EP308: How To Best Measure and Track Behaviors To Drive Sales With Chris Mercer | Measurement Marketing

In today's episode, Stacy and Chris, founder of Measures.io talk about the best practices of behavior-based in analytics. Chris also shares some techniques and tools for managing a sales pipeline and customer journey effectively.
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Transcript For This Episode:

Welcome to marketing mistakes and how to avoid them I’m Stacey Jones, and I’m so happy to be here with you all today, and I want to give a very warm welcome to Chris mercer.

Mercer is the co-founder of Measurement Marketing.io where he helps marketers know their numbers in an easy-to-understand manner. By leveraging tools, including Google Tag Manager Google Analytics, Google Data Studio… a little bit of Google here to track behaviors measure progress of the customer journey and make sure the right users see the right message at the right time.

With over 20 years of experience in sales, marketing and training, mercer started his career in radio advertising, where he learned he had a passion for sales and marketing.

He now trains people how to measure and improve their sales funnels and as a top contributor and speaker and multiple optimization conferences.

Today, mercer and I are going to be chatting about how to best measure and track behaviors stripes sales and measure your marketing endeavors yourself.

We’ll learn what works from a service perspective, what should be avoided and how some businesses and people just missed the mark. Mercer, welcome so happy to have you here today.

Mercer
Thank you Stacey, appreciate you having me.

Stacy Jones
What I love to always start off on is how did you start this journey, how did you get here today, where you are now; the guru of measurement marketing?

Mercer
Yeah, great question so you know my background really is sales and primarily in sales management sort of directing and managing sales teams, so I’ve always focused on measuring and managing a sales pipeline in whatever industry that I was working on.

So when I came into digital marketing I had actually created a company to train people how to do WordPress sites really was just creating a membership site on how to do that.

And then we moved into building that stuff out, we moved into what they call conversion rate optimization so building websites and then helping them to optimize.

But in order to optimize you have to measure stuff, and so we started setting up analytics, and this is where the merging of I think kind of two backgrounds came, you know one was me training and helping people learn all this stuff, and the other was this sales background that I had.

I just cannot help but think in terms of a pipeline in managing a customer journey, essentially right as you move from prospect to a customer.

So when we set up Google Analytics way back in the day that’s sort of how we always did it. We didn’t know you shouldn’t or you couldn’t do that right before, and so, when we were delivering websites, it was people, all of a sudden, you know, seeing this and going like “Okay. Now, analytics makes sense. Now, I can tell that Facebook is causing a certain result, I can see how Facebook is actually helping people.|

People may say, be more aware of a brand versus particularly be closing us a customer journey like you know you see, you can see how Facebook and E-mail starts to work together and all these different traffic sources and that was really our claim to fame is when we started showing that to individuals, we actually pivoted the entire organization moved from WordPress and building up WordPress sites to just showing companies how to use these tools that we thought they were actually using them like this already, but we realized they weren’t.

We realized, most people would just sort of activate Google Analytics like they turn it on and they jump into the data… and then they think, “Oh well, if I just hack through the data long enough there’s magical insights going to smack me in the face and I’m going to be a better marketer tomorrow.” and that’s just not how it works and so that was, you know kind of a long story short, of how we got to where we are, it was just accidentally, in fact, setting up this thing in a way that made it a lot more useful and then showing people how to do it.

Stacy Jones
So, are you trying to tell our listeners and I today, that if you are a company that sets up Google Analytics it doesn’t just magically make everything just happen for you?

Mercer
Imagine that. Actually, to be even more precise it’s that word ‘set-up’ is the challenge, because a lot of people think they have ‘set-up’ Google Analytics but what they really done is just turned it on.

So setup is really two things, one is you want to activate the tool right? Sometimes it’s a WordPress plugin that you’re doing or sometimes it’s a chatbox if you have a shopify store along those lines or you’re working with your Dev team to put that script on your pages.

Well, that activates it that turns it on and, of course, all the data table start showing stuff. But you have to actually customize and configure it. So that it tells a natural story and there’s a lot of people that think, you know. “If I just understood how to analyze my reports, I would be better at this tool,” and that’s kind of a false belief, I think.

Most people don’t have to learn how to analyze reports they have to make the report simpler, so that they don’t require analysis.

Now, for example, if you are driving and you look at your speedometer, you see a number, you see how fast you’re going and you instantly know if you need to hit the breaker hit the gas, right? Just knowing the number leads to an action.

And a marketer’s dashboard can be built that simply, as long as you set up your Google Analytics correctly, but remember ‘setup’ is turning it on, and then also customizing it, configuring it properly.

Stacy Jones
There’s so many things now that I think marketers are faced with, whether you have an inbound system like HubSpot. Whether you are measuring your traffic with Google through your own website.

There are so many things that are kind of mind-boggling for those of us who might not be experts in the digital space to get very confused about or scared about and just step back from.

Mercer
Yeah, that’s exactly right, I think the challenge with tools like this, is they are so easily complicatable, right?

You can go into Google Analytics, there’s a million reports, there’s a brand new Google Analytics now, which is completely different from the older Google Analytics.

