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So What? Analytics Ask Us Anything

So What? Marketing Analytics and Insights Live

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In this week’s episode of So What? we answer all your questions. We walk through content marketing, social media, and general analytics questions. Catch the replay here:

So What? Analytics Ask Us Anything

In this episode you’ll learn: 

  • We’ll be answering your questions!

Upcoming Episodes:

  • Analytics AMA part 2 – 12/16/2021

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AI-Generated Transcript:

Katie Robbert 0:43
Well, well, well, here we are, again, another Thursday, another episode of so what the marketing analytics and insights live show I’m Katie joined by Chris and John. In today’s episode, we’re doing another Ask Me Anything session this time focused on analytics. And we kept it pretty broad because analytics is a big topic. It’s a big skill set. There’s specialties within analytics. And so we really wanted to see what kinds of questions our Slack community had our other communities that and just sort of see where people were at? And how, if and how we could be the most helpful in providing some practical advice or quick demos or those kinds of things. So that’s what we’re focusing on today is general questions about analytics. And, Chris, I know you’ve been compiling a long list of questions, because I’m sure you as someone who’s known in the industry as an analytics experts, gets asked questions all the time.

Christopher Penn 1:44
Yep. But these are, many of these are from our Slack community. Actually, I think almost all of them are. So let’s go ahead and dig into these. Let’s start with and I got to do a little round robin and get some perspectives on a few of these questions. Hannah starts off with if you could only pick three KPIs to measure blog performance, which ones would you choose?

Katie Robbert 2:10
Hmm. I would probably pick shared content. So how many times that piece of content is shared? directly from your site? around the internet? Whatever it is? Probably traffic to that page? No, that’s not a good one. I take that back. I don’t know. We just lost John he ghosted us. You know, I would, so I would want to know, cut, I guess, engagement. So that’s people sharing it. That’s people. How, you know, if they read the entire thing, so maybe scrolled up, depending on how long it is. But probably also, you know, something around my SEO in terms of, you know, is it optimized in such a way that that’s what people are finding before? You know, am I am I bringing people to my assets? My site for that content?

Christopher Penn 3:29
That’s, that’s a good mix. How about you, John?

John Wall 3:32
Yeah, you know, we’re in the biz dev hat. I think the biggest three stats are closed, one closed one and close one.

Katie Robbert 3:41
So, assisted conversion, view, and version,

John Wall 3:47
right, right conversions, assisted conversions and meetings with sales. I love kid you know, I like to share thing. I hadn’t thought about that too much. But like, that’s a big deal. If you have concept that you know, gets passed around a lot. That’s a that’s a great staff.

Katie Robbert 4:04
I like that. I like it because it to me, it says I wrote something that people enjoyed and wanted other people to also get something from it. Note about Yes.

Christopher Penn 4:16
The though. I liked and you talked about this in this week’s newsletter, having those three very basic buckets awareness, engagement, conversion, right. So did blog posts, any of them participate in conversions, right? That’s obviously John’s. John’s near and dear love, right? Engagement, one, I think is important. Specifically, time on page. If you know how many words are in a blog post, say this a blog post is 600 words. You know the people’s average reading speed is about 150 words per minute, give or take. Therefore, the timeline page ideally should be about About three and a half minutes. If your time on page for your blog content is like two seconds, it ain’t doing the job, right? People are going there and then just leaving. And of course, it’s how the funnel really is that the new users, right? Are you getting new users to your blog content? If you are, by any means great. If you’re not, then again, your blog content is not doing enough to attract people by any digital channel, not just search, but you’re not getting social media content, you’re not getting emails to drive traffic, nothing’s working to drive those users. So from a blog, if we had now down to three, those would be the three that I would pick.

Katie Robbert 5:41
That make sense. And so do you think that so you’re talking about time on page, how does bounce rate compared to time on page, which is a better metric?

