How to get the most out of your data and analytics

Q&A with Alex Rigg, ORM’s Senior Data Analyst

Data can be a scary thing, especially if you’ve not been trained how to identify or use it. So, we’ve spoken to our senior data analyst Alex Rigg who has dispelled the mystique around data and revealed how you can use it to your advantage.

What is the most common mistake marketers in Asset Management firms make when collecting data?

Typically, marketers have an imperfect analytics data collection set up. Many have already added Google Analytics tags on their site and have thought ‘job done’. Yet, the problem with this is that they’re often collecting junk data, poor quality data or data that is difficult to use.

How can marketers identify and collect clean, workable data?

The first stage of data and analytics is implementing the right customised tracking codes on to a website. We normally recommend using the Google suite of tools, such as Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics. We implement them on a website and from there we configure and put customisations in to track specific parts, elements and features of it. Customisation allows you to obtain richer data that’s unique to your business or website. For example, for Asset Management companies, we use customisation to identify audience types, to find out if the user is a retail investor, a financial advisor or institutional investor etc, that way we can gain deeper insights into each segment’s behaviour and advise how to tailor the content on the site accordingly.  

How should marketers use their data?

Although each business we work with is unique, we always begin using data by setting clear KPIs. We establish what the website’s purpose is and then set data KPIs to measure the effectiveness of it. Some typical KPIs include: looking at the scroll rate, or proportion of people scrolling a specific distance (that indicates if they are positively engaged with an insights article or not), we measure the number of people visiting the site, as well as whether those people return and if so, how frequently. We also measure recency, which is a good indicator of intent.

Do marketers need a data specialist to help them manipulate it?

There are two ways we help our Asset Management clients use data more effectively. We conduct a deep dive analysis of their website, where we extract, analyse and interpret the data to make recommendations on how to improve it. The alternative and complementary method we use is creating a reporting dashboard, which presents the data in an accessible format so that the client can analyse the data themselves. The dashboard takes data inputs such as from Google Analytics and then filters it, formats it, displays it, explains it, and makes it easier for anyone in the business to use.

What are the benefits of bringing data into a reporting dashboard?

When you bring web interaction data into a central dashboard it can tell you what people are doing on your site, how they behave, how they interact, what they like, don’t like, what they find useful, or not useful, all in a single view. The dashboard gives you a better understanding of your customers or potential customers and enables you to make changes to your site to make it better for the people you want to serve, whether that’s trying to sell an investment fund or generate inbound leads. The dashboard helps you to focus your analysis on interpreting what your users want and how you can make your site better for them.

How has ORM helped its Asset Management clients use the data to drive business results?

We’ve been able to use their data to identify types of visitors on their site, be-it retail investors, financial advisors or institutional investors. The latter two visitors tend to represent a much smaller number visiting the site, but they are much more important to Asset Management businesses because they bring more value. Once you can identify your visitor, you can tailor your site to meet the needs of the users, so that they have a good user experience and will ultimately come back and do business with you.  

We’ve also helped Asset Management companies assess whether their content is performing effectively. We use data to monitor interactions with insight articles. We can see which are being read, how far people scroll, the time they spend with the content and what action people take afterwards. If users are clicking on a headline but don’t read the article, we know that piece isn’t working and that the client hasn’t got their message across, or that user hasn’t left with a positive impression of the company.

A bad experience from a user perspective makes it look like a website doesn’t work. The user never thinks ‘I’ve made a mistake here’, the user thinks ‘this website doesn’t work, that’s poor quality’. If you improve the user experience you will add value and build trust in your brand.

We know if they have read all the way through they have clearly found it interesting and engaging and got value from it, and will then appreciate that brand – it’s about brands adding value and building trust.