Lead Generation

April 22, 2014

Measuring the Online Marketing Mix

By Gary No comments

Ask any B2B customer and you’ll quickly understand that a buying decision is made over time and is influenced by a mix of marketing and advertising touch-points.

It is why, as marketers, we insist on running integrated campaigns: great attention and effort goes into harmonising messaging, coordinating content production and media buying so your TV ads are supported by Google Adwords, or your PR is supported by your SEO.

So why, when it comes to review the performance of the campaign is there a tendency to view all the integrated elements of the online marketing mix in isolation?

Especially when it can be so misleading.

Multi-Channel Insight

Looking at a client’s B2B website (anonymised), using Google Analytics’ eCommerce plugin to track lead generation, it’s possible to see how using multi-channel insight can make your campaign planning and decision making more effective.

Looking at the following as isolated activities:

Marketing Channel (Last Interaction) Average Lead Value
Direct £10,500
Paid Search £285
Organic Search £1,500

The recommendation would be to fire the paid search agency, invest more in brand awareness and increase the number of direct visits.

But when you add a layer of multi-channel insight, and you discover, over the previous 90 days, 87% of the Direct conversions are started by a previous visit from Paid Search, the recommendation does a U-turn: you need to invest more in Paid Search to help more people discover your brand.

This multi-channel insight also applies when you start analysing performance using different attribution models. Looking specifically at the Paid Search channel, there is a vast difference in performance whether you attribute value to the last interaction or the first interaction.

Channel Last Interaction Conversions First Interaction Conversions
Paid Search 683 936

The number of conversions attributed to Paid Search increased by around 40%. And using a first interaction attribution model, the cost per conversion for Paid Search decreases by around 30%. Both of which, further support the decision for increasing your Paid Search budget.

Multi-Channel & Multi-Device

Multi-channel insight is just the start. With most B2B websites starting to see about 30% of visitors coming on a mobile device, the next challenge for marketers is to connect multi-channel insight with a multi-device journey.

At the moment I think the advantage here is with Google, for the following reasons:

• They have a pretty popular search engine
• They have a fast-growing social network
• They have a TV network in waiting
• They have a mobile phone ecosystem
• They have a browser
• They have an analytics package

Using everything above, Google have all the signals in place to understand how a single user experiences the same content across a number of devices/platforms. It’s just a matter of time until we see the multi-channel, multi-device displayed in a report in Google Analytics. And at that point, measuring the effectiveness of isolated marketing activities will truly be a waste of time and resources.

What To Do Next

How are you currently measuring/optimising the performance of your integrated marketing campaigns?

Do you email broadcast reports look before/beyond the click?

Are you SEO and PPC reports joined at the hip?

Do you know how your channels join up and support one another?

If you answered ‘no’ to any of the above, please get in touch.