Let’s face it: every serious business that wants to generate leads and revenue needs to have a marketing strategy that will help them in their quest for profit. Today’s digital data has given power to an average Internet user a massive amount of information that helps him or her to choose between brands, products or offers, making the market a highly competitive arena for the best ones to survive. An important part of a successful business intelligence strategy is implementing a marketing report in its core procedures. But only 22% of businesses are satisfied with their conversion rates. That being said, a marketing report will become the beating heart of acquiring customers, researching the market, providing detailed data insights into the most valuable information for a business: is our performance on track? Ultimately, it will provide a clear insight into relevant KPIs and build a solid foundation for increasing conversions.
If you are reading this, it probably means that you understand the importance of tracking your performance and its progression over time. Be it in marketing, or in sales, finance or for executives, reports are essential to assess your activity and evaluate the results. Management thinker Peter Drucker once stated, “if you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it” – and he couldn’t be more right. To know if you are successful, you first need to define success and track it. As we have already talked about in our previous blog post on Sales reports for daily, weekly or monthly reporting, you need to figure out a couple of things when launching and executing a marketing campaign: are your efforts paying off? How do you know that? If you are doing things in the right way, should you do more of it? Or drastically change for another path?
Using the right marketing KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) is a good start – what is now left is finding a way to organize it all in a way that makes sense and brings value. Let’s dig deeper.
What Is A Marketing Report?
A marketing report is a set of data created to analyze the performance of a specific marketing campaign or effort. It is utilized to effectively communicate a company’s marketing strategy, including research, promotional tactics, goals and expected outcomes.
Why You Need Marketing Reports?
We’ve all heard of that famous end of the month when it’s time to deliver reports, be it in an agency or in-house. While your keyboard is burning and your fingers try to keep up with your brain and comprehend all the data you’re writing about, using an interactive online data visualization tool to set specific time parameters or goals you’ve been tracking can bring a lot of saved time and, consequently, a lot of saved money.
There are countless reports digging into your marketing data; the question usually is, where do I start? Are there any basic reports that could help me get more comfortable with these mountains of aggregated data? To get started, you might want to equip yourself with a marketing BI software to analyze all your data and easily build professional reports.
Secondly, launching a campaign with achievable goals is only worth if you check on them on a regular basis and see if you’re on track – waiting for the end of the campaign to see how it performed is, unfortunately, a common mistake people do, and the worst practice. As a Forbes article states, “there’s no such thing as ‘set it and forget it’ [in digital marketing]”. Noticing that something does not work as planned on the 7th day instead of the 47th is a lot of time saved, and less money wasted.
First things first: organizing and prioritizing your marketing activities. And just like you schedule daily, weekly and monthly marketing activities, so will you build daily, weekly and monthly marketing reports. If you get your practice right and utilize some effective data driven marketing strategy tips and tricks, a report can be generated with just a few clicks. We’ve gathered some of the marketing reports templates that can easily be used to perfect the efficiency of generating data and reduce the time needed to create it.
But let’s get over some real data, starting with daily marketing report examples.
Daily Marketing Report Examples And KPIs
The general purpose of reporting is to give you tools to make better-informed decisions. A daily marketing report will help you do that at a faster pace. You can use it to create an action plan every morning: what did you accomplish the day before, and what can be done better today. It can allow you to interact with your data almost in real time, so you can be positive that information, objectives, and strategies are fresh and on track. Although the overall result of the marketing strategy will not be affected on a daily basis, using these kinds of reports can provide more details into the daily activities of the campaign setting.
A daily marketing report will also allow you for faster experimentation: running small operations to answer small questions. This keeps everyone proactive to see a problem early enough and adapt, to avoid wasting money. Besides, your team and yourself will know your numbers perfectly, enticing more confidence for everyone when a decision has to be made.
On a daily basis, though, a lot of things are out of your control – especially in marketing. One single day will definitely not determine the outcome of a campaign, but several days in a row can indicate a trend. While you shouldn’t tie yourself up in too much daily reporting, checking in on a couple of activities every day is the best practice. Here are some examples of KPIs you can track on a daily basis:
1) Website Traffic
For inbound marketing, website traffic is the blood and pulse: you need to attract a certain audience (new or returning), before turning them into prospects and actual customers. After setting a traffic goal for the month, you can divide it by the number of days in the month to set your daily target and see if you come close to it or not. For greater precision, you can adjust according to your business, and if weekdays/weekends impact or not. Monitoring your website traffic can help identify sudden rise or drop, lets you act straight away, and should encourage you to communicate with the sales team, whose number of leads and qualified leads will also probably be affected. You can also filter the channel-specific traffic, meaning you can instantly look for sources like Organic traffic, Referrals, Social media, Email, or Paid search, and see which channels are performing well, and keep an eye on how they behave in relation to your goals, so that you can optimize them on time and prevent unnecessary budget expenditure. The important thing to emphasize is to not change all your defined structures or goals merely because your daily activity hasn’t performed as expected. Let’s take a look at an example.
