Use Your Data To Make Smarter Marketing Decisions

Suzanne McKee
Suzanne McKee

You have likely spent a lot of time and resources on your website. You take the time to put your marketing emails together thoughtfully before you hit the send button. But do you really know which campaigns produce results? Do you know the pages on your website that bring in visitors? Or, those that more people leave your site from?

The amount of data you can collect electronically these days can become overwhelming, but it is worthwhile to take some time to decide which metrics are important to your business, to help measure your successes and learn where changes are needed.

What Metrics Matter Most?

It depends — what are your goals? If you are trying to gain awareness in the market, page hits, blog visits and organic searches could be very important to you. If you need to prove your ROI for a particular campaign, then funnel analytics, landing page performance and visitor sources would be critical information to understand.

HubSpot is an expert in inbound marketing and a company that provides software as a service product to assist businesses with their marketing needs. It recommends that you start with SMART goals, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. Such goals will set the stage for what data points matter most to your business.

For example,
Specific = Increase email opt-ins by 20 percent
Measurable = Move from 100 to 120
Attainable = 20 new contacts brought in with valuable
content marketing
Relevant = Company needs to gain more awareness
Timely = Two months

Or, maybe you have set up a specific page on your site to promote a new program that you are offering. Your goal could look more like this:

Specific = 1,000 page hits on our landing page for the new petunia program
Measurable = Use Google Analytics (or other tool) to measure
Attainable = Previous campaigns have hit 750, so 1,000 is not out of the ballpark
Relevant = New petunia program is the big push for the company this sales season
Timely = One month

Once your goals are set, make them manageable and start with only two to three to set your benchmarks. Find out where you are today. Do you have two visits per month or 2,000?

Everyone has to start somewhere, but if you don’t know where that starting point is, you’ll have no way to measure your success — or learn about what you need to do differently next time.

How To Capture The Data

Getting your hands on different analytics and data points is actually rather easy, and methods range from a combination of free (or relatively inexpensive) tools to incredibly sophisticated tools that require more of an investment.

The following data collection sites give an overview of some of the more common tools available, but there are so many on the market that a simple Google search of marketing analytics or inbound marketing will offer you a broader view of what is available and what might be best for your business. Take advantage of the free trial periods that almost all of these companies offer to make sure it is intuitive to use and it meets all of your needs.

Here are some of the best known sites:

  • Google Analytics is a free tool that places a line of code on each page of your website to provide web visits, page hits, visitor source and much more.
  • MailChimp is a service that ranges from free to $500/month depending on your package to create, send and track emails.
  • Constant Contact is an email, social and event marketing solution with varying levels of pricing, depending on your service level.
  • KISSmetrics is similar to Google Analytics, but it adds customer intelligence to its mix to give you a better look at who is on your site and not just how many. Pricing ranges from $179 to $599/month.
  • HubSpot is an inbound marketing software platform that advertises itself as helping companies attract visitors, convert leads and close customers. Pricing starts at $200/month and goes up from there based on service levels.
  • Marketo is positioned as a marketing automation software company that helps you bring together all of your digital marketing activities. Pricing starts at $895/month and is targeted more to larger companies.

What Do You Do With Everything You Find Out

You’ve set goals and captured data, and depending on the tools you’re using, you may even have some nice graphics to impress everyone with at the next staff meeting. The time you’ve taken to get to this point is only worth it if you use this intelligence to learn, finesse, and update your website and campaigns.

If a promotion didn’t hit your target, don’t just rerun the same thing next time and hope for better results. Dig in and learn from it — sometimes it may just be a matter of a few tweaks to improve performance. Sometimes you may need to step back and reevaluate the underlying strategy and be willing to walk away from something that just isn’t working. Learn from the data you collect and be flexible enough to make adjustments to your website, programs and promotions when necessary.

Measureable Metrics For Digital Marketing

It’s helpful when setting your goals to understand which metrics exist to get a good frame of reference.

Some of the measurable metrics in your digital marketing and online presence:
Web metrics (Page hits, visitors/month, etc.)
Email metrics (Open rate, click rate)
Marketing channel analytics (How did they find you? Social media, email, organic search, direct traffic)
Funnel analytics (At what point in your communications and nurturing did they make the move from a lead to a customer?)
On-site engagement (Where do they click? Where do they stay? Where do they leave?)
Customer analytics (Surveys, web experience, etc.)

 

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

More From Management...

February 16, 2018

New England GROWS Discontinues After 25 Years

After 25 years, New England GROWS — both the annual event and the organization behind the event — are discontinuing operations.

Read More
Weigela Czechmark (Spring Meadow Nursery)

February 14, 2018

Spring Meadow Nursery Furthers Its Mission of Giving Back to the Industry

The Spring Meadow-Proven Winners Endowment Fund through the Horticultural Research Institute has now topped $800,000, with more scholarships coming in 2018.

