Don’t Get Lost in a Maze of Metrics
There's a lot of data out there. More than any one marketer needs at any one time.
The new frontier in using big data in multichannel marketing is learning what data you need. And that starts with clearly defined marketing objectives.
The proliferation of data has caused many marketers to get caught up in minutiae that are not relevant to their objectives. With all the data that's available, it takes discipline to focus only on the metrics that are relevant. Too often the most important metrics, like cost per acquisition and customer lifetime value, are overlooked while we're looking at things like email bounce rates and time on site. Those are metrics which certainly have their place, but should be viewed in the context of how they can be leveraged to improve lifetime value.
How Many Metrics Do You Need?
Every semester, more than one student in my "Advertising Research" class asks:
How many questions do we need to have in our quantitative questionnaire?
My answer is always the same, and always initially perplexing to them:
As many as you need.
The ensuing discussion is a lesson in the importance of setting clear objectives:
What are you trying to find out? Write down what you need to learn from your survey, and develop questions that will get you that information. Once you've done that, count the number of questions you have. That's how many you need.
That lesson applies to marketing measurement, as well. With all the metrics that our marketing analytics platforms can provide, it's easy to get buried in a landslide of statistics that don't really relate to your business objectives. If your objective is lead generation at a landing page, why measure time on site? (Of course if you find that the abandonment rate on the data capture page is high, then look at time on site. You may be asking for too much information.)