How To Make Better Marketing Decisions

The most important skill you can develop as a marketer is the ability to make good decisions. This includes decisions about which projects to work on, what to build next, who to hire, and how much time/money/effort should go into each of your initiatives. 

The problem with developing this skill is that it’s easy for marketers and businesses, in general, to get stuck in bad habits. 

Those habits make us believe we’re great at making decisions when, in reality, we’re just repeating the same mistakes over and over again until something goes right by chance. 

That’s why I wanted to put together this guide full of tips you can use to improve your decision-making skills as a marketer. 

These are all things I’ve learned along the way (sometimes the hard way), but they’ll help you change your mindset so that you start making better marketing decisions every day!

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Key Takeaways
1. Understand your target audience and their preferences.
2. Gather and analyze relevant data for informed decisions.
3. Stay updated with industry trends and competition.
4. Test and iterate marketing strategies for optimization.
5. Utilize consumer insights to tailor your campaigns.
6. Balance short-term goals with long-term business vision.
7. Regularly review and adjust strategies as needed.
8. Collaborate with cross-functional teams for diverse input.
9. Incorporate feedback and learn from past decisions.
10. Continuously adapt to changing consumer behaviors.

1) Stop Allowing Yourself To Be A Victim

This is the part where you might get a little angry. When you’re making marketing decisions, it’s important to stop all the blaming and complaining. Stop making excuses and start taking responsibility for your own actions. 

Take off your victim hat, step away from the mirror, and put on some big boy pants. If there’s something wrong with your marketing strategy, then it’s up to you to fix it! 

There is no one else to blame but yourself if something isn’t working as well as you hoped it would so take control of your life by being proactive instead of reactive!

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2) Believe In Your Ability To Make Good Decisions

  • Believe in your ability to make good marketing decisions.
  • Believe in your ability to make good marketing decisions that will help your business.
  • Believe in your ability to make good marketing decisions that will help your customers.

3) Don’t Do Things Just Because Everyone Else Is

  • Don’t do things just because everyone else is doing them.
  • Don’t do things just because they are familiar.
  • Don’t do things just because they are easy.
  • Don’t do things just because they are safe.
  • Don’t do things just because they are convenient.

4) Apply The 80/20 Rule

The 80/20 rule is a rule of thumb that says that 80% of effects come from 20% of causes, or in other words, the top 20% of your clients bring in the bulk of your income. 

This can be applied to any type of data, but it’s especially useful when you’re dealing with a large portfolio for example when you have thousands or even millions of customers.

It may seem counterintuitive at first: after all, if we know that many clients contribute very little to our overall revenue why not just drop them? Well…because it’s not their fault! 

They aren’t doing anything wrong (and neither are you). The problem is with the way we’ve segmented our analytics tools and metrics into categories like “web traffic.” 

“Engagement,” “retention,” etc., which means we rarely look at them holistically as part of one big picture until now.

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5) Constantly Ask “Why?”

Whether you’re in a meeting or working alone, ask yourself this question constantly. Ask it when your boss asks you to do something when your customer requests a new feature or service when the competition releases a new product. 

Start asking it before the “why” even comes up. For example, if someone asks for feedback on their business idea which is great! 

Take that opportunity to ask yourself what makes that user want to make money in the first place and why they chose this particular approach over others. 

If your boss wants more sales from his marketing team and gives you some data about ROI for various channels (which is always helpful!).

Don’t just assume those numbers are correct; dig deeper into each case study he gave and ask questions about how each number was calculated.

And whether there are any other factors beyond direct revenue that should be considered when evaluating performance at scale. And so on…

Asking why will help build up an understanding of your customers, competitors, and business as well as provide insights into what makes them tick and will ultimately lead to better decisions down the line!

6) Start at the End, Not The Beginning

The best way to ensure that you’re making the right marketing decisions is to start at the end. Know what your marketing goals are, and make sure they align with your business goals. Once you’ve done that, visualize the outcome of implementing each strategy. 

As far as possible, try not to get caught up in all of the details of how we’ll get there focus on making sure it’s worth going there at all.

Once you have an idea about what kind of results you want (and by when), break down this big goal into smaller steps that can be measured along the way. 

For example: if we want more people visiting our website over time and signing up for our newsletter using specific calls-to-action (CTAs).

Then our next step would be figuring out which CTAs are working best right now and testing new ones until we reach a point where most visitors follow through on one specific call-to-action or another (like downloading an ebook).

Once this plan is written down in clear terms so everyone involved understands their role in achieving those goals, hold yourself accountable for hitting certain milestones by sharing them with others who can hold themselves responsible as well!

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7) Know What’s Necessary To Win, And Cut Everything Else

What’s necessary to win and what isn’t? You need to know that.

In the early days of AppSumo, I made a lot of mistakes with marketing. But one of the biggest mistakes was that I tried to do everything for free. I didn’t have enough money in the bank to pay for email marketing or Facebook ads, so I decided to do it all organically (for free).

But what happens when you’re trying everything at once? You start getting lost in your own decisions. There were so many things going on that I couldn’t see which ones were working and which ones weren’t working because there were too many variables involved: 

What content was being shared more on Facebook than others; how much traffic was coming from Pinterest versus Twitter; how often people clicked on my images vs videos etc. The list goes on.

8) Dig Deep Into Your Data

Data is your secret weapon. The more you have, the better decisions you can make. The better decisions you make, the easier it is for you to learn and automate your marketing process. 

But how do we get more data? How do we know if our current strategies are working or not working?

