The 70-20-10 rule of marketing

For years, there was always a line in advertising (apart from the tagline) that separated mass media from everywhere else. Mass was above the line, everywhere else was below. Enough pundits have spent enough screen real-estate (ok I’m trying to come up with a more internet appropriate term to “spilled enough ink”) talking about the death of the line or the death of mass media and I don’t have much more to add to that subject here.

I would like to suggest an alternative for marketers as discussed with me by a former colleague:

70% of your budget should go to efforts with a fairly known ROI

20% of your budget should go to efforts that push the creative boundaries and have a lesser known or harder to callculate ROI

10% of your budget should go to purely experimental efforts

What do you think?

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3 comments so far

  1. David Chan on

    First off I just want to say that the biggest obstacle companies face, and the one that prevents them from straying from the usual marketing strategies, is this obsession with ROI. ROI is an archaic term that needs to be left behind as far as marketing goes. Web banners are the backbone of Internet advertising because of ROI, and honestly what was the last effective web banner you have saw? ROI doesn’t mean much of anything except give people a false sense of security.

    I don’t think a rule can be used when looking at how to spend your marketing dollars, instead I think companies need to just look at their markets and let that dictate where the money goes. Usually experimental campaigns in digital or social media require a fairly tech-savvy audience, so if that is your market then try something more experimental, if not then maybe you should look at either traditional media or something that may bridge the gap.

  2. jdojc on

    David, I agree that it’s not always easy to come up with an ROI for everything you do in business nor does it always make sense to do so, but you do need to measure the success of your marketing efforts somehow. What would you replace as a success metric other than ROI?

  3. David Chan on

    Sorry when I refer to the ROI I don’t mean the term in general to be archaic, but the tendency to strictly base it only on page-views and click-throughs. The issue is those don’t necessarily mean the return was positive.


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