Everyone wants to know how effective their marketing campaigns are. How do you judge the ROI of Internet marketing and its accountability? Updates on website visits, open rates, followers and friends are no longer sufficient. This is where a dashboard can help. What is a dashboard? A dashboard gives an at-a-glance view that quantifies the overall impact marketing has on the business and how marketing initiatives increase customer acquisition, retention and revenue.
Blue Interactive Agency understands the importance a marketing dashboard has on a company's marketing plan. We hold monthly dashboard meetings to discuss past results, brainstorm on strategy and keywords to determine if any course adjustments are necessary. Blue Interactive prepares monthly dashboard reports for its customers so they know how they are ranking on search engines, what words they rank for and what keywords are needed to focus on. Also included in our reporting is the number of website visitors, open and click rates, Twitter followers, Facebook counts and how much the company is being discussed on the web.
Creating a dashboard can be an expensive and time-consuming job, but the marketing analytics it provides are invaluable. There are five basic steps to creating a successful dashboard:
Align Marketing to Business Outcomes
This step may seem obvious but it is often overlooked. You need to know what business needles, or outcomes, you want to improve and that need to be on the dashboard. You need to understand which customers (new or existing), how many and what products and/or services you want them to purchase. You can then develop measurable marketing objectives and define the strategies, programs and tactics to support those numbers and/or objectives.
Choose your metrics
You need to select the metrics you will be using to measure your marketing's impact, efficiency and value. The metrics relate to how well marketing is affecting market share, growth, and customer value and customer equity.
Typically, metrics are from the following categories: customers (acquisition, retention, value); products (adoption, innovation, price, and margin); competitive positioning (market share, brand preference); and financial (budget, payback).
Document the data chains
Create the data chains between the marketing activities and programs (number of webinar participants), objectives (number of qualified leads) and business results (new opportunities added). Data chains help visualize the link between programs, strategies, objectives and outcomes. These are vital to framing the marketing dashboard.
Acquire the Data
Measurement requires data, which means you need to know what data you have and what data is missing.
Validate and review
Work out any process, data and measurement issues before you purchase a dashboard software product. Eventually, you will be able to produce a pilot, after which you can take your dashboard into production. That is when you should explore how to automate the reporting.
Develop an alpha dashboard to validate the data, data chains and process. The alpha can reveal whether the marketing dashboard captures the performance information you want; decide if any changes are needed to the dashboard, measurement and reporting processes, and create a beta version.
Blue Interactive Agency understands the importance of marketing and the use of dashboards for analysis of the effectiveness of a marketing plan. Our monthly reports give our customers a visual look at their marketing analytics and the health of their programs and campaigns. The creative team at Blue Interactive knows how to interpret the results, then plan and implement the strategies to get you the desired results.