What is a marketing report?

What is a marketing report?

Hello there my name is Martin Henley, this is the What The series and in episode number 18 we’re answering the important question what is a marketing report and are you really expecting to be successful in your sales and marketing without one?

What are we going to cover in this marketing report definition?

In addressing the question what is a marketing report there are six things we’ll be sharing with you we are of course gonna answer the question what is a marketing report? We’re gonna answer the question why a marketing report is necessary; who needs a marketing report; if there are issues with marketing reports; how you do a marketing report and when you do a marketing report?

Let’s get this started Sonny.

Did we find a marketing report definition?

As always, when we come to bust this marketing jargon, we are looking for a definition and we found this one right at the top of google at datapine.com. What they tell us is that a marketing report is “a set of data created to analyse the performance of a specific marketing campaign or effort. It is utilised to effectively communicate a company’s marketing strategy including research, promotional tactics, goals and expected outcomes.”

The reason I’m sharing this definition with you is because I really like it but I do have a couple of issues. For example when they talk about “a set of data created to analyse the performance of a specific marketing campaign or effort,” my marketing report is actually specifically reporting on all of our marketing campaigns and efforts. The second part of this sentence or the second part of this marketing report definition; “it is utilised to effectively communicate a company’s marketing strategy, including research, promotional tactics, goals and expected outcomes,” – all of that work has gone into my marketing strategy, which is a separate document. The marketing strategy has informed the actions that we are taking and the marketing report and will remind us every month of what those objectives are, informed by the marketing strategy and show us how we are performing against those marketing objectives.

Why is a marketing report important?

Which brings us to question number three which is the question why is a marketing report important? Let me tell you, a marketing report is critically important for three very good reasons. The first reason is that this is how you manage your performance with your bosses or your clients; the second reason is that this is how you stay focused on what it is that you’re looking to achieve and the third reason is that this gives you an opportunity to think about what it is that you are doing.

Typically what happens, if you have a new boss or a new client, is they come to you because they are worried about a particular problem; most likely they don’t have enough sales in their business or enough profit in their business. Because you’re a cool marketer you tell them don’t worry everything’s going to be cool, we can fix this for you. The client is then like whatever you can do to resolve this issue please just get on and get it done because i need profit in my business. Then what happens is you go to work and some time passes, typically it’s about three months, and the client starts to wonder what’s going on with his marketing investment, at which point they start to get very inquisitive. If you don’t have the data to back up how their marketing is performing then you will be found guilty and you will be terminated. Categorically, you don’t want to get terminated from your marketing projects so my advice is that you produce a marketing report. Of course, this go entirely the other way, if you are producing a marketing report and you can demonstrate monthly that you are delivering a return on investment, that you are delivering value, then there is no reason why you can’t go back to your client or your boss and tell them this is what I’m doing with your investment, give me more investment and I can do more. So it could become very positive.

If we remember when we were talking about our marketing strategy, you will remember that effectively this is a journey. This is a journey where you are looking to find the treasure. What happens, immediately you set sail, you set a course towards the treasure, immediately what happens is that you become a victim of the tides, and the weather, and the winds and you get blown off course. The most important thing in your marketing is that you stay focused on exactly what it is that you are looking to achieve. Your marketing report is an opportunity to do that, you will be reminded every month when you complete your marketing report what your objectives are and you will stay focused on those marketing objectives. We understand that the tides, and the winds, and the hurricanes can be a problem, we haven’t even started thinking yet about the sharks, and the boars, and the snakes and the bullies that all exist in the marketing industry to take your marketing resource and your money. It is imperative that you stay focused on what it is that you are looking to achieve and you don’t get distracted by any shiny new toys and get pulled away from achieving the marketing success that you deserve in your business.

The third reason you need a marketing report is because this is your opportunity to sit down and think every month about how you are doing against your marketing objectives. How you are doing against your previous performance. When you are thinking about your marketing in that way you will find new ways to improve the effectiveness of your marketing every single month.

So there are three good reasons that you should be investing your time and your energy in producing a marketing report?

Who needs a marketing report?

Which brings us to the question who needs a marketing report and you might be wondering if you need a marketing report? I’ll keep this very simple; if you are investing your time, your energy, your money in marketing or sales you absolutely, categorically, need a marketing report. I’ve just given you three good reasons why and how this is going to add value to your life so. My advice to you is do not invest any time any energy, any money in sales or marketing unless you have produced a report and you are able to track precisely what is coming back from your time, your energy and your money.

