The Reporting of Analytics


Chris Bretschger

September 7, 2015

The other month I wrote about how analytics can be a flawed science.  Definitions of data, transparency of sources, and the lack of analysis continue — and look as though it will continue to plague our industry.  Though, in the midst of all of this, there have been some great advancements that are bringing analytics closer to both the agency as well as our clients.

Paper reports (big, fat, heavy decks), or PDFs that are static and forwarded from email are quickly becoming the way of the past.  We’ve noticed that our clients need information now, and they’ll need it later — on demand.  Great software platforms and data visualization tools have come out to support these efforts, and they’re getting better every day.

The real goal here is aggregation.  We all know about Google Analytics, or Omniture, as well as the some of the smaller analytics platforms, there are channel reports coming in from our media buys, or our CRM activity.  Performance reports coming in from each storefront. And then a load of intelligence sitting at headquarters, waiting to be mined.  As companies begin aggregating more and more data, the layer of intelligence on top of that will increasingly become more important.

In order to tackle this we’re moving toward real-time reporting services for ourselves as well as our clients — accessible online, updated constantly, so we can spend more time analyzing.  It’s a good time to take a look at your reporting habits and see how they can be improved.  We’d recommend starting with a few key areas:

– Reporting Period (what time frames do we report on)

– Reporting Frequency (how frequently do we address performance)

– Actionable Outcomes (what do we do with this information once it’s available)

– Quantifiable Results (what do the other areas of the business need to answer their questions)

Once the answers are addressed for these questions — it’s time to figure out how your reporting begins to factor in.

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