And so it’s really easy to get overwhelmed and frustrated by these tools and just sort of give up, like, you go in, there you go “Okay, I have no idea what any of this means, one report seems to contradict another report. You know what? I’ll just come back in a couple of years, and you know, hopefully, at that point, I’ll figure it out.” And that happens, a lot and it’s a shame because it’s like if I gave you a kids’ book and I said, “hey read this kids’ book to me.” Let’s say, Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

You could probably do a pretty good job reading that book. Well, if I take that same book I rip out the pages and I rip those pages and the pieces, smash them all between the cover and then I give you back that book, could you read that story to me?

Now, the answer is yes, you could. Because I didn’t change your ability to read. But it’s a lot harder to see the story, ‘cause you gotta dump everything out try to figure out, where everything goes, how everything connects…Some of the pieces are going to get lost, you got to kind of makeup and make some assumptions, as to what might be going on, and you’re going to tell a decent story, but it’s going to take you a really long time to figure it out.

And that’s what I think a lot of marketers don’t realize, is tools like Google Analytics by default, if you haven’t understood how to properly set up that tool; meaning customizing and configuring it.
It is just a bunch of ripped-up pieces of data it’s all there the stories are there, but it’s all wrapped up in no real format.

So, of course, when you get into Google Analytics it’s not that you’re not a numbers person, it’s just that it’s a bunch of ripped-up pieces of data, so you really can’t see an obvious connection.

But when you properly set it up, you properly tagged the traffic, you’re trying to properly measure the results, and we can talk more about that; how to do that, but when you do that, a natural story starts to appear.

And then it becomes very much like “Oh, okay, I see that Facebook is really good at making people aware, it’s my Google ads retargeting campaign that’s really good about getting them to become a lead, it’s my emails that’s really good about helping to close the deal with the product or service that I’m working on, and now, as a marketer, I understand how to use Facebook in the personality that it’s really good for, and the results that it gets, I understand how to use Google ads, and understand how to use email together,” and so now I’ve got this ‘the thing’ that I think everybody tries to look around for, which is this multi-touch attribution thing everyone’s like “Oh, what traffic sources, how do I work them all together.”

You know, Google Analytics will definitely tell you that stuff, but you have to actually set it up properly and that’s the part that people just don’t realize. It’s a lot simpler than people make it out to be and that’s the challenge, to not overcomplicate it, to keep things simple.

Stacy Jones
So, for our listeners right now who are like, “crap I’ve totally set this up wrong, probably.” What should they be doing actually to go back in and make sure that it is set up correctly, are there certain steps in place that they should be following?

Mercer
Yeah, let’s give you a little bit of framework.

One, is to forgive yourself. Number one. Because you’re not alone.

99.9% of the people that come to us, to learn how to do this, that’s where they are, everybody, we were too, I did it for years because I thought that’s how you’re supposed to use it initially, right? When I was using it for other companies.

But in reality, the trick to this, is you have to have a plan, then you’ve got to go through your build, and then you have to launch it properly, so let’s talk about each of those steps.
So, in your plan, it’s something we call “QIA” which is “Questions, Information, and Actions.”

So the first step, and this is before you open up Google Analytics, right? A very important thing, you got to plan it out first, this is what most people skip, ‘cause they don’t realize they should be planning, but you got to build a measurement plan.

So how do you do that? First, you ask questions, and I know a lot of people are kind of confused around that, and they say, “Well, I don’t know if I’m asking the right questions, I don’t know if I’m asking questions that are pertinent to my business.” And so, they go, and they Google it and they do things like, ‘What questions should a Shopify business owner be asking?’ All of a sudden, you get a million blog posts, 300 YouTube videos, and everything’s like, ‘All 11 questions that every eCommerce store owner needs, seven questions every influencer should be asked,’ and you get millions of these things, they all seem to contradict the like ‘Okay, you know, enough.’

In reality, there were only ever two types of questions that you can ever ask, one, is probably when you’re asking, which is “RESULTS questions” . Like how many leads that I get how much do they sell how many units, you know that sort of thing. Sometimes it might be if you’re more of a content marketing, how many clicks that I get, right… to send over to the site that may be an affiliate for.

So, that’s the result type of question, but the more important questions to ask, and you still need to ask results, but you also need to ask how, how is that happening.

And the way to think about this, I can tell, I can see, we have our flagship program it’s called the ‘Measure Marketing Academy.’

If I only measured, the number of people who bought the Academy, and what the average ticket was, what the revenue was. Like, that would be okay.

But if I have no idea, the customer journey that’s actually causing that I don’t actually know what actions to take to improve things, right? So what we do is we measure for that end result of revenue in the sales and all that.

But we also measure the “HOW stuff” so we asked questions like well “How many people actually saw the offer? How many of those people actually went to the cart? And then, How many of those people actually completed the purchase?” Now, I have a customer journey and we’re starting to see the pipelines that’s starting to appear.

So that’s kind of RESULTS and HOW Questions. I just gave a real brief example of that.

