These days, marketing is highly complicated. This is contrast to several decades ago when a good gut feel was accepted standard marketing practice. The more accurate your gut feeling was, the bigger your annual bonus would be. Now, to come up with a winning marketing strategy, it comes down precise analysis of data. But, in today’s age of big data where we have tools at our disposal that can collect an amazing amount of data from customers and potential customers, analyzing that data has become a science on its own.
Just look at all the tools you need to work with in order to organize and compile your marketing data. If it’s an email campaign, you need to work with an email marketing tool. If you use Google Adwords, you need an Adwords account. For web analytics, you have Google Analytics and a host of other commercial solutions. Business dashboards can assist with tracking social media marketing campaigns.
Get it? There are so many different tools to track different facets of your marketing campaign. You could spend a whole day just logging into different accounts to check reports and gain insights. To avoid this, it is best to use an integrated marketing dashboard that consolidates all your metrics into one dashboard. There are many commercial solutions that do this and you can even build your own custom solution.
But, even doing this is only solving half the problem. To maximize the benefits of your marketing dashboard, you need to first organize it. You need to decide what should go into it and what shouldn’t.
The following are five steps you should follow in order to build a powerful digital marketing dashboard.
1. Identify the Reports Needed
People process and communicate information differently. There are people who are good with words and completely terrible with numbers and vice versa. So consider who the audience will be. Identify the story that needs to be told and numbers needed to tell the story. Decide on the type of reports needed, for example; an executive summary, an awareness report, an engagement report or even ROI report. Once you know what kind of reports are needed, the marketing dashboard will be much easier to organize.
2. Focus on KPIs Only
There are many metrics you can include on a marketing dashboard but the only one’s that you should include are those that relate to key performance indicators. When choosing KPIs, consider the following questions:
â€¢ What objectives does the marketing team want to meet?
â€¢ What metrics demonstrate progress towards these objectives?
â€¢ How is campaign success of failure measured?
â€¢ How will the reports be enhanced by this metric?
â€¢ Does the metric relate to a key business question?
3. Integrate all your Analytics Applications
To get the entire picture of your marketing campaigns integrate all of your analytics accounts into one dashboard. As mentioned earlier, there are many commercial applications that already do this or you can hire a developer to have one custom built for you. Having all your marketing analytics, Google, social media, Mozetc in one place will save you a lot of time. The only heavy lifting you will do is at set-up but once you set it, you will be able get a big picture view of your entire marketing campaign. No more having to log into several different applications to see the analytics.
4. Make Use of Visuals
One of the greatest strengths of marketing dashboards is that they are meant to be visually appealing. Graphs, charts, images and infographics are much easier to digest than rows of data on a spreadsheet. Everyone appreciates visuals so you can’t go wrong.
5. Make it Interactive & Accessible
Don’t build a static dashboard. Users should be able to select the data, filter it, sort it, arrange it and manipulate it as much as possible so that they can get further insights. The dashboard should come with this functionality built-in. For example, a user should be able to change the view from daily, to weekly, monthly or whatever other time period they want. Also, the marketing dashboard should be accessible using different types of hardware, that is, tablets, smartphones, computers and anything else that people are using on a large scale.
Data analytics is integral to the success of businesses today. In the absence of analytics, it would be a herculean task deciphering what today’s discerning customers want and need, and the decision one needs to make in order to better utilize scarce marketing resources to meet business objectives.
Version 4.5 of WordPress has been released. It is named “Coleman” in honor of jazz saxophonist Coleman Hawkins. As always it is available for download or update in your WordPress dashboard. New features in 4.5 help streamline your workflow, whether youâ€™re writing or building your site.
Stay focused on your writing with a less distracting interface that keeps you in place and allows you to easily link to your content.
Do you enjoy using formatting shortcuts for lists and headings? Now theyâ€™re even more useful, with horizontal lines and code.
Live Responsive Previews
Make sure your site looks great on all screens! Preview mobile, tablet, and desktop views directly in the customizer.
Themes can now support logos for your business or brand. Try it out with Twenty Sixteen and Twenty Fifteen in the Site Identity section of the customizer.
One of the best ways to make money off your website is to use automation. By automation I mean use a process or a system that will generate money even while you are sleeping.
Selling an e-book is one such example. You write it then upload it onto your website and put a system in place to manage transactions.
Then even while you are away, even when you are not actively working on your website, people will purchase and download the book and the money will be deposited automatically into your bank account.
As I said this is just one example. The most popular method of money making automation for websites is ads.
So let me introduce you to Adverts, which is a brand new classifieds plugin for WordPress.
This WordPress classified ads plugin is light weight and developer friendly. BuildingÂ anyÂ kind of classifieds or business directory siteÂ hasÂ neverÂ beenÂ easier.
This plugin is easily extendible with bundled modules. To do that just go to WpÂadmin/Classifieds/Options panel, select the modules you want to use and build a unique website for yourself.
Adverts allows you to create a number of different kinds of websites:
- Website,Â whereÂ youÂ allow your visitorsÂ toÂ postÂ ads for free. They can register for an account and then you can grant them access to post ads using Adverts.
- TheyÂ canÂ eitherÂ publishÂ adsÂ forÂ freeÂ or you can charge them by PayPal or bank transfer orÂ you can use a combinationÂ ofÂ both.
- WebsitesÂ whereÂ onlyÂ youâ€”the administrator can publish ads.
You can try and use Adverts for a free trial. Just go to their website and click on the â€œView Online Demoâ€ button. You will be taken to a new page where you should click on â€œOpen Admin Demo.â€
You will be shown the login page of WordPress dashboard. Enter the user name and password both as â€œuserâ€ and you will be logged in.
