Digital marketing benchmarks and you: everything you need to know

There’s nothing like seeing your digital marketing efforts grow and grow. How do you measure what’s happening? As all savvy marketers know, a result isn’t anything until you can measure it! How on earth can you get this done simply and easily? The Zebra 360 Marketing team has all the secrets you need… and it begins with benchmarking.

So, what is benchmarking?

Benchmarking is basically a research strategy. You’ll accurately measure your current performance metrics (especially against your competitors) and use that data to identify new ways to improve. This means you’re finding the ‘gaps’ your business isn’t filling and helping it to expand into those areas.

Is benchmarking important for my business?

Yes, it is! Benchmarking is one of your critical tools for tracking and measuring your digital marketing successes. Are your SEO and CRO strategies working? Do your email and social marketing campaigns get the job done? Benchmarking is the way to answer those questions.

How do I set benchmarking goals for my digital marketing?

Look at benchmarking as the process of establishing data-driven answers to your questions, rather than relying on what you think your marketing is achieving. Here’s how to get it done:

  1. Discover your goals: You won’t get anywhere until you know where you want to go. We’re talking specific, quantifiable goals. How do you rank organically? How does paid search change that? What is your current digital marketing baseline? What are your engagement numbers on social media and email looking like? It’s time to hunt out the data.
  2. Suss out the competition: Now you know what you want to achieve, find some brands working in the same space as you. Usually, this means direct competitors, but don’t be afraid to think more broadly. If they target the same audiences (and keywords) and use similar marketing channels they’re of interest. Stay in your budget lane, too. There’s no need to compare your bespoke soda with Coke when their advertising budget far outstrips yours- look for other firms in a similar spending niche to yourselves. Keep the giants as aspirational goals instead.
  3. Analyse the competition: Now you need to analyse your competition. What are their strengths and weaknesses? This can vary and needs careful tailoring to your end goals, but effectively see how they’re doing next to you. Do their keywords perform better, for instance?
  4. Strategise: Now you need to work out the path between your goals and your current position, using that analysis. Using the keyword example again, that analytical data can tell you which of your goal keywords are more achievable, and which should be worked on later.
  5. Track your work: Benchmarking is an ongoing process. You’ll need to come back to it again and again, tweaking as you do. Make sure you have tangible ways to track your ROI. Google Tag Manager, Mouse tracking, heat mapping and more come into play.

What types of benchmarks are there?

Many firms divide these benchmarks into 3 key areas. Roughly speaking, this is:

  1. Competitive benchmarks: That’s looking at everyone who does what you do. It’s obviously a fantastic way to see the state of your niche, but remember the caveat above about budgets? That’s why you should also consider:
  2. Industrial benchmarks: Industrial benchmarks tighten the scope to companies with budgets like yours. So you’re no longer putting your small software start-up against Microsoft’s data. You can also widen this a little, looking at how similar-sized corporations outside your niche are doing.
  3. Historical benchmarks: Don’t forget to spend some time considering YOU alone. Use your historical data to decide how to grow in the future.

How do you compare? Remember, benchmarking is a critical digital marketing strategy. It helps you identify new opportunities, understand your market better, and monitor your ROI and advertising efficiencies. Feel confident in your decisions again- allow data-driven marketing to help you move forward.

Not sure where to start? Then let Zebra 360 Marketing help you benchmark your business today.