In Insights and Analytics

Marketers have an overwhelming amount of choice – technologies, data, metrics, KPIs, tactics, channels and opinions seem to increase by the day.  Reviewing and selecting these successfully to deliver an exceptional digital strategy for your brand continues to get harder as organisations seek a competitive edge.

To help navigate this increasingly complex marketing landscape, I spoke with Tealium’s own Digital Strategist Mike Knott who has dozens of success stories under his belt.  I asked him what marketers should keep top of mind when planning and implementing programmes and what metrics to follow to ensure you are delivering a first class digital strategy.

Which obstacles do your customers most frequently report when tackling digital marketing initiatives?

A lot of customers find themselves looking for a needle in a haystack.  We love collecting data but it’s never in one place, owned by one team or organised consistently. We love the thought of launching sophisticated marketing initiatives with multiple vendors and channels but often don’t know where to begin.

Understanding how to turn KPIs into technical use cases is another common issue.  We know we need to increase our conversion rate, or increase our brand engagement, but how do we do that? What needs implementing, who needs to help and what components are required?

What are the next steps that marketers should be considering when faced with these problems?

Forget the technology (initially at least!). When solving the problem of how to achieve your marketing initiatives, remove the technology and even the data from the equation. Focus on the problem you’re looking to solve then gradually add in the data, content and third party vendors required to deliver it.

Create a storyboard before writing the story – outline what you want to achieve first and then fill in the gaps.


I encourage marketers to consider the following things when planning a marketing initiative:

  •    What is the engagement type? E.g. Acquisition, retention, engagement etc
  •    Which data do we need? E.g. Profile, behavioural, purchase etc
  •    Which channels will we use?
  •    Which business KPIs do we want to satisfy?

Which KPIs should be considered?

This is always a contentious issue, as each company will have an individual focus with variables such as market, culture, industry and product all playing their part. That said, the most common KPIs which garner the most attention tend to be:

Revenue / conversion rate

Ultimately, all our efforts in marketing attempt to enhance this KPI and so every time you come up with a marketing initiative, consider how it can impact your conversion rate. This could be as simple as simplifying the payment process, changing the order of content or personalising the website so content is more relevant and easier to find.

Engagement level

Click through-rate, open rate, visitor frequency, purchase frequency etc – this is an important KPI category that can have a big impact on your revenue targets.


“List growth” is always something that comes up with acquisition targets but I prefer to look at engagement growth split by prospects and customers. You’re successfully acquiring new prospects if your engaged prospects list is growing AND your engaged customers are growing.

Testing is critical when implementing anything new to ensure that you are getting the KPI improvements you’re aiming for. How often as a consumer have you received a poorly constructed email with a uninspiring subject line or incorrect salutation? Testing can easily remedy such issues and prove the difference between and good campaign and a great campaign.

What outlook would you urge marketers to adopt tomorrow?

Don’t follow your competitors – this makes you another fish in an already overcrowded pond. Be bold and be prepared to be different.

When designing your digital strategy, bear the following in mind:

  1. How can I optimise my customer journey across multiple devices and locations and which of my vendors can I utilise to achieve this?
  2. Would I be converted by my own customer experience? Don’t think of customers as people to email, target and generate money from. Think of them as the people they are, what they do and why they might buy from you.
  3. Unify offline and online data and join the dots – every employee, product, email, display ad, social interaction and website visit creates an experience for your customer and any one of those touch points can create a brand advocate and lead to repeat business.

Next month at Digital Velocity Europe 2016 Mike will present Activating Your Digital Strategy: 10 Uses of Tealium AudienceStream.  To see Mike at Tealium’s customer education and training event for tag management and real time unified marketing, register today to avoid disappointment. We look forward to seeing you in London on June 9th & 10th!

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DVEU 2016