The second part of that, once you have your questions and sit down… I kind of think about it’s like three columns.

So list those questions down, then next to that I’ll think, ”Okay, what is the information that I need to collect in order to get those answers,” so it might be well, I’ve got to record the number of… every time somebody loads a page for the Academy, I want to, I want to see that page view, every time the cart page loads I want to be able to count the number of times that happens, and the number of times the thank you page looks right to keeping it kind of simple. So now, I can record all this information and that’s going to give me answers to those questions that I’m asking.

And then, this is the most important part, this is the part that definitely people skip it it’s because they just don’t know to do it and that’s action.

So remember this is before you open up Google Analytic, before you look at a report, and it doesn’t just matter about the moment it’s just measurement in general. Doesn’t really matter, even if you’re not using Google Analytics still applies, but you think to yourself, “Okay. What actions, am I going to take based upon the answers I get?” and the secret sauce to this step is, we could call it “IF THIS, THEN, THAT.”

What that means is you think, “Okay. IF the number is lower than what I wanted to do, THEN I’m going to do THIS. IF the number is higher, than what I want it to be, THEN I’m going to do THAT. And IF the number’s just right, THEN I’m going to do THIS other thing, right?” So you think about all the actions that you’re going to take before you even look at the number, before you can go, in your google analytics, in your dashboards, in your reporting or whatever it is.

So that’s that’s the “QIA process” that’s a proper measurement plan. You have the questions will sit out, you have the information that you use to collect in order to get the answers to the questions you’re asking. And then you think about the actions you’re going to take based upon the answers you get.

Now, that action step is really important, because it eliminates the problem that a lot of companies have. Which is, a lot of data, no story. A lot of reports, but no action. A lot of “Okay, this is great, but I have no idea what to do with it.” Right? This happens everywhere, most companies have this problem.

But that’s because they haven’t role-played what they’re going to do with the actions first, they haven’t rehearsed it, they haven’t done a dry run, they have even thought about it.

So, Imagine going back to your speedometer, the example that we talked about earlier when you look at your speedometer. You instantly know if you’re gonna hit the gas or hit the break.

But the reason you know that, is because you already knew that ahead of time, right? You knew what actions would take ahead of time.

If this is the first time you’ve ever seen this pedometer, and that was when you saw it, you’d have no idea what that number means. You would have to sit there and analyze it and you would crash, right? That’s why you.

Stacy Jones
I’d go really fast or really slow.

Mercer
That’s exactly right so that’s and that’s the problem, a lot of marketing that’s that happens, either when it works, it works really well. When it doesn’t, it works horribly. And nobody really knows how , and that’s a huge issue.

And it doesn’t have to be like that. So, having a measurement plan is the first, most important step, and again that’s just the “QIA process,” so you list all the questions, the results and how.
Think about the information you’re going to collect in order to get answers to those questions, and then what actions you’re going to take based upon the answers you get. And then, once you’ve got that, then you move into your build that’s where…

If you use a tool like Google Analytics; which is free, so it applies everybody why we teach with that tool, but it really doesn’t matter it’s not just a Google Analytics thing, it’s just a measurement thing in general, whatever you use.

But the first thing you have to do in your build is you’ve got to make sure that you’re measuring for the results like that measurement platform, and again I would use Google Analytics as an example because everybody has access to it.

It has to know what results you’re trying to achieve, and again, most individuals will set it up and they’ll think, “Okay. Well, I’ve got leads set up maybe as a goal what they call a conversion event in Google Analytics for the new the new platform.” But they will set that up they’ll set up maybe revenue and E-commerce and they have those results being measured, which is great, but the secret sauce to this step is what we call “A.C.E.” It stands for three things; “Aware, Complete, and Engage.

And that’s the trick to this is, you have to set up your results, not just for that final sort of completion step of the customer journey, not just for when they become a lead, or when they purchase something.

But you have to measure when they are aware of the customer journey; they want them to be aware of. And you have to measure as they engage as well. So again, A is the Aware. Measure, for the aware. So again, as an example for us, we actually set a goal for when somebody comes to the Academy page, because now we know they’re at least aware of that as a product, right? So we’ll set that as a goal.

We’ll set up the Completion goal, which of course is when they hit the Thank you page, they’ve officially purchase that product, and joined that Program.

And then, we’ll set up Engagement goal, which is, in our case, the cart view. So, when they actually see that cart, the checkout page, and they’re starting that process.
So now we can measure: Aware, Completes and then, as they Engage along the way. Now, the important part of that is for the next step of your implementation.

Which is you’ve got to make sure that your implementation is measuring the traffic, it has to know who was sending you traffic what type of traffic they’re sending you, and what was the purpose of that traffic in the first place.

And for this one, everybody here can play along at home, because here’s what we’re going to do. So, I’ve got a service we call the Measurement Marketing Toolbox. It’s a free level membership, it’s a ton of tools, and everything else.

So, in Google Analytics there’s a thing called “UTMs”, everybody can google photos, it’s very simple. Just Google UTM, and you’ll see a million videos, and 4 million blog posts, They had it all. Very, very simple to do.

