Just last year, almost a quarter of small businesses reported that finding the time and resources to focus on marketing is their top challenge. Another 33% said they aren’t sure if their marketing efforts are paying off.

Marketers aren’t just struggling to invest time in creating great campaigns. (More than 20% of small businesses have at least one person doing marketing in addition to other tasks.) There are plenty of folks wondering if the campaigns they create are even performing.

This struggle is especially relevant now with time and resources in short supply. Businesses are having to focus on crisis handling or retention, further limiting the time they’re able to focus on marketing.

We all know that optimizing for the highest conversion rate is vital, but the act of actually improving campaigns often takes a back seat. Lots of us don’t have the budget or experience to use pricey tools (or we might be using these tools incorrectly, pulling junk data). Without being able to draw on meaningful insights, many just don’t know where to start. Of course you want to improve your campaigns—but what should you change, exactly?

At virtually every conference, we hear about all the ways we can market better. But these recommendations don’t acknowledge the reality: campaign optimization is aspirational for most small businesses. It’s something to work on when you get some spare time or budget (if you ever get that spare time or budget). It’s something for someone…

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