Julian Juenemann, Founder of Measure School
A New Approach to Digital Marketing Using Data Analytics
My guest today is Julian Juenemann and he is the founder of MeasureSchool a website dedicated to teaching marketers about tracking, data and analytics.
Julian is a wizard at Google Analytics which is one of my favorite topics at the moment, as labyrinthine as it is. The degree to which you can track your prospect behavior is quite staggering and the more you learn about it, the more empowering you will find it to be.
In today's episode you'll learn how to see if your data is being measured correctly, how to make sense of the data you collect, and, most importantly, how to make decisions based on what you learn.
In short, learning how to track data is the digital equivalent of reading someone's non-verbal communications during a meeting - something that if you're good at it, will give you the edge you need to succeed.
What You're Going to Learn
- Use Data to Drive Your Marketing and Improve It
- Measure Online Traffic to Gather Crucial Information
- The Power of Google Analytics is Free
- How to Find the Most Effective Marketing Channel for Your Website
- Use Analytics to Track Website Traffic and Conversion Rates
- Identify Visitors to Your Website and Build Engagement
- Target Website Visitors through Personalization
- New at Using Google Analytics and Where to Start
- Using Excel to Analyze Google Analytics Data
- Growing YouTube Subscriber Base to Market Yourself
- From 1 to 100,000 Subscribers on YouTube
- And much more!
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Use Data to Drive Your Marketing and Improve It
Adam: Teach me the data driven way. What is that what does that mean in digital marketing?
Julian: Yeah, well, first of all, thank you for having me, I think, marketing online and marketing in the digital age is quite different from what we had offline. So the biggest difference is not all the mediums that are out there, the different methods that you can use. I think the fundamental shift here is that we have actual data to work with in order to improve our marketing, to optimize our marketing. So if you think of a retail store, you might have people coming in and looking at products, but then leaving your retail store, buying something or doing some other kind of action. And that was the end of it, at least in the offline world. In the online world, we actually can measure all of this stuff. People coming to our website for clicking on certain things, looking at certain things and then leaving or buying something. And that's how we can really measure the success of our marketing campaigns. How many people were actually driven to the website? How many people then clicked on something? How many people put something into the cart, and then ultimately bought? And how successful was was this? And this new way of digital marketing is really where the difference lies, because we can use data to really drive our marketing and improve it. And that's the data driven way of digital marketing.
Measure Online Traffic to Gather Crucial Information
Adam: What is, at what scale would you need to be at with a website in terms of traffic to make it worthwhile analyzing it?
Julian: I would say that it matters from day one if you have any kind of online presence you need to be measuring, otherwise you are missing out on this crucial information and data points that you might want to look into at some point later. Now, it might not be as crucial as when you are actually spending money online to buy traffic or to put your name out there on a search engine or on a marketing campaign. But it is already something that would make sense for a very small website, because there are points that you can look at, even though you are not buying traffic, like what products that people click on, what did they they buy. And to be frank, any Web site that you set up already measures some kind of data, maybe you don't have to install these complicated tools, but your Web server, every time there is a connection, it already measures data for you and you could be looking in that. So these systems that you set up online that automatically already gather data for you. And this is useful in any case, even if you only have two or three people a month on your website.
Adam: Well, that changes very quickly after we start working with them.
The Power of Google Analytics is Free
Adam: Tell me, what is Google Analytics? I told you, 101 stuff alright!
Julian: All good.
Julian: Yeah, Google Analytics is a tool, obviously, by Google. They bought the company in 2006, 2007. Previously, they just wanted people to spend more money on the biggest asset of Google, which is AdWords or Google Ads, as it's called now, and they wanted people to recognize what the traffic that AdWords, the Google search engine was sending them what it actually does on the website because the website owners were ill informed about if they were actually making sales or not. So Google gave them that tool, which previously cost a lot of money. It's actually still a premium version out there that cost twenty thousand dollars a month. And you get that power, that raw power of this analytics tool for free from Google. So you just install a little bit of code onto your website. And henceforth it starts tracking these little things on your website, which then give you a picture about the user behavior on your website. And this can be used in many circumstances from improving your marketing, as we have talked about, but also improving your website of obviously how people are moving through your website and then giving you that data, again for free.
