Much business marketing these days is carried out digitally. One of the key benefits of this compared to more traditional marketing methods, is that everything is wholly trackable. Built-in or add-on analytical software means that data can be extracted and analysed to see how well campaigns and marketing initiatives are performing.
The importance of monitoring performance
When it comes to marketing, business owners want to make sure they are getting the best return on their investment (ROI).
Marketing investment typically goes towards two objectives. First, to raise awareness of your business (brand awareness) and second to generate new leads, or customers (lead generation).
Lead generation is typically easiest to track, as it is tangible progress that can be calculated by the number of new enquiries and new customers per day, week, month, year.
Brand awareness is less tangible, but in general your marketing strategy can be monitored in terms of:
- the volume of people you reached
- how engaged they were
Tracking certain metrics ensures that your marketing campaigns are reaching the right audience and creating good levels of interest.
Making educated marketing decisions
Analysing your marketing data may seem like a chore, however it is absolutely essential to make key decisions and ensure your budget is always being used to the best advantage.
It allows you to make educated decisions about things, such as:
- which web pages need further improvements
- which blog topics are best to write about for engagement
- which day of the week is best to send email campaigns
- which hashtags are best to use on social posts
When analysis is carried out properly, you can fine tune your marketing activity to the tasks that perform well and cut out other activities that don’t.
This saves time and budget and ensures you are also building up to meet the demand of your target audience, not just ploughing forward with the things you think are going to work.
Here are some ways to track your marketing performance:
(1) Analysis of website performance
Google have an analytical online tool that is essential to track the performance of your website. It is free to use and easy to set up.
Google Analytics tracks many useful statistics including:
- Number of Visitors to your website, including new and returning visitors
- How the Visitors arrived at your website, for example, via searching, via an email campaign or via social media channels
- The average time your Visitors stayed browsing the site
- How many pages, on average, your Visitors viewed
- The percentage of Visitors decided instantly this site wasn’t what they were looking for and therefore left the site before browsing, known as the Bounce Rate
- The location of the Visitor + some information about their profile; age, gender etc
- The pages that attract the most visits
- + much more
Having Google Analytics linked to your website is essential for all website owners to track the performance of their website.
To assist you further, analysing this data helps to track trends and see overall performance over time-periods.
(2) Analysis of newsletter performance
If you use a software, such as Mailchimp, to send marketing emails, you will be able to use their integrated reports to extract data that can be mapped and analysed.
If you upgrade to their Pro version there are even more reports available, but even with the standard package, you will be able to access important information about your campaigns.
- Deliveries – the size of your mailing list minus the emails that bounced
- Opens – the number of people that opened the email
- Clicks – the number of people that clicked the links
- Unsubscribes – the number of people that unsubscribed
It is also possible to segment the database you hold on the system, to target specific segments of your subscribers or clients. This can then make up for more detailed campaign management and subsequent analysis.
(3) Analysis of social media performance
Most social media channels have a built-in tool that shows the performance of the posts and campaigns.
Twitter shows things like number of impressions, likes and retweets. LinkedIn shows number of impressions, likes and shares. Instagram shows number of likes and comments. And, so on.
The important thing is to ensure that reporting is a regular task and that date is also tracked month-on-month to ensure you are making progress overall.
There are also many other add-on software programmes that pull all statistics together into concise reports.