Christopher Penn 5:55
Time on page is a better metric. Bounce Rate is problematic, is problematic for a variety of reasons. One, it is context insensitive. So it’s okay for you to bounce off of blog posts, you came you read you left? Great, I’m okay with that. If it’s, you know, I would not be okay with that, like on the landing page. Like that’s, that’s a problem. Because if you left you didn’t fill the form. That’s okay. But to and this is especially true, this is one of the reasons why you no longer see bounce rate and Google Analytics for which is is kind of an interesting thing. A bounce happens only when nothing happens and no event fires. But now with things like scroll depth, for example, somebody scrolls and it triggers an event in Google Tag Manager that relays that as Google Analytics. It’s no longer a bounce. So the moment you do anything that triggers any kind of event that pings Google Analytics Gulag says, Hey, notes, you did something. And were like, No, you didn’t do something, because you just scrolled once and you left, but it’s no longer counted as a bounce. So Ty on page three, I think is more reliable.

Katie Robbert 7:00
Got it. I think that that’s something that is going to continue to be a learning curve for people. Because I know bounce rate has always been something that people have defaulted to have like, Well, we had a very low bounce rate. So it’s a good page, but it doesn’t give you enough information.

Christopher Penn 7:16
Mm hmm. We have even seen cases where if somebody accidentally doubles up their analytics tracking code on their website, like they have it, they have the Google Analytics tag, and they put us put in Tag Manager, your bounce rate goes to zero, because you’re now have two events happening at the same time, and so that’s not good. Okay, let’s move on. We have a long list to get through today. Brian asks, How do you can you get easier ways to track and compare performance across digital channels? For example, if a tweet gets lots of engagement, I would like to be able to see how that engagement translates into other results. So how do we how what are your recommendations for tracking across channels?

Katie Robbert 8:01
attribution modeling, sounds a journey. Yeah, some some kind of attribution modeling, even if you are using just a system like Google Analytics, or another system, like your CRM that has attribution modeling, built in assisted conversions will probably give you some of that information, as long as it’s tied to a goal. But I think, you know, we would obviously, say, our digital customer journey, our attribution model is probably more accurate than what you can get out of the box. But that’s what I would default to is, if I want to know, cross digital channels, I’m thinking of an attribution model.

John Wall 8:44
John, what about you? Yeah, that’s what you know, all the work you’ve done as far as going beyond what Google can do, you know, rather than just doing last touch, or maybe based on four touches, grabbing all that data and doing some machine learning against it to find out what’s relevant, regardless of where it falls in the funnel, and then being able to report where in the funnel those things hit. I mean, that’s just a massive improvement over that, you know, it’s one thing to know that, well, these five programs show up all the time, and there are champions, but to be able to dial it down further and say, well, these are the ones that end up getting the meetings, and these are the ones that get people to sign up for the newsletter. And these are the ones that close deals, then you can more strategically place your budget as far as you know, what do you need more of this year? Where are you? You know, where’s the shortfall and where do you have to allocate to get the best results across the board?

Christopher Penn 9:33
Yeah, attribution modeling definitely is is close to as good an answer as most folks are likely to get. If you want to get very sophisticated, like if you if you are pretty sure that you know your tweets really matter, then you’re probably going to want to do something that involves a little bit of data warehousing, and putting all of your data in one place like a Google BigQuery database, for example, than being running a big report. analysis, we’ve done this for a bunch of clients, where they’ve got like billboard impressions and phone calls and people walking into stores, and doing that multiple regression to say, here’s the outcome we care about all the data you have, which columns alone or in combination, have the highest mathematical relationship to that outcome, and then trying to figure that because sometimes it is stuff like, you know, the number of feet who walked in the door actually does really matter, particularly if you’re, you know, click and mortar business, he not having that information would be really, really a big mistake. Mm hmm. Okay. Stephanie asks, what is going to be an important social media analytics trend to watch in 2020? Do?

Katie Robbert 10:50
You know, it might be considered an anti trend, but I think I mean, I don’t know, I feel, I don’t know that trend is the right word. But I think the thing to look for in social media is diversification. So people are going to be moving away from relying on the quote, unquote, tried and true Big Four, you know, which is, you know, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram, I’m seeing more and more people boycott and move away from Facebook, which by that extension, they’re moving away from Instagram, because Facebook owns Instagram. Um, you know, LinkedIn ads are still really expensive. And you need to understand how the algorithms work on both LinkedIn and Twitter in order to make them work for you for your benefit. So I think what we’re going to start to see is smaller, more niche, social platforms becoming more relevant, you know, I wouldn’t call Tiktok a small platform. But I would call it almost kind of like a niche platform, because it’s still, I feel like it’s still a very specific audience for a very specific purpose. But more and more people are signing up and getting on board with it. So how can you as a marketer, think about where that works into your brands and your company’s plan. But I think there’s going to be a lot of other social networks that people are going to turn to, as they move away from, you know, the giant ones. So that’s my Trend prediction. in quotations.

