When you first start in digital marketing, you’ll find that many experts tell you to start taking action – never mind a strategy. This couldn’t be further from the truth, and here’s why.
Without clearly defined goals and plans, you don’t have a clear path to success. You don’t have a framework that can be improved, scaled and optimized over time. In short, you’re leaving the performance of your business up to chance; not the best idea.
This means your first priority should be understanding your company’s goals, your customers’ desires, and creating a strategy that can bridge the two at a profit.
The first step towards that is…
Putting it all in practice and reaching your goals
A lot of the time, your digital marketing efforts will turn an immediate profit. Here’s an example to illustrate what I mean.
Jack has a website advertising the home-cleaning water pumps he sells. The price he gets them for is $20 – and he sells each one for $50 a pop.
If Jack can figure out a way to attract 1 customer to his website for under $20, he turns an instant profit of $30 minus the cost of acquiring a customer.
So far so good, right? All Jack has to do is get paid, targeted traffic under a certain price, and he’s making a profit.
This is how things will work for you a lot of the time as well…
But not always.
A lot of the time, it’ll take a while for you to recoup your marketing budget. This is where having realistic expectations comes in – and here are the 3 key points you should understand about digital marketing.
- Your digital marketing should deliver a positive ROI. If it doesn’t, it’s a waste of time – and a drain on your business’s resources.
- You may not see a positive ROI immediately, for reasons that will be readily apparent in a second.
- Some efforts take years to yield a positive ROI – and it’s important for you to be realistic about whether you can afford to wait that long or not. If you can’t, there’s no shame in trying to make instant money. In fact, doing so will give you an ad budget to re-invest into long-term marketing efforts!
- You MUST have an end goal in mind and systems in place to drive your customers to that end goal. Even if you goal for marketing campaign is to get 1000 email subscribers and you allocate $10,000 for it. There is no immediate sale and no immediate ROI. But since you know that these people signed up for a free quote, you have 1000 warm leads. Let’s say the company provides home renovation services where the average project is $5000 dollars. This means that means when you build relationships with these people through email marketing and introduce them to your business and services, if you only secure 2 projects your marketing campaign is paid for itself. And you should be comfortable to close 10-20% of those quotes requests. Also, some customers might be just shopping around at this stage and so they asked for a quote. They might not be ready to buy from you right this moment, but once they see your YouTube channel, the articles you share with them through email marketing, testimonials, and just build a genuine relationship to the point that they feel they know you and can trust you, you secured even more customers than those original 10-20%. And that is why it is hard to estimate the ROI right away but with proper tracking tools you should be able to know who signed up from which traffic source and when thy made a purchase. With proper tracking, you should easily see, on average, how much each lead costs you and how much revenue each acquired lead brings into your business.
So long as you understand these principles, it’s fair to say you’re being realistic about marketing online.
Launching a marketing campaign online is one of the best investments you can make into your business. As with any investment, you shouldn’t always expect to make a quick buck – because trying to do so will rob you of bigger opportunities.
On the other hand, you shouldn’t put up with years of losses and sunk costs without getting anything.
To keep track of how successful your efforts are most platforms have metrics in place, which you should use to track the performance of your marketing. They give you extremely detailed information about who your prospects are; how much are you paying to acquire them; what actions they take; how far along they are in the buying process.
There are hundreds of different analytical metrics, which you can spend a week to study. Some of them are useful and some might be a complete waste of time to take into an account at all. To make your life easier, I made a shortlist of the most important ones you’ll need to use and keep track of to have a birds eye view about the performance of your website and marketing campaigns.
The Ultimate Guide to Marketing Metrics
The total number of visitors you get on your website each day, week and month will give you a big-picture of how your marketing efforts are doing. A steady increase is good; a sharp decline – not so much, and often signals that something is wrong.
Traffic by Source
Most modern platforms will show you where your traffic is coming from – and how many people came in from each specific source. This will give you an even better idea of what’s working well, and what needs to be improved.
The 3 broad categories are direct visitors, who typed your URL into their browsers directly; social media visitors, who come from websites like Pinterest and Facebook; organic visitors, who come from other websites and/or search engines.
Clicks/Actions Per Visit
This metric shows you what people are doing once they’re on your website. Are they clicking stuff and checking out other pages? Leaving reviews and comments? Or are they just leaving as soon as they the first page?
Your Clicks per Visit figure will answer all these questions – and many others.
Time Spent on Site
Traffic statistics show you how well you’re driving visitors to your site; “time spent” shows you how long they stay there. This metric is a good predictor of the quality of your content and your marketing efforts. This is one of the most important metrics.
A “bounce” is a website visit that is immediately terminated. The lower your bounce rate, the better. A very high bounce rate can be hugely problematic, pointing to irrelevant content; a poorly constructed website; misleading ads.