But they essentially sort of tag that traffic coming in, so that our platform like Google Analytics knows where the traffic came from. They do know who sent it to you, what type of traffic, it was and why.

So, if anyone wants to test this out, please go to measurementmarketing.io/marketingmistakes so again measure marketing dot io forward slash marketing mistakes.

And what will happen when you type that in, is you’re gonna get redirected to that toolbox page. It’s completely free offer. You have just name and email and get your free account a bunch of marketing tools and training.

Stacy Jones
And just for everyone to know this is something special set up just for you as listeners, he does not normally have the backslash marketing mistakes on his website. So this is for this podcast and a tool for you all as a gift.

Mercer
And you’ll be able to learn as you’re doing this because, when you type that in, look into your browser and you’re going to see at the very top of the browser that you’re going to a page where it has that toolbox membership.

But next to that you’re going to see all these little characters with the call parameters and the URL and it’s going to identify and it’s actually going to say “Hey, it came from the marketing mistakes podcast.” It was podcast traffic.

And it was for the purposes of the Academy journey you’re going to see all of that, and the reason that that’s there, is so in Google Analytics I can then go back and say, you know, weeks after this is released… I can go back and I can say, “Well, what happened with that podcast that we did.. you know, with Stacey.” we can go back into our Google Analytics and we can see. Oh well, turns out let’s say 100 people came in from the podcast, 50 of them became aware of the measure marketing academy, 30 of them became leads, and you know, say 10 of them purchased from an email that we sent them, later we’ll be able to see all of that and we’ll be able to attribute it to the fact that I was on this podcast.

In fact the only reason that I’m on this podcast right now is because we’ve been doing this for many, many years. And we realized podcast traffic is kind of like SEO in a way, it’s got a great long-tail we get traffic from podcast I did four years ago, which really surprised me I didn’t think that was h ow podcasts work but they definitely do, and so we really started going into the podcast channel as a company, we made the marketing decision to focus on podcasts as a traffic source.

The only reason we did that is because we measured for it and we understood the results we are getting. We can tell podcast now they’re not great traffic sources for us to get purchases for the Academy. But that’s not what they’re there for. They’re there to make people aware of the brand and we measure for that goal, and so we know podcast traffic is a type of traffic and super important. And, more importantly, I can pull a report on Google Analytics. It sure shows me all the podcasts that we’ve done.

And that’s where all the different traffic sources, of course, like Marketing Mistakes and How To Avoid Them would actually show up there.

So, the beauty of doing that, with your build when you just focus on those two primary steps; you identify, you set up with what we call ACE. Those are little ACE conversions; Aware, Complete, and Engage.

And you’ve identified the traffic… Now you can connect them into a story, where it shows, “Okay, this traffic this type of traffic is really good at this specific type of result.”

And I don’t try to make podcasts traffic sell the Academy, because it’s never going to do that well. But instead, I make it… so that… Okay, it’s going to set people up to be aware of the Academy. If they become a lead, the email’s job is to actually help move them through that customer journey and complete the journey ideally.

Right, so now I’m using my traffic sources and the way that they’re most likely going to give me the better results that I need as people move to the customer journey.

So that’s just an example of how our own, you know, measurement plan lead into that build we measure for that and, of course, you know, everybody can play along at home if you go to that link again, measurementmarketing.io/marketingmistakes and you’ll see how we’re doing that. So it’s kind of a cool thing to see in real-time.

Now, once you have all of that down, then you go into that launch mode. That’s the third step of the framework here.

And what that is, is just using it, right? So first, you have to have a good plan, don’t do anything, unless you have a plan. If you’re not planned first, make sure you get that plan. (Q.I.A.) Questions. Information. Actions.

Then you do your build, you had set up your A.C.E. You set up your traffic, right? So you have your Measuring results with A.C.E. you get your traffic, and now you’ve got a story, where you can see the different types of traffic are really good at certain types of results.

Then you use it, this is where you launch, and essentially what you do, is you first listen to the conversation. Now, we say, listen to the conversation. I think that’s another thing that a lot of marketers have missed specifically digital marketers.

If you and I were on an offline store, and let’s say you came into my shoe store. I would say, “Hey, how can I help you?” and you would say, “I’m looking for let’s say sneakers or something.” I go, “Great! Let’s go back to the sneaker section. What are you looking for? Who was it for? Blah blah blah. Have you tried on some shoes? Eventually, hopefully, buy one get one free, maybe. Give a little coupon to join my email list,” it would be a conversation.

I would be listening to what you’re saying, and I would be responding and changing how I say things back to you to ultimately get a transaction to happen, right? That’s the whole point. This happens offline absolutely. Normally, nobody ever thinks about it but digitally we don’t listen. Digitally, there’s a website there. So digital marketers kind of, “Well, okay. There’s no way for me to do it, so you know you don’t think about that there’s an actual conversation. That is so not true.There’s an absolute conversation that’s happening between your website during this particular step of the website that they’re on.

