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Measuring marketing success

Marketing Metrics ROI

Click the image for a printable PDF.

Connecting Marketing Metrics + Business Goals


Tying your marketing efforts to your business goals is a critical and often overlooked step in the creation of a marketing plan. Rather than creating exhaustive metrics reports on a monthly or quarterly basis to explain the value of your outreach, choose a few strategic measurements to track that you can more directly translate into success.

Just about everything you use for marketing from your website to social media has analytics behind it showing your performance. Without taking the time to step back and look at how you are doing, how will you improve your marketing? Marketing measurement is crucial when it comes to increasing your business performance.

Are you using analytics to your advantage?

Did you know that organizations that adhere to well-established marketing metrics are 3 times more likely to hit their goals than other organizations? As a marketing firm obsessed with numbers and analytics, we have found this to be true.

The key is to take a good look at your business goals and find the marketing metrics that align directly with those goals. From there, you can begin tracking what works for you when trying to achieve those goals and what does not.

Everything we do from social media to SEO is backed by the data we find from our analytics. There is nothing that is more objective than your analytics, which is why we recommend using every piece of information you can that will help you when creating your marketing strategy.

When you’re reporting your marketing and sales success to a manager or board of directors, you often may as well speak to them in a foreign language if you’re going to communicate your success in impressions or pageviews. Instead, speak to them about the return they’re getting for their investment (ROI) by matching your business goals to a few key measurements that are direct indicators of the success or failure of those goals.

In today’s blog, we have shared two potential guides that you can use to start your tracking process. One is a quick, high-level, printable guide you can keep handy at your desk. The second guide is a more in-depth look at some ways you can measure your social outreach and campaigns. These lists are far from exhaustive, but should help you begin to measure the ROI of your marketing efforts.

Business Goal Marketing Goal Notes
  • Traffic to website
  • Number of calls
  • Number of emails
  • Number of downloads & subscribes
  • Visits to contact page versus number that actually complete form
  • Lead score or B.A.N.T. evaluations
Prioritize lead follow-ups by:





  • Increased conversion rates from qualified lead to opportunity
  • Overall decrease in sales cycle duration for qualified leads
Utilizing a CRM (Customer Relationship Manager) tool may help you more effectively measure improvements in lead conversion. May calculate by total number of leads minus conversions divided by 100.
  • Landing page for purchase conversion
Measure visits to a page that indicates successful conversion. Track this in Google Analytics’ “Goals” section.
  • Social media impressions & reach
  • Social media engagement (virality due to likes, clicks, comments, shares)
  • PPC ad clicks
  • Increase searches
  • New direct traffic to website from word of mouth, advertising or PR (non-digital) interest
  • Number of inbound links coming into your website (people referencing your material as authoritative)
  • Email subscriptions
  • Email performance (open rate, click-thru)
  • Blog subscribers
  • Website traffic
  • Lifetime value of customer divided by cost to acquire them.
  • Cost Per Action
  • Cost Per Click
  • Website traffic compared to leads/completed contact forms
  • CRR Formula: Calculate by number of lost customers from original number of customers divided by original number of customers for the given period.
REFERRALS & REVIEWS Use a CRM to track the source of your incoming leads to know how many come from word of mouth referrals.
pogo sticking social media

Pogo-sticking: how to keep users on your site

So what is pogo-sticking and how does it affect your website? Pogo-sticking is when a user goes back and forth between search engine result pages and individual sites.  Basically, if a user is pogo-sticking, they are not getting the content they are searching for, which forces them to leave the destination site quickly and move back to the search results. If a user is pogo-sticking off your site, you’re getting clicks, but you are also getting a higher bounce rate. Search engines keep an eye on this type of activity, and if they find that users are continually disappointed in your site’s content, your website will fall in their search page results.

What causes pogo-sticking?

Pogo-sticking can happen when you choose to target too broad of a term. For example, if you are trying to sell someone a catering service in Denver, targeting “catering service” is far too broad. You might attract customers from outside your service area, which will result in them quickly leaving your site.

You might also be using misleading titles or descriptions. For example, if a user searches “Who should I vote for for president?” and they see a link that says “Who to vote for? Presidential Candidate Quiz” they expect to click through to a quiz. If the landing page is actually just an article explaining the candidates’ ideals versus the quiz the user was promised, the user will most likely leave the site immediately.

Another common cause has nothing to do with your content and everything to do with your load time. If the landing page is chocked-full of slow-loading elements and the user only sees a blank page or half-loaded items, they might get frustrated and impatient, causing them to give up on your site.

site speed on google analytics

How to prevent Pogo-sticking problems and keep users on your site

Get into the searcher’s head. When they search the term you are targeting, what are they looking for? What answers or solutions are they hoping to find? Then, ask yourself, does your landing page deliver? If the answer is no, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have bad content, you could simply be targeting the wrong terms.

