Today, mar­keters are dri­ving the lion’s share of a company’s dig­i­tal efforts and bud­get with a shock­ing­ly small slice of the infor­ma­tion they need to max­i­mize their effec­tive­ness.

If you’re won­der­ing why this is, it’s sim­ply that there is a divi­sion in the world of data-dri­ven deci­sion mak­ing, specif­i­cal­ly in regards to the data that mar­keters have read­i­ly avail­able to them vs. the data ana­lysts and site opti­miz­ers have avail­able to them. I say “read­i­ly,” because the data is there, but it’s not being used for var­i­ous rea­sons.

Why? Because peo­ple have incred­i­ble dif­fi­cul­ty col­lab­o­rat­ing when it comes to bring­ing data from dif­fer­ent sys­tems into a fast-paced deci­sion envi­ron­ment. Espe­cial­ly when the tools don’t sup­port it and the deci­sions are micro vs. macro in nature (like bid opti­miza­tion, vs. home page redesign).

Feel famil­iar? Now, pair that with this lit­tle gem:

The ratio of dol­lars spent on mar­ket­ing a web site to dol­lars spent on improv­ing the con­ver­sion of that web site is over 90:1.

Dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing chan­nels are opti­mized on an infin­i­tes­i­mal frac­tion of the data that con­ver­sion per­for­mance is opti­mized on, and the two are most often done as com­plete­ly sep­a­rate ini­tia­tives.

Put them together and what do you have?

The peo­ple man­ag­ing your dis­play, search, email, and oth­er mar­ket­ing chan­nels use tools that typ­i­cal­ly have just one piece of site-side data: con­ver­sions. Your ana­lysts, on the oth­er hand, have thou­sands of dimen­sions of data. And sad­ly, your mar­keters have a sig­nif­i­cant issue receiv­ing and con­sum­ing the data that the ana­lysts have in a repeat­able and effi­cient way, because the tools and process­es they use day in and day out aren’t built for it.

So today, busi­ness­es are putting 90 times more mon­ey into mar­ket­ing pro­grams dri­ven by tools that don’t have and can’t get the infor­ma­tion they need to do their job at a high­er lev­el of sophis­ti­ca­tion. And in many cas­es, these tools and mar­keters are miss­ing some of their most valu­able cus­tomers because the data just isn’t in their view.


An Example: Social Amplification

You buy a paid search ad for “Mis­sile Launch alarm clock.” Each click costs you around $0.50, and sends that user to a land­ing page with infor­ma­tion about your prod­uct.

Missile Clock

So, here’s the ques­tion: which vis­i­tor is valu­able?

**A) The vis­i­tor who buys this thing
B) The vis­i­tor who adds this thing to their shop­ping cart
C) The vis­i­tor who shares this on face­book and twit­ter

Today, the vis­i­tors who do B and C are not a fac­tor to the mar­ket­ing man­ag­er run­ning this cam­paign. Why? Because today, almost zero ecom­merce web sites track cart adds and social shar­ing as con­ver­sions in their bid opti­miza­tion tool(s). The web ana­lyt­ics team knows all about these things, but the data nev­er gets to the per­son sit­ting in Igni­tionOne, Marin, AdWords, or what­ev­er cock­pit they’re dri­ving the cam­paign from with­in. It’s not “read­i­ly avail­able.”

I’d actu­al­ly argue (and every econ­o­mist and sta­tis­ti­cian in the world would agree) that C is the most valu­able. Why? Because we are will­ing to pay $0.50 for a sin­gle click, based on that keyword’s his­tor­i­cal per­for­mance. And when that user shares on face­book, we will like­ly get 5x, 10x, or 100x the clicks for that one $0.50 expense. Sta­tis­ti­cal­ly speak­ing, we know with absolute cer­tain­ty that what we get from a share ampli­fies the reach of our paid click, there­fore it’s worth more. Also, we may get not only one sale, but sev­er­al sales. But today, C is not count­ed as a con­ver­sion, and the mar­keter can’t see any of the sales dri­ven by the share, either. Today, C is equal to a bounce. C is called “waste.”

Again: yikes.

Satellite for Marketers

For Search Discovery’s clients, how­ev­er, get­ting this data is ridicu­lous­ly sim­ple. A mar­keter can sim­ply browse any of the exist­ing rules in Satel­lite, which are a buf­fet of mea­sure­ment touch­points. That mar­keter sim­ply needs to mar­ry Igni­tionOne, Marin, AdWords, Bing, DART Search, or what­ev­er plat­form they’re using to each rule they care about:

  • Sale Com­plet­ed
  • Prod­uct Social Share – Face­book
  • Prod­uct Social Share – Twit­ter
  • Prod­uct Social Share – Pin­ter­est
  • eNewslet­ter Week­ly Spe­cials Sub­scribe
  • Add item to Wish­list
  • User dials 800-num­ber from mobile

Rules in Satel­lite are user and behav­ior-cen­tric, not tag cen­tric. So mar­keters can eas­i­ly lever­age rules the ana­lyt­ics team has set up to col­lect the same type of data in their own sys­tems, and even cre­ate indices and aggre­gates to sim­pli­fy the con­sump­tion of that data. With a few clicks, the mar­keter who used to only see hard con­ver­sions is now also see­ing sev­er­al oth­er inter­ac­tions that are as valu­able, if not more valu­able than a sale. Now, when that mar­keter goes to opti­mize a cam­paign, they’ll take viral­i­ty and ampli­fi­ca­tion into con­sid­er­a­tion, as well as oth­er types of soft con­ver­sions that still sig­nal a valu­able cus­tomer.

Opti­miz­ing your mar­ket­ing cam­paigns shouldn’t have to be a black and white propo­si­tion where the user is either immense­ly valu­able (a sale) or worth­less (not a sale). Your vis­i­tors come in all fla­vors, and some are in the ear­ly phas­es of their pur­chase process, research­ing and com­par­ing your offer­ing in order to make their final deci­sion. If you didn’t want these cus­tomers, why are you buy­ing key­words that are high fun­nel in the first place? So, in these “high fun­nel” sce­nar­ios, doesn’t it make more sense to mea­sure that user to their actu­al intents, rather than only a sale that is almost com­plete­ly unlike­ly to hap­pen at that exact moment in time? If a user search­es for “dig­i­tal cam­era reviews” and reads 10 prod­uct reviews on your cam­era store’s site, is that user use­less to you? Absolute­ly not. But that’s how mar­keters large­ly opti­mize that spend today.

Assists and attri­bu­tion can help you tell part of the sto­ry, but don’t give you insight into why things are the way they are. They only give you hope for high-assist, low con­ver­sion key­words or oth­er media by cred­it­ing sales back up the blood­line. But what are those users actu­al­ly doing ear­li­er in their process? And the ones who nev­er con­vert, what did they do? Do you think when Seth Godin goes to a page on Ama­zon, copies a link to a book, and puts that link in his blog post with­out buy­ing any­thing, that Seth’s vis­it is worth­less to Ama­zon or that author? I sure hope you don’t think that.

If you’re inter­est­ed in adding a whole new lev­el of sophis­ti­ca­tion to your mar­ket­ing mea­sure­ment and opti­miza­tion, that’s what we’re here for.

Satel­lite is not about “tag man­age­ment.” That’s a basic, nerd-cen­tric con­cept. We’re about your busi­ness, your sophis­ti­ca­tion, and hav­ing the tools to do things you couldn’t or wouldn’t do before. That’s why Satel­lite is the future of your mar­ket­ing efforts. We want to help you see more clear­ly so you can act and engage in new, smarter and bet­ter ways. Let us know when you’re ready to take things to the next lev­el.