How to Find the Most Effective Marketing Channel for Your Website
Adam: We start, we're starting with a digital marketing campaign, right? So this is what we do. So what could we measure? What we do is we'll create content. So we'll have a website that really has no function, where most of my clients start, they have a website with no function. It's got maybe a couple of pages, an about page a contact page and an our, you know, track record. So some of our properties, I mean nothing out, no functionality, very limited. So we create a lot of content, a lot of articles, a lot of videos that go on the website. They go on the website and then we create posts on social media, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook and YouTube that all have links back to the website that drive traffic back to the website. So with that kind of structure in place, tell me what kinds of things Google Analytics will allow us to detect as we start to build this thing.
Julian: So from a high level perspective, if you have a website, you definitely are using Google analytics, first of all, from a marketing optimization standpoint. So marketing analytics is the art of tracking where users came from, from these sources. So if you have all these links pointing to your website, people coming to your website, you want to know in the end where did they come from? Because then you can see which platform drives the biggest traffic. But then quickly, the question also becomes, what are they doing on my website? And so what? What are they actually doing? What if I get traffic from LinkedIn? Does this do me any well.
Use Analytics to Track Website Traffic and Conversion Rates
Adam: What we have discovered from Google Analytics is that we get significant - once we build these systems just because of the business that we're in, we actually get significantly more traffic from LinkedIn than we do from Facebook. And yet, when it comes to advertising, we can't use LinkedIn. It's too expensive and ineffective, and yet we can use Facebook. And that's all because of analytics. So tell me something about how we can. That's a very practical example. Explain that in a little bit more detail how that works.
Julian: That's where you get into behavioral analytics and this is where you want to track your conversion. So the goal that you want your user to reach on your website, the action that you want them to take, the action that you want to drive on the website, there might be a submit of a form that you have on your website. And then when you connect both data points, how many people converted and where they actually came from, then, you know, and you can find out which is the most effective marketing channel for your website.
Adam: So how many people filled out that form or watched that video, whatever your goal of your business, but also of your website is and what you have set up for users as actions and what do you want to actually spend money on as well? And what you can do then is measure how many people have taken that action? Maybe one hundred people. Right. So you have this conversion rate, depending on where the user came from, from maybe 10 percent of users clicking through on their Facebook ad or on Facebook, a social post and then filling out that form. Now on LinkedIn, this might be completely different or it might be something that's exactly the same. It could be exactly the same 10 percent. But what makes the difference then is when you go into the calculation is to look at how much money did you actually spend on the advertising on Facebook versus the advertising on LinkedIn. Might also be how much time, how much effort did you actually put into it doesn't have to be money related. And then you might notice that Facebook is the far more effective method of driving traffic to your website and converting people rather than using LinkedIn as a platform.
Julian: And this is comes down to where do you find your customers? Obviously, we can all try out new platforms like TikTok, but maybe it just doesn't work for us. And I would say that there are more younger people on TikTok than on LinkedIn or on professional networks, obviously. Who do we want to target where? And let's try out how effective that is. And oftentimes you find that people need to spend money in order to try out these marketing forms, try them out for a specific amount of time in order to see any kind of conversions coming in. And then you can calculate the actual customer acquisition cost or the lead acquisition costs, which are then something you can put into a budget and see, OK, if I want to scale my business, I might need to spend more money on Facebook versus on LinkedIn. So a very practical example of how you can use analytics in this context.
Identify Visitors to Your Website and Build Engagement
Adam: If you've got one audience, let's say that have signed up and they're all from LinkedIn and another audience that signed up, they came from Facebook, is there some way that you can adjust your communication with them or make decisions based on actually those known audiences?
