reporting and planning

It’s the end of the year and you’re doing planning for 2019. How should we look do our reporting on our marketing programs so that we know where to invest in the future?

Grant Grigorian, Director of Project Management at Engagio helps answer that question. He shares his thoughts about how time influences how we should be looking at our reports and making our decisions.

I’ll give you an example. Let’s say this year you sponsored two events, one on January 1st, and one yesterday, Dec. 6th. Which one will show more ROI? Why? Time!

That means we must look at our reports differently when making decisions about where we’ll be investing our marketing resources.

Here’s Grant.

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So it’s the end of the year and we’re looking back at our campaigns to see how well they are performing. But Grant actually has some tips for us today on how to actually best get data out of those campaigns to figure out what is working. So hey guys Brandon Redlinger here, director of growth at Engagio and I’m joined by the one and only Grant Grigorian. Welcome Grant.

Thank you.

Brandon: So he’s on the product team and he’s been thinking a lot about how to run these reports and figure out what is working. So Grant give us some tips.

Yes so I work a lot with our customers and partners on the analytic side. So campaign ROI, attribution, things like that where we’re trying to evaluate whether the campaigns that we ran this year were successful. What was successful, what wasn’t successful, to help guide our 2019 next year’s planning.

And there’s one thing that comes to mind that I see over and over again that we collectively, as B2B marketing professionals we tend to stumble over. And that is the influence of time. Because uniquely in B2B, our marketing efforts take time to bear fruit. So there’s two things that I would say. A we’re definitely not patient. Right? We do a thing and we want it to generate money right away.

That doesn’t happen. It can take months or years for things to bear fruit. And so two, knowing that we don’t handle this delicately in our reports and analysis of data. For example I might run a report about all the different things we did this year and try to compare them to see which thing is performing best and which thing is not. But the tactic or the campaign that we executed at the beginning of this year is gonna look way better, all things being equal, than the thing that we did last week. Or last month. Right?

And so it’s not fair to the thing that we did last month to compare it to the thing that we did almost a year ago. So actually adjusting for that time influence is really hard because you have different audiences that campaign touched. Maybe it was different channels. There are so many different variables involved that getting the time out of the way is gonna be pretty important. Because otherwise it’s gonna be the main influencer. So things that happened in the past will look better than the most recent things, which is totally not fair and very confusing to everyone.

So what do we do?

So first of all just acknowledging that is actually very helpful. And then being able to somehow find a… I would say two things.

One is understand what is the velocity for how quickly do things tend to bear fruit for whatever you’re measuring. Knowing that gives you a good sense of baseline that says maybe it’s six months for you to generate an opportunity for something on average.

Then I would start looking at ROI for campaigns six months ago and things that are within that six months window, maybe give them some time. If somebody asks, hey how did that go? Say don’t know yet. Let’s wait a little longer to find out. Also therefore, things within that six month window, don’t freak out. It’s okay if they’re not quite there to the level of expectation yet because it will take time to develop.

Great. Sounds good. So marketers be patient out there.

Be patient. Be mindful of the time element and incorporate it into your analysis one way or another.

Great. Love it. Thanks Grant!

Cool thanks. Take care.