And that user, in fact, when you’re on a website, you probably hear it, when you’re going through and you’re reading the copy. Probably hear that voice inside your head that’s actually saying stuff. There’s a very real conversation happening. So the trick is, “Okay, well, we can’t be there, the websites there, obviously it’s digital. So how do we listen.?”

Measurement is how we listen, so the better that you get at measurement is the better, that you are understanding their side of the conversation. And then, how do we respond, how do we keep the conversation going, well that’s where marketing comes in, the traditional digital marketing stuff.

So measurement is how we listen, marketing is how we respond.

And so, if we saw that there was a bunch of people coming to the Academy page as an example, and they weren’t staying there more than 10 seconds. Am I going to create a Facebook retargeting or, worse, a look alike audience out of that group? No! Why would I do that? It’s not the right group, they’re clearly not interested.

For example, bring it to offline. Which I love using examples of offline, ‘cause people don’t do that enough.

But if you came in, into my shoe store, and I say “Okay, how can I help you?” see. “Sorry, I was looking for the tire place?” and I’m like, “Oh, yeah. They used to be here, but there across the street now.” You would be like, “Oh. Thank you so much. I’m gonna go get some tires.”

That would be the end of the conversation offline world, but in online world.

I would follow you over to the tire store wait for you to come out and be like, “Now, d’you want to buy shoes because, clearly, you were interested buying shoes, because you walked in my shoe store for half a second, right?” This happens all the time, digital.

It’s part of the reason we’re in this big privacy problem right now with marketing in general, because it’s just been overzealous. No one’s really realized if you set up measurement properly, you can avoid that mess.

So, listening to the conversation is super important then, you just look for the trends and patterns that are happening your numbers to do that. And once you have that, you got kind of your benchmarks of what a typical opt in rate might be for you, or what a typical conversion rate might be for you.

Not just your core conversion rate. Not just how many people are purchasing. But how many people actually saw or aware of the product, how many of those actually started to engage with it.

So there’s multiple results and how steps, right? You understand everything about how your marketing is working. When you have those benchmarks, you can do the second step of that which is Forecasting.

This is what a lot of people miss, because again, they’re not aware of it. That’s the only reason, is ‘cause they haven’t realized to do it.

But you have to stop looking back in their numbers. Thebig problem most companies do, is they asked questions like, “What happened to $10,000 to spend on Facebook last week”.

And what they should be asking is, “What’s going to happen to the $10,000 we’re going to spend next week.”

That’s a powerful question, because now your marketing forward, you’re not driving through the rearview mirror anymore, you’re driving through the windshield like a normal person should.

And you’re actually starting to forecast and say, “Well, we’re going to spend $10,000 that’s going to should generate about 10,000 clicks. That should cause about 2500 opt ins of those, let’s say maybe 250 purchase within seven days for 100 bucks, and that’s what’s going to generate our $2500 in sales.” or whatever the thing is that you’re looking for.

So you forecast what your results are going to be, and again, that’s in the beginning, you might just guess, but tha’ts perfectly fine.

And then, you measure against your forecast, and that’s the final, final step of this whole framework which is Optimization.

So, optimization but everybody wants to race toward, everybody wants to know “What actions do I take? and How do I improve things? Should we change your headline? Should we change the offer? Should we change the entire funnel? Maybe do a webinar funnel instead of a long-form sales copy? Maybe we, you know use a different tech stack instead.”

And that’s everybody randomly guesses as to what’s going to improve their marketing. And you don’t have to do that, your customers will tell you that, as long as you listen to their side of the conversation through measurement.

So optimization is really just measuring against your forecast. So, again, if we go back to that example and said, “Well, we thought that we’re going to spend $10,000 on Facebook it’s going to generate 10,000 clicks and we find out, it only generated 2000 clicks.”

We go “Okay, we clearly know it’s not the offer. We don’t need to the change the headline on the pages, we don’t need to change our checkout process, nothing about the tech or pricing. It’s on Facebook’s end right now, we got to focus on that, what’s going on there.”

If it’s well, we got 10,000 people, but only 1000 opted in instead of the 2500. Well, now we know we might have an issue with mismatching the expectation a little bit. But maybe the Ad didn’t properly present them or maybe it’s too bad offer on that page, but now we know what part to actually focus are very limited resources on.

Because, as digital marketers there’s a million different things we can be doing every day.

So the challenge is, where do you focus to be able to move the needle the fastest and the beauty of measurement is that it will tell you what to do.

And the real beauty of that, is that it’s not you guessing, it’s not the platform telling you, it’s your customers, because your customers are the only ones who will actually know.

And so you listen to what they’re doing on the site and then by their behaviors you can say, “Ah, this is what I like.” If you like the behaviors that you’re getting, go scale traffic. Go get more of it.

But if you don’t, fix it. Fix that pipeline, you might find there’s a lot of people coming to the pages that have been hanging around more than 10 seconds.

So there’s probably like an above the fold issue with the page at that point, it’s something that they clearly see, and they checks out immediately in there, and they’re gone.

But if they are staying there more than 10 seconds, and you know, and they’re scrolling down the pages, and then maybe, they’re not clicking on the page when maybe at that point, you have a problem with the offer and that’s where you focus your resources so.

