Analytics are critical for marketers – online and offline
Digging into analytics is a critical activity for marketers, whether they're marketing online or offline. Daniel Cotlar, Chief Marketing Officer at Blinds.com, talks about what metrics their business finds most telling.
Robin: Hello and welcome to this edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies. I’m Robin Tooms, Vice President of Strategy at Savage. And my guest, again, is Daniel Cotlar, Chief Marketing Officer at Blinds.com. So Daniel, welcome back to Brandonomics.
Daniel: Robin, it’s a pleasure. Thank you so much for having me.
Robin: I love having you on this show because we get to talk analytics. So, I know all marketers are trying to be more strategic in their analytics and how they use them, so what advice do you have for all of us?
Daniel: You have to dig deep. Don’t go with the shallow metric like how many visits or the overall conversion rate. Segment it and specify it as much as possible. One of the things we do is we’ll look at which pages perform best and which ones have a high bounce rate. Bounce rate would be when somebody sees it and they just flee ’cause it’s not working for them. Um, and you want to pick pages that get the most visits and the worst bounce rate first.
Other things we look at is maybe it’s — so I’ve mentioned before that we look at profit per visitor. But you don’t just look at overall, we want to look at it by source of traffic. Does Google do better than Bing? And does that other website that refers me traffic do better? And you want to look at it by product. Sometimes when somebody looks at one product they’ll have a better success rate than another product. So segment and specify as much as possible so you can spot the opportunities for improvement.
Robin: So one of those opportunities may be using analytics to measure your offline marketing as well. So how do you do that?
Daniel: It’s a lot harder. You don’t have the click stream electronic trail that you do for online, but it’s still possible. For radio, we do a lot of radio advertising on shows. Every time somebody buys from us or even orders a free sample we ask them how they heard about us and we measure that, and it’s been really effective. People want to say they heard about us from a certain show, and so that works. Another thing we look at is how many people search for us by our own name as opposed to getting to us because they found us. They actually looked for Blinds.com. That means we’re gaining brand strength because we’re advertising offline.
When we do direct mail, postcards, we measure the responses there based on — we go back to the original lists of everyone we sent something to, and then we compare that to the revenue during the other time, and we actually match them back one to one. And even that’s not really enough because you need to know what would those same amount of people have bought if I didn’t send them postcards? You want to send, separate out a control group and watch those sales, and then only count the delta. Pretty complicated. .
Robin: Yeah. I imagine it might be hard to like not get so caught up in the data. So how do you really kind of make sure you’re not doing that?
Daniel: I think we’re well trained to look at patterns and find the thing that’s moving. And you don’t have to relearn every time what the eyes do on a face and what the mouth does; we look at what’s changing. It takes a while to become familiar with the business’s metrics and then you can learn a lot of things. But then after that you’re looking at what’s changing and how to improve it as opposed to relearning everything all the time.
Robin: Okay, always great advice. Thank you again for sharing.
Daniel: Thank you.
Robin: This has been another edition of Brandonomics, an inside look at top brands and their marketing strategies.
Blinds.com is the largest online window covering store in the world. At its heart, it is a passionate customer service and marketing company that connects the community to home décor trends and high quality window coverings. It’s been featured in numerous magazine, newspaper and radio publications.