John Wall 12:21
I’m still betting heavily on influencers, I think that there’s so much going on with YouTube and Instagram and other channels like that dumping hundreds of millions of dollars into these content creators who are amassing their own audiences of millions of people. And I think that’s going to be a great alternative for a lot of brands to, you know, instead of spending more on ads that are now less effective than ever before, to, you know, get in front of the right audience that’s qualified and is, you know, more on target for the brand. So I think spending is going to continue to shift on that front. The big question for me is programmatic ads, you know, we’re losing a lot of tracking, but yet, I don’t know, if you believe a lot of what the programmatic people are saying it’s, you know, you can still do well with machine learning targeted ads, where you just set them up in the system runs. But that will have to prove itself over the next year, you know, it is when you put the money in, do you actually get the quality conversions or not? And I think the jury’s still out on all that.

Christopher Penn 13:20
Yep. Okay. It’s interesting, because neither one of those really were analytics trends for social media. Those are for more general social media trends. But I think they’re both absolutely valid. From an analytics perspective, we have a data blindness problem, right? So the amount of data you can get out of these platforms continues to get smaller and smaller and smaller. LinkedIn if unless, basically, it boils down to this, with social media, unless you’re paying, you’re not getting data, right, you can’t get LinkedIn data, you know, much more than what you’re doing on your page. You still have good data of Twitter, but Twitter is, you know, much more of a niche audience actually, than Tiktok is Twitter has 300 million users. Tiktok has a billion and a half. So if there’s anything that’s a niche, it would be Twitter, Facebook, you can’t get organic Facebook data other than your own page anymore. And even that’s great. Instagram Tiktok. You can’t get again, stuff except what’s what is in your app. So if you’re trying to do any kind of industry, or competitive analysis, it is really, really hard to do that now. And then you have this whole raft of new networks, right? You have things like clubhouse, you have you know, in Twitter spaces, you have decentralized social like desert, the desert project, you have private social, like discord and slack and mattermost. All these services don’t give you any data, like none. So one of the big challenges that we’re gonna have to face in terms of analytics is you’ve got less data to work with than ever. So that means you have to rely on a bunch of new data sources. You One, you’re gonna have to start survey, you’re gonna start running surveys to your audience, there’s no way around it anymore, you have to be asking people questions, because you’re not going to get the information the other way, too, you have to have really good tracking governance. Because if you’re not putting tracking codes on everything, everywhere, you’re blind, you’re not going to see that data, especially as cookies continue to get throttled down that that URL based tracking is all we’ve got left. And three. One of the things I think that is a strategic change for marketers, we got to figure it out. So this is not true of enterprise large enterprise companies. But it’s definitely true of mid market and below, we’ve got to get away from the mindset of bigger is better, better is better. Like we have a Slack community with about 2000 or so people in it right here. This is not a huge audience. This is not going to light up any prizes for social media and size, but it’s the right 2000 people. And for us, as we look at our social media strategy, we continue to focus on are we getting in front of the right people. Truth be told, if you’re an enterprise B2B company, say like you sell security software hardware, you only need 50 people in your social network as long as those 50 or the 50 CIOs of the Fortune 50. Right, that’s really all you need as a social network. You don’t need much more than that. But in marketing, why things were stuck on is that bigger is better. Okay, let’s move on. Stephanie asks, content marketers often default to using vanity metrics, because it’s easy to track and understand. But if you want to prove to your boss, that your content is making an impact on business results, what metrics do you recommend using instead?

Katie Robbert 16:52
So let’s first be clear on how we’re defining vanity metrics. So Chris, I know you recently wrote a post about, you know, stop eating vanity metrics. What do you consider to be vanity metrics?