Julian: Yeah, there are ways to then take your data and actually activate it. So you have maybe some kind of insight that you taken from that data. Facebook works quite well. Let's invest. Let's look into Facebook more. And there are two ways to go in this. You could go onto the marketing platform itself. So Facebook ads in this instance and look at where did people actually click on. This might be that one at one of our converts much better than what we intended it to be or versus something else. So you can run these little tests, just like you said at the beginning with the letter. And that can help us to make our marketing even more effective and more cost effective as well. So we buy more traffic for cheaper money. And this is what ad buyers who all day long they optimize optimize these traffic channels. On the other side, we could also look into what could we do on the platform itself in order to elevate us to the next level. So we could change our offer that work on the advertising side very well on the website and say maybe this young woman on the advertising is something they click on. Maybe you should show that young woman again on the website so they feel like, OK, this offer is something that was given to me on Facebook and now I'm on the website itself. So this is like conversion optimization on the website itself to optimize the funnel itself.
Target Website Visitors through Personalization
Adam: You can actually change what people see on your website according to how they are categorized by the data. Just talk to me a little bit about what that means exactly.
Julian: People who didn't convert so they didn't leave their name or their information with us, we can actually set something a little a little file a cookie onto their browser and can reach them again through Facebook, for example, and say, please, everybody who didn't convert, please show them again an advertising or show them a different offer, like, for example, coupon code. That's from a that's known as retargeting. And you target, again, the people who were on your website already, who you engaged with already. And they are more likely to actually convert because they already saw something from you. So this way you can take your data and actually activated and make it into something that works for your business.
Adam: Isn't that amazing? That's one of the coolest tools. I think the power of that is that you are reinforcing your visibility in front of them repeatedly. It builds reputation, it builds trust, it builds confidence in who you are. And at some point, if they see you in a in an organic post, they may click on I mean, there's people that say that you require six to ten touch points before somebody will actually become active. You've used the term activate, but activate themselves so they might click through on a link to see your website.
Julian: Right. We are again, not talking about personal information that we would get from the user. We don't necessarily know who the user is, but we have data points about him. Where's he from, for example. That is something that Google Analytics shows us directly. Where is he, which traffic source did he come in from? So that can let us know what marketing message he might have seen. We also know the day of time, for example, and what device he is on. So if he's on an iPhone or an Android phone, that might already tell you a lot about what person you have in front of you. And based on that, you can change around your messaging. This gets very much into the weeds of personalization. So you personalize the website, but also the communication later on in the email funnel for that user. And obviously, if you have the right message at the right time for the right person, you are more likely to convert that person into a buyer, into an investor, into somebody, or the action that you want the user to take. Definitely in the real estate space, a lot of people have used this. Are you looking for houses in Houston? Are you looking for houses in New York? That's obviously if the user comes from New York, you don't want to have a big headline saying, and this is not relevant to me because this is not I'm not in Houston. Why would I look at this? So, again, depending on the space you're in, this can be used in very creative ways.
New at Using Google Analytics and Where to Start
Adam: So, somebody who is getting started in Google Analytics, in this kind of analytics. What have you found, again, as I said when we got started, I know that you're super advanced on this stuff and so I'm sure that most of the people you talk to are equally as advanced and want to learn from you.
Julian: The biggest part of using analytics is actually going in and asking questions. So questions are the most powerful thing because then you will start clicking around and trying to find answers. And this is what these tools are all about. They give you the numbers, but they can't quite predict what you actually want to see and what is helpful to you. So you need to ask the questions and start digging into these questions and these tools and then you might find an answer. And hopefully, and this is the most important part is, you won't just leave it and say this is something I looked at and I know where my users are coming from, but actually taking some kind of action. Some kind of recommendation that you might tell somebody about or you might want to go to a colleague and tell him about your discovery. That is the analytics process in a nutshell. You measure something, you get it into your system, and then you analyze it by just simply asking questions. It doesn't have to be a very detailed analysis and then you are going into action recommending something, changing something on your website. We talked a little bit about the activations that you can make happen with these different systems, and that is, yeah, the analytics process, in a nutshell. This is what you go through again and again and you get better.
Using Excel to Analyze Google Analytics Data
Adam: When you download data from Google Analytics, you can download that into Excel, right, into Google sheets? So how does that change the way that you analyze the data?
