Denise Dunckley, President Crossroad News: May-June Issue 2003
"Are We There Yet?" by Denise M. Dunckley

"Why?" A seemingly straight-forward question, right? Children ask it all the time! Well, as it relates to marketing, and building successful marketing programs, it's a question every senior executive and marketing-person should add to their repertoire. That along with the others, 'Who? What? When?' etc.

Most companies invest in advertising, communication programs, and sales initiatives- totaling in some cases substantial percentages of corporate revenue. In order to validate those expenditures, executives need ask those questions in order to accurately measure their Return On Investment (ROI). If you are investing in advertising, for example, it should be in the forefront of your mind to ask:

Though these questions may be tough to answer, (especially since advertising has long been considered hard-to-measure) if no one can discuss results associated with ROI - how do you know there are not other marketing initiatives which would be better suited to directly improve revenue growth? The potential options for marketing diversification are enormous. For example, an executive may ask:

As well, executive should continually ask:

Building successful marketing programs is not solely based on creativity and ingenuity - yes that helps - but successful programs are built on measuring ROI, and being able to prove you are moving in the right direction. So go ahead, ask the really tough question, "Are we there yet?"