In this guide, you’re going to learn marketing analytics for the digital entrepreneur: what analytics are, how to find the data you need from your Kajabi analytics dashboard and other marketing tools, and how to use data in your business to improve your performance and beat your competition.
Don’t worry if you’ve never thought of yourself as a numbers person. Tracking your business is like tracking your weight. Just watch the numbers and adjust as you go. Keep reading to learn how to do it like a pro.
Watch this video from John Grimshaw discussing the importance of analytics and data measurement:
What are marketing analytics?
Marketing analytics is the process of tracking, measuring, and reporting on data about your marketing activities so you can optimize your results.
In simple terms, it’s the process of gathering the numbers that tell you how your business is performing, and leveraging them to improve your sales.
From the outside looking in, analytics can seem complicated. But it’s actually pretty easy. And it’s mission critical to your success.
Too often, marketers pursue a strategy that “feels good.” That leads to weak marketing and low sales. But the numbers don’t lie. They tell you clearly:
- Where your business is underperforming
- Where you’re doing great
- How you can prioritize your time, either improving the weak areas or doubling down on the areas where you excel
The most successful businesses use marketing analytics to guide their strategy. So let’s dive in and look at what you need to know about marketing analytics.
How can you use marketing analytics to improve your business?
Marketing analytics starts with metrics. Metrics are the numbers that reveal how your marketing is performing.
Once you know your metrics, you can easily see what’s working and what’s not. In this section, we’ll talk about how you can use those numbers to improve your business.
To get started, you need to decide which metrics you want to focus on. There’s no right answer for every business. The numbers you focus on depend on the goals you set for your business.
You can choose any area of your business. But it should be an area that you want to actively improve. As a course creator, your goal might be:
- Make $$ amount of money this year ($100k in annual revenue)
- Hit a specific number of offers sold each month (50 new students a month)
- Boost a specific metrics (10 percent more page views)
Once you’ve set your goal, you’ll know which numbers you want to impact. For most course creators, these are the metrics that matter most:
Once you know specifically how you want to improve your business, you can start testing different ways of achieving that goal. If your goal is 50 new students each month, you might decide to do monthly webinars. Or maybe you’ll start an affiliate program.
Once those campaigns are set up, you’ll need to watch your numbers (metrics) to see whether your activities are helping you achieve your goal.
Example: Using marketing analytics to inform your marketing
Let’s say you focus on webinars, but you aren’t making any sales from your webinars. You have two possible problems:
Maybe your webinars aren’t hitting the mark. You’ll need to look at your webinar metrics (attendance rate and where people quit watching). Then you’ll need to test different methods to improve those results.
Maybe webinars don’t attract your best customers. If no one is signing up, or if the people who attend aren’t interested in your course, you may be targeting the wrong people. Your webinar landing page could be the problem Or, maybe webinars aren’t your best marketing channel.
These kinds of decisions are key to improving your business. But they aren’t possible without marketing analytics. The numbers tell you very clearly where your marketing and sales are weak, so you can diagnose and strengthen those areas.
Then, it’s just a matter of watching your numbers. Ideally, your metrics will continually trend upward. But if they ever take a nosedive, you want to know right away, so you can figure out what’s missing and quickly adjust your strategy to stay profitable.
What we’ve just outlined is an informal approach to marketing analytics. And truthfully, it can be that simple: Set a goal, test, measure, and tweak.
But you can also create a formal process that gives you all sorts of data on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. So let’s look at how you can set up a formal marketing analytics program that helps you continually improve your business.
How to set up your marketing analytics like a pro
Here’s a 7-step process for setting up your marketing analytics. You’ll notice that this is essentially the same process we described above. But now, we’re going to get very granular.
The key is to set up your analytics correctly, so you have the data you need to track and improve your business. So don’t get in a hurry. Aim to complete each step before moving to the next.
Step 1: Set your goals, strategies, and key metrics
Just as we did in our informal analytics process, above, a formal marketing analytics program starts with a goal. Having a goal helps you focus on the marketing activities that will grow your business.
It will also make your analytics program easier to manage. Instead of looking at all the numbers related to your business, you’ll focus only on the ones that will move the needle for your business.
#1. Set your goal
As a course creator, your primary goal is to sell courses. But let’s get more granular than that. What area of your business do you want to improve?
Maybe you’ve been selling courses for a while, but you want to be more profitable. Or maybe you want to increase your monthly recurring revenue. Take a moment to think about what you’re trying to achieve right now with your business.
#2. Identify a strategy to get you there
Brainstorm all the ways you could start making progress on hitting your goal. As we mentioned above, if you want to get 50 new students a month, you need to think about how you’ll build awareness.