Christopher Penn 17:08
vanity metrics are numbers that don’t have a correlation to your business result, which means you got to do the math first.

Katie Robbert 17:16
So like number of followers, and

Christopher Penn 17:19
yep, well, so for example, with my with my personal website, number of Twitter followers is not a vanity metric, because it does have a strong correlation to the number of people who sign up for my newsletter. So for me, that’s not a vanity metric. Now for Trust Insights, it is has no correlation to our newsletter signups. So even though it’s the same metric of one place, it is a vanity metric and don’t want to place it is not.

Katie Robbert 17:41
So vanity metrics is really going to depend business by business. And so using the term vanity metric is probably number one. It makes sense. And so the question that Stephanie is asking is, what metrics should you care about in content marketing? And so I would say, it really depends on what your goal is, why do you why are you writing content in the first place? For us for Trust Insights, we write and share content, to help answer questions, but also secondarily, to demonstrate our expertise in the questions being asked so that people can say, oh, Trust Insights, knows what they’re talking about, I can probably hire them to help me solve my problems as well. So it’s, it’s twofold. It’s to be helpful and to get people to hire us. So that’s our goal for creating content. So I would say that’s where you really need to start is, why are you creating the content in the first place, there’s plenty of companies that don’t have a blog, if they don’t have content other than the content that’s on the pages of their website. And so it really just depends on why you’re doing it in the first place. And I’d say that’s really the place to start. And from there, you start to build the KPI map. So if your goal is revenue, and you’re using content, then you need to figure out where content fits in, in terms of your customer journey. Is it an awareness tool isn’t an engagement tool? Is it a conversion tool. And so if it’s an awareness tool, you need to write it and then share it everywhere so that everybody knows about you who you are, what you do and write it from that introductory standpoint. If it’s an engagement tool, maybe it’s gated, maybe it’s original research, maybe it’s something of value that people would sign up for and give you their contact information for and if it’s conversion, well, maybe putting it on your website is not the right place. Maybe it belongs in an exclusive newsletter maybe it belongs somewhere else that only you know people who sign up for it can get it kind of a thing so that that’s where I would start with content. Marketing is why are you doing it in the first place?

Christopher Penn 19:56
Yep, John, what about you? What what you’re the boss of marketing over coffee, and you have a clear business result, right? Which is getting people to sponsor the show. What do you look at? That helps you determine, yep, we’re gonna make our sponsorship numbers or no or not. And then what do you change to get bigger, better dollars out of sponsors?

John Wall 20:15
Yeah, you know, it’s really the thing with that is it’s always been driven by quality of content like I really do next to nothing for the sponsors when you think about I mean, the idea is that I know, well, it’s a double edged sword, there’s more to that I don’t just say, sponsors, you suck, give me money. I mean, there’s a lot more than that. It’s, you know, we deliver what we deliver the right audience to them. And that’s a really important thing, because there are all these people that will advertise on podcasting, they’re like, yeah, we’ll give you $30 1000. But, you know, our audience is worth 500 bucks, 1000, because it’s, it is the right people, you know, if you want to talk to marketing, people that are dealing with, you know, 10 or more cloud solutions, you’re not going to find, you know, they’re going to be a needle in the haystack over on the Joe Rogan show, but our whole audience is made up of those people. So yeah, for us, it’s always been about quality content, you know, we want to make content that’s educational, and entertaining, so the audience stays on board. And, you know, unfortunately, the topic is so nice that if someone listens to our show, we know they’re the right kind of person for these sponsors, because, you know, the rest of my family has no interest in listening to us go on about attribution models, for a half an hour on Thursday. So, yeah, quality content has always been at the heart of it. And yeah, and we are a small business. You know, I think that’s an important thing, where, you know, sometimes vanity metrics are all you’ve got, you know, I mean, if you have enough staff, so you can start to build attribution models, and do all the tracking that you want to do, then you can grow away from the vanity metrics. But, you know, for now on it’s, as long as the numbers are always going up, and there’s more engagement, more listeners, then there’ll be more. And we do see that the sponsors get more qualified leads. So those all move in the right direction. But it’s still Yeah, it’s a lot of tea leaves. And like, the worst part is like when numbers dip, it’s like, Well, what happened? I have no clue. You know, we have no idea what the hell happened when the numbers move in one direction or the other. Maybe once a while, if they go up, we know that, oh, we got cited here, there. You know, we got an inbound link. That was good. But yeah, it’s just interesting. How much of it is flying blind? You know, you really it’s any, you know, a vanity metric does beat nothing. I mean, it’s not great. And, you know, maybe you can’t draw the connection to close business directly, but at least Yeah, at least twice as many people came around, I think. But the big fear that has changed so much with digital marketing, is that it’s so easy to fake the vanity metrics. You know, like, if I really wanted to, I can go buy 5000 Twitter followers for 12 bucks over on Fiverr. And I don’t understand how that works. But somehow I can spend 12 bucks on Fiverr. And you can make the the numbers move. And so that’s the big. One of the big fears with vanity metrics is like, yeah, we’re just getting bamboozled here. But you know, I don’t see any way around that you just, you know, slowly over time, as you ramp up and get more savvy, you’re able to put more Reese’s resources towards it and do just better analytics.

