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How to Fool Your Boss Into Thinking You're an Analytical Marketer

163700987Did you know that Google has an algorithmic attribution model that gives you “a complete and actionable view of the entire customer journey”?

OK, did we lose you with our two back-to-back foot-and-a-half-long words, algorithmic attribution?

We threw those in there to illustrate one way to fool your boss into thinking you're a mathy/analytical type. Algorithmic has to do with problem solving, and the attribution part is just abstract enough to sound very analytic. Use those words sometime soon, your boss will be impressed.

Here’s what it means in real life: Google’s model allows you to make better marketing decisions and invest the marketing budget in ways that achieve the best results.

Put yourself in the boss’s shoes. Your boss will love knowing about an algorithmic attribution model because then your boss will know that someone is making some smart decisions about marketing budgets. Just knowing that someone on the staff knows where to do the math that goes into all those charts and graphs gives the boss warm and fuzzy confidence, and is pretty good for your career, too.

But talk is cheap.

You’ll need to work on the “math” side before you can get all analytical. So you’ll need a plan that relies on counting, gathering data, and surveying customers who buy your products.

But you’re no math geek, right? However, you are analytical enough to know that there are tools out there that do the counting and tracking for you. Those tools take the eclectic bits of customer activity and crunch them into colorful pie and bar charts, and trend graphs that track (hopefully) horizontally upward, from left to right.

There are plenty of marketing analytical tools, so you can decide for yourself what tools best fit your needs. Get started by reviewing this Inc. piece on the best web analytic tools, and then dig in with these "mathy" rules, apps, and websites:

Know thy SEO rankings

Need a leg up for the next meeting? If the company has a web presence, digging up some keyword stats could prove beneficial. Create a list of relevant, new keywords, plug them into a tool. Moz has great tools you’ve probably heard of. If you favor something that will work on your iPhone, here’s a link to a slick SEO Ranking app. With those, or other SEO tools you'll get a regular digest of how well your keywords are tracking, and make it easy for you to present some very analytical presentations to your superiors.

Tap Into Research Numbers

You don't have to memorize an entire workbook of math problems to stand out from the crowd. All you need is just a few research numbers. Tons of reputable companies and universities (like MIT) offer free reports, complete with research numbers. Check out MIT's Research Highlights section, or put their Publications tool to work. If you don't see research relevant to your company's field, try another great tool, SearchEdu.

This comprehensive search engine delivers results from hundreds of collegiate sites. Does your company sell wireless widgets? Do your homework! Find out what research companies say about the future of wireless widgets, and share that info with your boss. After all, those are the numbers he wants to know -- and you'll improve your "mathy" image!

Put KenKen to Work

Download this cool math puzzle app and invite the boss to play. These addictive math and logic puzzles will challenge anyone, including your math-loving manager. Get your name onto the KenKen leaderboard by playing regularly (and of course, solving math puzzles). That's sure to impress!

The One Tool if You Use No Others

Google Analytics is the standard. It can give you the knowledge you need to boost sales, track site statistics, locate your target market and more. The beauty of using this powerful tool is that you don’t have to be an expert to get results that will make you the hero of the day with your boss. One of the best aspects of Google Analytics is how easy it is to use, and the amount of help there is out there to teach you.

Like all really great tools, it’s so powerful that it can take a while to figure out how to use it fully. Luckily there are plenty of guides, including:

“How to Use Google Analytics for Beginners” - This step-by-step article walks you through the setup with ease and will have you using the tools like a pro in no time.

A Beginner’s Guide to Google Analytics by Ben Barden - A free ebook, this guide started out as a series of blog posts by the author in 2008. But the popularity led him to create the ebook and even update it with a second edition. Written in layman’s terms that are easy to understand, it gives a breakdown of all the tools available to you, and how to use them.

“Beginner’s Guide to Google Analytics” - This guide doesn’t tell you how to install the product. Instead, it tells you how to read and use the most popular reports that Google Analytics can give you.

While these are just a few of the resources available to help you with Google Analytics, it covers all you need to know to sound like a pro. No one can be an expert at everything, but Google Analytics can help you improve your marketing strategies, and impress your boss with your marketing skills.

If you need help turning your analytics data into something that’s more presentable, here are a couple of more tools:

Spreadsheet Software

This one is so simple you might have overlooked it. Instead of presenting your internal numbers as a boring paragraph or bullet list, use your spreadsheet software to turn the data into a bar graph or pie chart. Every spreadsheet program offers users the ability to generate graphic representations of their numbers and some people find it easier to understand numbers when they can see them.

f you need help learning how to create effective bar graphs and pie charts that show off your numbers in a positive light, check out the University of San Francisco's School of Business and Professional Studies' publication Spreadsheet Analytics.

You can use the numbers from your web analytics, from your company's sales, from your email newsletter's analytics report, or from anywhere else. The beauty in combining data from outside analytics and from internal sources is that it helps you tell a story about why your work matters.

ROI for Web Marketers

While your boss may want more analytics from you, what the boss undoubtedly wants at the end of the meeting is an understanding of the Return on Investment in Inbound Marketing.

Focusing on the ROI is important. The people who are determining your budget and salary need to be aware of how you measure your success, and they're more likely to be impressed with statistics they can understand. It would be nice if you could click on the big red button that says "How much money have we made from all the clients that my campaign brought in?," but so far, no one has written a universal code for generating that button. Because of this, you need to follow the money backwards and present your information in context with the overall success of the company. Factors to discuss when it comes to measuring the success of web marketing include:

  • Actual web sales
  • Reader's interaction with your brand
  • Downloads
  • Growth of email lists

Marketing goals are different from sales goals, and it's in your best interest to define your goals as a marketer, rather than as a sales force. Other marketing goals you can declare are:

  • Brand engagement
  • Product education
  • Buzz (mentions of your company by the public or other businesses)
  • Positive reviews

If you want to learn more about how to talk about the measurement of ROI, in terms of relationships and not actual sales, check out MIT's article Can You measure the ROI of your Social Media Marketing? on the Sloan Business Review.

Ask the Right Questions

When you're thinking like your leaders, it's easier to provide them with the answers to the questions they're going to be asking. When you know what your marketing goals are, you're able to ask the right questions, like:

  • How many new visitors to the site have we had since this campaign started?
  • How many of our visitors stayed on the site for more than half an hour?
  • How many new newsletter subscribers did we get?
  • What percentage of subscribers bought our product or subscribed to our service?
  • How many copies of our eBook have been downloaded?
  • How many people have clicked through to our website after watching the YouTube videos?
  • How many "likes" do we have on our Facebook Page?
  • How many people entered our most recent giveaway?

Always look back at previous presentations and specifically address the topics you've addressed in the past. For example, if your previous presentation promised that you'd triple the number of Facebook “likes,” be sure to reiterate the reasons why this was a goal. Be sure to show that not only have you reached that goal, but be sure also to show the positive effects of having more fans, more engaged readers, and more insight into the habits of these fans via Facebook Insights and data graphing.

What you're really trying to learn is how your company can justify what they're spending on your program. Vague touchy-feely explanations of "increasing brand awareness" are rarely effective, and explaining principles of domain authority and search engine optimization don't really answer their questions.

By utilizing these resources, and by being smart about your analytical methods, you can seem a lot more analytical than you actually are! Let technology do some of the work for you. Now, that’s smart!

This post is a creation of the team of writers at BlogMutt, a crowdsourced content creation service. Scott Yates is not just the CEO, he's a customer. He can write posts, and just recently created a post in one hour and did a livestream of the creation of the post. To watch the sausage being made, click here.

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