Metrics In Marketing: Let Analytics Do The Talking

Let’s admit it: it’s all about numbers really. Everyone from top-line C-level executives to the very bottom of the organizational pyramid (and those in between too) is constantly battling with numbers, be it business profits, sales figures, or as is the catchword these days – marketing metrics. For several years, conscientious marketers have been diligently measuring the value of their marketing efforts, be it conventional on-ground approaches or the more advanced and digitized web of online marketing. Welcome to the world of Marketing Analytics. It is the practice of measuring marketing performance to maximize effectiveness and optimize ROI. Studying the numbers that determine the fate of their strategies helps marketers bring in more efficiency in their work and save precious marketing dollars.

Marketing Analytics goes beyond mere presenting of metrics. By deploying advanced analytics tools, marketers can glean pertinent insights into customer trends and preferences from the data gathered and use these insights to make critical marketing decisions. As a digital marketer, you have probably invested a huge amount of time and money on structured efforts to reach your target audience. How can you measure the extent to which your efforts have reached desired outcomes? How can you utilize these numbers to help you further enhance customer experience? And before you start thinking of the answers to these two questions, here’s the difficult one – do you really know what to measure?

For one, there is nothing in the online world that you cannot measure. The internet has thrown up a plethora of opportunities for you to gain insights into your marketing efforts with the help of numbers and trends. Whether you are blogging heavily, churning out dozens of website landing pages, doing SEO and social media, or simply blasting out marketing e-mails, there is a way to measure every activity you do on the WWW. The following should help you get started.

Website landing pages: The main aim of efforts directed towards website landing pages is to increase traffic. Increased traffic implies scope for more leads that can be converted into prospects. As a general guideline, you should be tracking the following metrics:
• Number of visitors (both new and repeat)
• Visitor sources (direct traffic, referrals, etc.)
• Web pages with the maximum hit list
• Web pages indexed by search engines
• Landing page conversion rates (visitors who fill up forms, make a purchase, provide feedback etc.)
• Landing page bounce rates

SEO: SEO requires tracking of a complex set of metrics. These numbers will give you a better idea whether your content marketing strategy has reached its goal. Track the following key metrics when monitoring your SEO efforts:
• Keyword ratings
• Search engine ranking
• Traffic from organic and inorganic search
• Link backs from other websites

Pay-per-click campaigns: This is one of the widely used online marketing tools and perhaps one that requires careful analysis since you are measuring the results of something you are paying for. Tracking these metrics will help you justify your web RoI:
• Website click-through rate
• Cost per click
• Cost per lead acquisition
• Return on advertising expenses

Blogging: A blog essentially showcases you as a thought leader in your space and you can capitalize on your blog to acquire leads and effect conversions. The below metrics will help you evaluate your standing in the blogosphere:
• Blog site traffic
• Referrals
• Reader comments
• Leads acquired

Social media marketing: There are numerous tools available online to measure the effectiveness of your social media moves. With social media being the order of marketing today, here’s what you need to measure:
• Audience growth (Facebook page likes, Twitter followers)
• Audience engagement and conversations
• Brand visibility
• Social media traffic

E-mail marketing: E-mail marketing will never go to the grave. In the coming years, conventional e-mail marketing will take on a more structured approach. Measure the following metrics to ensure your organization is not stuck with campaigns that end up in readers’ spam boxes:
• Bounce rate
• Delivery rate
• E-mail list growth rate
• Click-through rate
• Sharing/forwarding ratio
• RoI per e-mail campaign

Once you have a clear idea of the numbers each of your marketing channels throw up, you can identify which of them work for you and steer your efforts in that direction. Online marketing strategies make sense only if they yield a considerable return on your investment. And by tracking relevant metrics systematically, you can revisit your core strategies to guarantee key benefits in the long run. As they say, ‘you cannot improve what you cannot measure.’

About the Author

Founded in 2008, CMO Axis is a global pioneer in Sales and Marketing Process Outsourcing with a vision to deliver transformational business and operational advantages to global organizations and marketing teams through a combination of strategic advisory, shared services delivery and business-results focused outsourcing.

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