Julian: A lot of times when you use Google Analytics, Google Analytics has a very clear structure of presenting that data to you. But if you really dive into it and you have questions that you can't answer by the tool, you oftentimes find out that the data is actually there, but you can't quite put it together in a way that makes it work for you. So in that case, you might want to work with something like Excel Excel is obviously, the most used tools still in business intelligence and any kind of calculation spread-sheeting. And so Google Analytics has a functionality to download that data as a CSV file, you could also use specialized tools if you want to update your reporting from time to time, what you can do, obviously, then, is not only work with Google Analytics data, but also you will have the ability to connect data, for example, to your CRM system, and then you can connect that data and actually see where that this user come from.
Adam: It's that amazing. That is mind blowing. Yeah, well, that's what..
Julian: Yeah, you can you in Excel, you can combine data, but obviously you can also change it around wrangle it around, make any kind of calculations that make sense to you and it's much more flexible.
Growing YouTube Subscriber Base to Market Yourself
Adam: Julian Juenemann, who is talking about something ultra ultra technical, has one hundred twenty thousand subscribers on YouTube. One hundred and twenty thousand people want to hear about Google Analytics.
Julian: That's that's the main thing that I started out with six years ago. And this is where I built my main, my main audience. And we are doing blogs as well and some information on our website. But our main thing is still YouTube.
Adam: Tell me about that. How is that such a powerful tool for you to market yourself and your website? Tell me about that.
Julian: So first of all, we need to say that YouTube might be seen as this thing where you can see funny Internet videos, but it's actually the second largest search engine in the world behind Google, which obviously YouTube is owned by Google as well. So there is a factor where you could say, if I am on YouTube, I'm on the second biggest place, market place to for people to discover me. Now, the form of making video is quite interesting because obviously you have a kind of a direct connection to your user, to the viewer, actually, because they can see your face, they can hear your voice, and it has all this auditory and visual effects on the brain. And also that builds a connection very, very fast. So even and I'm I must say, I'm not in the space where I do funny videos or whatever. I mainly teach professional marketers how to use the data, how to use analytics, certain tools around this. So it is kind of a B2B market for me as well. It's not a B2C where I sell certain items to the consumer. It is a B2B market and most of my customers are actual actual businesses. So even at a small stage when I still had under ten thousand subscribers, people were already writing me saying, "Hey, Julian, you're doing a great job in these videos that you're doing, please keep them going because they helped me out so much". I educated these people and the the audience grew and grew over time this year, we finally reached 100,000 subscriber mark. It was a long time coming.
From 1 to 100,000 Subscribers on YouTube
Adam: So how did you do that? I mean, what was the experience for you when you first started, when you had one subscriber? What was that process like?
Julian: For me, it was more like that I wanted to start publishing content. I had all this knowledge and I wanted to educate people. And I love teaching. Now, there are different mediums out there that you can obviously use. You can start writing blogs. There are new mediums like writing on LinkedIn and even newer mediums like Instagram and TikTok and so on. But for me, at that time, video was always something that fascinated me. Also, the techniques around this and how I built this little studio out, it's in the end something that I enjoyed. And that's what you need for YouTube, really. Because in the end, how did I scale how did I build up this audience? It was mainly through sheer persistence and continuity. Once a week clockwork, we bring out a new video that helps marketers to learn the data driven way of digital marketing. And obviously, I also get better on camera. It's all a work in progress, so I wouldn't recommend for anybody to go back into my old video catalog!
Julian: There are different factors around this. How searchable is this whole thing? Can you get discovered on the YouTube search engine and how big is the competition on the different keywords that you are targeting? And then for me, I mean, the YouTube algorithm is also a big kind of. Yeah, a big factor there as well, because YouTube actually recommends videos to their viewers so, YouTubers or people who watch YouTube are logged in. They and I subscribe to a channel. They get that as a recommendation when a new video comes out. And so I was able to build up this audience. And now when I bring out a video, then a lot of people watch it. And the thing there is that you need to- the biggest factor in the algorithm is actually watch time. So how many people have watched how long your video. So you need to make it very much engaging and make a, maybe something different than the other stuff out there.
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