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The example above shows the exact percentage of the traffic sources gained through a specific time interval, in this case, daily. While Organic search definitely shows the biggest value of this specific performance, Display shouldn’t be disregarded simply because on that specific day didn’t perform that well. But if this tendency of almost 50% of the overall traffic gained develops in the same direction, then it can be concluded that parts of the budget can be optimized for channels which are performing better.
2) Engagement On Social Media
We never say it enough, but engagement is key. For your brand to be known and your name to be memorized, daily activity on various social newsfeeds of your audience will not only increase your chances to reach a higher number of people with time, but it will also increase your chances to engage with them. No one discusses with a brand whose last post on social media was three months ago. Inactivity in today’s prolific discussion and sharing channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, but also LinkedIn, Snapchat and Pinterest) is digging your own grave. Find the channel that fits you better, but most importantly, where you can reach your audience better (50-year-old businesspeople do not use the same channels as teenagers, who somehow tend to create and make trends, so stay tuned). Communicate daily or every couple of days through it. Don’t throw uninteresting news just to have attention, or you will easily lose it; build a strategy and provide valuable content. Respond to questions, add yourself in relevant groups, interact with possible customers or clients and listen to what the market and audience say. While it depends on the industry you are part of, social media is a great tool to interact directly, on a personal level and build a community around your products or services. That being said, building a community management strategy can also provide an additional source of a marketing activity that can be tracked and evaluated on a daily basis. By listening to your clients and customers, you can also improve your product or service and generate more ideas that can be utilized and implemented in other marketing channels and activities.
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Researches have shown that content shared on Facebook and Twitter live from 30 minutes to three hours – which makes it a good daily KPI to track. Over a day, you can determine how engaging your post was and how much traffic it brought to your website. Although metrics and algorithms of digital media change regularly, social media is still quite an important part of a marketing strategy. By adjusting your social efforts to the right audience, it can still bring value and traffic.
Weekly Marketing Report Examples And KPIs
The weekly monitoring of your traffic will ensure that there is no “breakdown” in the performance, that could affect a whole month’s progress. A weekly marketing report will gather data that can be of utmost importance to the overall marketing strategy. If you see on a daily basis that your channels aren’t performing the way you expected them to, then the weekly summary can provide you with more insights and create a basis for future decisions. Especially in digital marketing reporting, where data can change on a daily basis, but keeping in mind the big picture is crucial for a successful campaign.
Now let’s approach some new aspects of this kind of a report, on a weekly basis.
1) Blog Traffic And Blog Leads Report
Some research showed that within a week of posting, a blog article’s traffic can drop by 90%. This is mainly due to the fact that you share the article on social media, which explains the short-term traffic, and the fact that after getting a couple of hundreds of visitors, depending on your reach, it may drop significantly. If it has been optimized for SEO though, you shouldn’t stop measuring it after the first week, as it needs a couple of months to reach its “cruising traffic”, and you can get several thousands of monthly visits. Tracking the weekly development of the blog traffic will show you how it actually takes off. You don’t need to panic if you don’t see the results right away, but do keep in mind the weekly progress to know when to take specific actions. If a blog post doesn’t deliver immediate results, it should not affect the whole marketing strategy, patience, in this case, is key.
We know by now how important blogs are for companies, and not only for ranking on Google. Correlation is not limited to the number of times a company blogs and the traffic they drive, but also to the number of leads they generate. Producing a blog leads report gives a quick overview of how many leads you bring every week with your articles. Sharpening the analysis, a bit more, you can see which category of articles is bringing the most traffic, and focus then on improving the quality of content in that category, to attract even more.
2) Website Traffic And Leads Per Channel
What we described above can also be applied to your website traffic in general. Breaking it down into channels and analyze which ones are bringing in the most leads may shed light on under-performing (or on the contrary, super-performing) channels that may need more attention and investments. The number of sessions by source or by channel groupings, can track your traffic in many different ways thanks to the website KPIs available in your Google Analytics account. Having interactive data analysis tools to establish your performance on a weekly basis can reduce the amount of time needed to consider additional actions or to simply decide what will the next step be.
Identify which channel from Paid, Organic, Social, Referral or any other is your gem and increment your strategies implemented in order to boost the traffic coming from it. Although keeping in mind your long-term performance is one of the most important parameters to decide in which way you have to adjust your campaigns and efforts, weekly summaries can decrease the number of interdepartmental meetings between marketing professionals, and provide a faster way to analyze big data.
3) Online Advertising Performance
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If you choose to invest money to advertise online, you also need to track how it performs. The most common pricing model, Cost-Per-Click (CPC), like presented in the picture above, is used by the main search engines like Google Ad, Yahoo Search Marketing, or Yandex Direct. You pay a fixed price for each click on your ad, and the goal is to decrease that price over time, which will decrease as a result of your customer acquisition costs (as long as your conversion rate is not decreasing). When you choose the most suitable online advertising model for your business, you can set your payment also on CPM, CTR or CPA, it all depends on which platform you want to advertise, how big is your marketing budget and which goals you expect. For example, there are programmatic advertising technologies that have their own sets of platforms on which your advertisement is shown. Also, if you set a branding campaign, then it differentiates from the standard Paid Search campaign. It all depends on your overall marketing strategy and how it aligns with your general sales report, which you have to keep in mind since sales is directly interconnected with marketing activities.
