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Why the agency's communication must move from the report to the analysis (and how)

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As an agency, we are in a results-driven business.

We are paid to deliver specific marketing KPIs. In its simplest form, we need to increase customer revenue and reduce its cost per acquisition.

And this difference would have been better than going beyond our own prices. It's all that matters to customers at the end of the day.

Except, it's rarely what we give them in reports. Instead, we give them all the leading indicators or random raw numbers and we ask them to read between the lines.

We assume that they understand the meaning of each – even if it is rarely the case. This reliance on reports only hurts us at the end of the day.

Here's why agencies should move from reporting to analysis – and how you can get your own agency to make that transition.

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Why "report" is not good enough

Let's be honest one with the other for a second. Most clients have no idea what we are doing.

I mean, they know the basics. They know the jargon and the buzzwords. They understand everything at a high level.

However, they do not always get the nitty-gritty details. It's not always clear what we do Monday to Friday or how we spend their money.

This problem only worsens when we send a weekly or monthly report.

We know how to read these link profile metrics. We understand how ranking fluctuations are a leading indicator of traffic and sales. But customers do not always understand the meaning.

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These random raw metrics can also take us off the track. They train customers to worry about the wrong things, so that they are obsessed with weekly fluctuations that you can not control.

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Source of the image: Moz

To make matters worse, the data we receive often.

Do A / B tests, for example. You could see a short-term hump with a green button versus a red one. But these tiny improvements do not usually last very long. Over time, the rise in conversion often comes back to the average.

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Source of the image: WordStream

Instead, customers must stay focused on the big things and their own team and internal goals. They want to know what works, what does not work, and how we will fix it. They want to know if – and how – all this translates to more money for them.

And reporting too often does not do any of that. This is why agencies need to turn to analysis.

Rather than waste time being ragpickers, we should focus more on our job as translators. We should personally examine the raw data. But then we should put it in context for the customers. We should create a narrative that explains what is happening and what you are doing about it.

Customers want to know that you understand their priorities. They want to know that they can trust you. And the only way to do it is to be their consultant or their advisor. Here's how to do that.

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How to Scale Customer Analysis

In our agency, we work with different search marketing APIs. The raw information in each tool works well for our team members.

But we can use the API of Moz, Majestic, Google, Bing or SEMrush, for example, to extract all this information into a database. Once it is there, we can model it.

Google Data Studio can help you create dashboards to build context around these raw numbers. They have ready-made templates, like this one for Google Search Console reports:

But the best part is that you can extract database information for analysis and review correlations. ( Remember, the correlation is not always equal to causality. )

We can then see, for example, how changes at the top of the funnel with a new paid campaign or a landing page conversion will influence income-based results at the bottom of the page. ladder.

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The data becomes fluid. More importantly, it becomes mostly automated, reliable and real-time.

We can then build sophisticated models that also take into account industry references, scenario analysis or previous seasonality. You can predict or predict new results based on past performance.

This is not completely automated, unfortunately. However, this reduces the number of manual entries or reports. Our team can spend more time explaining nuances to clients and making recommendations on what to do next.

For example, the beginning of the funnel can start pretty basic, like impressions or visits per channel.

But more importantly, we can quickly follow how this leads to lower actions, such as Opportunities by Channel.

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Although it's a pie chart, with a simple click, we can do a chronological analysis and see the growth or decline over a period of time.

And we can continue to follow these actions in what matters most:

  1. New transactions concluded
  2. KING

This funnel report is the missing link between what we do day to day and the end result of the customer.

Even better, they can instantly see how much money is being brought back through these activities.

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Now you can predict the appearance of these changes based on the improvements.

For example, you can make predictions based on what will happen to our traffic if we build more links and answer questions like, "Are these efforts worth it?"

You can use the same approach for income models or lifetime value measures. Apply these changes based on the customer's position over time, and view the total revenue you report for the duration of the contract.

That takes a bit of extra work – it's not as simple as having an entry-level employee spit out filing reports.

But providing your customers with a funnel analysis like this is the fastest way to be considered a partner and not a supplier. This is the most predictable way to charge prices based on value, as opposed to a cost-plus price that barely pays the bills.

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And that's the best way to continually prove your worth, month after month, to keep them constantly.


Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. The authors of the staff are listed here.


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