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Don't be Afraid of Marketing Metrics

Mention "metrics" to some (even experienced) marketers and the response will be cool at best. There are a lot of reasons that marketers shy away from metrics, here are three:

  1. They only run metrics when asked (quarterly or even yearly). In fact, management generally only asks for metrics when they sense that things are not going well. If that's the case, then the marketer should be scared. By the time the metrics are run it will almost certainly be too late to do anything about a failing campaign: too late to shift strategy. A better idea is to get in the habit of running metrics weekly and--during a period of crisis--daily.

  2. The marketer has a sense that the campaign is going south and isn't confident they will know how to fix it (so why shine a spotlight on everything with metrics). This is an issue for many inexperienced marketers, who genuinely don't have the same resources as their experienced counterparts. A better idea is to run metrics at least weekly anyway and run any issues past more experienced marketers in other organizations Mentors are great as are former marketing professors. Another excellent resource is LinkedIn marketing groups.

  3. A third reason that marketers dread metrics is that they are all flawed. This means that, for example, when website traffic is way down one week it's necessary to eliminate the possible causes that have nothing to do with the campaign. In the case of website traffic, one or more pages may be missing Google Analytics code. This happens A LOT. So the marketer is left trying to explain Google Analytics code to someone in management. Another example is the rapidly diminishing click thru rate on emails. Most marketers know that this is due to recently enacted privacy laws. However all management sees is a click through rate approaching zero. A better idea is to use a sophisticated analytics platform. A good analytics platform is definitely not free, but worth every penny.. The two that are most often recommended are Ahrefs and Semrush. There is a steep learning curve, but it's worth it Both of these providers have excellent customer support and will walk you through any issues.. They will even go through reports with you. They have just as much interest in your marketing success as you do. They are on your side.

There are a few other reasons some marketers don't like metrics. If not run often enough, they contribute to the sense of always being on defense

. The truth is that metrics, run weekly, backed by experience, and using a good metrics platform puts marketers back on offense!


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