What are marketing metrics?
Marketing metrics are the measurable data points used to assess and evaluate the performance and effectiveness of marketing campaigns, strategies, and tactics. It involves tracking, analyzing, and interpreting various quantitative and qualitative data such as website traffic, sales revenue, customer engagement, conversion rates, and other key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge the success of marketing efforts.
Using clearly defined and measured marketing metrics allows businesses to:
· Make data-driven decisions about their marketing efforts
· Measure progress towards goals, at every step of the campaign
· Optimize marketing budgets for improved marketing ROI
· Identify new opportunities to target and go after based on data from tracking
The use of metrics in marketing dates back to the early days of advertising when newspaper publishers began tracking how many copies of their publications were sold. Over time, businesses started to measure other metrics such as customer acquisition cost (CAC), customer lifetime value (CLV), and return on investment (ROI). Today, with the rise of digital marketing and analytics tools, businesses can track a wide range of metrics across multiple marketing channels.
How to choose the right marketing metrics
When deciding which metrics to use to track specific marketing efforts, it’s worth keeping in mind the following:
01. It's relevance to overall business goals, is the main goal conversions or is it brand elevation? The two can be tracked and measured very differently.
02. Measurability and accuracy both short and long term. Do you have the tools in place to track the chosen metrics, now and in the future? How long will it take or what kind of investment will it require to put those tools in place?
03. Comparability over time or across channels, for example social media and website metrics vary. Some can be used across both channels, like engagement, but would need to be calculated, collected and analyzed differently. Some metrics are unique to a specific platform - shares, for example.
Main benefits of using marketing metrics
Some of the main advantages of using or implementing metrics in a marketing strategy include:
Identifying areas for improvement of marketing and advertising campaigns based on the data collected as they run. For example, if you can see that after running a campaign for x number of days, that traffic metrics are low, its also going to have a knock-on effect on conversion metrics.
Optimizing campaigns for better results from this analysis, can help turn a marketing effort around, and in the right way. If website traffic is low, as a tracked metric, then owners of the campaign can figure out how to improve its assets or targeting to increase traffic.
Increasing ROI, based on constant optimization.
Marketing metric examples
Some usable examples or scenarios of marketing metrics include,
This metric can be tracked to identify pages that aren't keeping people on the page, or moving through your site domain.
Split testing (A/B testing) can be used to compare the performance of two different ad creatives. This then helps advertising execs choose the higher performing one for longer term gains.
Website owners can understand which traffic sources are bringing the most traffic and conversions to website, and focus on those more.
Average order value (AOV)
e-Commerce store owners can and should track their average order value (AOV) to optimize pricing and promotions.
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Best practices for using and applying marketing metrics
To use or implement metrics effectively in a marketing context, you should consider the following before getting started:
01. Set clear goals and KPIs that align with your overall business strategy. If you're a new company focused on brand elevation, over sales - make sure your metrics reflect that.
02. Choose metrics that are relevant to your goals and track them consistently over time. You can set different time periods depending on the metric and goal of the overall campaign.
03. Use analytics tools to collect and analyze data accurately and efficiently.
04. Segment data by audience, channel, or other factors to gain deeper insights.
05. Regularly review and analyze metrics to identify trends, opportunities, and challenges. Use this analysis to improve your campaigns and wider marketing strategies.
What to be aware of when using marketing metrics
When it comes to choosing and tracking metrics for your marketing campaigns, keep the following in mind:
Avoid focusing too much on vanity metrics that don't directly impact business goals. Sure, social shares are great, but if you're overall goal is short term conversions, they aren't going to be helping towards that.
Don't over rely on data without considering the broader context or user experience (UX). Users are individuals with their own way of behaving, data is just one part of the story.
Understand the potential difficulties that may arise in interpreting or visualizing data without proper training or expertise.
It's very difficult to measure certain intangible factors such as brand awareness or customer loyalty.
Marketing Metrics FAQ
What are the most important marketing metrics to track?
The most important marketing metrics to track depend on your specific business goals and KPIs. However, some common metrics include website traffic, conversion rates, customer acquisition cost (CAC), customer lifetime value (CLV), and return on investment (ROI).