Friday, November 7, 2014

Metrics, Metrics, Metrics!

I majored in Russian Studies at Harvard, after originally wanting to be a Spanish Literature major. Numbers were not exactly, "in my blood," though I was good with math. Well, in the circuitous route that is life itself, here I am spending 99% of my time with SEO, AdWords, and Social Media. And increasingly on metrics.

Marketing and Metrics


Metrics and Marketing
Marketing and metrics, metrics and marketing. The old sage, "I know half of my advertising dollars are wasted... I just don't know which half" still haunts many of us. But we live in an age of metrics - clicks, impressions, click thru rates, placements, conversions, etc., etc. Metrics matter!

I had the (mis)fortune of interacting with a San Francisco Ad Agency (that shall remain nameless), who attempted to feed one of our mutual clients a bunch of baloney. Branding and RTB (real time bidding and this hocus and that pocus). But... refusing to give any data - about placements, about impressions, about clicks.

To be so insane as to argue that people "don't click on ads," they just get an "impression" in their mind and then Google the company name, or call them out of the blue (even if the ads do not have a telephone number). Then when the mutual client asked for some metrics...

Ain't Gonna Give You No Metrics


Nope, nada, not gonna give you. We don't "give" metrics to our clients.

Wow, I thought to myself. The unwillingness to give data speaks volumes about how strong the advertising is.

I'm not saying that everything can be measured.  I don't worship clicks or even conversion data. I believe in branding!  I believe in advertising!

But a complete unwillingness to share any meaningful data - that speaks volumes about what's really going on here.


People who have facts on their side are usually quite willing to discuss facts; people who don't have the facts... not so much.

Questions about Metrics & Marketing


So, questions for you my dear readers -

  • Is your ad agency, SEO firm, consulting or whoever willing to provide metrics?
  • Do you have an idea of what metrics are meaningful?
  • Do you have a healthy skepticism of both "too much faith in metrics," and "too little?"
Metrics, metrics, metrics.  They're not everything. But they are something!