into practice.

Sign up here.