CTR (Over) Used Marketing Metric

According to this article by Jeanne Hopkins at HubSpot, the tried-and-true metrics many marketers are using are being used disproportionately and sometimes even inappropriately. Just as we strive for the perfect ‘marketing mix,’ in our campaigns, we also have to aim for a balanced ‘metric mix’ when evaluating them.

Marketers are desperate for a clear, comprehensive, and effective set of metrics and measurement systems for driving marketing performance.

According to Geoff Ramsey, CEO of eMarketer,”The right metrics and measurement framework will allow you to prove your worth in both the short-term and the long-term.”

CTR is Most Over-Used KPI

A recent survey by Chief Marketer revealed that:

Of seven typical measurements, the metric most used by U.S. marketers to evaluate interactive performance is click through rate (CTR).

Ramsey suggested that while “click-through is the most commonly used metric by online advertisers…it is still relied on too heavily and in inappropriate ways. Click through rate should continue to be used as a diagnostic metric for direct response initiatives; however, it should not be used as a primary metric.”

How Marketers Measure Success

In the following chart, Chief Marketer asked U.S. marketers to select the metric they use to measure interactive marketing performance/success.  All numbers are represent percent of respondents to the March 2011 survey.

“Digital marketers today are drowning in metrics, but they don’t know which ones are important or how to connect the dots in a meaningful way that will drive marketing performance,” concluded Ramsey.

Ways to Measure Success

MarketingExperiments believes that there are really only four elements that are considered measureable:

  1. The amount of activity (pageviews, visitors, returning, etc.).
  2. The source of activity (referrers, search terms, countries, etc.).
  3. The nature of that activity  (entry/exit pages, average time per page, etc.).
  4. The results of the activity  (leads generated, number of downloads, orders, etc.).

You may be obsessing over metrics that won’t move the needle for your business.  Instead, find those areas that really matter to your website, your business, and your bottom line. Then, take a focused look at defining the metrics that matter.

What metrics are you measuring in your marketing departments?  Are you convinced they are the right ones?  Check out the responses on HubSpot.

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CTR (Over) Used Marketing Metric
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About the Author

Justin Downey, Nerd
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I’m a student of experience and a nerd at heart. When conversations with Fisher Vista clients meander into the realm of technical abbreviations, behavior or statistical analysis, I step in and translate, recommend and inspire.
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