By Stephen Peters, Senior Email Marketing Strategist, Content Marketing
In this day and age, it’s imperative for companies to capitalize on the plethora of data available to them. There are all sorts of tools and avenues to capture this data and companies that don’t utilize these tools are way behind the eight ball when it comes to marketing in 2016.
With each passing day, customers – existing and potential – are leaving digital fingerprints everywhere on the web. Whether that is while at work, on their phone, browsing Facebook or reading a blog, there is an opportunity available for a marketers with every click or tap.
The good thing with all these online interactions – whether it’s between two consumers or a consumer and a company – there are so many metrics that companies can be tracking to help fine tune their marketing strategies to maximize their ROI, return on investment.
When it comes to your company’s campaign, the metrics you’ll inevitably end up using will be reliant upon what goal is deemed most important. All projects are different, which can be said even inside one company – one goal could be customer acquisition while the next could be building branding awareness.
So with that said, here are four essential metrics companies should be tracking in their marketing campaigns.
- Bounce Rate: The average number of visitors who have left your website after only visiting one page – possibly coming to the website on an entrance page (click through from an ad, perhaps). It is also possible for each page to have its own bounce rate.
A bounce rate, though, is all relative. A particular page could be higher than industry averages or average of other pages on your website because those leaving that page may have found exactly what they’re looking for and don’t need to go anywhere else on your site. A customer could also have been created when they utilized the “contact us” page appropriately.
- Channel-Specific Traffic: This refers to where just before coming to your website, or what door, so to speak, they used to come to you.
Those channels are: direct (those who directly type in the company’s URL to visit the website), referral (those who come to your site from another website, usually by clicking a link that directs to your company’s site), organic (those who use a search engine and choose your website on the results page – this is generally non-paid) and social (those who arrive to your site via social media, which is a great indication of your SEO and social engagement).
- User Demographics: This is a tried and true metric of marketing, but it cannot be overstated enough. If you’re not targeting to the right audience, whether it’s by age, location, gender or any other quantifier, then you’re essentially throwing mud at the wall and seeing what sticks. Every company needs to identify the ideal consumer for their product or service to really hone in its marketing strategy.
When you can see where, or how old the audience is, you are able to discern whether the intention of your strategy is meeting its intended goal or not.
- New vs Returning Visitors: Want to know how well received your website is based off an existing campaign? This metric will tell you just that. New visitors could come from a variety of reasons, such as a response to being mentioned on a different website/blog or an increase in budget for a paid campaign. A new email campaign could lend itself to an uptick in returning visitors, which could mean your email campaign was a success.
Just remember that no two campaigns, just like companies and goals are the same. While one metric or set of metrics may work for one campaign, it doesn’t mean it will carry over to the next. These data points are the vehicles that make your goals real and concrete, and make your attempts at reaching them observable and quantifiable.
Stephen is a communications graduate from the University of Texas at Arlington, with a focus on journalism. Stephen has worked for the Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, ESPN Radio and freelanced for a number of other entities, which include newspaper, magazines and marketing. You can find Stephen on Twitter – @iamspeters or LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephenpeters7