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NBAA Regional Forum Keeps Connections Strong

Our Wichita-based marketing communications agency considers NBAA’s annual convention a must-attend event. Surprisingly, though, we’ve never made it to a regional forum. That changed when we attended last week’s NBAA Regional Forum at Teterboro Airport. It won’t be our last.

The things we most look forward to at the national convention – staying abreast of industry trends and news, connecting with longstanding friends in the industry, forging new alliances – were all present. There was no shortage of networking opportunities with the record-breaking, 2,500-strong crowd. First Aviation FBO offered a bounty of 35 aircraft and 130 indoor exhibitors. NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen was on hand to speak, as well, presenting findings of a new report on government’s use of aircraft – highlighting the very real and positive role aircraft play in driving economic development, enhancing public safety/security, improving facility management and more. Good data for all of us who champion the use of private aviation.

Seeing Eye to Eye

In today’s global business environment, we increasingly conduct business via email, phone or online meeting tools. NBAA’s forums provide a much-appreciated chance to make the all-too-rare face-to-face connections – developing, solidifying or even reviving relationships.

Thanks to NBAA for its ongoing support of business aviation and for continuing to provide these value-added opportunities even when times are tough. Its forums, podcasts, email discussions, user groups, social media outreach and more all add up. The sum? An industry that’s overcoming challenges. Together.

Marketing Analytics Needed Here

If you trust your marketing instincts more than metrics, you’re in good company. A recent study of chief marketing officers* reveals that more than 60 percent of the time, top marketers don’t use analytics in their decision-making.

But don’t pat yourself on the back just yet. This might be an instance where being in the majority isn’t such a good thing. Know what’s loaded in your pistol before you start shooting from the hip.

Analytics Schmantalitics

If you relegate most marketing evaluation to post-effort determinations of ROI, ask yourself what’s keeping you from tapping into analytics sooner and more often. Maybe you’re unsure how to best use analytics or don’t trust what they reveal. Analytics can change the way you think. Convinced that Friday morning is the perfect time for a direct mail to hit? Analytics may reveal something quite different.

Measure Twice, Cut Once

Every part of your marketing mix benefits from analytics or measurement. This becomes even more important with ever-leaner marketing budgets and staff. Plot your attack before spending precious resources. Research. Survey your customers. Tap into existing data.

Start with your digital tools. Their wealth of marketing intelligence begs for analysis and action. Not just after your AdWords campaign ends. While it’s going. Monitor and adjust. Make your campaign dynamic and nimble – with results that’ll make you proud.

Invite Change

Most companies consider their websites their No. 1 marketing tools. Providing anytime, anywhere information. Yes, you can build it and they will come, but watch and learn. Your site will work harder and smarter if you use analytics to track how people use it – where they’re coming from, where they enter, what they do once they get there, how fast they leave – and from what page.

You value your customers. You want them for life. And you want more just like them. Tracking their loyalty could reveal unexpected insights. Ones that affect your future plans. And deliver stronger performance long-term.

But, of course, don’t just trust your gut. Listen to what the numbers say.

*February 2012 CMO Survey