Metrics: More than Clicks
Analytics is more than just a convenient way to track how many clicks you get – it’s about making your marketing make sense, connecting to your consumer, and creating a two-way street between you and your buyer, and you and your sales team. It does a lot! Getting comfortable with the idea of analytics, and more importantly, learning to rely on the insights you draw from your data will give you the clearest picture of the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and overall content strategy.
Now, as I have argued elsewhere, when it comes to planning your content strategy, make sure to place brand awareness at the top of your list of marketing goals. Of course, making brand awareness a goal also requires a means to measuring your progress toward. For that, you need the right metrics. And the most obvious metrics to track for awareness are visits and visitors. You want to see these numbers going up as you work to increase awareness. Pay attention not only to visits but also to unique visitors. One unique visitor can trigger several visits so you want to make sure the number of unique visitors is increasing.
Along these same lines, you’ll want to take a look at your traffic mix and ensure that the percentage of new visitors is increasing. If the percentage isn’t increasing, but the number of unique visitors is, that’s also a good sign – especially if you already have a high percentage of new visitors. The importance of new visitors is even more important if you’re running a PPC campaign. You want to make sure that you’re not simply attracting the same people over and over again.
Here's a quick list of metrics (and definitions) that provide useful inidcators of brand awareness:
- Unique Visitors: Unique visitors refers to the number of distinct individuals requesting pages from the website during a given period, regardless of how often they visit. Each individual is counted only once in the unique visitor measure for the reporting period.
- New Visitors: The number of Unique Visitors with activity including a first-ever Visit to a site during a reporting period.
- Direct Visits: Direct traffic contains all visits to your website in which people arrived at your site directly (by typing the url) or via a bookmark.
- Audience Shares:The number of times that users shared your content on a channel.
- Followers:The definition of a follower can change depending on the channel. However, a follower generally refers to a visitor who has committed to receive updates of your posts and (as per the term) follow any new information your company has to share. Followers thus provide a good indicator of brand awareness.
- Inbound Links: An inbound link is a link coming from another site to your own website.
- Referring Domains: Indicates a URL that refers to one of your sites.
After you've gathered all of the appropriate brand awareness data, it's time to take action. What does action resemble? Well, this is usually specific to your company and your local marketing plan; the big idea is to use this data to shift your strategy.
Ask the hard questions. What could you do better to imptove your reach and engagement? Are you posting to the channels most relevant to your target audience? Are you distributing the content . effectively? Which specific pieces of content just aren't drawing visits? Are certain topics not resonating? When developing content for brand awareness, veer toward shorter driver content with a lot of visuals. to employ a lot of visual content.
Brand awareness data pushes you to get on the street level with your brand awareness campaign and make the necessary changes to move your company forward.
Questions? For more information on data and analytics, or more general guidance on how to improve your B2B digital marketing strategy, feel free to contact us!