Right off the bat you want to set some structure around your relationship with a new client. These key metrics will help you establish a foundation on which to build future programs. It also ensures that your clients know that you’re not only about vanity metrics, but that you have their core business initiatives in your sights.
Get current cost per lead and cost per customer
These key metrics will give you a great quick and dirty overview of how current marketing programs are performing. Plus, they are great metrics to refer back to when your agency begins new marketing programs. If new programs are coming in with a higher customer acquisition cost or lead cost, it’s time to start optimizing them or cutting them.
Take stock of current traffic
You’ll already be performing a site audit and other necessary functions with Google Analytics, so set up a quick dashboard of key metrics from Google Analytics as well. This will again establish expectations around what your agency will be monitoring and delivering for your client. It also facilitates communication and collaboration around key metrics that will spark larger conversations about strategy and scope to drive the relationship forward. You’ll find an example dashboard below. For more tips of marketing dashboards check out this post.
Calculate customer lifetime value
We know that agencies aren’t all about top of funnel analytics, but do your clients know this? Tracking customer lifetime value will again give you a great benchmark to refer back to when you’re assessing various marketing programs. It will also help you decide how to allocate budget amongst those programs. If customer lifetime value is suffering result of high churn, suggest some re-engagement or nurture campaigns to help your clients’ customers understand the full value of their product, and to address that churn issue.
Track Traffic to Lead Rate
Monitor this metric as a whole for the site, but also by program, channel, buyer persona (if that data is available to you) or landing page. Agencies generally start up a lot of programs and initiatives in parallel, so it’s incredibly important to have a baseline to refer back to for conversion rate, without previous agency efforts.
Track Lead to Customer Rate
Some companies need agencies to focus on their traffic to lead rate while others need agencies to focus on the lead to customer rate. It’s good to know what the client prefers, as you may need to sacrifice traffic for the right customers, or vice versa. Of course each client has different initiatives so if brand awareness or demand generation is their emphasis, they’ll likely want to focus on traffic to lead conversion rather than lead to customer conversion. This is another metric that will invite larger strategy discussions and allow you to understand more of the client’s core business.
Landing Page Performance
Landing page performance has a few metrics associated with it, primarily conversion rate and search engine ranking. The search engine ranking is pretty easy to calculate, along with search and traffic volume. Focus more on conversion rate, which is related to the previous section but breaks it down in more detail. Particularly if your agency is responsible for A/B testing you’ll want to have this information readily available and refer back to it frequently.
Monitor Social Presence
We know that social media has an increasingly significant impact on SEO, but many agencies gloss over social presence in their initial client audits and proposals. Get a good understanding of what the current social presence and strategy is, and ensure that it is a part of the overall strategy moving forward. With a lot of clients still asking for the ROI on social initiatives (and rightfully so!) you can put your agency in a great competitive position by demystifying the social process and tying it back to real business metrics.
Follow this checklist of client metrics and you’ll undoubtedly start off on the right foot with your clients and lay the groundwork for a fantastic relationship moving forward. Once you’ve asked for these metrics, make sure you refer back to them as well. Better yet, create and share a dashboard of these metrics and others that are pertinent to your client, and create a rock solid deliverable that will leave no question about how much value you’re contributing to your client.
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