Stacy Jones
A lot easier to do this than, to date, because you’re actually getting in this whole digital world constant feedback that you’re able to look at address tweak, and try again and get that feedback again versus being in a siloed world.

Where you’re not necessarily hearing from your customer from this relationship, whomever it might be what you’re doing, whether it matters or not.

Mercer
That’s exactly right, yeah.

Stacy Jones
Where along the line here do people just go off the deep end and mess it up right we talked earlier on about the fact that they don’t get ready at the beginning they’re trying to raise to optimization so they’re not setting everything up along the way.

So the sides not planning, where else does it tend to go off the rails, where do people think it should be one way and it’s actually another?

Mercer
It’s a great question. The beginner mistakes, obviously, a plan, which we already talked about.

The other biggest issue which we already sort of mentioned earlier, is that setup phase, because it’s so easy to turn on these platforms, right? Just to activate them so they start collecting a bunch of data.

And just people don’t realize, and this is not anyone’s fault, I mean because again, I did the same thing, right?

It’s just the fact that these platforms are so easy to turn on and activate, and start filling with data that you think well if the data is there, it must be ready to use.

But it’s not, it’s like if it went into a kitchen and you just pull a bunch of ingredients you’d have a bunch of ingredients in the bowl.

And then you’re like, “Must be ready to eat.” It’s like “Well, no, it needs to be mixed and cooked” Right? and you gotta cook at a certain temperature, you got it, you actually have to prepare everything.

And it’s like, “Okay, that’s what that’s what you have to do with data,” and people don’t realize that, because it’s so fast to get this stuff there.

And we don’t need more data, that’s a big problem with the world right now. Big data is a thing and it’s just getting bigger.

But we don’t need it, for the for the most part, what you need is to understand the conversation that’s happening so you collect the information just the information that you currently need to answer the questions you are currently asking.

And so, as you go through this entire process you plan out and it might be something simple that’s perfectly fine, if you’re just starting out. You ask the questions that you really want to know, like, “How many people are going to my offer? How many of those are going to the checkout? How many those are completing the journey?” Fine, start there.

Eventually, you will go through this process over and over. It’s not just a one and done thing. You do your plan, you do your build, you use it, right? To learn and optimize, and then you’re going to improve your plan, how do you improve your plan, because once you understand let’s as an example, if we knew that, like, for us, we have a basic forecast that says…

8 to 12%, let’s call it 10%.

10% of the people who see the Academy page should go to the cart page, right? So, we know that. Now, remember, we have a little more measurement muscle, we’re doing this for a while.

But because we have measurement muscle, because we understand how to use the tools, we not just know… Okay, maybe it’s 3% of people go into the cart, that could be a problem for us.

And we don’t, but at this point what do you do to fix it, right? How do we optimize? And so, for us… we might.. Well, we know that should be 10… 10% going to the cart, we only have maybe you know, 2 or 3% going to the cart.

What’s going on on the sales page? What’s going on on that offer page that might be causing that?

So, we started asking bigger questions so we start asking questions like, “Wellm how many people are staying there more in 10 seconds? How many of those people are staying there 45 seconds and scrolling halfway down? How many of those people are actually seeing the pricing table for at least three or four seconds? So, they’re like investigating the offer, and considering it. And then, how many of those people actually clicking on the button that will send them to the cart page?”

So now, we can go at a whole new level and we can see exactly the behaviors that are happening offer page and more importantly, our marketing team does this.

So they go to that report, we call it the “Eyes and the Journey Report” because it kind of shows how many people have the impression, how many actually were introduced, which is that 10 second rule, we haven’t called entity or officially introduced the product or service. How many were interested, haven’t investigated, how many initiated to go to the next step, right.

So they’ll look at this report and they instantly know how to direct the copy, so the copy team comes in, they go, “Oh, I see we’re not getting people interested enough, so let’s go back to the copy and try to make it more interesting.”

Sometimes, that’s simplifying the copy a little bit sometimes that’s building more value in that copy. But they know because if it’s that they’re not getting interest let’s say as an example, they don’t try to change the offer, because they know that no one’s seeing the offer yet so it’s not that it’s something else, and so they know where to focus very specifically on a certain step and again, this is an evolution, so please don’t try this at home, when you’re just starting this out.

But it’s inev– but that’s the idea, so that you can get really specific, so the better you get at measurement, the better you’re able to listen, and this is not just– you can just use Google Analytics to start. That’s perfectly fine, everybody can use that tool, because I’ve just got access to it, and that’s where other tools come in, like tag manager like data studio.

Stacy Jones
Or heat mapping, because you’re talking about being able to travel down so for all of our listeners, who are like, “How does he know that someone went halfway down the page and folder over there and looked..”

You have this crazy technology if y’all have not ever done it with heat mapping where you can actually follow where people are moving and going on your website, and it’s a bigger step than Google Analytics but it’s another one that will help you…

Mercer
Actually, we use Google Analytics for that, in our case.

We use tag manager for that.

