Redefining KPIs in a Cookie-less World

Over the years, many organizations and marketers have loved digital because ‘everything is measurable.’ While that is true (to an extent), it doesn’t mean that all things should be reported on. It creates a slough of charts, numbers, and trends. Soon, no one knows what they should be looking at and/or how to make insightful decisions.

As digital marketing moves away from the third party cookie, so many aspects of the practice are being evaluated for what’s changing, what is no longer available, and what remains the same or similar. 

An organization’s measurement KPIs should be no different. Now is a good time to reevaluate how the organization is determining success. Go through a bit of measurement audit to realign what’s possible and how each channel is aligned to the business. At Ciceron, we like to call it ‘The House of Fun,’ and it takes organizational alignment to be successful.

Here is how The House of Fun is built:

The Business Goal
This should be the north star for all efforts. Is the organization trying to make $50MM in revenue this year? Retain 90 percent of accounts/customers? One, or possibly both, of these should be key goals for the organization. However, just because the business goal is our north star doesn’t mean we only measure the success of individual activities like a Facebook ad based entirely on that goal.

Customer Journey
Certainly in many organizations, users don’t see one ad or visit a website one time and acquisition is complete. Understanding the customer journey it takes to achieve the business goal is important, as KPIs can be broken down into align with how your audience interacts with your brand. 

Not all channels feed all moments along the consumer journey. Let’s be OK with that. We don’t have to measure each channel according to ‘how many leads or sales did it produce?’ Sometimes, that is not where the customer is at or the ultimate goal of the channel. Additionally, in a cookie-less environment, it will likely be more difficult to tie that business goal back to something like an ad impression, so let’s not try to force it.

Outline what success looks like at each stage. In the higher funnel, it’s likely impressions or video views, while lower-funnel activities need to drive sales/leads. 

Marketing Goals
With alignment on journey and success for each stage, it’s much easier to determine marketing goals and create plans that achieve them. Within the plans, the marketing team should also outline the KPIs by stage and channel, and use these in reports rather than spinning wheels to report on everything that’s possible.

Getting Started
It may seem simple, but there must be organizational alignment on what each stage of the customer journey looks like and its corresponding KPIs. This alignment makes reporting streamlined, more concise, and better able to determine success. But it can also take time. 

As with many things related to the upcoming changes in the industry, the sooner an organization starts thinking about these pivots, the better. Think through possible changes, implement a few testing scenarios to ensure that these new KPIs are being measured as expected, and refine as needed. This is especially true if you have recently on-boarded Google Analytics 4

We understand that this can seem overwhelming, but we stand ready to help make this all a bit less complicated.