Measure What Matters in Digital Media
You have your digital campaign performance deck prepared, you go to meet with your CEO and she asks, “how many sales did we make?” You know that answer but your campaign wasn’t geared
toward sales, it was geared toward engagement. At this point you’re basically stuck. But simply knowing what you’re trying to accomplish is not always enough. First you need to make sure you’re actually measuring something that matters. It needs to matter to the business, your CEO, your internal partners, and most of all, your customers. Secondly you need to communicate what the goals are for each campaign and how it will be measured.
- Sales: Usually the holy grail of metrics. We all love sales, that’s what pays our salaries, bonuses and stock options. Measuring sales can sometimes be tricky since assigning attribution can be a challenge. I’m not going to go into all the technical approaches you could use to accomplish this but your methodology should be sound, logical and above all consistent. You don’t want to be called out that you measured sales a different way than for your last campaign.
- A subset measurement here could be click-through. Since the digital marketing team is not responsible (usually) for the website/stores etc. this is a valid way to measure success. Hey, you got the customer in the store.
- Engagement: Yes, I know engagement is dead, but, there are times, especially in social media where you care more about engaging customers than making a sale right now. But you need to measure engagement with other metrics in mind as well. Did the engagement cause a click, additional share or better yet, a sale.
- Reach/Awareness: The once common but now often maligned reach metric is a tricky one. In today’s world whether you’re advertising on websites, apps or social, reach is usually a matter of how much money you put against your campaign. A key metric then would certainly be what did it cost you to reach each eyeball. Then you should also look at secondary metric of what did the people attached to those eyeballs do next, if anything. Did they click on a link, comment on social, visit a store? Reach can be misused in reports but is still an important tool in your digital media toolbox.
You can certainly use all three of the above as campaign goals in order of importance, though I don’t recommend this. The important thing is that you decide up front what you’re solving for, what the appropriate measurement is and how you’ll measure it. If you have one takeaway from this; Find what matter and be consistent.