With mobile devices now driving well over 50% of all traffic in the U.S., it’s a good idea to see how many of your website visitors are using mobile devices. If the vast majority of them use mobiles, it may be worth it to create a website specifically for smartphones and tablets.
Cost per Click
This metric lets you know how much paid traffic costs you per visitor (i.e. per ad click). The lower your CPC, the likelier you are to convert at a profit and succeed in your marketing efforts. There are many ways to optimize your CPC – a few of which you’ll learn in section 5.
You’ve got to measure your conversions. This is the definitive way to see how you’re doing. Whether you’re looking to make sales, or simply get Facebook likes for a group, low conversions mean something’s going wrong – and needs to be fixed.
Click Through Rate
Your click-through rate, or CTR, is the rate at which people click on links in your content, e-mails and ads. Your CTR can be the difference between failing, barely breaking even and earning millions – so don’t discount the importance of this metric.
Cost per Conversion
This is a more “exotic” metric, in the sense that it can be difficult to measure – but today, most websites, including Facebook, can help you track it. That way, you’ll know exactly how much it costs you to convert traffic – and calculate whether you’re doing so profitably or not.
Your marketing efforts are never happening in a vacuum. There are always other things to do – and other ways to spend your money. Keeping track of your ROI will always let you know how efficient your campaign is – and whether it is the time to change something.
You Know The Metrics – Now What Do You Do?
Now that you know the basics of driving traffic and measuring how well your marketing campaign is doing, you’re good to go. You can start running and testing campaigns for your business – and the next section will show you how to do it in a way that generates conversions and, ultimately, sales and clients.
The key thing to remember is that once you know the basics and have a strategy, you need to start testing.
That means you do not wait for the perfect moment or the perfect opportunity or the perfect alignment of stars in today’s night sky to start your marketing campaign.
You just figure out what you’re going to do to get started – and then you start testing, changing your methods as you go along. So long as you keep an eye on your conversion rates, and the price of each conversion, you’ll never go to far astray.
That closes the chapter on traffic, conversions and metrics – but before you go, I’d like to give you my 5 best tips for boosting your conversions effortlessly.
5 Sneaky Ways to Improve Conversions Like Gangbusters
Have a Lead Magnet
Your first order of business with every new website visitor is to get their contacts. Having their phone, e-mail or Facebook like means you can get in touch with them whenever you want – and pitch to them as many times as it takes to create a sale.
However, people aren’t fools… they don’t want to simple hand over their e-mail address to you, because they anticipate you being just like every other company flooding their inbox with irrelevant, boring messages.
The best way to get around this is with an ethical bribe; a free product that users get after registering to your list. In the online marketing world, these bribes are called “lead magnets”, because of how powerful they are at attracting new leads to your business.
Principles of a lead magnet:
- It must be free
- It must be offer a specific solution to a specific problem
- It must offer a specific end result
- It must be of high perceived value
- It must actually contain valuable information that helps the customer
A lot of times, the things we expect to work well do the exact opposite. Without testing, you can never tell whether you’re doing the best possible thing in the best possible way or not.
For example – you’d think that green buttons get more clicks… But multiple studies show that red buttons get as many as 50% more action as green ones. Simply knowing this can increase your sales and profits dramatically.
That’s why you should always test everything – even when the “right thing to do” seems obvious.
Offer Benefits, Not Features
The features of a Starbucks coffee are that it is a freshly brewed cup of coffee. Needless to say, that’s not why people buy the darn things for as much as $8.
They buy Starbucks coffee for the intangible benefits they perceive the brand to have: quality, class and comfort. Do the same in your marketing; increase the perceived value of your product/service, offer solutions to pain points, and offer benefits that match what the customers are looking for – instead of hard but bland features. Marketing is about them, not you.
Headlines, Headlines, Headlines
80% of users don’t read past the headline. This means that you should allocate at least 80% of your energy to making sure the headlines in your ads, articles and videos are irresistible. This is literally the highest-ROI move you can do in terms of making great ads.
Figure Out What People Want
Instead of coming up with ways to “push” your product on people, focus on figuring out what your prospective customers want. This will make it easy to craft an offer that automatically pulls people in without you having to do much selling. Sell solutions to people’s needs and wants instead of trying to force your product on them, and you’ll go far.
Closing words and over to you
I honestly hope that this guide helps you achieving your life and business goals. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me and comment below.
What is one thing I want you to take away from this guide? Do it and test. There are a lot of ways to grow and market your business, but not one magic marketing technique will grow it over night. Don’t be afraid to experiment and if you are serious about the business you are in right now – marketing is an investment into your successful future. Test and try different methods and find what works for your customers and your business. Find that golden nugget that brings you the most ROI and stick with it.
Thank you for reading! Now go out there and implement everything you just learned into your business.