Read More
Laura Drotleff

February 13, 2018

Don’t Let Your New Year’s Resolutions Fade Away in 2018

Stuff got real in 2017, and it caused many of us to stop and reflect on the current state of the world, and how we can impact change — or at least improve our own situations. Life is too short, and we work too hard, to not use the annual renewal as an opportunity to take stock of our own personal lives, businesses, and careers, and make the necessary adjustments that will allow us to work smarter and live better. Even if you have already given up on your resolutions, perhaps you can think of January as a trial month and make February the month when you really get to work on your goals. And while I know it’s a difficult month to start on some of these changes, since you’re already immersed in the busy spring season, I promise that if you take some time to evaluate your reality […]

Read More
Latest Stories

February 16, 2018

New England GROWS Discontinues After 25 Years

After 25 years, New England GROWS — both the annual event and the organization behind the event — are discontinuing operations.

Read More
Weigela Czechmark (Spring Meadow Nursery)

February 14, 2018

Spring Meadow Nursery Furthers Its Mission of Giving Ba…

The Spring Meadow-Proven Winners Endowment Fund through the Horticultural Research Institute has now topped $800,000, with more scholarships coming in 2018.

Read More
Laura Drotleff

February 13, 2018

Don’t Let Your New Year’s Resolutions Fade …

Stuff got real in 2017, and it caused many of us to stop and reflect on the current state of the world, and how we can impact change — or at least improve our own situations. Life is too short, and we work too hard, to not use the annual renewal as an opportunity to take stock of our own personal lives, businesses, and careers, and make the necessary adjustments that will allow us to work smarter and live better. Even if you have already given up on your resolutions, perhaps you can think of January as a trial month and make February the month when you really get to work on your goals. And while I know it’s a difficult month to start on some of these changes, since you’re already immersed in the busy spring season, I promise that if you take some time to evaluate your reality […]

Read More

February 12, 2018

Calling All Designers: Enter the International Plantsca…

Applications are being accepted through April 13 for AmericanHort’s International Plantscape Awards, which recognize achievements in interior plantscape design, installation, creativity, renovation, and innovation.

Read More
Dr. P. Allen Hammer, Dummen Orange

February 10, 2018

Applications for Dümmen Orange’s Dr. P. Allen Hammer Sc…

Named for Dr. P. Allen Hammer in acknowledgment of the contributions he has made to the floriculture industry, the scholarship is intended to extend Dr. Hammer’s legacy by supporting the next generation of floriculture students.

Read More
Hand-Crafted Stone Mushrooms (Stone-Age Creations)

February 9, 2018

Garden Retailers at TPIE Highlight Their Favorite Produ…

A team of garden retailers once again participated in the 2018 Tropical Plants Industry Expo Cool Product Awards.

Read More
Amazon-Online-Plant-Store

February 7, 2018

The Latest on Amazon’s Online Plant Store

There is debate throughout the industry over how Amazon’s presence will affect growers who are looking to sell plants online.

Read More
Congressional-Action-Days-2018

February 6, 2018

Congressional Action Days to Feature Pep Talk From Lead…

Rep. Jimmy Panetta, (D, CA), one of the floral industry’s biggest advocates in Congress, will deliver a pep talk to the Society of American Florists’ (SAF) Congressional Action Days participants before they meet with lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

Read More

February 6, 2018

Registration for 2018 IGC Show Now Open

The event takes place Aug. 14-16 in Chicago and features keynote presentations from horticultural economist Charlie Hall and Daymond John from the TV series “Shark Tank.”

Read More
Dendrobium-Orchid-Costa-Farms

February 4, 2018

USDA to Allow Orchid Imports from Taiwan Into U.S.

The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has amended its regulations to allow the importation of orchid plants of the genus Dendrobium spp. in growing media from Taiwan into the U.S.

Read More
North Creek Nurseries Head Grower and Owner

February 3, 2018

Be Sure to Take the NICH Industry Survey on Horticultur…

The National Initiative for Consumer Horticulture is asking industry members for their input in a brief survey designed to measure the types of information used to run horticultural businesses.

Read More
Nature-Hills-Nursery-Plant-Shipping-feature

February 2, 2018

How You Can Tackle Online Plant Sales

Selling your products online can open up a new revenue stream, but there are several factors you need to consider along the way.

Read More

January 31, 2018

Online Education Empowers Employees to Succeed

See how UF/IFAS online certificate courses helped employees at Costa Farms get ahead with their jobs.

Read More
Ter-Laak-Orchids-Netherlands

January 30, 2018

Netherlands Orchid Grower Named International Grower of…

Ter Laak Orchids took home the International Association of Horticultural Producers’ top prize at its ceremony at IPM Essen, while Van Belle Nursery in Canada was also a big winner.

Read More
TPIE-2018

January 30, 2018

Color, Décor, and Wellness Were On Display at TPIE

The 2018 Tropical Plant International Expo celebrated its 45th year bringing buyers and sellers of interior plants and related products together in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

Read More
Stuztman-Greenhouse

January 30, 2018

Stutzman Greenhouse Co-Founder Dies at 96

Ervin Stutzman started the Kansas-based family business with his wife, Emma, in 1956.

Read More
Money-feature

January 25, 2018

Why It’s Critical to Understand Your Real Costs o…

It’s time to stop guessing and start calculating when it comes to finding out what your real cost of production is, and pricing products accordingly.\

Read More
Tax-Money

January 23, 2018

Learn How the New Tax Law Will Affect Your Greenhouse B…

AmericanHort will co-host a free “Comprehending the New Tax Law: webinar on Wednesday, Jan. 31, with K-Coe Isom, a national tax consulting leader.

Read More