Well, we’re officially half way through 2018—crazy, isn’t it? For many businesses, since the summer months tend to be a little quieter, this is a perfect time to reflect on past digital communications campaigns. And if it’s not a quieter time, summer walks or relaxing on the beach are also perfect time for reflection.
It’s also a great opportunity to dig through monthly reports (I sure hope you have some!) to see what needs to be tweaked, kept status quo, or ditched altogether to achieve better return on investment (ROI).
Measuring Digital Communications Campaigns: What to Look For
Ultimately, we all want ROI from our digital communications campaigns. The alternative is wasted money and a stagnating business. Yet many business owners aren’t sure what to look for when measuring a campaigns efficacy. In fact, “What do I look for?” is one of the most common questions we get!
So, in the spirit of sharing, we thought we would highlight the most important building blocks of ROI measurement.
Create S.M.A.R.T. Objectives
This sounds very academic, doesn’t it? Trust us, it’s not that complicated. S.M.A.R.T. stands for:
Setting S.M.A.R.T. objectives is an important first step when crafting any campaign. And having them in place will make reviewing metrics so much easier. Why? Because it’s impossible to measure the success of a campaign if you don’t know what you were striving to achieve in the first place.
Here are some examples of S.M.A.R.T. objectives that could be set for a digital strategy:
- Increase new leads through website contact forms by 15 percent in the last quarter of 2018.
- Generate 20 percent more sales through paid social media advertising by October 2018.
- Grow customer email database by 30 percent before August 2018.
- Secure four earned media opportunities with key influencers by December 2018
Match Your Metrics to Your Objectives
There are myriad metrics one could measure in the world of digital communications. The key here—your goal, really—is to closely match the right metrics to the objectives that you set. If you’re not measuring the metrics related to your objectives, you won’t end up with a proper picture of how well your campaign fared in meeting those objectives. Confused? Let’s map it out:
Let’s take our first example from above. Your objective was “Increase new leads through website contact forms by 15 percent in the last quarter of 2018.” But, your team focuses their efforts on monitoring social media referral metrics.
The end result? Wasted time and incorrect numbers relating to your specific digital communications campaign. Instead, you should be monitoring the number of conversions on the contact form on your website.
Also, take a look at traffic to the landing page where the contact form lives. If the traffic isn’t strong, what can you do to increase it? Or if the traffic is strong, but people aren’t converting, how can you make the call to action more appealing?
A Few Metrics You Should Be Measuring
In addition to conversions and traffic, here are some other metrics we love to monitor:
- Engagement: Are people reacting, commenting, and sharing your posts?
- Clicks and click-through-rate: Engagement is fantastic, but are consumers actually clicking on your call to action?
- Open rate: Are your email campaigns being opened by your subscribers? If not, try some A/B testing to figure out how best to tweak.
- Backlinks and referrals: Are other websites, influencers, bloggers and media sharing your content on their website?
The beauty of digital marketing is that even small tweaks can make a difference and often you start seeing results almost immediately (particularly for paid campaigns). So, remember to review these metrics at minimum once per month (and ideally twice per month) so you can make adjustments before too much time, money and effort are wasted.
Are you getting ROI from your digital communications campaigns? I’d love to hear about your successes and the metrics that you monitor to uncover them. Drop your comments below and let me know!