Once a campaign has run through a full response cycle there needs to be a detailed report made available which documents the relative performance of the campaign. Ideally this report should have been built at the same time that the campaign was built, and depending on the recency of the response data it would be preferable to have an interim report made available to the business. An interim report would enable damage limitation if there was a negative consequence of the campaign. The first campaign report will make it clear whether the campaign is hitting it’s targets and provide vital information for the marketing management team to make critical decisions around whether to continue a campaign or whether to shelve it.
Campaign reporting should be owned by Campaign Management
For a number of reasons:
- Independent reporting carries more weight. If the reporting is independent it is less likely to be questioned or altered.
- Reporting gives Campaign Management more prestige when it comes to inter-departmental politics. Most people see campaign management as just a data extract function. Once you take on the reporting function you will become the knowledge experts for campaign activity and results. A trusted partner rather than just a data provider. With the build and extraction function already within the team it isn’t too much of a stretch to cover the reporting function as well.
- The alternative (an MIS/Reporting team) will add an overhead in terms of handover and follow-up of data. They will also have limited understanding of campaign build and execution in order to glean insights into campaign performance and the subsequent ability to offer advice.
With a little training on the presentation of data and some simple guidance into offering advice, it won’t take much to raise the general awareness of your function and be seen as campaign experts.
Presentation of Results
In my opinion the easiest way to provide ongoing results is to create a capability for self-serve reporting. Stakeholders should have easy access to all reports at all times. This could mean regularly updated Excel reports sitting on a shared drive or Sharepoint, to browser-based reporting software giving real-time results. What you should add to the self-service reporting capability is a face-to-face follow-up to ensure that the results are digested and understood.
There should be:
- A meeting to discuss the first report for every campaign.
- A Quarterly review of the entire marketing programme.
This comprehensive approach will allow you to cover all angles with the least overhead in terms of time.
First Campaign Review
The first campaign review meeting should attempt to discuss the following:
- Is the campaign meeting it’s goal or objective?
- Is the campaign covering it’s costs?
- Can it be improved?
- Can we do a champion/challenger test? Also known as A/B testing – is there another offer or creative that we could test against our current version?
- Can the campaign continue or do we stop it?
When it comes to the improvement question you need to make a cost/benefit decision. Can we invest time and money to come up with a propensity model, or do we try to do some quick analysis to determine if any targeting tweaks can be made. A thorough and detailed propensity model can take 3-4 weeks to build properly, not to mention the re-run and productionisation overheads. Are the likely benefits worth the time invested? Your senior analyst might be a sunk cost, but does their cost for that period justify the potential gains?