Christopher Penn 23:12
Yep. Cool. Dominic has one I think it’s very interesting. Those to Katie first, what does success look like? When you’re tracking influence in education versus explicitly generation? Is it more of a B2B marketing question?

Katie Robbert 23:32
You know, success. It’s subjective, it really depends on you first have to define what success looks like to you. So if we take influence and education first, as the question then I would say, you know, you could say broad strokes success there looks like you know, engagement, it looks like retention. It looks like people sharing, you know, your stuff because it was worthwhile. sales conversion, you know, is what it is it’s people go into your stuff and saying, I want to hire you, I want to buy this thing. And so it’s more of a direct line of why they’re coming to you why to come into your assets, but I feel like education influence is like a constant cycle of sharing and learning and growing. I personally, for B2B Specifically, I think influence is really an awareness and engagement tool versus a conversion tool.

Christopher Penn 24:39
John, what about you?

John Wall 24:41
Yeah, I think you know, you can see views and shares and if you get SEO value out of it, you know, if it’s a worthwhile training resource, you should see some SEO action from it some ongoing, you know, Evergreen inbound traffic, which is the holy grail for that stuff. But yeah, that falls squarely into the leap of faith stuff, you know, you’re gonna put a bunch of stuff together and throw it out there and just pray that it flies. Really the only thing that you can do to give yourself some kind of a fighting edges, you know, if you’re dealing with your customers or prospects, and you know that this is the kind of material that they need, you can at least increase your odds and give yourself a better shot. But yeah, I don’t know that. I mean, it’s still I, you know, again, use UTM links and all of your stuff. And yeah, even though it’s educational, that doesn’t mean that all of the normal goals don’t apply and tracking. So I don’t, you know, see how you really have to treat training much differently from everything else that you’re doing.

Christopher Penn 25:36
Yeah, we typically all that,

Katie Robbert 25:39
I think we typically think about influencers in the B2C space. And so, you know, fashion people in sports people saying, like, I use this sports drink, or I wear this brand of clothing, that is more of that conversion versus an awareness. Whereas in B2B, the services and the things are not as tangible. And so it does, at least in my opinion, it does tend to be more of an awareness tool of like, hey, you know, this person endorses us. So therefore, you could probably learn about what we do and how we help to that person as well.

Christopher Penn 26:15
Exactly, the John hit the nail on the head, which is, it’s not an either or it’s not influence or leads, right, because one has to lead to the other. If it doesn’t, then you’ve got a bigger problem. But one of the favorite brand measurement tools slash influence measurement tools that I love, is Google fashion branded search, right? If people are not searching for your company, or its products or services by name, you’re not getting the job done, right? There’s no, there’s no good brand stuff. So we want to see branded searches going up. And if you roll out an influencer campaign of some kind, or you roll out an educational campaign of some kind, and you don’t see this number, move upwards. It didn’t work, because people still don’t remember who you are. And or still don’t feel compelled enough to just Google for you by name. Now, you also will probably want to do a little bit of correlation with direct traffic. Because again, if you did a really good job branding, people don’t need to search for you. They just type in your your domain name, just go straight there. So there’s there’s that aspect, too. But branded organic search is one of those things, I feel like everybody just misses, like they just forget that it exists. And it’s there. And it’s so valuable if you work, especially in public relations, or brand advertising, and you’re not using branded organic search data as a KPI. Today’s a great day to start. Today is a

Katie Robbert 27:43
great don’t wait until January 1, no, no new year, no new you start today.

