Do you know why your digital marketing is or isn’t working?

12/02/2021 | Article

written by Gustavo Bacchin, Co-Founder & CEO EMEA, Cadastra


The proverbial saying ‘you are what you eat’ speaks to the notion that to be fit and healthy, you need to eat good food. The better and more balanced the diet, the better and more balanced the person.

But of course different people have different diets for different goals. Want to gain muscle? Add in some protein. Want to reduce your environmental impact? Go vegan. Need to fend off scurvy whilst on a long naval voyage? Invest in citrus.

The input directly affects the output. To understand what the right diet is for you, you need to understand what you want your outcomes to be. Because if you put garbage in, you will get garbage out.

The same is true of digital marketing. If you don’t keep track of your inputs, or measure the wrong data points, you will quickly lose sight of your desired outcome.

Everyone knows that measurement is important, but you can get lost with vanity metrics and limited attribution models – a topic for another article – and start making poor investment decisions at different points in your campaign goals.

This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t cover the full marketing funnel. But that you need to treat each stage of it separately and not use the same measurement for all parts of the funnel. You need to tackle each bit step by step and measure it correctly or you won’t even know if you are winning or losing.

So where to start? It’s simple, think about what you are trying to achieve, and really break down what you will need to put in.

Are you trying to grow your audience?


If you want to sell your product to more than just your existing customers, then you must focus on driving awareness and building your brand.

In traditional media this would mean TV ads that allow you to tell a story, and the same reasoning applies to digital media.

On Google you should be using their discovery ads, display ads and video ad formats, on Facebook and Instagram, sponsored posts and ads are the best formats. This is also an opportunity to use Pinterest, and where sponsored pins can help get your brand in front of people who are interested in the wider category.

And how do you know if these formats are working? Closely track viewability, impressions, video views and clicks. At this stage getting your brand in front of people is the most important thing, so drive topline engagement. Any clicks or deeper engagement from users should be viewed as a bonus and suggests they are moving further through the funnel.

Building engagement, knowledge and understanding about your product.


This is the consideration and engagement section of the customer journey. At this point you need to be prioritising channels and ad formats which are easy for the user to engage with, such as Google smart display, Amazon sponsored brands and Facebook and Instagram dynamic product ads (DPA).

This is where it is sensible to start measuring click-through rate (CTR) to see if people are engaging with your ads, as well as monitoring other metrics such as average time on site, average page views and if the rate of returning users of your website is increasing . These metrics all show how much a potential consumer is engaging with your content and website, that he is coming back for more, so demonstrate if your strategy is working.

Drives sales or another type of transaction?


You’ve made it to the most exciting part of the funnel: the conversion end.

Often there can be a real urge to skip forward to this point, or think that activity in the awareness part of the funnel will lead straight to conversion. Whilst the funnel isn’t as linear as it looks on paper, using the wrong channels and ad formats for your goals will always result in missing your targets.

So what channels and ad formats should you be using? This is the phase to leverage ads which drive a clear call to action and have a specific goal. These are PPC, Shopping on both Google and Bing, Amazon Sponsored Products, along with Facebook and Instagram DPA’s with a focus on Images and Carousels.

To measure if your marketing is driving sales, and is doing so effectively, brands must keep their finger on the pulse of conversion rate, average order value, the amount and growth of transactions, growth in overall revenue, cost per acquisition, cost per lead and customer acquisition cost. These are all important indicators of success.

Cross sell, upsell and build long term relationships with customers?


Much like a single workout or meal is never the end of a fitness plan, a sale is never the end of the process. Now it’s all about customer loyalty and growing the relationship. To do this, marketers need to focus on understanding their buying behaviour, patterns and profile in order to increase their CLV.

And whilst the tools to upsell and build loyalty are the same, success is measured in a different way. The click-through rate (CTR) becomes important once again as you look to re-engage the customer, balanced with the cost per click (CPC), growth in transactions and ultimately lifetime value (CLV) of the customer.

For brands and people alike, you are what you eat. To change your output you need to understand and closely track your input. If you are measuring the wrong metric and the wrong stage of the funnel, it is impossible to know if your strategy is working and if you are getting ROI from your budget. To keep your brand fit and healthy, you need to understand and control its diet.