Metrics from marketing intelligence tools will never exactly match ‘internal’ tools
We typically expect metrics from marketing intelligence tools to vary by 5-25% compared to internal measurement tools like Google Analytics, Advertising Accounts, and so on. It all varies from tool to tool because each tool collects data differently. Sometimes metrics match bang on, other times there’s a significant spread. The most common reason for variations is how different tools handle bot traffic. For this reason, we don’t base our analyses too heavily on absolute figures, but rather focus on relative figures and trends over time.
Relationships between brands tend to be very reliable
We can see how ‘big’ or ‘small’ brands’ metrics are in comparison to each other really accurately. For example, that Red Bull’s website traffic is 4x higher than Monster Energy. Or that Loblaw’s ad spend in Canada is 10x more than Safeway’s. We’ve verified this with multiple past clients whose ‘internal’ data we had access to. Having an accurate understanding of the relationship between brands is more strategically important than matching exact figures.
Trend Lines over time tend to be very reliable
We can see how metrics are changing over time quite accurately. For example, that Canadian Tire’s web traffic increased by 20% in Q2 and 40% in Q3. We’ve verified this with multiple past clients whose ‘internal’ data we had access to. Having an accurate understanding of how things trend over time is more strategically important than matching exact figures.
WHAT brands are doing is the easiest thing to observe
This is the most important point. Once we measure how much a brand’s metrics are changing over time, we hone in on the biggest shifts and can see the actions that brand is taking to move those metrics. We can see the exact ads that brands run on all major platforms, how all their social posts are performing, where their traffic is coming from, what technologies and conversion strategies they’re using on their sites, what emails they are sending, to what segment of their list, and how often, etc. This is the best source to identify the causation of changes to the metrics.
How RightMetric creates valuable and trustworthy research with imperfect inputs:
- Understand data collection: Panel, API, & crawling. We “trust” tools at various levels.
- Understand the weaknesses: Every tool has them. We seek to understand them.
- Corroborate findings using multiple tools. To mitigate tool weaknesses.
- Supplement with manual observation: To fill blindspots or when we don’t trust a tool.
- Trust trendlines: We’ve verified that they match internal analytics.
- Trust relationships between entities: We’ve verified that they match internal analytics.
- Show stories about why the data shifted: To create an insight that’s actionable.