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Number Stories: Win Friends and Influence HiPPOs with an Effective Measurement Strategy

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Number Stories Win friends and influence HiPPOs with an effective measurement strategy Mike Powers Director of Electronic Communications Indiana University of Pennsylvania Confab Higher Ed 2015


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@mjpowers


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Measurement Strategy: Overview


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Content strategists are storytellers.


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Effective measurement begins and ends in storytelling.


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How do numbers turn into stories? How do stories turn into action?


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Managing effective measurement 1. Plan for measurement 2. Collect data effectively 3. Present persuasively


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Planning


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Why measure? To answer questions about our content


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Questions come from your goals


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#squadgoals


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#squadgoals


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#plutogoals


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#minigoals Image by Pascal Pinck


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Higher Ed Goals


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Higher Ed Goals 1. Get students


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Higher Ed Goals 1. Get students 2. Help students, faculty, alumni succeed


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Higher Ed Goals 1. Get students 2. Help students, faculty, alumni succeed 3. Get money to keep doing 1 and 2


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Creating the Plan PLANNING


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What’s the story? 1. What are your goals? 2. What is your content? 3. How will this content achieve those goals? 4. What would success look like? 5. What would failure look like? 6. What measures would show success or failure? 7. What are your targets?


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Example: Promoting a new MA in Content Strategy


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Example: Promoting a new MA in Content Strategy


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1. What are your goals? 1. Bring in enough students over the next four years to make program viable 2. Acquire a reputation for excellence in CS that brings in students and helps them find employment


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2. What is your content? • New microsite about the program • Press releases about the program, faculty • Blog posts about CS written by faculty members • Presentations by faculty and student at CS conferences • Online ads


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3. How does content achieve your goals?


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3. How does content achieve your goals? Ad Blog Earned Media


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3. How does content achieve your goals? Ad Blog Earned Media Come to Microsite


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3. How does content achieve your goals? Ad Blog Earned Media Come to Microsite Learn More


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3. How does content achieve your goals? Request Info Ad Blog Earned Media Come to Microsite Learn More Request Visit Apply


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4. What does success look like? Image by velkr0 https://www.flickr.com/photos/velkr0/


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4. What does success look like? • Highly qualified • Diverse • Likely to succeed Image by velkr0 https://www.flickr.com/photos/velkr0/


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5. What does failure look like? Image by Andrew Allio https://www.flickr.com/photos/allio/


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5. What does failure look like? • Not qualified • All the same • Unable to afford the program Image by velkr0 https://www.flickr.com/photos/velkr0/


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6. What measures would show success or failure? Enrollment? Test Scores? Diversity Data? Image by gozalewis https://www.flickr.com/photos/gozalewis/


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Interim Goals A. Do prospects understand content? B. Does content communicate value propositions? C. Does content appeal to/engage prospects? D. Does content encourage conversions?


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A. Do prospects understand your content? Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/photojonny/2268845904/


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Readability scores Make sure all content meets a set readability standard. Screen capture of HemingwayApp.com


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Cloze test Test sample content for readability with typical users.


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Inherent Value Test User testing technique to understand if your site communicates your value/values. Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/l-i-n-k/3654390818/


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B. Does your content appeal to and engage your prospects? Photo source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dm-set/4200811849/


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Bounce Rate Time on Page Return Visits Social Media Engagement New Users Pageviews


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C. Does content encourage conversions? • Inquiries • Visits • Applications • Page value


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Home Page Admissions B.S. in Math Visit Campus Visit Sign-Up Form Thanks for Registering


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Home Page Admissions B.S. in Math Visit Campus Visit Sign-Up Form Thanks for Registering $100


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$20 $20 $20 Home Page Admissions B.S. in Math Visit Campus Visit Sign-Up Form Thanks for Registering $20 $20 $100


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You can’t measure everything. Choose wisely, using your goals.


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7. What are your numeric targets? • If you want 50 students (donations, etc.) • How many applications? • How many inquiries? • How many web sessions (visits)?


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50 Students


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If 10% of applications result in 1 matriculated student …


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?? apps × 10% yield = 50 students


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500 apps ?? × 10% yield = 50 students


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???? inquiries × 20% yield = 500 applications


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2,500 inquiries ???? × 20% yield = 500 applications


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??????? sessions × 1.2% goal conv. rate = 2,500 inquiries


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208,334 sessions ??????? × 1.2% goal conv. rate = 2,500 inquiries


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Or, profile the visits you want Applicants All Users Visits to Site 5 Avg. Session Length 9:34 2 Goal 3 2:13 3:21


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Add those goals to your plan, and launch


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Data Collection


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414 Measures


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You probably have years of Google Analytics data at your fingertips.


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Google Analytics Isn’t Enough • Data for context • A place to put it all • Sustainability


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Context DATA COLLECTION


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Context


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Context Football Game Football Game Football Game Football Game Foo Ga


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? ? ?


