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Why should companies spend 5 percent of their annual budget on marketing?

It’s simple: they want their product to reach as many prospects as possible, and their messaging to resonate. They implement thoughtful marketing strategies because they believe it’ll bring more customers, more referrals, and more revenue from existing clients.

Still, the only way to know whether companies are achieving those goals is by measuring their results, which take the form of marketing reports. Which begs the question: are companies investing in the right marketing tools or just wasting a percentage of their budget?

Cut to the chase. Not all marketing reports are created equal. There’s a huge difference between vanity metrics that don’t mean a thing, and actual great insights that bring you actionable knowledge for future marketing campaigns.

Here’s how to tell which is which and stop falling prey to (pardon our French) BS metrics that won’t add to improved results.

Marketing Reports: How to Be Sure You’re Getting Real Insights

The great thing about digital marketing is that it’s almost entirely trackable.

There are different types of reports you can view, and while the ideal reports will vary from business to business, here are a few important numbers you’ll want to keep an eye out for:
  • Number of completed contact forms
  • Number of calls
  • Number of appointments
  • Number of actual sales
  • Estimated or actual revenue (based on the data above)

By the way, all of these statistics should encompass all stages of the buyer funnel (awareness, decision, and purchase), so as to make sure no leads are slipping through the cracks.

Based on the insights above, it’s a great idea to back track the marketing “levers” that drive them, which are:
  • Number of clicks
  • Conversion rates
  • Open rates (for email)
  • Impressions
  • Reach

Identifying Areas To Enhance (Or Eliminate)

What you don’t want are insights without any solid meaning or explanation behind them. For instance:

Your likes increased 8%. Okay…that could mean a whole lot of things. If the chart doesn’t specify the reason for the boost in likes, let it go.

The same goes for increased (or decreased) reach and engagement. There are several reasons why that could happen. Can’t take any actionable insights from them? Leave it alone.

Relying on shallow data is like trying to win a match without knowing your score. You can see why that wouldn’t work.

Here are two simple examples:
  • One of our customers’ Google click-through rate (CTR) was way below industry standard. After analyzing real, actionable metrics, we figured out that either their targeting was unqualified, or their ad wasn’t compelling enough. We proceeded to fix the issues with marketing best practices.
  • On the flip side, another customer had a solid CTR, but still wasn’t generating any leads from them. The verdict: their landing page didn’t have a clear messaging and call-to-action (CTA), so prospects weren’t sure about which steps to take.

See how it should work?

The Bottom Line

Don’t be fooled by pretty charts whose meaning is unclear. More often than not, they truly don’t mean a thing. Instead, focus on metrics you can learn from. It’ll propel your marketing and assure you you’re getting the most for your money.

At Big Rig Media, we take a stand against crappy marketing. Come get to know us.

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