Marketing Analytics vs. Web Analytics
Marketers have to answer a lot of questions. Who responded to this campaign? What kind of person are they? What are they interested in? Why did they click through in the first place? Because of this never-ending stream of inquiries, we love analytics. Analytics make it easier to digest the daily onslaught of data in a way that allows us to actually answer these questions.
However, data can be tricky. Not only is there a ton of it, but it’s not always clear what data is the most important. Marketers often get caught up in things like new vs. returning visitors, growth of unique visitors, etc. While that data is interesting, it doesn’t provide what marketers need: a complete picture of their performance. That’s because that data is web analytics, not marketing analytics.
Not All Analytics Are Made Equal
Google Analytics has, in a way, monopolized the thinking around analytics. So, when most marketers think about analytics, they think Google. Google does provide very powerful analytics, and they are important, but they aren’t what marketers should be looking at. Instead, marketers should be focused on the intersection of what’s happening across marketing channels and the outcome of those happenings.
Connecting Multiple Channels
Often marketers struggle with seeing their marketing operation as a whole, particularly when they have campaigns and activities going on across multiple channels (e.g. social, email, web, direct, etc.). Marketing analytics systems do a great job of connecting those channels, allowing the marketer to see the direct relationship between the channels.
Focusing on the Customer
One of the main differentiators of marketing analytics and web analytics is that marketing analytics focuses completely on the prospect, from the time of the first interaction, up to their most recent conversation with your company. Meghan Anderson from Hubspot puts it succinctly: “In short, marketing analytics measures people, not pageviews.”
Hand-in-Hand with Sales
More and more, marketing and sales are focusing on aligning their efforts. Marketing analytics can help marketing find out if their efforts are in line with sales’ priorities, and if their activities are contributing to the bottom line. This is done most effectively when integrating marketing analytics with your existing Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, like Salesforce.com or Oracle CRM.
As you can see, analytics is an integral part of marketing. With it, you can not only get a clear picture of marketing’s performance, but you can also see how marketing is impacting the bottom line.
BIO: Lauren Carlson is a writer and online marketing professional in Austin, TX. She joined Software Advice in 2010, where she heads up the CRM technology blog, focusing on topics related to CRM software, with particular interest in social media and the changing virtual landscape of how we communicate. She has a background in magazine journalism and the music industry, and when she isn’t writing about software, you can find her running at Town Lake and singing at local venues. She is a graduate of the University of Texas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.
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