Is there an issue with marketing reports?

Martin, Martin, Martin, there always seems to be an issue with these things.

Well, I can tell you, there is an issue with marketing reports. The big issue is that people don’t want to see time invested in producing them. I can’t tell you why this is, certainly in larger businesses they expect to see a marketing report and everyone is very happy to sit down and review the marketing report every month. It seems to me that in smaller businesses they see this as a waste of time.

I’ve already told you how important this is and I’ve already told you that you need this so when you take a job with a new client or with a new boss and they tell you don’t worry about producing the reports, just invest all of your time and your energy in making stuff happen; make sure you produce the marketing report anyway, because in three months time, absolutely, they are going to want to see progress and if you can’t show that progress you’re going to be terminated.

You need to keep yourself on focus, you need to be reminded of what the objectives are every month and absolutely you need to be thinking about what it is that you are doing if all of the numbers on this marketing report are going to be going in the right direction.

How do you produce a marketing report?

I’m hoping now that you are seeing the absolute necessity to have a marketing report and I’m hoping actually that you are excited about putting together your marketing report. You are probably asking how do I produce a marketing report? What do I include in my marketing report?

The good news for you is that I have prepared a template so you don’t actually need to do this work yourself.

What this looks like is 12 or 13 pages depending on how many marketing initiatives you have running in your business. On the front page we have a reminder of which objectives, which platforms and which campaigns we are running and what the objectives are for each of those campaigns. We include some headlines so anyone, if they spend a second looking at this document, will see what’s good about what’s gone on.

As we move through the document you will see that we just have lots, and lots, and lots of tables. For every single campaign that we are running. Clearly the website is going to be important, the PPC is going to be important, the organic search performance is important, keywords you’re targeting for search engine optimisation and where you’re ranking; where your LinkedIn performance is and where your email marketing performance is; where your youtube performance is.

Whichever campaigns you are running you need to make sure that you have a table which is presenting the key performance indicators for every campaign. I’ve done this work for you I’m the template and we’re going to go through these processes as we go through these videos, so you don’t need to worry at this stage where this data comes from, I will be showing you that in the future.

This template is available for you, if you’re not on the website click through to the website, there will be a link to this post underneath this video. You can click on that link and you can download this template and then you will have a basis to produce something that is going to be absolutely perfect for your business.

So the answer to the question; how do I produce a marketing report? The good news is that we’ve done the work for you already, you just need to click through to the site and download it for yourself.

When should you produce a marketing report?

Which brings us to the fifth and the final question which is when should you be producing a marketing report?

That will depend on how much marketing there is going on in your business. If you’re sitting in a business with thousands of transactions every day with hundreds of thousands of people visiting your website, then this is something that you might want to perform daily. If you are somewhere around half of that activity then you might get away with producing a marketing report weekly. Certainly, you don’t want to go more than a month without producing a marketing report; the issue is, if you miss a few months, you will forget about this entirely, then that critical three months will tick around your bosses will want to know what’s going on, you won’t be able to tell them, you will be bang in trouble. Think about how much activity there is going on in your department, in your role, and how often it makes sense for you to be producing a marketing report. My advice is make sure you are producing this marketing report at least once a month.

What did we cover in this marketing report definition?

If you are still with us, well done, you now know exactly what a marketing report is you; know why a marketing report is important; you know who needs a marketing report, you definitely do if you’re doing sales and marketing; you know that there’s an issue with marketing reports, hopefully you’ll get around that, you know how to produce a marketing report and when to produce a marketing report.

What should you do if you have found this marketing report definition interesting or useful?

If you have found this interesting or useful please take a second to like share, subscribe, maybe comment, maybe there’s a piece of marketing jargon that you would like to see to defined in this fashion. If you found it really interesting and useful why not head across to The Effective Marketing Company blog and subscribe there and you will get this marketing jargon, bullshit busting goodness in your inbox every single day.

We are done here Sonny.



Free Marketing Report Template
Martin Henley

Martin Henley

Martin has built a reputation for having a no nonsense approach to sales and marketing and for motivating audiences with his wit, energy, enthusiasm and his own brand of audience participation.

Martin’s original content is based on his very current experience of running effective marketing initiatives for his customers and the feedback from Effective Marketing’s successful and popular marketing workshops.



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