A few ideas might be:
- Advertise in new channels
- Hold webinars
- Tap into influencers
- Start an affiliate program
- Start a podcast that will attract your ideal prospects
Brainstorm a long list of ideas. But to start, you’ll need to pick one or two that you think will move the needle quickly.
#3. Choose your key metrics
Now that you know how you want to achieve your business goal, you need to decide how you’ll measure success. Marketing analytics is about testing an idea and measuring your results. You must be able to look at a number to see if your strategy is working.
For instance, if you decide to hold webinars, you might measure:
- Webinar sign-ups
- Webinar attendance
- How many people stay to the end of your webinar
- How many people buy as a result of your webinar
#4. Set your targets
Now, let’s get really granular. Set target numbers you’d like to hit. For your first webinar, maybe:
- You want 100 people to sign up for your webinar.
- You’d like 50 people to attend.
- You’d like to get 10 new customers from that webinar.
Step 2: Focus on the metrics that matter
Every marketing tool you use has metrics. Now that you’ve set your goal, you don’t need to focus on all of them. You only need to focus on the metrics that will help you achieve your goal.
Continuing our webinar example, you’ll want to focus your marketing around your webinars. How many people are signing up? How can you improve that number?
As the webinar approaches, what can you do to ensure they attend? Maybe an email marketing campaign would help. Maybe a phone call or text message to everyone who signed up.
What about following up the webinar? Can you offer a replay recording to people who signed up but didn’t attend? What about putting together an email campaign that targets anyone who didn’t buy at the webinar?
Notice that your focus is on moving your marketing analytics. But because you’re focused on a small subset of metrics, your marketing strategy is very focused.
And since you’re watching the numbers related to this campaign, you know exactly where your marketing is working and where it’s weak. So you can test new tactics right away, instead of waiting until the end of the month and wondering why you don’t have 50 new students in your course.
Your marketing analytics is giving you the whole story in real time. So you can course-correct as you go.
Now you: What one metric(s) should you start tracking? What are the most important metrics for your course business right now, based on your goal and marketing strategy?
Step 3: Get Google Analytics right
Google Analytics is one of the most powerful tools you can use to track your traffic and conversions. In this section we’re going to get into the basics of how to use Google Analytics, and how to set up your goal tracking, so you can start optimizing your business.
Let’s start with the basics. There are three pieces of information you need to know to get the most out of Google Analytics:
- The marketing metrics you care about (from above)
- The pages that are driving those numbers
- How you’re getting traffic to those pages
In our webinar example, to track webinar registrations, you’ll want to know how much traffic is going to your landing page. And let’s say you have a Facebook ad and a YouTube ad running traffic to that page. You’re also promoting the webinar to your email list and publishing organic social media posts.
Because of all that activity, you’re hitting your goal of 100 registrations for the webinar. Great! But which channels are sending you the traffic that converts? Is your paid traffic doing the heavy lifting? Or is your free traffic responsible for the majority of it?
Here’s where Google Analytics comes in. The Source/Medium report will tell you where your traffic is coming from, so you know how to prioritize your marketing.
To get to Source/Medium, go to Acquisition / All Traffic / Source/Medium.
The Source/Medium report will show which sources of traffic are driving your goals: direct, google/organic, or social media. And if you’re using UTM parameters in your links, you’ll have more information than that.
We’ll talk more about UTM parameters in a minute. But first, let’s make sure you have the information you need. Let’s set up your goals in Google Analytics.
To set goals, navigate to the bottom left of your Google Analytics dashboard and click on the “Admin” gearbox.
On the next screen, click on Goals, then click the red button labeled “New Goal.” The next screen will give you a choice of templates to choose from. Your categories are:
You may also choose Custom or Smart goals.
Select the type of goal
There are different types of goals you can set up in Google Analytics:
Destination. Use this when a pageview signals a conversion, such as your confirmation page after a sale. Enter the URL for this page in the Destination field.
Duration. If a minimum time on page qualifies as a goal conversion, set the hours, minutes, and seconds to the appropriate length of time.
Event. Here, you can set specific user interactions as a conversion.
Pages/Screens per session. Here, users who view more than the specified number of pages or screens will be considered a conversion.
Set your goals. Then give Google Analytics some time to start tracking actions before going back to the Source/Medium report. Now, you’ll be able to see which traffic sources are driving your goal actions.
Watch your Source/Medium report
This report will tell you whether your marketing is working. For instance, maybe your Facebook ads are driving traffic, but they’re not driving purchases. That tells you that you’re sending the wrong traffic to your landing page, or your landing page isn’t converting.
You can test both of these issues to see where the real problem lies. But you can also get more granular with your data. That will give you even more information to understand how you can improve your marketing.
For that, you’ll use UTM parameters.
