Dear Agencies: Stop Validating Your Own Success Metrics – Part 2

Dear Agencies: Stop Validating Your Own Success Metrics – Part 2

December 3rd, 2012 // 12:31 pm @ // No Comments

Last column, I covered the often lack of reporting effectiveness for media agencies and how we can improve. To summarize, most of media agency reporting focus too much on the front-end media impressions/clicks and not enough on conversion effectiveness. The reason for that is that most of the conversion data lies with creative agencies, and it’s hard to integrate the two distinct data sets for a cradle to the grave analysis. However, even with conversion data, most creative agencies STILL do not do a good job on reporting what’s important.

The Purpose of Analytics

But before I dive any deeper, let me again ask a fundamental question: “What’s point of reporting and analytics within creative campaigns?” Well, most strategists/planners will say to measure the effectiveness of the particular campaign in driving strategic business objectives. And the creative/art directors will say to measure the effectiveness of tactical creative manifestations. With these two goals in mind, let’s look at some examples of creative agency reporting.

Mini/Brand Site Measurement Reports

One of the most common landing points for a digital campaign is the mini-site or brand site. Hence it’s only nature that we conduct in-depth reporting on this piece of digital assets. However, most reports produced by creative agencies serve none of the aforementioned purposes. Let me show you what I mean below:

Maybe the above report is enough for the judges at Cannes… BUT did it really give me any insights into why we’ve created this report in the first place? Keeping the two goals of analytics in mind, firstly knowing the bounce rate and UV/PV does NOTHING to help me understand if my digital asset is effectively serving my business objectives. Secondly, after looking at the top contents, I still have no clue how to optimize my creative to increase engagement.

Hence these reports are merely data puke, because we took the data from GA/Webtrends/Omniture and dumped it in a “Weekly Report” just for the hell of it. We don’t know why we’re doing it, we can’t get any business related insights from it, and most importantly I don’t know what ACTIONS to take afterwards. To better serve the purpose of analytics, let me suggested the following reports to measure digital campaign effectiveness:

From this report, I can gain insights on both aforementioned goals. The table on the left allow me to focus on metrics that tie directly with business objectives. As we look at the bigger picture metrics, we’ll begin to dig deeper and ask more tactical questions like “Why are my new registrations so low? Is it because of my content, and how can optimize my creative to increase my objectives?”

Those answers are delivered by the report on the right. The funnel analysis is one of the most effective ways to analyzing creative flow and user experience. From this report, we can see that in the 3 step process, 76% of users are not even making pass the 1st step. This helps us narrow down user design issues as well as making more engaging content that drives the call to action.

Great! How Do I Get There?

As you probably gathered, the above report is not a one size fits all. As business objectives on digital vary greatly within industry and companies. So how do creative agencies work this out with their clients? Allow me propose the following model for implementation.

Digital Marketing and Measurement Model

This model is a structured approach for agencies to better tie digital assets with business objectives. It originated from the analytics expert Avinash Kaushik. A detailed step by step instruction can be found on his blog. Let me summarize the steps below:

  1. Identify the business objectives for the digital channel
  2. Set concrete goals to how the objectives manifests itself on the website
  3. Selected a few key metrics as KPI’s as an indication for reaching each goal
  4. Set a target for each KPI metrics based on industry benchmarks as well as previous campaigns
  5. Identify the segments of people/behavior/outcomes to gauge effectiveness

An example of a completed model is shown below for a sample insurance client:


Using the above model, creative agencies can tie analytics to business objectives rather than reporting on shallow metrics to win creative awards. As I conclude this series, I’d like to emphasize the exact same point that I put forth in the previous column:

We as an industry need to understand that analytics is a tool to measure the delivery of digital marketing business objectives, rather than the verification of our own agency’s success metrics.

This article was written for ClickZ

Category : Blog &Digital Marketing &Featured

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