In our previous post in this series, we talked about analytics tools that businesses can use to measure the impact of their online marketing activities.
Today, we’ll explain how to develop your analytics strategy. As with any marketing or business strategy, understanding what you’re trying to accomplish before acting is the smart approach.
If you start collecting data and attempting to perform analysis without first understanding your online marketing objectives and desired outcomes, you will be flying blind and not focusing on the insights you need to improve results.
Before gathering data and reviewing reports, you must take a step back and develop an effective online analytics strategy.
3 Steps for Developing an Effective Analytics Strategy
1. Identify/Confirm Business Objectives
Understanding your organization’s growth targets and – more importantly – how this growth will be achieved, is a prerequisite to understanding the role online marketing will play in supporting the targets. This should direct all of your online marketing efforts and analysis.
Example: A business may want to double revenues for a particular product line over the next three years.
2. Establish Key Performance Indicators (KPI)/Metrics
Key performance indicators/metrics must be directly linked to business objectives.
How will success be measured against the stated business objectives? What are the leading indicators that will determine whether business objectives will be achieved?
Once you know exactly what you need to measure, you can concentrate your efforts on gauging performance versus these key performance indicators.
Example: A key performance indicator/metric may be the number of inbound leads generated through the website for the particular product line.
3. Set Specific Targets
Once objectives and key performance indicators/metrics are established, specific targets must be set.
Initial targets can be based on historical online marketing performance (if available), and/or forward projections driven by the business objectives.
Example: Based on a historical close rate of 30%, it may be projected that an average of 25 inbound leads per month must be generated to double the product line revenue over the next three years.
As you can see, you must be strategic and deliberate with your analytics strategy.
Although measuring performance may seem daunting, a pragmatic and effective approach is to concentrate on business objectives, how online marketing will help you achieve them, and measuring, evaluating, and refining online marketing activities based on desired business results.
Core Online Marketing provides the experience and skillsets small and mid-sized businesses need to be successful online. We do so through a strategic approach that drives results.
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