Then you can use Adverts, play around with the settings, or do whatever you want to do with it and see how the changes take place in the preview.
Thus you donâ€™t even need to install the plugin on your WordPress website to try it out.
Important Plugin Highlights
Some of the important features of this plugin are discussed below.
OneÂ clickÂ installation: I described above that you can use the demo version straight from their website. However if you want to install Adverts on your own WordPress website you can do that with just a one click install.
Great support:Â Although the plugin is quite intuitive and easy to use, if at any time you face a problem, you can always contact their support system. You will get a reply within 24 hrs.
CompatibleÂ withÂ anyÂ WordPressÂ theme:Â UnlikeÂ many other plugins, theÂ Adverts pluginÂ isÂ designedÂ toÂ workÂ and blend in smoothly with any kind of properlyÂ codedÂ WordPressÂ theme.
SEOÂ ready:Â Not only is this plugin compatible with all WordPress themes, it is also developed to workÂ properlyÂ withÂ allÂ majorÂ WordPressÂ SEOÂ plugins.
Go check out their website and use the free trial version of the plugin. I truly hope you wonâ€™t be disappointed.
Then drop in a comment below letting me know what you think of Adverts.
Version 4.0 of WordPress, named â€œBennyâ€ in honor of jazz clarinetist and bandleader Benny Goodman, is available for download or update in your WordPress dashboard. While 4.0 is just another number for us after 3.9 and before 4.1, we feel weâ€™ve put a little extra polish into it. This release brings you a smoother writing and management experience we think youâ€™ll enjoy.
Media LibraryExplore your uploads in a beautiful, endless grid. A new details preview makes viewing and editing any amount of media in sequence a snap.
Paste in a YouTube URL on a new line, and watch it magically become an embedded video. Now try it with a tweet. Oh yeah â€” embedding has become a visual experience. The editor shows a true preview of your embedded content, saving you time and giving you confidence.
You can embed videos from CollegeHumor, playlists from YouTube, and talks from TED. Check out all of the embeds that WordPress supports.
There are more than 30,000 free and open source plugins in the WordPress plugin directory. WordPress 4.0 makes it easier to find the right one for your needs, with new metrics, improved search, and a more visual browsing experience.
Version 3.9 of WordPress, named â€œSmithâ€ in honor of jazz organistÂ Jimmy Smith, is availableÂ for downloadÂ or update in your WordPress dashboard. This release features a number of refinements that we hope youâ€™ll love.
Improved visual editing
The updated visual editor has improved speed, accessibility, and mobile support. You can paste into the visual editor from your word processor without wasting time to clean up messy styling. (Yeah, weâ€™re talking about you, Microsoft Word.)
Edit images easily
With quicker access to crop and rotation tools, itâ€™s now much easier to edit your images while editing posts. You can also scale images directly in the editor to find just the right fit.
Four high quality fresh new WordPress themes are available for download at WordPress theme directory. These themes are really premium quality. Make sure to check them out and diversify your blog network with high quality templates. Full of features and options to customize them, these themes will surely offer a fresh modern face to your sites.
Radiate is a clean, creative and light retina ready responsive blogging theme supporting parallax header image. It integrates primary color option, custom background, custom css and few other features through WordPress customizer.
HTML5 & CSS3 Responsive WordPress Business theme with business style home page layout with welcome section, 3 product/services blocks and a client quote/testimonial section. 2 logo section layout options. 2 premade (Blue, Red) ready to use color schemes/skins. 3 widget areas in footer, 1 widget area in sidebar. 2 page layouts including a full width page template. Social media icons in footer.
In 2014, our default theme lets you create a responsive magazine website with a sleek, modern design. Feature your favorite homepage content in either a grid or a slider. Use the three widget areas to customize your website, and change your content’s layout with a full-width page template and a contributor page to show off your authors. Creating a magazine website with WordPress has never been easier.
Sixteen is an artistic and responsive theme suitable for most blogs. It supports header image with a parallax effect. A Reponsive Slider, Customizable Header and Footer, Grid Layout for Homepage, etc make it one of the most unqiue wordpress themes. Sixteen has been already translated into French, Spanish, Russian, Japanese, Arabic and supports translation into more languages.
WordPress 3.9 Beta 2 is now available forÂ testing at WordPress.org. The development team has made more than a hundred changes since Beta 1, but they still need your help to hit our goal of an April release. For what to look out for, please head on over toÂ the Beta 1 announcement post. Some of the changes in Beta 2 include:
- Rendering of embedded audio and video players directly in the visual editor.
- Visual and functional improvements to the editor, the media manager, and theme installer.
- Various bug fixes to TinyMCE, the software behind the visual editor.
- Lots of fixesÂ to widget management in the theme customizer.
Amongst the enhancements which WordPress 3.9 could bring, is an improved Widget Customizer which allows you to edit and preview widgets in a similar way that the current Theme Customizer works.
Further widget management improvements may come in the form of the Better Widgets feature, which enable the sidebar area to be switched to the main screen instead of being constricted to the sidebar, giving users greater control over widget placement and configuration.
As always,Â if you think youâ€™ve found a bug, you can post to theÂ Alpha/Beta areaÂ in the support forums. Or, if youâ€™re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report,Â file one on the WordPress Trac.
This software is still in development,Â so we donâ€™t recommend you run it on a production site. Consider setting up a test site just to play with the new version. To test WordPress 3.9, try theÂ WordPress Beta TesterÂ plugin (youâ€™ll want â€œbleeding edge nightliesâ€).