New Chart: Online Marketing Is About Time (and Budget)

Jeanne Hopkins
Jeanne Hopkins



7 4 2010 6 54 49 AM I’ve been looking at this MarketingProfs chart “What is the Biggest Challenge for Marketers?” (MarketingProfs asked their readers a couple of questions on our behalf in March 2010) while I’ve been juggling multiple deadlines.  So it’s easy for me to understand and agree with the number one challenge – having enough time to execute against planned marketing programs and taking advantage of unplanned marketing opportunities.

Tied with “having enough time” is “having enough budget.” The two are both finite resources, but the difference is that many of us work late and extend the amount of time we put into projects while our budgets rarely get increased. So while budgets stay fixed (or shrink) time appears to be more elastic. There is nothing wrong with extending time to make sure programs are executed. It happens every day. The question you have to ask yourself is “ did I spend the right amount of time for the return?

Everyone talks about ROI, and that usually refers to results in relation to budget. But what about results in relation to the time and effort you put in? If having enough time is as big a challenge as having enough budget, shouldn’t we be evaluating projects as much in relation to effort as in relation to cost?

For many organizations that have small budgets but big hopes, time is their currency. In some cases, ROE – return on effort – is far more significant than ROI.

In fact, we’ve been thinking a lot about this at HubSpot and we’re curious how others spend their marketing time. That’s why we’ve commissioned Econsultancy to conduct a Return-on-Effort Marketing Survey . We’re asking all marketers to take the 8-minute survey.   In return, you will receive the entire ROE research report, not just the executive summary. 

Not only will this survey tell us about the best and worst return-on-effort marketing tactics but it will also help us with decisions about how we spend our time – and that will have a powerful affect on customer acquisition, company revenue and long-term marketing success.

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