31 Jul Turning Ideas Into Executable Decisions Through Key Performance Indicators (KPI)
Success comes to those who work hard with measurable results – have you ever wondered why there are people who keep finding success in business? Most of the well-known business performers have established multiple entities, in multiple industries. What is it about them that allows them to be successful in wildly different arenas?
The difference is in their approach to things. It’s said that the first million is your hardest. The reason is that you have never earned a million before, and the path is confusing and misleading at times. However, once you become the person who made a million dollars, you know what approach it takes, and you keep on growing and growing. If you want your ideas to truly succeed, you need to focus on their execution, and you need to take the right approach.
Know what is your mission and your vision. Don’t use business plan as your source; business plans always change. Priorities shift, every day shifts, but you’ll always stay on track with the focused goals.
The easiest way to reach the farthest is to stand on the shoulder of giants. Look at Walmart, Apple Stores, Amazon, Wholefoods, look at their concepts; just take a quick glance and copy what they are doing. We don’t mean their business model, or their ideas – you need to see how they make things work. How they keep employees productive. How they keep profit margins high. These are the basic tools your business needs to succeed. Your idea can be original and innovative, that is a good thing, but you need to learn from the successes and mistakes of successful businesses to become one.
Using KPIs to Succeed
Almost every big organization uses KPIs, and you need to start using KPIs as well. Key Performance Indicators (KPI) have a bad reputation, but that is just because they are misused by some organizations to squeeze work out of employees. KPIs aren’t a tool that you use to make your people work more – they are a tool that can make the execution of your idea successful.
When you have a business goal, it is too broad. You may be planning to expand to a new location, or to increase sales for the next quarter, etc. These goals will require hundreds of different tasks to be performed. You need to be able to track the progress of these goals – are you going in the direction that you need to be going in?
The solution is to break your goals down into tasks. Once you realize all the little tasks that need to be completed in order to achieve your goal, you can simply see how many milestones have been completed and know where you stand. You can also immediately see if a task is bottlenecking the whole project and nip the problem in the bud.
Test, test, test — Marketing is always testing
You will be surprised when you find out how much testing goes on in some of the biggest marketing departments in the world. These major companies don’t just pull out successful campaigns out of a hat – they test each and every thing to make sure that their campaign will achieve what they want it to accomplish. Even if you have a small marketing budget you should be A/B testing your digital marketing to find out what approach is more lucrative.
Marketing, Sales, and Goals = Always think KPI!
You always need to measure the KPIs when it comes to your marketing campaigns. If you are running a digital campaign, then this will be easy to do. You will be able to see the Click-Through Rate, the impressions, and much more. If you are running a campaign on print media or TV, then you need to measure all the sales data to see if the campaign has a positive effect on your bottom line.
Automate a lot of things: Consumers expect you to be on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn. Pick at least 3 social media accounts and stay consistent; Your brand has to be consistent; Make your social media posting consistent. You can automate these things easily – there are many social media management suites that automatically push content to all your social media accounts, and they also track the engagement generated, which is the most essential KPI when it comes to social media campaigns.
Unsure about where you can start testing your marketing campaigns or don’t have enough budget for focus testing? Start where you are at—start locally, start with your friends and family:
- Tap in a community of people. People tend to act in certain ways, but when you target a community, you are defining a group which makes it easier for you to market.
- Always go back to your KPIs!!! When you bring up an idea, always ask the question: How is this going to convert?
“You need a SOLID, CLEAR GOAL and FOCUS, but you have to let it flow.” – Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO
Make incremental improvement and schedule meetings to discuss different topics to measure company’s results. Here’s a sample of Cannaeo’s weekly analysis:
- Monday, we discuss Google analytics
- Tuesday, we discuss Sales
- Wednesday, we discuss Social Media Marketing
- Thursday, we discuss about Blogging and Articles
- Friday, we have Key Progress Indicator Metric Analysis
See what works. Ideas are great, but focus on what works. You may have what you think is the greatest idea in the history of the world, but if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work. Move on.
About the Author: Carlo Desierto is a serial entrepreneur with over a decade of experience in business startups. He has founded, built intrinsic value, and sold several companies in which he sits as an adviser for the Board of Directors. Carlo has interviewed over 200+ entrepreneurs and published mini-biographies for new digital media channels relating to entrepreneurship, health, self-help, futurology, and the green industry.