Step 4: Set up UTM tracking codes for all your URLs
What are UTM tracking codes? UTM parameters are pieces of code added to your URLs to help track advertising, social media, and email marketing campaigns in your Google Analytics.
UTM codes help you identify:
- The campaign that’s giving you most of your traffic
- The specific article or email that’s driving a particular action
- The exact link in the content that’s driving the most conversions
To get this level of detail in your marketing analytics, you need to plan in advance the data you want to collect. Then you’ll tack UTM parameters onto your URLs, so Google can identify all the sources of your traffic.
Here are the UTM parameters you can set up:
Let’s say you’re hosting a webinar this month. The link to your webinar landing page is: mysite.com/webinar. And you want to promote your webinar in an ad, in social media, and your newsletter.
Let’s start with your newsletter.
Build your links
First, you’ll need to write your newsletter copy. Look at where you’re putting the links. In this case, you’re including three links:
- In the body of the email
- In an image
- In a button
Next, you’ll create UTM parameters that tell Google not only that this traffic comes from the newsletter, but it came from each of these links.
Go to Google’s Campaign URL builder.
Here’s the link generated by Google’s URL builder for the text link: mysite.com/webinar?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=feature&utm_campaign=april_webinar&utm_content=text_link
Let’s look at how this link is constructed. The first UTM parameter is introduced with a question mark:
Each successive parameter is introduced with a “&utm.”
The type of parameter follows that first piece of code: source, medium, campaign, or content.
Your job is to create an identifier for each parameter. That term cannot have a space in it. You can simply delete spaces or use an underline between words. (In our example, we’re using underlines.)
Once you know the format, you can build your own link for every use-case. So let’s create the three URLs you’ll need for this email. In this case, the only parameter that changes is the content parameter. Everything else is the same, since all of these URLs are for your newsletter.
Email Body: mysite.com/webinar?utm_source=email&utm_campaign=april_webinar&utm_content=bodylink
Now, let’s use these URLs in your newsletter. When building your newsletter, you’ll use each of these links just once. The “bodylink” URL goes in the text link of your webinar promotion. The “imagelink” URL goes on your image. The “buttonlink” URL goes on the button.
When you send out your newsletter, Google will be able to identify which link got clicked and will collect the data in the Source/Medium report. To know which link people click on most, you only have to view that report.
You can create a distinct URL for every piece of your webinar campaign. In a Facebook ad:
In a Tweet:
You get the idea. To save time, plan your URLs when you plan your campaign. Build your links and save them in a spreadsheet where it’s easy to find them and plug them into your marketing materials.
Step 5: Create a spreadsheet to track your results
Tracking your metrics long-term can help you see trends as well as how your marketing is performing. It can also help you focus on the metrics you care about.
For full details on setting up a marketing dashboard using Excel or Google Sheets, read The Perfect Marketing Dashboard by Hailey Freedman, head of marketing for Improvado.
To build a spreadsheet for your marketing analytics, create a tab for each of the metrics that are important to your business. Here are the basics that you should include in your spreadsheet:
Monthly goals and metrics. Record the goals you set for yourself in Steps 1 and 2 above.
Each week, collect the data for that week. It will give you a bird’s-eye view of your business. You’ll be able to easily see whether you’re on track to hit your monthly goals.
If you aren’t hitting your goals, check GA’s Source/Medium report to see what’s going on. Try to identify where your funnel is leaking, and brainstorm ways to stop the leaks.
Monthly performance. This is where you list all the different marketing channels you’re running. For instance, your channels might be:
For each channel, track the following data:
- Number of leads
- Cost per channel
- Cost per acquisition (CAC)
- Revenue per channel
Advertising. If you’re running ads, you need to watch the numbers carefully. Track the details of what you’re spending, when, and where.
Allowable CAC. If you want your business to be profitable, you need to be aware of your CAC. CAC stands for cost per acquisition. This number gives you the break-even cost per lead that you can spend on each channel.
To calculate your cost per acquisition, divide the cost of a channel by the number of customers it gives you.
$ media spend / # new customers acquired through that channel
Step 6: Track real-time actions by integrating all your tools
Having a spreadsheet dashboard is a great way to get an overall view of your course business, but it can be time-consuming to update a spreadsheet every week.
That’s where marketing analytics tools come in. They can do a lot of the grunt work for you, so you only have to check in and review your metrics. Two data integration tools that work well for small businesses are Databox and Cyfe.
Each of these tools can reduce the time it takes you to manage your marketing analytics by connecting all of your data. Rather than looking at each tool independently, you can pull the data into one dashboard. This includes analytics data from your Kajabi account, Google Analytics, Facebook, and advanced tools such as Mixpanel, Kissmetrics, or Hotjar.
