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2011 is here. A new decade begins—and, along with it, a new list of resolutions. A key topic of the last decade was marketing accountability in all its forms—marketing measurement, marketing ROI, marketing effectiveness, and so on. It doesn't look like the focus on this topic is going to change anytime soon.

Recent studies by CMO.org and Forbes Insight indicate the emphasis on marketing accountability will persist into the foreseeable future.

Maybe you're asking yourself, What more can I do? As a marketing professional, you're tackling the problem by adding Web analytics tools and marketing-automation systems.

Since 2001, VisionEdge Marketing has conducted research in the area of marketing performance measurement and management (MPM). In the past decade, to optimize their performance, organizations have steadily invested in developing and implementing processes to measure and report their progress toward key outcomes and objectives. But there are still some important gaps to close.

The following five resolutions can help improve marketing measurement and performance as you start the new year.

1. Resolve to create a direct line of sight between marketing activities and business results

Marketing's inability to definitively link its contribution to business outcomes is due to its method of tracking. Commit to improving the link between Marketing and business results. One option is to use a mapping methodology.

2. Resolve to select outcome-based metrics.

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image of Laura Patterson

Laura Patterson is president and founder of VisionEdge Marketing. For 20+ years, she has been helping CEOs and marketing executives at companies such as Cisco, Elsevier, ING, Intel, Kennametal, and Southwest Airlines prove and improve the value of marketing. Her most recent book is Metrics in Action: Creating a Performance-Driven Marketing Organization.

Twitter: @LauraVEM