Christopher Penn 27:49
Yep. We have a live question here. From Monty consulting that says, growing our research capabilities, welcome thoughts on the resource reaching specific audiences with surveys? Katie, you want to go on first?

Katie Robbert 28:04
Sure. I feel like that’s the thing that eludes people a lot of like, how do I get that specific audience? And so, you know, you can run a Gen pop survey through something like a Google Surveys, or you can use a screen or a question, like, you know, do you work in X industry? Yes, no? And if no, then, you know, thank you for their time. But if yes, you know, so there’s ways to handle it with, you know, off the shelf tools, but a better way to reach those audiences is to become part of those communities. So Chris, I know you like to, you’ve been doing a lot of research into what you call the velvet rope communities. And it’s really those niche communities like the slack group that we’ve been growing for, you know, marketers who talk about analytics and data science. If you want us to do a survey with those people, you would first need to become part of that community, and then work with the owners of that community to say, is it appropriate for me to run a survey to these people, this is what I want to do. And so it needs to be a collaboration with the community owners, but those communities exist. So I would say step number one is, you know, figure out who that audience is that you’re trying to reach. Step number two is become a part of that community. So you’re not just showing up and asking something of the community, but actually participate, and then work with the owners of the community to say, Is this appropriate? Is this the right community? You know, can I do this, you know, with the people who’ve, like you felt trust with? So that’s how I would approach it.

Christopher Penn 29:43
Yeah, no, I totally agree. I think the other thing is that it the question assumes you’ve already done your qualitative research and it sounds like if you aren’t sure where the specific audience is, you haven’t done enough qualitative research. So focus groups, one on one interviews and things like that and asking people Hey, Where do you spend your time? Like when you are? When you want to talk shop? Where do you do it? Right? I don’t care where you you spend your leisure time necessarily. But if you’re trying to figure out like, Hey, I’m trying, I’m hiring a new analytics consulting firm, what do you ask? Where do you go and talking to people and say, and that can give you a sense of exactly what you’re saying, Katie, those those specific communities, some of them, you may, you may have to pony up a whole lot of money, like you may, if it’s a certain specific audience, you may need to be spending a lot of money on a golf course membership, because guess what, that’s where the audience spends their time talking shop. That’s one of the things I have heard of folks who have literally just booked flights, first class flights, just to see who they sit next to, you know, or fractional chartered private jets just to be able to talk to some of the highest power to use because it’s the only time you can get time on their calendars. Otherwise, they’re not interested, they, you know, they’re they’re unavailable. When you want to talk to the CEO of like, T Mobile or something. Yeah, you’re probably gonna have to pony up for, you know, at least first class seating to sit next to the person, but then you get that uninterrupted time with them. After that, the question is whether you even need a survey. So if you’re doing the top 50, CIOs, do you need a survey for all 50 of them? No, you can probably call 10 of them and get enough information to be able to make some decent decisions get to know them.

Katie Robbert 31:28
I can’t wait until I’m a high powered CEO who people can only get time with me. And if on my private jet, like that’s a goal. That’s a new goal that I’m going to write down and manifest it somewhere.

Christopher Penn 31:42
The other thing is that there are other there may be communities where you are in a non traditional community. And guess what you get, you have to be able to integrate into that community. A number of years back, there was a fantastic article in I think it was Fortune magazine saying like, Oh, is World of Warcraft, the new golf course? Because for some of the, you know, the tech CEOs of the time is where they spent their leisure time. I will tell you in advance. No, it’s not. But There absolutely are things like, say ranked tournaments in APEX legends or fortnight or you know, some of these other games where you have people who are that’s where they spend their leisure time now, whether they want to talk shop there, that’s a different question. But certainly, if you want to know where they hang out, that’s, that’s a great one. So. So great question. Let’s dig back into the question pile. This is a fun one. Kathy asks, What is Google Analytics tracking that we’re not taking advantage of? That is ripe with actionable data? I love that question.