In the example below, we can see the total amount of the spent budget in connection with weeks and channels. Using this data can provide insights on whether your investments are stable or need more optimization to deliver specified targets. These data sets can be broken down on the specific week of interest, meaning you can interactively follow-up what happened in week 11 in regards to the week 10. Although these data can also be utilized in monthly or yearly reports, this weekly marketing report template can be a source of input on how to track and analyze your efforts.
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Now that we have gone over some weekly marketing report templates, let’s move to a broader, long-term vision. Monthly reports are more common than daily or weekly ones, especially for SEO marketing, where you should not think too short-termed.
Monthly Marketing Report Examples And Templates
In our third part, we would like to stress the fact that you should also keep looking at the big picture. We have already stated that every report must correlate with the big picture in marketing and provide a steady connection with sales, but looking at a monthly level can deliver more insights than anything else. The weekly marketing report template we provided earlier can be implemented into the broader perspective and utilized for monthly decisions. The channel bringing in the most traffic is not always the one bringing the best quality leads in the end – but that you cannot know before some weeks have passed. That is why a monthly marketing report is so useful, providing a cross-disciplinary overview of several parameters at stake in a campaign, that you can analyze conjointly for more accuracy.
This first monthly marketing report below provides you with a broader feeling of how your marketing campaigns are performing in the long run – even though, as we said, it can be too long to spot problems and adjust. This is why each of these different reports should be used conjointly.
1) Marketing KPI Report
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This monthly report gives a good overview of the most important marketing KPIs in a single glance: costs and revenue stats. In the end, this is what matters: did I get enough bang for my buck?
The design of this marketing monthly report is clear and lets you focus on the core metrics. Keep in mind that a marketing KPI like your CTR (Click-Through-Rate) or the number of sessions should be understood in their globality, and not an absolute truth: increasing them will not systematically generate more profit or rise the ROI (Return on Investment) displayed on this dashboard. That’s why you should dig deeper: analyze the profit per acquisition you made, in comparison to the Cost per Acquisition over time. See which campaigns are acquiring the most customers, with the minimum of dollars invested in them.
Looking at your different campaigns and channels is key, when your set up a monthly marketing report, to have the big picture and understand what is going on.
2) Web Analytics Report
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Simply, the web analytics dashboard will track all of your website traffic details that you get thanks to Google Analytics (GA). GA is a great tool and provides a lot of affordable data on your visitors. Well-designed, custom Google Analytics dashboards will give you a deeper understanding and a greater clarity on your audience.
On this second monthly marketing report template, shown above, you can track basic info like the number of visitors over time, their behavior (new, returning, time on page, pages per session, …), the bounce rate, etc. In addition to the more general demographics, knowing your audience’s behavior is an asset. Secondly, monitoring the traffic sources is as important, as already stated earlier in this article. That way, you can tailor time and budget accordingly. Finally, the bottom line is the conversion. You want all of these people coming to your site to take action, and convert – whichever that conversion is, provided that you stated it beforehand: signing up for a newsletter, starting a free trial, watching a video, buying your product. Your monthly report should track these conversion rates and see how they perform compared to the initial goals.
3) Marketing Performance Report
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Our final monthly marketing report is providing a good overview of the performance of all your paid advertisement campaigns. How much do you spend? Is it complying to what was initially planned? These are the questions you want to answer through that report. This monthly marketing report template also wants to answer, “how much are we spending to get a new customer”? The cost per acquisition (CPA) addresses that question according to the campaign, and you can see which is the most profitable. Thanks to these insights you know how to acquire a new customer with the minimum of investments, and can then replicate the best practices from that campaign.
Thanks to the data gathered on that report, you have all in hand to strategically decide where to allocate your money.
Digital Marketing Reporting
These examples can also help a business to create a digital marketing report. In this data-driven world, it is essential to keep your digital efforts in a concise, factual and presentable way. Digital marketing has become a must-have part of the overall strategy, and to make sure you have all your data in one place, an online reporting software can track a campaign’s performance in real time, while setting an alarm so you can be automatically notified when a specific digital marketing KPI changes its course or performs below expectations. Let’s see this through an example.
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We all know the old content marketing saying: content is king, context is queen. To be certain your content production and article engagement is on its track, this digital marketing report example showcases a peek into an interactive dashboard representing the most important data for creating a content piece. With this marketing report template, you can get a clear overview of all the content stages before and after publishing. By seeing how much time a story needs to be written, you can conclude if the writer is struggling, or there is not enough time for the reviewing process? This whole story turnaround can provide deeper data-insights and, therefore, drive to measurable actions by decision-makers.
Why so much data analysis, in the end? Simply because we started this article with Peter Drucker’s quote, “what isn’t measured, cannot be improved”. These reports are slicing, dicing, and analyzing data, while connects the dots between your marketing activities and the goals originally set. They help you draw conclusions – but also lessons! – from your campaigns, various tests, and mistakes. They help you spot problems as well as opportunities to catch, and replicate success.
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