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Measuring Marketing – 103 Key Metrics Every Marketer Needs






Book: ‘Measuring Marketing – 103 Key Metrics Every Marketer Needs’

Author: John Davis


Publisher: John Wiley & Sons (Asia) Pte Ltd, 2006

ISBN: 978-0-470-82132-9

Measuring Marketing


In the corporate world, leaders often assert that “if you want to change something, you start by measuring it”. This concept was first applied in manufacturing process control. It was then adopted through many other business functions and is today being increasingly adopted to benchmark and improve marketing activities.

But can you really measure something as complex and intangible as marketing? Until recently, it seemed like marketing calculations were mostly done on the back of an envelope and accompanied by a lot of hand waving. Marketing initiatives were often justified with amusingly simplistic statements like, “If we just get 10% market share, we’ll have annual sales of ten million dollars”. Today the pendulum has swung the other way. Every marketing expert has a different opinion on what to measure, and the calculations are often dauntingly complex.


Enter John Davis, Singapore Management University lecturer and marketing strategy consultant. If you have read his previous books, like Magic Numbers for Consumer Marketing, you will know exactly what to expect. Davis has the enviable knack of cutting through complexity, and explaining underlying principles in simple, easily understandable terms.


Of course, there is something daunting about the idea of needing to know 103 metrics. That sounds like a lot of work – but don’t despair; it’s not as demanding as it sounds. Each metric is described succinctly in about four pages, and follows a set format which covers why the measurement is needed, how it is calculated and why it is relevant to the company’s marketing effort.


This structure means that you don’t have to read the entire book from cover to cover – in fact you wouldn’t really want to. It is essentially a reference book that you can turn to when you aren’t sure what a particular metric means, or whether it is being used appropriately. It is also a good place to browse for other more relevant metrics which will help to answer specific questions about your marketing program.


Davis takes a very broad view of what areas need to be measured, covering market, customers, marketing plan, product, advertising, branding, sales force, compensation and much more. The key metrics are grouped together under these themes, so you can select a topic of current interest and simply read about its relevant metrics.


Break-even analysis is a good example. Measuring Marketing explains that management needs to know how many units of a product or service have to be sold to offset the development costs. It then shows how to measure three relevant metrics: the number of units to break-even, break-even market share, and break-even for regular versus infrequent customers. Detailed examples are used to illustrate the calculations and show how to interpret the results.


This is a concise and useful reference book for leaders and marketers seeking quantitative measures of how well their marketing budgets are being used.


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