It’s tempting to target broad terms due to the high search volume, but more traffic is not a good thing if they are leaping right back off your site. Consider using long tail search terms that are more specific to the product, service, or information you are actually offering.

Make sure your titles clearly communicate what the searcher can expect from the content if they decide to click through. Don’t rely on click-bait titles. Eye-catching titles are important to attract clicks, but high-quality sites only aim for clicks from users who will be satisfied with the content they find.

Identifying and fixing Pogo-sticking issues

Google analytics content breakdownPreventing pogo-sticking is easier than fixing it, but that doesn’t mean past content is hopeless. Take a look at your analytics and narrow in on any pages that have a high bounce rate and low session times. If you see a content page that gets a lot of traffic but very low session time (time the user spends on the page), you likely have a pogo-sticking problem. If users are not hanging out on your page long enough to actually read the content, they probably didn’t get what they were expecting when they clicked through. Re-evaluate these pages and consider using more specific search terms or changing the title to something more relevant to the actual content.

You should also consider the web page load time as well as how your site appears on different devices. Analytics will show you the bounce rate and session time specific to different browsers and operating systems. Take a look and see if any browsers or operating systems have higher bounce rates than others, then test your landing pages to see if you can identify any lag or compatibility issues.

Give the people what they want

When it comes to keeping users on your site, the number one thing you need to do is give the people what they ask for. Search engines aim to satisfy users on the first click, so if your page is showing up high in their results, they expect you to be able to answer the searcher’s query effectively. Deliver on that, and you’ll see a significant increase in time spent on your site and maintain your high ranking with the search engine.

Have questions about how to make your pages user-friendly? Contact us so we can help!

facebook marketing strategy st louis Blank Page Consulting donated service

If you haven’t found success with Facebook, you may have skipped these important steps

 By Danni Eickenhorst (@STLDanni)

Facebook has the potential to be a game-changing social platform for businesses of all types, but as it grows in popularity, it also grows in complexity. For that reason, many businesses making the leap from traditional marketing to digital marketing find themselves overwhelmed. As corporate trainers specializing in guiding individuals and companies through the digital and social marketing realm, we are always looking for ways to simplify social media and the best way we’ve found to do this is by making people take a step back and consider the guiding principles apart from the ever-changing technology.

The principles of marketing have not changed – the methods have. Your marketing plan should be less tied to technology and more centered on the value and messages you’re providing and the behavior and needs of your audiences.

Consider for a moment the position of someone viewing an ad to like your page. Chances are that they fall into one of these categories:

  • A friend is connected to your page and in their mind has endorsed your brand
  • They have already had a brand experience and just realized they hadn’t connected to your page and want to stay in touch
  • Your page was served up to them by Facebook based on interest-targeting
  • They’ve generally heard buzz about your brand and would like to know more

Each of the categories above represents a different degree of connection – a different level of warmth to that lead. Studies consistently show that former customers that opt in to stay connected are going to be your warmest lead. They’ve purchased before and are likely to purchase again. These people are also most likely to convert into a brand advocate – liking, sharing and pushing your content on a variety of platforms because they love what you do. A 2012 study by Hubspot showed that people are 71% more likely to purchase a product or service when they are connected to your brand through social media. Yet another study revealed that that number increases to 80% if a friend or acquaintance has endorsed or reviewed your product or services positively.

When you are logged into your own Facebook account and you choose to connect with a brand’s page, whether you know it or not, you are saying, “I am cool with being passively marketed to.” Maybe you believe their information will provide some sort of value to your life, professionally or personally, but on some level, you’ve taken the next step to learn more about what they are offering.

Developing the Most Effective Target Profile

We mentioned earlier that, separate from a technological platform, your marketing strategy should focus on the needs and behaviors of your audience. This can be done by developing detailed profiles of your audience. These should include psychographic, demographic and community details. Without undertaking this exercise, every step you take after will likely be flawed, or less effective than it should be. This is the foundation of your marketing strategy. People often report that they don’t always see the return on investment (ROI) that they’d hoped with their Facebook outreach and this is in part because they did not spend the time they needed at this level, considering and developing an understanding of their various audiences’ needs and what value they are perceived to have – how they would go about providing a solution for those audiences through their product or service. <itemprop=”articleSection”>Community snapshot

Psychographic profiles

By psychographic, we mean that you will spend some time thinking about your audience’s experience and emotionally putting yourself in their shoes. Better yet, if you can feel what they are feeling, you will have a better chance at communicating a message that evokes an emotional response. A deep psychographic profile of your audience focuses on feelings, rather than facts. If you’re not comfortable with the idea of an emotional exercise, another option is to attend an industry event where many of your targets are in attendance and then to LISTEN. Hear the problems they’re working to solve. Decode the underlying needs they hint at it in conversation. Investigate to find out what keeps them up at night. Ask questions – but most importantly, LISTEN.