So let me talk about the different tools to that are out there, but I’ll tell you, so there’s great heat mapping companies out there, like hot jar, crazy egg; one of the old school ones it’s been out lucky aren’t just another one, but if you haven’t, and this is for everybody, this is a free one that people do not know about and it’s a shame, Microsoft Clarity.

Microsoft Clarity, completely free just go to clarity.microsoft.com

And what it does, is heat maps, scroll maps, screen recordings, it’s all compliant, GPR compliant they privatize everything, and optimize it, so it’s good there.

But all you do is you put a little piece of script on the page.

And now, you can go through… and what I love about clarity is they, they make numbers from normal people. Like, their dashboards are normal.

So, you’re not looking at a bunch of data tables when you come in, when you come in, you see a dashboard it says things like, “Rage Clicks” and you’re like, “What’s a rage click?” and a rage click is when somebody is trying to click on a button a couple times really fast and but nothing’s happening. So there’s like okay what’s going.. they’re clearly trying to make something work but they’re not.

And Microsoft Clarity says, “Hey, it looks like 2% of your audience are rage clicking right now. Would you like to watch those recordings?” and you’re like, “Yes, I would,” and you click the recordings button now you’re watching people going through, whatever the page was it you’re looking at.

And what’s beautiful about this software, this set.. the platform I should say, that Microsoft Clarity is it’s all happening in the background for all of your pages. So you don’t have to think ahead and be like, “Oh, we got to make sure to set this up,” it’s just automatically there.

So when we have a problem with the Academy page again, we’ll go into Microsoft clarity go see okay, we see rage clicks, they have another one there, it was “Dead Clicks”, which is where somebody’s clicking on something, but it didn’t go anywhere, so sometimes a buttom’s broken sometimes an image looks like a button, sometimes the designers got a little too carried away and they look like buttons and people are clicking on something thinking it’s a button.

And it’s like Microsoft Clarity says, “Hey, looks like there’s a weird behavior happening on your pages, would you like to watch the recordings of how people are interacting with it?”

That are just having that you’re like, “Yes, I would,” and all of a sudden, you learn, so much so quickly and what’s really nice about that platform, because it goes to your point about qualitative data, right?

Sometimes we’ll see stuff in pictures. Is you…very clearly see the story of what’s happening, and you can’t ignore it. Because it’s your customers doing it’s their behaviors you there’s no better way to listen to a conversation than watching somebody that you don’t know going through your site, right and again, there’s there’s no personal identifying information it’s completely anonymize, but that’s the point of it, is you could just see that behave and go, “Wow, we got to work with the design team and we’ll change that, where that opt-in buttons not working. Like, that explains the opt ins going low, there’s a functional problem with the website.”

And Microsoft clarity is a fantastic tool completely free, just like Google Analytics not enough people know about it, and certainly not enough people are using it.

But it is the simplest simplest thing to us it’s a piece of script you put on your site and you’re done, and there’s no setup at all other than that, so I would absolutely recommend Microsoft Clarity.

Stacy Jones
That is a very good tidbit. But I mean, we use HotJar for a very long time, but I think we will definitely try to look at Clarity..

Mercer
We use HotJar a lot for like the surveysm and things like that. And we use Clarity for the heat maps and the scroll maps and the screen recordings, because we’re all sitting in the background, just waiting for us, which is great.

Stacy Jones
So, do you also find that one of the mistakes people make, I mean, this is something we see as an agency, where we’re doing you know, different programs.. where we’re doing a product placement program, or cross promotion, or influencer marketing, and they’re offline… you’ve been.. you know, influencers online, but their activities that are not tagged and they’re not going to be from able to be sources from one specific action.

And we find when we’re talking to brands that like, “How did this campaign do” and they’re like “Oh, we don’t know how it did,” because they don’t talk with their digital teams about their offline activities that are actually making an impact in the digital world.

Mercer
That’s exactly right, this is an offline activity for us. If you think about it right so somebody in their car right now listen to this.

And so again when they go back and you say this is kind of interesting to learn kind of what this guy’s talking about what maybe stuff they have.

When they go to measurementmarketing.io/marketingmistakes link.

That’s a perfect example of how to measure for it, what is traditionally an offline activity. When I’m on stage is speaking, I give out links that redirect and I identify, speaking as a type of traffic, so podcast is one type of traffic, just like paid media is, like CPC traffic, right?

But so is speaking for us, and so, when we have speakers that are on stage, or webinar traffic for things that are out there, like that’s how we measure for all of that. If you’re doing radio commercials, if we did radio commercials, it’d be measurement marketing dot io forward slash you know, k.o. whatever.

Would be the radio station, and we would know that it came from that particular radio station. Now again, it depends how you’re doing your… I used to work in radio back in the day, so either way, you can do a link that will redirect, that will identify that type of traffic, and you can do that, more often than not.

There’s pretty… it’s pretty rare where you can’t do things like that, in fact, when you look at a lot of the TV commercials that are on there.

And you’ll see people will say, “Oh go to the site.com slash something that’s why they’re doing that, so they can measure for that, so there’s lots of ways to do it.