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Things happen that are not online • Mailing arrived in mailboxes? • Day off in high school? • Alumni returned for homecoming?


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Keep a journal of on- and off-line events • Annotation in Google Analytics • Running list in Evernote or other software


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Keep a journal of on- and off-line events • Annotation in Google Analytics • Running list in Evernote or other software


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Keep a journal of on- and off-line events • Annotation in Google Analytics • Running list in Evernote or other software


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Keep a journal of on- and off-line events • Annotation in Google Analytics • Running list in Evernote or other software


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Daily Screen Caps (with Dates)


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A Place to Put It All DATA COLLECTION


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A place to put it all


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Why?!


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Context often means non-analytics data • How many applications? • How many showed up for an event? • How many students haven’t yet registered for spring? • How much did we spend on advertising/promotion?


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A master spreadsheet gathers • non-sampled data and • non-analytics data in the same place.


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Sampling


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Sampling


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Sampling


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Sampling


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A place to put it all


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A place to put it all


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A place to put it all


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A place to put it all


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A place to put it all


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A place to put it all


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A Note on Correlation Football Game Football Game Football Game Football Game Foo Ga


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IE Market Share vs. US Murders 18,000 70% 17,000 60% 16,000 50% 15,000 40% 14,000 30% 13,000 20% 12,000 10% 2006 2007 2008 Internet Explorer Market Share 2009 2010 Murders Data from FBI: https://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/crime-in-the-u.s/2013/crime-in-the-u.s.-2013/, W3Schools: http://www.w3schools.com/browsers/browsers_stats.asp


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Correlation is not causality


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Correlation is not the absence of causality


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Correlation is not the absence of causality Football Game Football Game Football Game Football Game Foo Ga


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Link tagging can help you move beyond correlation in some instances


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Google URL Builder https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033867?hl=en


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Google URL Builder https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033867?hl=en


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http://confabevents.com/events/ higher-ed?utm_source=twitter& utm_medium=socialmedia&utm_content=test& utm_campaign=number-stories


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Next Stop: bit.ly


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http://bit.ly/ 1hmQBim


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Use this technique for • E-mail (no need to shorten) • Social media • Text messages • Print ads • QR codes (!)


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Then look for the traffic in Google Analytics


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Sustainability DATA COLLECTION


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Sustainability If you can’t sustain data collection, you won’t answer your questions.


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10 minutes for analytics Photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/58827557@N06/15479719427/


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Use student workers Photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/editor/1252393940/


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Automate with Google Sheets & GA Add-on


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Or with Google Sheets & Super Metrics Add-on


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Take a one-month sample Photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dafnecholet/5374200948/`


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Look at less Photo source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/matley0/2694746491/


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Reporting


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Reporting on Analytics • Focus • Tell a story with data


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Focus REPORTING


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Web Sessions Campus Tours 1,600 1,200 800 400 0 1/16/2011 1/23/11 1/30/2011 2/6/2011 2/13/2011


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Web Sessions Campus Tours 1,600 1,200 800 • Focus on just a few measures • Use them in comparison 400 0 1/16/2011 1/23/11 1/30/2011 2/6/2011 2/13/2011


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Design effective charts


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Edward Tufte


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Maximize “Data Ink”


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Use length, not angles to represent values


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Minimize “Chart Junk”


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Show Data in Comparison


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Story REPORTING


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Our number stories are stories about our content and how people use it.


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Source: http://mayaeilam.com/2012/01/01/the-shapes-of-stories-a-kurt-vonnegut-infographic/


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Source: http://mayaeilam.com/2012/01/01/the-shapes-of-stories-a-kurt-vonnegut-infographic/


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Source: http://mayaeilam.com/2012/01/01/the-shapes-of-stories-a-kurt-vonnegut-infographic/


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Source: http://mayaeilam.com/2012/01/01/the-shapes-of-stories-a-kurt-vonnegut-infographic/


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The structure of the stories we’ll tell 1. Here’s where we were 2. Then we changed x 3. Here’s what happened 4. Here’s what we need to do next


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Example • 40% of new students didn’t bring the right materials to orientation, even though it was on the website • We rewrote that content and provided a checklist • This fall, only 20% of students didn’t bring the right materials to orientation • Next, we’ll look at the way this content is labeled


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Example • We’ve had an increase in students who start an application but don’t complete it. • We increased the number of reminder e-mails we send them. • But—traffic from e-mail actually dropped afterward. • Next, we’ll cut back on the number of e-mails and make the ones we do send more personalized.


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Wrap Up


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1. Plan for measurement • Understand your goals • Understand how your content gets you there • Use that analysis to find a small number of appropriate measures • Set numeric targets


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2. Collect data effectively • Collect contextual data • Organize your measurements centrally • Have a plan to sustain data collection


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3. Present persuasively • Focus • Tell a Story


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Questions?


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