“We’re more okay than we typically are with trying to understand anecdotal evidence and gut reactions,” said HubSpot’s Meghan Keaney Anderson, saying that the standard key performance indicators (KPIs) her organization, along with other businesses, are used to tracking have been disrupted by the coronavirus outbreak. “I think some of that qualitative [data] that we usually push off to the side as just ‘nice to have’ has become more and more important,” she added.

During the content marketing in the time of COVID session of Live with Search Engine Land, Anderson, Lee Odden of TopRank Marketing and Amanda Milligan of Fractl talked about the signals that their organizations are currently utilizing in order to complement traditional performance metrics.

“While it is important to be empathetic with customers, they are also looking for leadership — they want to be understood, but they also want to feel more confident about what the ‘go-forward’ is, and I think that’s an important messaging component [right now],” said Odden. He also added that “there are metrics that go along with that: things like taking benchmarks for share of voice, for affinity, for sentiment.”

Although the metrics aren’t as specific as the data marketers are normally used to working with, “but they are about monitoring conversations around specific groups of people who may represent a sample of who you’re after,” Odden said.

“We’re putting more emphasis on qualitative data than quantitative right now,” Anderson said. She said thather organization is continuing to keep an eye on all of the quantitative KPIs that it was relying on before the pandemic.

It’s important to frame campaign and KPI expectations with your clients as well as internally. Keep in mind that neither dataset should be analyzed in a vacuum either. “It’s you determining, ‘Okay, what is now the purpose of this and what are the KPIs I’m going to assign to it?’ then telling that story . . . to make sure that everybody now understands what you’re trying to achieve,” Milligan said.

SourceGeorge Nguyen