The trick is, just realizing that you should, and I think you’re right there’s a lot of miscommunication, not miscommunication, just no communication between sometimes the digital side and that offline side, because they just they’re doing it traditional broadcast they’re more concerned about maybe reaching impression and that’s sort of how they’re measuring stuff but just reaching impressions like that’s okay, but all you’re measuring is potential awareness, when you look at reach an impression, and you don’t know or you’ve been targeting the right audience. Like, do they actually end up doing anything in that customer journey besides just hearing the name a couple of times, and you can do that as long as do the…

Stacy Jones
Well, Mercer, I think we could talk for hours. You have, you are a font of information, that is excellent, so I really do appreciate that. How can our listeners find you?

Mercer
Well, obviously we’ve talked a bunch about that link.
So we can see that, it’s measurementmarketing.io/marketingmistakes, but we have a ton of free YouTube training, so I realize, it’s you know, not everyone’s journey yet to purchase something like the Academy, but you can go to measurementmarketing.io/youtube and you’ll see our channel there, we got a ton of free training on all the different tools that exist in measurements.

And you know, obviously, I am always happy to help anybody there, you can reach me through there as well.

Stacy Jones
Any last words of advice today for our listeners?

Mercer
Get good enough to get going, and then come back and make it better later.

There’s so much to this measurement thing, there’s so many different reports, and so many bells and whistles in every freaking day there’s a new tool that does something different, that you think you’re supposed to have.

And if it’s a foremost fear of missing out that happens, and it gets really complicated really quick and people get overwhelmed and frustrated and they just shut down.

The secret to avoiding all of that is focus on one thing, just get good enough to get going, and then come back and make it better later. Think about it like a pair of glasses, if I have poor vision, which I do, I’m wearing contacts right now.

But if I have no glasses at all, everything’s really kind of blurry, if I find an old pair of glasses, I had 10 years ago, even though prescription’s not quite perfect, it’s better than what I currently have, and that will get me to get to an eye doctor, so I can get a better pair of prescription glasses, do you actually make it even better and even better after that.

So that’s the trick with measurement, with any of this stuff just get good enough to get going, come back and make it better later, because there’s always that iteration.

Stacy Jones
And you have to just start because, as you started this podcast out, if you don’t have that snippet of code in your wordpress or whatever website, you might actually have you’re not capturing that actual information that you’re going to need when you are ready to go and dive in deep.

Mercer
And exactly right in worse you’re ignoring the conversation that’s happening there, because that conversation is happening, regardless of if you’re listening or not.

So when you set up measurement, you actually are starting to listen to the conversation that’s there and, of course you will naturally… when you understand the conversation, you will naturally start to adjust your side of it to keep the conversation going the direction you want, that’s exactly right.

Stacy Jones
Well, thank you again I learned a lot, I am sure that our team, who I will unleash this podcast on the listen to as well, are going to gain tremendous insight, as will our listeners today, so thank you for your time and your energy and all your knowledge.

Mercer
Thanks Stacey, it’s been a pleasure.

Stacy Jones
Thank you for listening to another episode of Marketing Mistakes and How to Avoid Them. I hope you are enjoying the podcast.

Please remember you can always check out our influencer and branded content marketing school at learn.hollywoodbranded.com to find out more about all things content marketing and discover a deeper dive into topics that will help you and your marketing grow.

You’ll get access to courses and surveys, are going to improve your skills and knowledge, and you can join me as I walk you through easy by sides classes to teach you all the marketing’s do’s and don’ts. Have a great week.

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Marketing Mistakes and How To Avoid Them Reviews 

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The Best Marketing Podcast Ever!

Stacy is a brilliant branding strategist and she really knows how to bring out the best in her guests! This show is fun AND educational! If you’re looking to understand the world of marketing, branding, digital marketing, influencer marketing and more, look no further. This show has awesome insight into some of the greatest marketing minds out there today, and they provide practical advice you can use in your business today. #FanForLife

Awesome podcast for all marketers!

Keep them coming

Practical and pointed advice.

Stacy does a really great job making this a highly actionable podcast for business owners. With a focus on marketing, she covers a wide range of related topics as well and is always very specific with her questions so that the listener gets pointed advice instead of vague concepts to take away. It’s also really helpful to the hear the why behind any marketing tactic so that we can decide if something sounds like a good fit for where we are at in this moment.

Love this marketing podcast!

Lori has a way of finding new insights to share every week. I loved being a guest, but I enjoy hearing her many fascinating conversations with other marketers even more. Great show!

I love Stacey Jones!

I absolutely loved being on this podcast! Stacey is amazing – real, down to earth, and genuinely curious and interested in learning – this makes for a very engaging conversation and valuable podcast!

Thank you for your podcast! I LOVE IT

I just listened to the episode named Insights To Product Placement Brand Marketers Need To Know, and I really enjoyed every minute of it! There are so many ways to approach product placement in a manner that provides wins for many – and it is not always driven by money. I am looking forward to listening to more!

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Anyone who is in business should be listening to this podcast! Incredible insights and advice.

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