This is where we start digging deep into our data to see what’s working and what isn’t so that we can make changes accordingly.

9) Organize Your Team For Success

  • Team members should be able to work independently.
  • Team members should be able to work together.
  • Team members should be able to work with other teams.
  • Team members should be able to work with customers or prospects.

Team members should be able to work with vendors and suppliers (for example, think about how much easier it would be for your team if they could access the same data across companies).

10) Think About Things From  Customer’s Perspective

The goal of marketing is to make your customers happy, so it’s important to consider their perspectives. As a result, you should think about things from your customers’ point of view and ask yourself:

  • What do they want?
  • What do they think?
  • How do they behave?
  • How do they feel about what you offer them (or how could you help them feel this way)?

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11) Learn from Your Mistakes (The Hard Way Or Otherwise)

One of the best ways to make better marketing decisions is to learn from your mistakes, and—as with so many things in life, the hard way is often the most effective. 

After making a mistake, find time to reflect on what happened so that you can determine if it was due to an isolated event or part of a larger trend. If it was just a one-off situation that won’t happen again, consider yourself lucky! 

But if this is something that needs addressing before it impacts your business negatively, again and again, take steps as soon as possible so that you don’t have to go through this process over and over again.

12) Break Every Rule You Can Think Of

The best marketers are the ones who break every rule they can think of. But, there’s a reason you should do it:

  • To make something better
  • To make something different
  • To make something more valuable
  • To make something more efficient

To make something more effective

13) Never Stop Learning New Ways To Do Things (Even If It Means Starting Over From Scratch!)

The most important part of a marketing strategy is learning. Learning in and of itself makes you better than your competition, who are not learning. 

If you are not growing as a person or company, then your competitors will pass you by and leave you behind. You need to constantly evolve and improve yourself if you want to stay ahead of the game.

Never be afraid of starting over from scratch again if it means improving upon what came before it and remember that failure doesn’t matter so much as how quickly one gets back up on their feet after falling (or being pushed down).

14) Focus On Results, Not Processes Or Systems

  • Focus on results, not processes or systems.
  • Don’t get caught up in tools.
  • Don’t get caught up in the process.

15) Make Actionable Steps Toward Improvement Every Day, Instead Of Being Paralyzed By Perfectionism

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. If you’re trying new things, you’ll inevitably fail sometimes and that’s OK! Mistakes help you learn and grow as a marketer and a person. It’s all about how you respond to those failures that make all the difference in the world.

Be flexible and willing to change your approach when necessary even if it means changing course midway through or backtracking on something previously decided. 

Sometimes we feel like we’ve got our marketing plan all figured out only to realize some key components are missing from our execution plan (or even worse: we discover some parts of our plan no longer work). 

Be willing to adjust accordingly as often as needed until you find what works best for your business goals at different times throughout the year (or month).

Making Better Marketing Decisions Is About Changing Your Mindset

What do you need to change about your mindset? That’s the first question you should ask yourself. The answer will depend on what type of marketing decision you’re trying to make, but here are some possible places to start:

Learn New Things

Start by learning more about how different audiences respond and what they like, then think about how this knowledge can be applied in your own business.

Change Your Perspective

Think about how someone who knows nothing about your company would view it if they saw it for the first time then try to see it through their eyes and imagine what kind of products or services would appeal most strongly to them.

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Change Your Approach Or Decision-Making Process 

If there are several options available for solving a problem or reaching a goal, which one seems best suited for achieving that goal? If there’s no clear “best” solution (or if all solutions seem equally likely).

Then consider whether there might be ways around the problem altogether for example by doing something simpler instead of something complex that will take longer but may still get results eventually (or even better). 

Also, consider whether changing one part of the decision-making process could lead to better decisions overall; 

Maybe switching from using spreadsheets at every stage of planning would make everyone more productive because everyone was working with real data instead of fake projections based on past performance while also potentially being able


My advice to you is to stop overthinking and start doing. Start with one of these suggestions, or come up with your own; just make sure it’s something that helps you to better understand your customers. 

As long as you’re putting yourself out there, learning from every experience, and sharing those lessons with others who might benefit from them too, then I think you’ll be fine.

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources to enhance your understanding of improving marketing decision-making:

Be a Better Marketer: How to Improve Marketing Decision Making Learn practical strategies to enhance your marketing decision-making process and drive better results.

6 Steps to Make Successful Marketing Decisions with Data Analysis Discover a step-by-step approach to utilizing data analysis for making effective marketing decisions.

4 Ways to Make Better Decisions with Marketing Data Explore four methods to leverage marketing data for improved decision-making in your business.


Here are answers to some frequently asked questions related to improving marketing decision-making:

How can I enhance my marketing decision-making process?

Improving marketing decision-making involves a combination of data analysis, understanding consumer behavior, and staying updated with industry trends.

What role does data analysis play in making better marketing decisions?

Data analysis helps uncover insights from customer behavior, preferences, and market trends, which inform more informed marketing strategies and decisions.

How do I use consumer insights to improve marketing decisions?

Consumer insights provide valuable information about your target audience, enabling you to tailor your marketing campaigns and messages to resonate better with them.

What are some common challenges in marketing decision-making?

Challenges include balancing short-term and long-term goals, interpreting complex data, and adapting strategies to evolving consumer demands.

How can I ensure that my marketing decisions remain effective over time?

Regularly monitor the outcomes of your marketing decisions, analyze their impact, and be ready to adjust strategies based on changing market dynamics and consumer preferences.