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When I ran my retail flower shop my staff suggested and helped me create a form to keep track of where our customers came from, what “advertising” mediums were paying off and which ones were not. So every time a customer would call or come into the store we would refer to a from we called   “track your advertising effectiveness“which was conveniently taped on the counter next to every phone and by each of our cash registers at our sales counter. Each time we took an order we would ask the customer how they heard about us.

The form covered all the types of advertising we participated in (our marketing mix). I have updated that list to include online generated customers/leads via social media and internet marketing sites.  Next to each category was a space for their contact information as well as any other information we might need to follow up on the customer such as the date, the ticket number of the order they placed, if it was a referral, who made the referral, etc.  Here it is listed below:

Coupons

Postcards

Television

Radio

Newspaper

Magazine

Read an article about my company

Yellow pages

Online yellow pages

Website

Referral

Met at an event

Additional Tips:

Instead of running through the entire list simply ask them “how did you hear about us – “our company, my services” if they remember then we would simply check the column they mentioned and other pertinent data.

For example: If the response is “Television” ask if it was on cable or regular TV, if the response is Newspaper or Magazine it is important to ask which media, if it was an article about or by your company, ask what the article was about, and if they mention a website or social media site, you would ask which one it was. This will also give you an idea of where we should spend your time or advertising dollars online or off.

If the answer is Referral be sure to write down the person who referred you and send them a “thank you.”

Ask for their email address so you can keep them updated on your monthly specials, contests, company news. Most people will give it to you without question.

The “Track Your Advertising Effectiveness” form can help you track where the majority of customers are coming from, whether it be print, online or referral, etc. once you get in the habit of using it. It can be an excellent tool to discover what works and what doesn’t. You then know where to focus your marketing dollars and effort. You can find this form and many other marketing forms listed in Quirky Marketing Calendar: 365 Ways to Promote Your Business Using Zany and Non-Traditional Holidays by Heidi Richards Mooney.