Fortune Marketing, professional Marketing Consultants for your small business.
Let's connect!

CHART: Typical Response Rates for All Your Marketing Activities

What Response Rates Can You Expect for Marketing Campaigns?

We know we need to market our small businesses if we’re going to build our brand and generate leads. We know we need to blog, build an email list, develop social media, email marketing and advertising strategies. But if we aren’t marketing consultants or experienced marketers how do we know what success looks like? What are good response rates for our marketing campaigns?

This is an important question to address, because I find that most small business owners have unrealistic expectations about the response they should be getting from their marketing activities.  This goes back 20+ years to my days of selling newspaper advertising: a small business owner would spend $100 on tiny ad (because that’s all they could afford) and expect it to bring on hordes of customers. Inevitably, they’d be disappointed and discouraged; convinced advertising was a waste of money. Sound familiar?

The reality is, Marketing Response Rates Tend to be Surprisingly Low

Take a look at this chart by and the DMA: 



SOURCE:, Data Source: DMA


As you can see, typical response rates for most small business owner marketing activities are abysmally low. However, in their blog, “Direct Media Response Rate, CPA and ROI Benchmarks”, notes a couple of important facts about the methodology used in this report:

  • 57% of respondents reported most frequently running B2B campaigns, with 32% mostly running B2C campaigns and the remaining 11% mixed. Some 56% hail from smaller companies with less than $25 million in annual revenues, while 34% are from mid-sized companies ($26-500 million) and 10% from large companies (more than $500 million). Slightly more than 6 in 10 respondents are marketers, while 16% identified as agency respondents, 13% as suppliers, and the remaining 9% as being from other company types.
  • For the study, respondents selected rates from a pull-down menu rather than directly entering figures. For each medium, questions were asked separately for “House” and “Prospect” lists. A house file is defined as “a list of current and former customers that come from an organization’s database,” while a prospect file is defined as “a list of potential customers that is usually rented.”

In my experience, most B2B  Marketing campaigns tend to get lower response rates than B2C campaigns. Also, is a relatively small sample of the small business population, with only 485 respondents; a majority of which were from companies less than $25 million in revenues – which leads me to assume most of these businesses have marketing departments and are therefore  getting higher response rates than the typical small business owner who is doing her own marketing, without the help of a Marketing Consultant or other Marketing professional.

One last note; the email marketing rate is for emailing prospect lists – that means, purchased lists.  When you build an email list of people who have opted in, our response rates will be much higher.

Improve Your Marketing Response Rates

Improving your email marketing, advertising, direct mail and other campaign response rates takes a strong commitment to testing, tracking, measuring, researching, collecting and analyzing data, and an abundance of patience. If you aren’t sure how to do all this- or your’re just frustrated with your marketing, a marketing consultant can help.

If you would like help measuring or improving your marketing campaigns’ response rates, a Marketing Consultant like Fortune Marketing is the best choice. It is well worth the investment! Contact us today to get started with a complimentary consultation.


You may also like
Read This Before Wasting Thousands on an SEO Consultant!
13 Scary Marketing Facts Small Businesses Should Beware Of!
throwing money down the toilet
5 Huge Money Wasters in Small Business Marketing
young couple shopping in city with bags and coffee
13 Things Every Small Business Should Know About Their Customers

Leave a Reply


This blog is kept spam free by WP-SpamFree.


Are You Ready to Stop Guessing at Marketing?

How much time, money and energy have you wasted? Sign up now to learn the strategies top companies use to attract more clients who are willing to pay a premium for their services.