There's a good chance if you've produced a marketing report before you've spent a significant amount of time meandering through excel.
Determining where the data is going to come from and then pulling it from the right source.
Importing this data set and that data set.
Then, using functions like Vlookup and Index Match, you pull the data you need into a new workbook.
Then from here you begin to compare your selected data sets with different time periods (month-over-month and year-over-year for example).
These metrics provide a good insight into growth and the overall rate of progress.
Finally you perform a deeper analysis, bringing together different data sets to answer more complicated questions. An example would be combining your marketing data and your financial data to figure out customer acquisition costs.
As you can see, marketers can lose a lot of time slicing and dicing their data to build effective reports.
So why do marketing reports in the first place then? If they are just a waste of time wouldn't we all be better off just skipping them all together?
You would think so but that's not the case. Marketing reports are a critical element of inbound marketing. Showing success with inbound marketing and calculating your return on investment are the two biggest indicators that larger budgets are on the horizon.
Reports are how the business can learn and validate certain assumptions. They give the necessary people just the right insight. Mostly answering two questions, what is working and what isn't working.
Because the right data is hard to argue with, reports provide the channel everyone can use to drive decisions.
Data also opens the door to speed.
The more data you have, the faster you can test different assumptions. The faster you can test assumptions the faster you'll know whether they are right or wrong. You'll learn, at a much faster pace, what is working and what isn't.
This will allow you to identify successes and failures before they have any major impact.
Here's what daily marketing reports can do for you.
More Informed Decisions
The purpose of marketing reports is to help you make more informed decisions. They help you to uncover how much contribution individual efforts made to revenue which is important in growth companies.
Now if the purpose of marketing reports is to make informed decisions at a faster pace, daily marketing reports are the ultimate solution.
Use your daily marketing reports to create an action plan with your team every morning.
Start by determining what wins you had the previous day. As a team or as individuals. Or both.
Then define what lessons you learned and what you could do better today.
Finally determine a few targets for the day as a team as as individuals. The individual effort should add up to the team targets.
You can run smaller experiments everyday to validate smaller questions. This allows you to test new assumptions at a faster pace and make better decisions more frequently.
As you run tests and get a better feel for what your audience likes and doesn't like, you'll be able to more confidently decide what the next steps are.
Being able to prove individual contribution and the impact on top-line results is ideal for any modern inbound marketing team.
Keeping a daily pulse on performance promotes transparency and communication, two of the most important characteristics of a growth company.
A daily marketing report forces everyone to make decisions faster but with more information. This helps teams remain proactive so they can see a problem earlier enough to make quick pivot - disaster avoided.
Being data driven makes you look like a rockstar. It will give you the tools you need to prove your teams contribution. This type of reporting is critical for hitting ambitious goals because it helps you keep up with the rapid change of pace.
Use your monthly SMART goals to frame your daily marketing reports. This will help you create a daily action plan from your marketing report every morning.
You and your team will know your numbers like the back of your hand, building confidence behind everyones decisions. The level of transparency into performance also helps everyone to create a compelling argument for their case.
Marketing reports are good motivators, so why not use them to motivate everyday.