If you were hiring a tutor for your child, you’d know their value based on the grades your child earned under their instruction, not by the number of practice problems your child did or times they picked up their pencil. We aren’t tutors (at least, we don’t charge for the knowledge we share,) but the point remains: success is best measured by the metrics that show you the true value of your investment. Digital advertising firms provide a wide array of metrics to their clients that demonstrate various aspects of their advertising efforts, but when it comes down to the basics, there are a few metrics that must be included.
Advertising is complex. Depending on your specific business and industry, your success metrics could look very different from those of, say, a chain of pet stores. Determining what metrics to pay attention to and what to ignore has never been a simple task. In recent years, however, it seems that the advertising industry has become bogged down in soft metrics. It’s time to re-evaluate what type of information you are getting about your advertising success.
Forbes writes, “successful advertising agencies need to prove they’re willing to invest in honest analytics. Honest is the operative word. Real results are dollars.” That couldn’t be truer. Digital marketing agencies should always provide their clients with the metrics that are most meaningful in terms of profit and financial success.
With that in mind, here are the metrics we’ve found to be the best true measures of your advertising (and thus your digital advertising firm’s) success.
Even if a billion people click on your ad, if nobody ended up buying your product, you would have just spent a ridiculous amount of money for no return whatsoever. All the attention in the world isn’t actually useful if it doesn’t translate to sales. Impressions, clicks, views, even website traffic are all useless if leads aren’t being generated. A digital marketing firm worth its salt will always strive to provide you with an accurate number of the leads that their advertising efforts have generated.
Knowing how many leads your digital marketing firm can provide is extremely helpful, but it is also important to assure that your actual cost per lead stays low. One of the major issues with trust between digital marketing firms and their clients is the concern over being misled or scammed. Cost per lead helps you see where your advertising budget is going, and the results of each ad dollar.
A good digital advertising firm will focus their marketing efforts on generating high-quality leads for their clients. Naturally, this means they should also be able to provide a reasonable measure of lead quality, like lead-to-opportunity conversion rate. A huge influx of leads would be very disappointing if none of them converted to opportunities. A situation like this could be due to the poor quality of the leads.
The ultimate metric for any business venture is ROI. Return on investment. A long-term productive relationship with a digital marketing firm should be based on continual, demonstrable returns on the business’s investment. After all, a business is investing in digital advertising, in the hope and expectation of a certain number of sales being generated by that investment. ROI is also tied closely to attribution.
While not a metric in itself, your digital advertising firm should be able to provide you with appropriate attribution information. Being able to give each marketing channel it’s deserved credit is an essential trait of a trustworthy digital advertising firm. Without attribution information, you can’t capitalize on your best-performing channels or optimize your marketing strategy. If you are provided with it, the return on investment of each marketing and advertising channel can help both your business and your digital advertising partner tune your marketing strategy for maximum success.