Katie Robbert 32:47
I feel like you just covered some of it, which is branded search. How are people finding you? So I feel like there’s that I know that that’s more search console than Google Analytics, but I see them sort of as like part of the same ecosystem. You know, you can do pretty good attribution modeling in directly in Google Analytics. So you can find you can figure out like, what channels are working best for you based on the goals that you have set up? So I would say that’s probably one of the things that’s overlooked the most, the most common use case I’ve seen in terms of you know, our clients, and in my experiences, people are looking at in terms of was the goal completed? Yes, no. Did I drive more traffic? Yes, no. And I feel like that sort of diminishes all of the other things that Google Analytics collects.

Christopher Penn 33:43
John, how about you? Yeah, I

John Wall 33:44
just said, you know, you don’t have enough goals set up, you’re using UTM codes wrong, and your channels are messed up, you need to clean those up, like those are the big three. You know, people think they’re looking at the right kind of data. And when they’re making decisions based on this stuff. No, it’s actually you know, amazingly, Google ads look like they’re really killing it no matter what happens. Well, that’s probably not the case. So go back and clean it up and talk to somebody who knows what they’re doing. Yep.

Christopher Penn 34:13
One of my favorites, I guess, in Google Analytics, specific to Google Analytics for is that that attribution slash funnel view, it’s if you go into advertising, and you go into conversion paths, and let’s pick a conversion event here. Let’s do as just leave them all, that’s fine. And we’re going to change from last click to a time decay model. This to me is so incredibly valuable, to be able to look at what’s what’s happening within your follow the beginning of the funnel, the middle of the funnel at the end of the funnel, for the goals that you care about, how to know if there’s a difference of the channels, so that you can say like, just looking at this, this is something we talked about, actually on previous episodes of our podcast K, our top and middle of it is empty, we have some very serious issues to deal with, which we’re working on remediating, and we see the Bob in the fall is really, really full. And so this immediately tells us, we need to do a lot more stuff at the top of funnel to keep things rolling. But in terms of just an attribution volume, this is a really as long as your UTM tracking is good. This is a really powerful hidden gem, I think in Google Analytics for that almost nobody uses. And it tells you a lot, and it tells you things you could take action on. Okay, let’s finish up with one last one here. We have, like 10 more, but we’ll finish up with the last let’s go on forever. Alison asks, What is your go to number for gauging content marketing performance, the one that all teams should pay attention to, even if it’s the only thing they look at? So now we’ve gone from three KPIs down to what what is the one number that you think people should look at for content marketing performance?

Katie Robbert 36:06
The pressure is on? Um, I mean, that’s it? That’s a tough question to answer, because it really depends on why you’re doing it in the first place. And so that’s really the question, you have to answer that question first, because there is no one size fits all answer. Because why we do content marketing is different from why, you know, our friend Gini Dietrich does content marketing is different from why our friends b squared does content marketing is different from why, you know, some of our clients do content marketing. So that’s a really, it’s almost like a trick question. Um, so it’s like, why are you doing the content marketing in the first place? Then you can figure out what that one metric is? Because it’s going to feed up into that goal. So that’s my not, you know, super clear answer, but you got to know why you’re doing it in the first place. And then you can figure out that one number. Now, if I, you know, was like, pinned to the ground and couldn’t move. And someone said, you have to tell me what the metric is. I would probably say, you know, an engagement number something around. How many times is this piece of content being shared? John about you.

John Wall 37:26
Come on and closed one Coco’s for closers. Step away from the coffee.

