Campaign metrics still not adding up

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After stints as a minor league baseball player for the New York Mets farm team and as an amateur hang glider, Bob Merlo narrowed his focus on marketing and never looked back. With more than 20 years of experience in strategic marketing and communications, Merlo has held top positions at Cadis Inc., Customer Insight Company and Exodus Communications before winding up at Deuxo.

Q: How is campaign management software changing marketing departments?

A: To date, it really hasn’t changed it very much. If you look at problems that people are facing in campaign management, what we hear a lot of is "I still can’t measure the ROI [return on investment] of my campaign dollars in marketing," and I think some of it has to do with the metrics that are traditionally measured by marketers in that arena. They tend to measure independent campaign delivery and measure success based on responses, which is one measurement, but not necessarily the right one to look at. A far better measurement would be to measure the contract closure based on interactions with those prospects.

Q: How much does this software typically cost?

A: There are now ASP [application service provider]-oriented solutions that people are beginning to deploy. Those have a far lower entry price than some of the traditional license solutions that had been in the marketplace. You’ll see those [ASP solutions] ranging between $2,000 and $5,000 a month. Some are based upon the number of users you have, or there is some fee and, incrementally, the number of users draws an additional monthly fee, which is usually very low—such as $25 to $50 per month. … The delivery of solutions is moving away from the pure licensed, high-dollar cost upfront and into a more expense line item-oriented solutions space.

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