Demographic profiles

A demographic profile will consider their age, race, gender, occupation, interests, connections and relationship with your company. This will be key in Facebook advertising, which we will go through in depth later on today. This profile will tell you where you are most likely to find these customers. This data can be gathered from your Google Analytics Tools (Audience > Demographics) if you have them configured to gather this data. (If you don’t have that feature enabled, go enable it now for a future check!) Facebook also provides this information in the “Insights” area at the top of your page. Google’s information will be your strongest source, because they do a deep-dive into interests, technologies preferred, and more, in a way that Facebook does not yet offer outside of their paid tools. Your website data will also be stronger, because it will be more likely to paint a picture of a more interested consumer who has searched for your information and taken the time to engage with your brand on a deeper, more focused level.

Community snapshot

Finally, one tool that will help you develop an idea of where your ideal consumer “lives,” in terms of community, interests, businesses frequented, etc is Facebook’s Graph Search. This is a free tool provided to all Facebook users – and it’s likely one that you didn’t even know you had access to. Graph Search allows you to search phrases such as “Favorite interests of people who like PAGE NAME,” “Restaurants visited by people who like PAGE NAME.” and more. This will give you a sense of the communities they hang out in, what events you’re most likely to find them at and likely other insights, such as their general political or social leanings. This information can be used in a number of ways, including ad targeting. For more on Facebook Graph Search, click here.

Once you have taken the time to develop a well-rounded picture of your various audiences, you are ready to engage in marketing. You may also have a better sense of whether Facebook is where you will find that audience.

Truly impactful Facebook content marketing can be difficult to achieve and sustain. Just as with any other type of marketing, it’s all about being in front of the right people with the right message at the right time – but unlike many other forms of marketing, today’s digital platforms and the level of engagement are at the mercy of the platform developers and their overarching philosophy for what their channel should be used for – such as Facebook and Google., which both seek to provide users with the content they are looking to  The principles you followed to develop these profile are foundational for any marketing strategy, but they will remain the same, regardless of what changes Facebook, Google and other platforms will make in the future.

Developing an effective marketing strategy is an emotionally exhausting exercise at its best – a constant guessing game of intentions and actions, which we now must blend with data and analytics. Chasing a constantly-changing algorithm doesn’t make it any easier, but it is crucial to keep in mind that regardless of the way you format a post or how often you post, the most important part of your Facebook engagement is the value you provide and the way that you target that message. Rather than grumbling about the changes that are coming your way, it would the most productive use of your team’s time to roll with the punches and take the challenge to continuously develop stronger content. At the end of the day, their cousin’s cute baby will always out rank your customers’ interest in your brand – ALWAYS –  but Facebook is still an amazing tool to demonstrate your expertise, grow a brand – and, maybe as important as those – have some fun.

So, how does Facebook’s strategy of content delivery to their users affect you and your marketing strategy? I mean, right place, right time – right? Right – BUT if you take this thinking to the next level, you’ll quickly realize that Facebook users are primarily on Facebook to engage with their friends and family and to memorialize their own life experiences. They engage with brands because it is part and parcel of the Facebook experience – but a picture of someone’s adorable baby is always going to beat out your brand’s latest thought leadership blog. ALWAYS.


How I botched sharing social ROI – and how you can learn from it

tune out roi jargon

Early in my career, I worked as a freelance writer for companies who needed ad copy, research writers and web content. As social media grew up, I was growing in my profession as well, and quickly learned the potential power of this medium for my clients.
I can proudly say that many of my clients were the first in their respective industries to adopt social media – and that I was able to generate customers and revenue for them relatively quickly.
My BIGGEST regret in this part of my career, however, was that when I went to report these successes – and I mean HIT-IT-OUT-OF-THE-BALLPARK SUCCESSES– that I didn’t communicate these in a way that they related with. Instead, I presented leadership with social ROI and analytics jargon.The result?A group that was already skeptical about social media value quickly became more confused and defensive about digital marketing. Without realizing it, I was feeding into their preconceptions about digital marketing – (“She’s being paid to play on the internet.” is one I heard a lot) – even though I was doing excellent work.
This Friday, we are offering a FREE webinar at 12pm CST/1pm EST. I hope you can join us. I’ll be  sharing information on how to effectively and quickly measure your social media ROI (Return on Investment) – AND I’ll talk about how you can communicate these successes (or failures) in a way that your executive team or board of directors will understand – and support.
If you register by Thursday, we’ll also give you our Blog Content Checklist and Guide for FREE.