Measure What Matters

February 27, 2017

Marketing teams can track more information now than ever before, but quantity isn’t everything. It can be difficult to discern exactly what information should be tracked.

One effective way to navigate seemingly limitless data is to stay focused on the objective of your campaign.

Measure only what matters. This means any report that cannot directly contribute to analyzing the success of a campaign is nothing more than clutter.

Once the objective and key performance indicators (KPIs) are established, map how you will build simple, direct measurement tools for these KPIs – nothing more, nothing less. Let’s use this in an example:

Objective: Grow brand confidence through relevant content

KPI #1: The amount of time that users are engaging with paid, branded content

To monitor this key performance indicator, the only number you need to watch is the total time users are spending with your content. While other metrics, such as media impressions delivered and clicks, might fulfill other KPIs, don’t let them clutter this one.

Prepare your teams before the campaign starts. If you’re hosting the content on your website, give your analytics team a list of landing pages you need reports for, and ask only for the total amount of time spent on these pages. Or, if you are familiar with your analytics interface, monitor this yourself. Have your ad ops team use Google’s Campaign URL Builder to set up proper tracking so you can filter out how much of this time you can attribute to paid media.

If media publishers are hosting your content on their landing pages, outline the type of reporting you expect. Most publishers are happy to work with you on this, but you will have to work together to set up a custom report of the specific metrics you need. A standard report, which usually consists of impressions and clicks, has no value in this case.

The biggest takeaway with digital campaign measurement is that the more concise you can keep things, the better. Assuming your campaign has multiple KPIs, this method will help paint a clear picture of results when you pull it all together.

After all, genius isn’t about making the simple more complex—it’s about taking the complex and making it simple. Some smart Einstein guy said that.