What are your primary analytics challenges? That was the question we asked the audience before the start of our webinar, How to Prepare for a Successful Marketing Analytics Implementation.

The highest number of respondents – 57% – cited not being able to fully leverage platform capabilities as their main hindrance. Next, 52% said that low adoption and use of reporting and dashboards are key challenges, while 38% noted a lack of resources as their most significant obstacle to success.

Presenter Lloyd Thomas, Manager of Implementation at Cardinal Path, walked viewers through the process of understanding how smart preparation is vital in building a robust, well-supported and long-term plan.

In a virtual room full of digital marketers looking to gain greater insight and understanding , the Q&A period often cuts to the heart of specific challenges with standing up an effective and rewarding marketing analytics implementation.

Here are three that may be relatable to your organization:

How do I know the data being collected is actually answering my business questions/objectives?

It’s really about asking this question before the analytics implementation. Of course, I realize an implementation may have taken place already, but it’s about taking a step back and saying, “Okay, what I am really trying to answer here?”

I’ll give you an example: Let’s say you have a website and you are sending a lot of traffic to your site, and you are tracking when a particular person clicks on something or plays a video. How do you measure the quality of that traffic?

There are various ways, but it is definitely about having a documented measurement framework, so going right back to the beginning – ensuring that stakeholder objectives are met, what business question you want to answer, then ensuring that the tracking is optimized. It may be that you want to learn how many unique visitors click on a certain part of your website, or it may be you want to learn how much they engage with certain parts of your website.

The answers to that, from a business perspective, are going to vary vastly. But, knowing what is available from a tech perspective, means the tech team may be able to advise with options, such as engagement scoring and creating a custom metric. Then they could devise a calculated metric, thus ensuring once tracking is 100% tested and bulletproof, that tracking can become a single KPI on a dashboard.

I am not saying make it complex, but go back and reverse the question order to determine how you would measure it if there were no tracking set up today.

 

How much developer time do you really need for an implementation?

I am actually an ex-developer myself. The reason why I am smiling at the question is that it varies vastly from company to company; I have seen developers implement lengthy, fairly technical data layers quickly – within a week or two. I’ve seen others take a lot longer. It depends on if it’s a pure Ecommerce retailer with no brick-and-mortar stores. If they are online only, they’re typically more mature on the tracking implementation side because their business runs on that solely, but that shouldn’t affect how long it takes.

The big thing is ensuring that tech is well-structured for marketing analytics, as opposed to experiencing a push back from developers who say, “There’s a backlog. We have no resources – this is going to take two weeks for us to begin.”

Scope, timelines, and resources are essential, but to answer your question, it really does vary from company to company.

 

After the implementation is set up, what happens next?

Once it is set up, that is really just the beginning because data without insights means nothing. As much as I love being on the tech side, there can be great tech implementations, yet little business impact, and it shouldn’t be that.

Knowledge transfer is part of our process. It’s important that clients understand what we have customized their set up after, ensuring that they know how to own their data in the most optimal way.

And, of course, a lot of analytics consultancies will do analysis insights, reporting, and deep dive on behalf of the client. But I honestly believe, for optimal success, you need a mutual understanding of the specifics for the client’s analytics account.

 

Want to learn more about the benefits of establishing a successful marketing implementation plan? Contact us:  marketing@cardinalpath.com.