So many metrics to use, so little time. Confused about measuring your marketing success? No worries. Here is a quick list of what to pay attention to depending on what you are trying to accomplish. Some of these are more important if you have a wholesale or large volume type business, say a supplement manufacturer. Some of these are more important if you are a retailer and need eyeballs (impressions) and a lot of individual sales, like a tack shop. Some of these are key if you do specialized custom work, like chaps or saddles.
Execs like to toss around alphabet soup letters like KPI, SEO, etc. Don’t get thrown off by this stuff. Personally, I detest business lingo; I feel like it only serves to make others feel like they are somehow not in the club if they don’t know all of the shorthand. But, you should know what it means, even if you aren’t throwing it around like popcorn.
KPI – Key Performance Indicator. Which are just the leading indicators if something is working or not, so they can report to their bosses yes or no. How many times did your “contact us” page get hit, and how many calls/ emails resulted. This is a pipeline indicator, meaning, does your funnel (more on what a funnel is later) select out the interested vs. the tire kicker. They called. It worked. You want more of these
SEO – Search Engine Optimization. SEO is the most important aspect of your website right now. There are books and blogs on this crucial pile of data. In a nutshell, it’s how many people searched on Google and selected your site/ page to get what they needed. Making sure that your site is in the top 10 returns when somebody types in “women’s English show shirt,” and then click on your site next. How to get them to buy is another blog topic.
If you want to measure Brand Awareness, you should pay attention to things like traffic volume (unique users on your site), reach (meaning impressions), exposure, and things like how far your messages are spreading. Do they get shared on social? Basically, do people know what you do and what you sell?
Engagement is another important one. Pay attention to your retweets, comments on posts, replies, and if people are participating. And which people. Are they your target audience, or are you drawing in lots of others, but not who you want? Is your community paying attention to what you are saying?
If you need to find brand fans this is related, and you should dig deeper into contributors and influence. Are people mentioning your brand as a reference? Who is participating in your online discussions, and what kind of impact do these people have?
Are you trying to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry? This is called Share of Voice, and you should track your volumes against your competitors. Pick your top three. How many conversations around similar products are centered on your brand? It would help if you also had an idea of SEO comparison for this group against your site. Use Moz.com tools to do this quickly and easily.
All of these combine to create a bigger picture of how your brand is viewed in your market. I use Google Analytics and Moz to get a picture of web performance and SEO performance for brand sites. There are lots more out there, but I’ve used these for a while, and they offer more data than you can usually use for a first-timer.
Metrics can feel daunting when you set out but think of this as a building block system. Get some data, understand what it means, get some different data, and build a wider picture of what your company is doing. Once you know what is happening on the interwebs, you can make smarter decisions about what to tackle next to sell more products.