As an integrated marketing agency, we do lots of reporting for our clients and know that marketing + data is a crucial combination. How do organizations determine if a marketing strategy is working or whether they should even pursue a certain strategy without looking at metrics? It can be challenging, that’s for sure, but digging into analytics tools and social insights helps answer specific marketing questions and ties key performance indicators (KPIs) together. Here’s a short guide on building a marketing report your CEO will love.
Report on measurements that matter.
You’ll need to decide on what measurements to include for your boss or organization. It’s important to track the number of qualified leads, conversion rate, and customer acquisition cost.
- Are the campaigns generating enough leads? Many companies measure a marketing campaign’s success based on the number of new leads. Often there might be a small number of leads but a high percentage of qualified leads. Go through the leads coming in and determine whether they are valuable; quality leads is a better indicator of effectiveness. While you’re at, also note the number of unqualified leads.
- What’s the conversion rate? This is a biggie. How good was the marketing efforts at getting people interested in your product, service, or solution? What is your visitor-to-lead conversion rate, meaning how many people showed interest in your product or services and then became a customer? Reporting on new leads and customers clearly indicated to management the impact your marketing efforts are having on the success of the organization.
- What’s the customer (or donor) acquisition cost? Generating new leads and customers is fantastic, but not if it comes with a high price tag. So how much does it cost to gain a new customer? To find this, you add up all your marketing expenses (don’t forget to include salaries) and divide it by the number of newly acquired customers in a given time period.
As a marketing manager, these are the main metrics to look at and the questions you need to be answering in your marketing reporting. You need to justify to your executives the time and money spent on marketing. CEOs, CMOs, and similar senior managers are looking for stats that show the impact your work is having on revenue. They don’t care so much about the click-through rate of your recent email campaign or the fluctuations in keywords rankings.
Can you prove the investment in marketing is worth it? Take a close look at revenue data.
- What are we generating in sales revenue? Track the amount spent and compare that to your overall budget and how much money you’re bringing in.
- What’s the profit margin? Is it profitable? If it’s a loss leader, what’s the customer lifetime value (CLV) look like?
What does the data mean and how will we report on it?
You’ll want to build a comprehensive report for your monthly marketing meetings that highlights what progress has been made and answers all the questions spelled about above. Tying marketing to analytics helps answer questions such as “Are we reaching and engaging the right audience?” “Is this campaign helping us drive value and achieve our organization’s objectives?” We can use conversion rate data to identify and optimize campaign opportunities, which is great news because the majority of CEOs are looking for conversion-based metrics. High level execs care how your marketing activities are supporting sales and driving revenue so be sure you can provide substantiated answers in your reports. (Tip: make your PDF or Excel report easy to adapt and update month after month.)
The objective of your report should be to prove – using data – how you helped generate ___ amount of traffic which led to ____ number of leads and ____sales. Finding the balance between providing too many nitty-gritty details and showcasing what your CEO will find useful is challenging. However, if you can answer the traffic ->leads->sales question you’ll be well set up for getting budget requests approved!
When reporting to CEOs, provide a top-level summary report that answers these questions: What’s working? What’s not? Why? What’s our ROI? Include the marketing metric highlights. Plug in the most relevant information into a pretty graph or chart and share it at the beginning of your report so the reader can see a quick analysis of marketing activities.
Then you can get a bit more detailed and provide the results from your campaigns. It’s useful to show some historical data and compare this month’s work against the past period and year. From there, list the important statistics. In addition to the metrics discussed at the top of the page, this might include the number of blogs published, emails stats, and website visitors.
Happy reporting! If you’re able to get a good process in place for tracking, analyzing, and reporting, showcasing your team’s success can be fun and a great way to expand – both your team and your budgets!
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There’s so much data available to us and it’s amazing. If we don’t use it, it doesn’t help us! (Can you tell we nerd out about ROI-driven marketing??) But the trick is knowing which data your higher ups are going to care about. You can find more metrics to track in an earlier blog.
If you have all the data and are ready to dive in, feel free to set up a time to chat with us. Not sure what to track? We can help with that too!