Christopher Penn 37:37
Okay, then, from a content perspective, one of the hidden secrets to have Google Analytics, and this is Google Analytics, three now is page value. So if your goals contain $1 amount in them, even if it’s just like $1, right, you say like a newsletter signups are worth $1. As long as there’s $1 amount, then what Google Analytics does they have this explain that they have documentation about how they calculate page value, if you have a goal, then it starts to is basically spread out the value of that goal across the different pages it took to get there. And you can read this in the Google Analytics documentation. Now, if I go to our behavior, go to Site Content, let’s go to All Pages. And let’s really go back maybe like a few months here, just get a nice big picture. And I’ll sort by page value here. You can start to find like this influencer identification walkthrough has a higher value, like obviously, the Contact page, okay, it’s kind of a given this services page has high value, this blog post has higher value. This is not as good as you’d like using a more fancy machine learning model, like Markov chain modeling for for assessing. But if you don’t have anything else, the page value computation is actually really good. Because it says this page has contributed economic value as part of that path towards conversion. And so those are pages that you might want to pay some attention to. So if I had to pick just the one number, it would be that number. But you got to set it up. Right.

Katie Robbert 39:20
Let’s, let’s do one more question, Chris.

Christopher Penn 39:23
One more question. Okay. Here’s one from Tiffany as a I think, an easy winner. What? Too often analytics gets lost in the weeds? No one wants that. What metrics should leadership actually care about? John, we do I know it’s close one. So

John Wall 39:46
what do you keep asking me this?

Katie Robbert 39:50
Um, you know, again, I always have to go back to you know, what’s the goal? And so if you can safely assume that for the majority of companies, the goal is going to be revenue, then, as you’re looking in your Google Analytics, just as an example, as one system of record, you probably want to look at the goals that are tied to people buying something. So that’s the contact us form. That’s the, you know, fill out your information if you want a Free demo form. So those would be the metrics to start to look at. But then also sort of breaking it out into the, you know, the three chunks of your funnel. So, you know, a simple awareness metric is people actually coming to your website, if people know about you, they’re going to come to your website. So that number should continue to go up. engagement might be looking at, you know, people coming back to your website. So retention, so return users, so you start with new users, then you have return users, and then you have people who buy something. So if you have nothing else, I would say that would be a good three places to start to build out a funnel, that would lead back to your overall goal of sales.

Christopher Penn 41:06
Yep, I would say for leadership, well, for you, whoever you are, what number do you get your bonus for? You should care about that? What number does your boss get their bonus for? Right? And those are kind of the things that you got to report on. Because and you know, you want to be generous and look up the ladder, depending on how far you’re looking up. You know, what number does your boss’s boss get their bonus for? That’s that, to me is the easiest way to suss out what should be in your reporting. Because ultimately, nobody cares unless it’s it benefits them in some way. Obviously, there’s there’s the whole, you know, corporate governance, law stuff, but really, at the end of the day, like the CEO is held accountable for revenue, if the company didn’t make money, you’re in a lot of trouble, right? The CFO is held. The CFO is held to the things like margin, right? You know, are we profitable? If we’re not even making money, but we’re not profitable? It’s kind of a lost cause the chief sales officer, it’s closed one deals right? That’s that’s what the

John Wall 42:13
makes the world go round baby.

Christopher Penn 42:16
Exactly. So that’s the easiest way to answer a question is who are you? Who are the leaders? What are they getting their bonuses for? And are you reporting on that? And you’re reporting on that number? And the one or two numbers that lead to that number? And if you’re not, chances are nobody’s reading your report.

Katie Robbert 42:35
Agreed. I think the big takeaway there, which, you know, I hate, I really hate to say that this is sort of the the PSA of it is that at the end of the day, we’re, we all have some degree of narcissism. We’re all selfish to a certain degree. And so, first and foremost, we care about the things that are going to affect us first. And so to Chris’s point, find out what that is from your leadership team and build that that report.

Christopher Penn 43:07
Exactly. So we covered a lot here we will there’s even more to be covered more questions to be answered. So if you have if we didn’t cover your question on today’s show, we will probably on another show or in a newsletter or in a blog post or in our free slack group analytics for marketers. But no matter where it was, thank you for your participation. Thanks to the folks who are on live and asking questions live. We love that. And we will be back next week. Thanks for tuning in. Thanks for watching today. Be sure to subscribe to our show wherever you’re watching it. For more resources. And to learn more. Check out the Trust Insights podcast at trust AI podcasts, and a weekly email newsletter at trust Got questions about what you saw on today’s episode. Join our free analytics for markers slack group at trust for marketers, see you next time.

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