You must pay attention the data points that matter!
Long gone are the days when digital marketing was based on gut feel and what looked good. The industry knows data is critical to a successful strategy. The hard thing is knowing which data points to pay attention to – separating the signal from the noise.
With so much of marketing being quantifiable nowadays, it can be easy to get lost analyzing the wrong data and wasting time which could be better spent elsewhere. Preparing a comprehensive marketing plan before you close on your priorities for 2022 can save you some of these troubles.
Consider what your ambitions are and what metrics you’re going to use to judge your effectiveness. Each business will have their own specific goals which change the priority of the data points below, depending on what is needed most by them at that time.
Here are five of the most important data points you must include in your digital marketing strategy to maximize effectiveness.
Good digital marketing takes budget ceilings and ROI into consideration, so it’s critical for marketers to make the most of their limited resources. As a metric, cost-per-lead is particularly useful to keep track of in a segmented fashion, with drill-downs by channel and content type. This allows you to make educated decisions about where the right places are to invest in the future.
Keep in mind the pareto rule of 80/20 rather than trying to have a presence everywhere. If you find that most of your leads are coming from one channel, then invest more time there where you may see cheaper results rather than pumping money into channels which aren’t offering a good return on investment.
Within a platform, you should also watch which types of content are generating the most leads and their relative costs. For instance, native content promotion ads have been shown to be far more effective than banner ads. If you’re finding potential customers consistently telling you that they found you through one post, then it makes sense to create more content similar to it.
Lead conversion rate
Inexpensive leads are great, but generating lots of them that don’t convert is a waste of resources and futile effort. The lead conversion rate of different channels and messaging can show a company where the highest quality leads are coming from.
A low lead conversion rate could mean your marketing is poorly aligned with your actual product. It’s common for companies to use memes to grow their social followings, for example, yet if those memes lead to the wrong type of people clicking through to your site then it becomes a waste of time.
Consumers who are interested but ultimately don’t buy might feel as if they are being misled, and collecting feedback from these people can be a big help to address the underlying issue.
Marketers may be aware that the average lead conversion rate is very low, but this masks considerable variation. The top 10% of converters have a conversion rate of over 11%. This is a realistic goal for people to aim for by cutting down on low quality leads and improving the relevance of your messaging.
The use of buyer personas has become widespread, but a fictional persona is no match for real world customer data. It’s not uncommon to find that actual customers and followers are different to what you might expect.
On social media platforms such as Instagram, you can easily check breakdowns of your audience by going to the insights section. This shows you your followers’ gender, age and location breakdowns, key information which can help drive your strategy to focus on how to convert the people who are gravitating toward your brand. You may find the difference in cost-per-lead and lead conversion rate is huge between different geographies.
For instance, if you have a large percentage of followers in a region you do not prioritize, then you can change this and update your talking points to be more relevant to these people. This could then make them more likely to convert in the future.
Trends in search are changing all the time as different topics have their moment in the sun. The words people use to describe the same underlying concept change too over time. It’s particularly important in the most innovative industries, where consumer recognition of certain terms can evolve considerably, even from month to month.
Google Trends allows you to work out whether or not you are targeting the right keywords. You can see the peaks and valleys in the volume of demand for search terms and see whether your results match that of the overall market. Keeping an eye on this is critical if you’re going to minimize wasted SEO efforts.
Seasonality in search trends is also key to ensure the right digital strategy is being used at the right time. If your company sells multiple products, it could be worth emphasizing different products at different times of year, when the demand for them online is at its greatest.
Volume and sentiment of mentions
Most people don’t enjoy being bombarded with adverts, and 84% of millennials don’t like marketing at all. It’s important to be aware of this in your marketing strategy and encourage organic mentions that help the brand grow without feeling too corporate.
The power of an everyday person evangelizing your product can’t be underrated. If you’re generating content that people want to share, then it helps to signal you to create more that type of content.
On the other side, look out for negative mentions. These can give crucial information of where something is falling short so it can be addressed. It’s not uncommon for ads and social posts to unintentionally cause offense, and it can be a disaster for a company to not have a timely response.
A sudden spike in mentions means something major has happened, whether it’s good or bad, and the company must be aware of this to leverage it the best they can.
These are some of the most important data points to consider into 2022, but be sure to customize what you track depending on your company and what you wish to achieve.
Ensure that you are tracking your statistics regularly to avoid needing to make significant pivots in your strategy at short notice.