Translating Reports Into An Actionable Marketing Plan

What do I do with all of these reports?

You’ve taken the time to look through Google Analytics and social media reports, so now what do you do? Let’s create an actionable marketing plan based on those results.

What did you see in your reports? Perhaps you noticed that Facebook posts had a higher engagement on Friday afternoons than those on Tuesday mornings. Or maybe you saw that hundreds of people are coming to your website from a specific referral website such as Yelp.

Organize the Information. Write down a summary of your key findings. Organize it however works best for your needs. I like to organize my summaries by channel (i.e. website, social media, email, and sales).

Share the Information. Sit down with a coworker or trusted advisor to discuss your findings. A second opinion, especially that of a friend who is a marketer or someone interested in statistics may be really helpful. Collaboration will make you stronger.


How can I apply what I see to create actionable marketing?

You have taken the time and focus to review your marketing analytics, shared it with a trusted friend, and hopefully learned some things about your existing digital content. Here are some common things you may see in your reporting and the recommendations I would make based on those findings:


Organic Traffic is Higher than Paid Traffic.

actionable marketing, Google Analytics, Marketing Plan, Organic traffic, Paid ads, referral traffic
You are getting a ton of organic traffic and direct to site website traffic, but you have been spending $200-$300 per month on Google AdWords for the past year. While the AdWords may have helped your rankings, people are clearly choosing to click on your organic listings. You can continue to run your AdWords campaign, but consider cutting back your monthly spend and switching some effort over to content such as blog posts and social media.

Test this out for 2-3 months and compare your analytics. Look to see how your traffic sources have changed and how people are interacting with your website (i.e. what pages they go to, for how long).


Social Media Reaches People, But Has Low Engagement.

actionable marketing, Social Media marketing, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Social Media

What is the content of your typical post? It could be something that is very interesting to read, but is missing a call to action. If you want people to engage with your brand or company on the social channels, then tell them what to do. If you want followers to read a news article on your website, then say “Read the Full Article on the Website” with the link to that page. Make it easy for people to click on something and take action.

The sample post on this page is a great example of a strong post on Facebook. It begins with an actionable marketing phrase “Join me” followed by an image that pops that has copy on it to reinforce the message.


Emails Are Not Being Opened Consistently.

Sometimes your emails have 60% open rate, but other times it’s 10%. Why is this happening? It’s so frustrating. Start with the most obvious thing – the list. Who are you sending emails to and how frequently are you sending those emails? A really common mistake to make is over-messaging your audience. It’s easy to make that mistake when you’re so excited to tell people about what your business is up to, but pause for a moment and think about it.

If you send event-related emails, then a really simple method to apply is the opens verses non-opens list segmentation. For the initial email invite to your event, send it to everyone. Wait 2-3 days and look at your statistics. Now take the people who opened the email and turn them into a new list (something like “Event Invite Email Opens”) and do the same for those who did not open the email and name that list the opposite way (“Event Invite Email Non-Opens”). These kinds of actionable marketing tools will move you from being a listener to a marketer.


actionable marketing, Email Marketing, List Segmentation, Email strategy, marketing email strategy

Segmenting: Plan to send an updated version of the invite to the “Opens” list about 5-7 days after the initial email invite, but make sure to remove anyone who has already registered. Make sure the second email feels fresh – either with updated content or a new spin on the idea. Apply the same concept to the “Non-Opens” list, but wait until 7-9 days after the initial invite.

If you have a weekly e-newsletter, consider cutting it back to bi-monthly (every other week) for a while to see if your open rates increase. You should also try sending it on a different day of the week. Mondays, for example, are generally not a great day of the week for many small businesses that are B2B to send emails to their clients because that is a work catch-up kind of day. Also consider the time of day that you are sending.




actionable marketing, Marketing Audience, Email marketing, Email marketing strategy, audience segmentationStep Into The Shoes of Your Audience: Imagine for a moment that you are a customer of your business. When are you feeling the least stressed and most curious about new information? CEOs and Presidents often will ignore non-business emails until Friday and the weekend, so a Friday evening email may be the most effective. Whereas a working mom may prefer a Thursday morning, because the kids will be at after-school activities for a few hours after her work day.


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