Data and analytics are not just for big businesses.

In the Digital Age, even small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) need to effectively track and monitor their marketing performance, and leverage analytics and reporting to grow their business.

In the past, marketing performance data had to be manually plugged into spreadsheets, business data analysts hired, custom calculations had to be created, data exported for analysis and analysed to find key business insights, and finally visual graphs painstakingly created and shared with company management. Few business managers had the expertise or desire to do this, and most small companies did not have access to high-priced data scientists or analysts.

Today, however, things are very different. Many marketing analytics tools exist that automatically track, analyse and display data in a visual format for actionable insights. However business managers, marketers, and owners still need to understand and utilize the data that these business intelligence tools provide.

There are a number of data sources that you can use to measure your marketing performance and grow your business, some of which include…

1) Facebook insights: These insights track how your customers are reacting to your Facebook page and your posts in terms of analytics from Post Reach to Engagement Rate. While Post Reach shows you how many people viewed your posts, Engagement Rate goes beyond simple views. It tracks all clicks associated with the post, including comments, likes and shares. You can see what type of content generates the most shares, and what topic your community cares most deeply about. Other metrics show you information, such as what external links are sending traffic to your Facebook page and where your page likes are coming from.

2) Twitter Stats: These stats allow you to understand your followers and their demographics. You can tap into their interests and locations to find the topics that matter most to the community. You can also measure the engagement and sharing (retweeting) to learn what content is most engaging to your Twitter followers.

3) LinkedIn Analytics: LinkedIn shows analytics and trends of your company page. These analytics include Updates, Followers and Visitors. Updates gives you an overview of updates made to the company page and the data associated with it. Followers offers an overview of the LinkedIn members following your company page. Visitors allows you to track page views, clicks on your company page, and visitor demographics. You can also view unique visitors.

4) Website Analytics: Social analytics are not the only effective platforms that can be used to acquire and analyze data. You can gain insights about the traffic and engagement of your website through analytics tools like Google Analytics. With Google Analytics, you can take a look at website traffic, time spent on your site, repeat visitors, sources, and conversation related metrics (if Google Analytics is properly setup)

5) Email Marketing Reports. When sending emails it’s critical to pay attention to key marketing performance analytics such as the email open rate, the click through rate, site traffic from email and the conversion rate.

6) Sift through already-existing customer data: As a business owner, you probably already have access to a lot of customer data (potentially stored in your CRM System [Customer Relationship Management System]. It’s important to sift through this data, identify trends, find sales opportunities and improve sales close rates to help take your business to the next level.

While it’s great to have access to so many helpful analytics sources, in an age where multi-channel marketing is essential, it is still challenging, since many businesses use a number of marketing tools, for example, social media marketing, email marketing, pay-per-click advertising, Customer Relationship Management, Promotional tools, text messaging marketing, and so on.

And sadly, more often than not, the analytics from these disparate marketing tools, often generate conflicting, varying and confusing analytics information…basically the data doesn’t match up across marketing systems.

This is where Integrated Marketing Systems shine. Integrated Marketing Systems such as IntellaSphere integrate an array of marketing tools and provide a centralized dashboard with consistent metrics, visual reports and actionable insights. This way businesses owners, managers, and marketers can more cost-effectively take their business to the next level.

For more information on how you can effectively leverage analytics and reporting to grow your business, contact Intellasphere at 425-283-9772 or at contact@intellasphere.com.

Bruce Worrall

+Bruce is the CEO and Mastermind behind IntellaSphere and regularly blogs about Small to mid-size business challenges and opportunities for growth. He can also be reached at @bruce_worrall.