No one would deny the need to collect and analyze marketing reports for any type of business: this type of essential information is required to shed light on the strengths and weaknesses of your current strategy and to shape new and effective brand development paths. But there are too many analytical tools and reports, and too little time. This led to the organic emergence of such a thing as report automation.
Some statistics: more than 60% of companies were able to outperform competitors and increase sales revenue by 50% by using the automation of marketing and reporting. This improvement became possible due to the substantial decrease of routine work, with advancement aimed directly at marketing optimization.
So, let’s take a closer look at the benefits of automation and reveal the best tool to implement it.
Why Automate Reporting?
We have already pointed out some of the advantageous automation statistics. It makes sense to elaborate on exactly how the marketing team will benefit from this.
Optimizing the Work of Marketers
Advanced marketers know that to be successful and get a complete picture of performance across all channels, they need to deploy at least 5 analytical tools and regularly collect information from there. You can imagine how much time it takes to study data from Google Analytics, Ads, Facebook, Instagram, and others, given how different the interfaces may be. This is not to mention email and SEO, which have their specifics.
When you need to send hundreds of letters or collect information about your customers from the website and social networks in a separate database, not days, but whole weeks of manual work are wasted. After marketing and reporting automation, the productivity of the marketer will increase, and many routine processes will become the concern of services and programs.
Marketers get the opportunity to spend more time working with leads and customers, rather than endless disparate reports.
Smoothly flowing from the first paragraph, this one clarifies the useful properties of automation in matters of combining all analytical tools.
Not all services offer large-scale integration of all tools in one place, but we can tell you a secret: Whatagraph tool can do that. End-to-end analytics from over 30 platforms allows you to focus on lead generation, lead processing, and custom campaigns. This will increase the number and quality of leads you attract. And you will finally have complete data to build comprehensively informative reports. But we’ll talk about specific tools a little later. Remember that we’ve told you about Whatagraph confidentially.
Minimizing Human Impact
It is in human nature to be imperfect, or in other words, we are all human beings and can make mistakes. But in working with large amounts of data, even a small error can greatly distort the overall picture and lead to misinterpretation.
Automation of reporting will not let you miss important nuances and will always allow you to see the real picture of what is happening. The marketer just has to draw conclusions, continue to improve the launched campaigns, and start new ones.
Evaluating Advertising Campaigns Based on Complete Data
Working with ad campaigns can be a tedious task. Moreover, their effectiveness is not always easy to measure.
It’s one thing to make guesses about the effectiveness of an advertising campaign based on disembodied data from dozens of sources, yet another is to collect all data streams together, visualize the results, and get the whole picture. Of course, the second way is more difficult. But, as practice shows, each non-optimized campaign, launched in vain, without subsequent correct assessment and adjustment, will bust the budget without a tangible result.
If your automation tool can show end-to-end analytics across all ad campaigns, then you or your marketers can easily build reports that highlight weaknesses in the sales funnel and help increase conversion rates. Moreover, you save your budget and get the ability to quickly respond to the inefficient use of funds.
Building Effective Communication
It’s scary to say, but even in modern realities, the sales department does not always understand what marketing is doing, let alone leads to mutually beneficial interaction. Reporting automation can, in particular, help prevent such a dire scenario from happening.
The more marketing work with questions and concerns from potential customers, the more arguments the sales department will have. The better marketing can do its job of generating leads, the more work the sales team will have. Automation helps set up communication between departments, simplify information exchange and synchronize efforts. A positive result in the form of an increase in profits will not be long in coming.
Increasing Customer Loyalty
This is not the most obvious point but remember: at the beginning of this article, we addressed the fact that automation has a beneficial effect on sales. This is also facilitated by upselling, which is not always easy to implement. But a loyal customer will happily agree to accept an additional attractive offer.
The better the offer is personalized, the more likely the customer will make a purchase. Increasing loyalty with personalized offers is a must. To implement this scenario, a business needs to collect data about its customers, consequently process it, and segment its audience to build personalized marketing.
Timely and structured reports of customer preferences make it possible to leverage data to tailor individual customer communication. Customers are pleasantly surprised that business knows so much about them and is responsive to their needs, so they may end up becoming brand evangelists.
Which Reporting Automation Tool Should You Choose?
So we’re done with the theory and it’s time for practice. Let’s take a look at two of the biggest marketing data charmers: Whatagraph and Supermetrics.
The meaning and mission of both tools are the same – extracting marketing data from multiple sources for further analysis. But here the coincidences end.
Supermetrics is a fairly inexpensive option, starting at $39 per month for an individual user. The client is offered a 14-day trial to assess the capabilities of the tool and the possibility of more than 40 integrations with advertising, social, email, SEO, and web analytics sources.
The detail of the extracted information, however, is limited and best presented only for Google Analytics, Ads, and Facebook. This makes the tool a good choice for start-up companies but raises questions if marketers need more advanced reports and detailed dashboards.
Also, the tool does not provide the ability to visualize data and can only place it in Google Data Studio or Google Sheets, the number of rows in which is limited and can cause problems in the case of a large amount of information.
Whatagraph is a much more expensive option, starting at $99 for a single user and a 7-day trial. This can prove to be somewhat costly for start-ups or small businesses. However, here it is important to understand what is included in this cost.
One report that combines all channels and integrates all data is a treasure for any marketer. With Whatagraph, you can easily compare the same metrics from different resources and watch the performance of landing pages, advertising campaigns, and various promotions.
A huge advantage of the tool is the ability to visualize data in the format of appealing and engaging infographics, easily digestible for marketers, other team members, as well as clients who are not always well versed in such data and need a detailed explanation of each parameter. Visualizations and infographics have always been and remain the best way to present complex statistical information to clients so that they can truly understand the benefits of digital transformation.
Reports are customizable: they can be given the desired look using templates and widgets, which allow you to insert any custom information required for the best presentation. It is also possible to add images and screenshots to reports and even brand them with your logo.
Even though the tool does not provide as many integrations as its counterpart (although 30+ is also great), unlike the latter, the data extraction is flawless down to the last detail. And even if sometimes loading historical data may take some time, it will fully pay off with the value of reports.
So, these are the basic things you need to know. The choice is yours – evaluate the tools according to your needs by weighing all the pros and cons to make sure you end up with the most efficient choice for your business.
Reporting automation frees the hands of marketers and significantly improves the business model. It has a positive effect on almost everything from streamlining workflows to improving customer relationship with the brand. In the huge flow of information, one cannot lose such an attractive opportunity to introduce structure, order, and unity to all marketing efforts. Seize the hour and feel the difference right away!