Step 7: Leverage Kajabi analytics
Whether you use an informal approach to marketing analytics or go all-in with the formal analytics program we just described, Kajabi gives you the marketing analytics you need to grow and optimize your knowledge business.
- Tracking revenue, offers sold, subscription metrics
- In-depth reports on customer progress, including student progress and subscription churn rate
- Page performance, including landing page conversion rates
Kajabi also works with providers like Zapier, so you can integrate with nearly any marketing tool or service you’d like.
What should you focus on first?
When your business is new, focus on your revenue analytics. Any sale is a good sale at this stage of the game. And Kajabi makes it easy to track your net revenue (gross revenue minus expenses). For more information watch the Kajabi net revenue video here.
Once you’re fine-tuned your sales messaging, focus on metrics related to your opt-Ins. Lead generation is a leading metric for sales conversions. Optimizing your lead generation, you’ll build a strong foundation for your business.
How do I know if my marketing is working?
Analytics really are the secret to knowing whether your marketing is working. It’s easy for knowledge entrepreneurs and creative businesses to lead with the heart. If marketing feels good, it must be working, right?
Wrong. Even the best marketers are only guessing when they launch a new campaign. You must test your ideas, then watch your analytics to know whether they’re working or not.
Be aware, it takes time to dial in your messaging, targeting, and calls to action. No one gets it right at their first attempt.
That’s why marketing analytics are so important. The numbers don’t lie. If any element of your marketing isn’t working, you’ll see lower conversions.
Then you can use your analytics to troubleshoot your marketing. Your mission is to find the bottleneck that is keeping people from converting. Then come up with ways to improve those numbers. With this approach, you can improve your marketing one tweak at a time.
Let’s look at a simple way to do that by visualizing your marketing funnel. For this exercise, break your marketing activities into four stages of the customer journey: awareness, engagement, lead, and customer. Then itemize the metrics you need to track at each stage.
This funnel represents a hypothetical course business. Once it’s filled out, you can see your entire marketing cycle, from awareness all the way to purchase. Look closely at the activities you’re using to move your students through the funnel.
To make prospects aware of your courses you might be running some Facebook or Instagram ads, optimizing your website to rank on Google using SEO. Maybe you launched a podcast in which you interview experts in your field.
In the engagement stage, you’ve written and published some blog posts or videos that educate prospects on your business and philosophy. Your podcast is another way to educate and engage your prospects. These assets get your prospects excited about the topic you teach.
To convert your prospects to leads, you’ve provided them with two opportunities to convert: a newsletter subscription, and a monthly webinar series.
When somebody signs up for a webinar, you put them into an email sequence designed to keep them excited about it. One confirms their registration. The next promises a bonus if they attend. A third teases them on important information you’ll be teaching in the webinar.
At the end of your webinar, you make a 10 -minute pitch and take time answering everyone’s questions. Then you send them to your landing page.
When someone subscribes to your newsletter, you send them a 3-part mini-course. A fourth email promotes your course and includes a link to your course’s landing page.
Of course, you use different UTM codes in your webinar and mini-course. That way, you know how much traffic is coming from each of these sources. You may also find your webinar or your newsletter gives you the best traffic.
This funnel gives your customers a great experience. At each stage, it include a point of conversion:
- From awareness to engagement.
- From engagement to lead.
- And from lead to customer.
If your numbers are good at one level but drop off at the next, you know where you need to improve your marketing. Something is jarring the customer experience, causing them to opt out of your funnel.
So for example, if you’re not generating the 25 newsletter subscribers you were aiming for, you need to see how many people are engaging with your blog posts or your embedded videos.
The typical lead conversion rate is 2.4% to 4%. If your conversion rates are below this range, then you have a conversion problem. You may need to optimize your calls to action (CTAs) and conversion forms.
Alternatively, if your conversion rates are good, then you likely have a traffic or engagement problem. You know this because you’re relying on your marketing analytics to give you the big picture of your business: the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Best of all, you know exactly what to fix, because you can see where your customers get stuck. And based on that information, you know where to focus your energies.
Using marketing analytics to boost your knowledge business
Analytics is about pulling back the curtain to see clearly where your marketing is strong and where it’s weak. And it’s far easier than you might think.
So dive in and start watching your numbers. It can be exciting to know exactly which campaign, blog post, or ad drives certain profitable actions. It’s even more exciting to see where your prospects are getting stuck and knowing exactly how to fix that leak in your funnel.
Kajabi easily integrates with a variety of digital marketing tools like Google Analytics and Facebook. Use your marketing analytics can help you take your knowledge business to the next level.
Try Kajabi free today.
Already a Kajabi member? Check out the full length Kajabi University course, Analytics and Measurement Fundamentals.
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