Marketing metrics are essential and Oxford College of Marketing measures every stage of success. We measure the number of students that attend one of our intensive weekends, move on to take up a vocational course and sit exams and deliver assignments. We track the progress all the way through the process and we share our results – in fact our more recent digital students gained another 100% pass rate!
Today’s marketers are more informed when it comes to the quality and quantity of data available to them compared with marketers back when TV, radio and print were the main outputs and there was only so much that could be measured in terms of how consumers engaged with your campaigns.
Measuring success has never been easier thanks to the online revolution, as we now have website and social analytics tools providing every detail from who was looking at our websites to exactly what they were engaged by and for how long, if they shared or ignored anything, even how they found the site and what their reasons for coming there were. It’s powerful information, but for this very reason it can be somewhat overwhelming, and knowing the relevant from the irrelevant measurable information can be difficult. So the key to successfully utilising what is at our fingertips is to know which marketing metrics will give you the most valuable insights.
The Company Website
The website is the most important part of any company’s online marketing plan, and it should be the base of all campaigns, with one of the main aims being to drive traffic to the website. This is because a company’s website is one of the only places online that they have complete control over. It is part of your ‘owned media’.
Social media channels are great for reaching the masses in a fast and effective way, but what people tend to forget it that you only have a small amount of control over your page or account on a social media channel. You can personalise posts, pictures, media, and even create your own landing page, but that’s as far as it goes. Your website is under your control, and you can change every single aspect of it to optimise and customise your visitor’s experience.
When deciding which metrics should be measured on your website, you should consider your business goals.
- Do you want to generate leads?
- Be a voice of authority within your industry?
- Generate brand awareness?
If generating leads is your goal then you should measure the leads generated from subscription and/or inquiry forms placed on your website. If becoming a voice of authority is your goal then this should be measured according to the time spent by visitors on the relevant informative pages of your website. If brand awareness is your goal this can be measured by the amount of engagement in your site’s blog posts, i.e. amount of likes, shares, comments, social contact.
Google Analytics is a valuable (and FREE) tool when it comes to measuring metrics of a website, as it encompasses a wide variety of metrics which can be narrowed down and focused on depending on your particular business goals. And use the information gathered to optimise your website so that visitors are guided towards and encouraged to help accomplish your business goals.
The Company Social Media Channels
Social media channels should ideally be used to promote the brand and drive traffic to the company website, as well as give you insights into your audience’s thoughts and feelings towards the company and their products or services.
The best way to track your audience activity is to use general analytics apps such as Google Analytics. There are additional social media analytics such as Facebook Insights to track click-throughs on individual posts. In effect, patterns should begin to emerge that will give you a unique insight into your audience’s consuming habits, allowing you to accordingly adjust content that you share and post.
Other apps such as Sprout Social are also useful as they allow you to see the impact of your company’s presence on social media and how it can be improved.
You may have noticed there has been a mention of Google Analytics throughout, as it is a central and important tool in the measuring of success. Not only is it mainly free, but it is also considered one of the best and most powerful tools of its kind by marketers worldwide.
The data that Google Analytics provides will demonstrate
- How successful campaigns have been.
- With whom they have resonated most.
- In what parts of the world/country your campaign has had the most impact allowing you to capture demographic data.
It also shows you where these visitors have come from in terms of referrals (e.g. from Facebook, Twitter, etc.), PPC (pay per click) campaigns and organic traffic (i.e. from a search of specific keywords in a search engine). That last point is the most important in terms of SEO (search engine optimisation) as it shows you what keywords deliver visitors to your site and which web browser and search engine they used at the time.
Google Analytics can also show you as much detail as
- Who looked at which pages.
- For how long.
- Landing pages.
- Exit pages.
This is a great way to determine the attractiveness and engagement level of web content, which is the most important key to keeping people on the site. Also, what page was their exit page? This is generally defined as the last page the visitor looks at, and is often interpreted as being a page on which the visitor did not find what they were looking for and therefore ventured elsewhere. This is a powerful information into what needs to be changed on the site to generate future leads.
Not only can Google Analytics be used to see what HAS worked, it can also show you what areas of your campaigns and other strategies such as SEO are NOT working. For instance, when you look at the list of keywords that have been used to find your site in search engines, are there any vital ones that you use that aren’t on the list? This means those keywords aren’t doing their job, and you can then look at why.
At Oxford College of Marketing we do more than measure our students’ success. We provide our marketing students with the knowledge of how they can develop their organisations’ websites, create search engine strategies and improve digital marketing to take their businesses further and stay ahead of their competitors.