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Ready Set Rocket: any luncheon speaker from an agency like that is bound to create a little fun (and perhaps impart some something meaningful along the way)!  The topic at the July 19th Lunch & Learn was Marketing Metrics, certainly the focus of marketers everywhere, and in this case, a focus on Google Analytics.  Jonathan Lawoyin from Ready Set Rocket was able to lift attendees off their seats with an in-depth yet entertaining demonstration of both the strategic and tactical implications of this tool.  Indeed, Jonathan began the presentation with an approach you don’t often hear from the tech community: “If you want me to help you, let’s begin with your business objectives”.   This 35,000 foot view with a “begin with the end in mind” flavor certainly resonated with the attendees.   Jonathan went on to explain the next step: Identifying metrics that addressed the objectives. His list included definable KPI categories (and specific examples) for Awareness (e.g. brand searches), Conversion (e-commerce transaction), Engagement (content downloads), and Loyalty (RSVP’s for seminars).

With regards to KPIs, he further explained how they need to fit top-down roles in an organization.  For example, CEO’s will have broader metrics than CMO’s and Digital Strategists.

Jonathan’s presentation went on to drill-down from the strategic to the tactical, in helpful ways. Jonathan suggested to more data-driven, Google Analytics data can be used to drive Adwords keyword bidding.  For example, in cases where there is insufficient conversion data, keywords that drive longer visits (Average time on site in Google Analytics’) can be viewed as more valuable, and bid higher in Adwords.

Additionally, some of our useful Direct Marketing concepts – such as the Campaign Order Curve – can be viewed in Google Analytics (labeled “Time Lag”).

Finally, the topic of attribution – namely, the issue of “how much credit” goes to a given channel (display, PPC, or other advertising) for a response – stirred some interesting discussion. Jonathan fully admitted that this is not an exact science, but data and metrics available in Google Analytics (such as the First to Last Click conversion ratio) can help marketers to better understand the impact of certain channels as the first interaction point on the way to a conversion.   This data can give additional insights into consumer navigation patterns over the usual practice of “last click only” attribution.

Perhaps the best takeaway for this luncheon was expressed by DMAW Exec. Director Donna Tschiffely, in her thank you message at the close of Jonathan’s presentation:  “What I am hearing is that you really need a strategy”. Certainly some of the attendees, who had a bit of a glassy look after technical bits of the presentation, were very agreeable to that notion.

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Bruce Gregoire is president and founder of Desktop Marketing Solutions, Inc. (DMSI), Falls Church, VA, and also an adjunct professor in Customer Relationship Management at the Carey School of Business, Johns Hopkins University.  Since 1998, DMSI has focused on data-driven marketing programs.  In 2006, DMSI’s WiseGuys Marketing Software received the marketing analytics award from the National Center for Database Marketing.  Bruce can be reached at BruceGregoire@DesktopMarketingInc.com