Podcast: Creating a data-driven marketing plan

Blog title: Podcast: Creating a data-driven marketing plan with Joonas Jukkara

By Alexander Evjenth

Podcast: Creating a data-driven marketing plan with Joonas Jukkara

Today's episode is all about data-driven marketing. I'm thrilled to have Joonas Jukkara, from SEOSEON, as our guest. Joonas is an expert in creating data-driven marketing plans and will be sharing his insights on how to identify and track KPIs for success. As we know, data is an essential component of any successful marketing campaign. In this episode, we'll dive into the world of data and learn how to leverage it to achieve your marketing goals.

Joonas Jukkara from SEOSEON works as a digital strategist, helping companies improve their processes and solve various problems. He leads some of the agency's larger digital marketing accounts and believes that organizing processes is essential to obtain relevant information and make better decisions. Joonas works on a wide range of digital processes, including CRM and ERP solutions.  


During the podcast, we discussed:
  • The importance of having a data-driven marketing plan.
  • We also talked about whether customers typically have the necessary data in place before beginning a project, or if time is spent determining what data to collect.
  • How to ensure the accuracy and reliability of tracked data.
  • While the dream scenario is to track 100% of activities, I asked Joonas what the average percentage that companies actually track and succeed is?
  • We also covered how to identify KPIs for a marketing plan and communicate success to stakeholders. Communicating based on data and KPIs is often a common mistake. As a monday.com partner, Joonas explained how they track everything in the software.
  • Finally, Joonas offered advice for companies looking to start a more data-driven approach.

I had a fantastic time chatting with Joonas on the Onlinification Pod, and I believe we gained some valuable insights. If you want to listen to this episode, it's available on various podcast platforms, and you can find the links below. Additionally, if you prefer to skim through our conversation, a complete transcription is available further down. 

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Alexander Evjenth: Hello, Joonas. How are you?

Joonas Jukkara: Yeah, I'm good. I'm good. A little bit recovering from the flu, but other than that. And guess that's probably the normal seasonal issue.

AE: Yeah, exactly. And are you in Finland now?

JJ: Yeah. Yeah, I am. I'm in Finland. I'm, I'm basically based, uh, pretty much mainly in Finland. I guess this question is, relates to the fact that a lot of our team, I think we're like 50/50 splits. So I guess we're talking a little bit, a little bit more about what we are. Actually, the only office is in Spain in the Canary Islands, but then we have roughly half of the team is in Finland working remotely. We used to have an office in Finland, pre-COVID, but then basically just because of the lack of usage and, you know, nobody then went there like regularly, we just like, okay, anyways, we're doing so much like remote work is half of the team is any way in Spain. So then we just basically got rid of that.

AE: Yeah. Because you're you're from SEOSEON.

JJ: Yeah, SEOSEEON, or yeah how do you want to want to pronounce it. But that's correct. Yeah.

AE: So tell us a bit about who you are and what do you do.

JJ: Yeah. So I'm Joonas Jukkara from SEOSEON, and I think I'm currently running under the title of the digital strategist. But basically what that means like what my current role is is I generally help companies to solve various kinds of problems by improving and utilizing their processes. And then I do also work as a kind of a lead role on a couple of larger digital marketing accounts, accounts that we have. So I'm probably it's been a little bit like during my kind of career, it's been shifting now maybe a bit more onto like process side, which, which is of course connected to marketing. I think we will discuss a bit a lot more during this podcast about that. But my view is like a lot of things in companies in general, but a lot of things in in marketing where we can do a lot better in most of the organizations is like, how do we actually organize the process and how do we through that obtain like relevant information and how do we track it and keep it in a reasonable place where we can use it then to make better decisions in the, in the future. But yeah, so I'm basically doing, doing that for a lot of companies and then also some other digital processes. It might evolve like problems that we solve with CRM solutions or problems that we solve actually with some kind of an ERP solution. So it's kind of a wide range of things altogether. But my kind of like how I've ended up here is through marketing, and I think marketing departments, in general, are very interesting spots inside a company because they have a lot of they usually have a lot of in their plates. So and they also have they should be at least communicating with a lot of different stakeholders internally. And then of course, also externally the customer. And the whole idea of any process in the company should be to actually provide value to the customer so you can get your own little piece of that cake.

AE: Yeah. And for how long have you been doing that now?

JJ: So I've been like. Uh, like. Like if we take it a little bit, a little bit back. I've been now working in marketing, like originally in marketing-related roles since like 2013. Uh, effectively, actually, I've, I have a little bit maybe an interesting background for marketing, for a marketing person or marketing / now digital consulting person, I've like the academic background is in economics. So I was very determined to be like a finance guy, like a banker or like a proprietary trader. Uh, when I was, when I was going through school, but then I ended up in marketing kind of an accident. I was like trying to do an internship in China in a company that was handling like accounting and finance and legal stuff on it. But then when I ended up there, they were like, okay, so you're a Westerner, so you know, Google. So get us customers from Google. So they did like they pushed me into the marketing again, then you know, I was starting like studying SEO and, and email marketing practices and was like putting them in use during that internship. And then basically after that I wanted to continue, uh, in, in China actually it was like my goal. But then it also sped up the process since I met my current wife at the time. And then we were like, okay, well if we want to continue after my internship period, I should find a job in China. Then again, I was trying to push myself into like finance or like accounting and send a CV to a company. And they were like, Yeah, we're not or like business consulting. And they're like, Yeah, we're not going to take you on business consulting, but we will hire you for marketing, you know, to do the same stuff that you were doing at the previous company. That's how I ended up doing marketing marketing. Then I was there like in that company for like three and a half years. We did some interesting stuff there. They were very solid. This company called Dezan Shira & Associates, and they like, they were very solid already, like they have tons, like inbound marketing, like they have editorial teams. They do China briefing, India, briefing Singapore briefing. Like it a ridiculous traffic that I was able to like play around with that that, you know, was already put in place before I came. But then I was like managing the SEO side of thing and then actually like digitalization and revamping the infrastructure of their websites and stuff like that. And basically after that it was a bit hectic.

Marketing often is. And the reason why marketing is often it's like a little bit the marketing departments might end up in a kind of a losing position in a company if they are not able to like, defend their role. And we'll talk more in-depth about that later on as well. How to avoid that. But that was basically the situation that there's a lot of fires, urgent things. People are like hammering you with like sales. They want some presentations and somebody wants to like talk about some email campaigns in the US and somebody else. And then you actually have your some plan that you are like, you know, gone through and like thinking that this is what actually brings us the revenue. And then you are in constant kind of like firefight there. And uh, it got hectic. And then at some point I'm like, okay, you know, I'd like to, you know, kind of like step back, you know, like cut like 30 hours from my week, you know, like, like get into the European terms of it. And then, yeah. Decided that, okay, we're just going to move back to Finland. And then I was like looking a bit for opportunities and like interviewing a bit. But then SEOSEON it was actually a couple of friends like that I know from already from school.

They started it in like 2013, and I was actually there helping them because it was originally the team was located in like Asia, in Thailand, and it was incorporated in Hong Kong. So I was like there to help them originally with the Hong Kong company registration and whatnot. And they were asking, would you like to join? And then I was like, okay, well, guess that that might make sense. And then I've been working from since like 2017 until now, I've been, I've been working in SEOSEON. It was Account management, digital marketing a lot. And then we ended up partnering mandate with Monday.com co-partner in Finland. And basically through that we started to get more and more traction on other process digitalization as well. And then it's been like shifting a bit. So I think I'm doing- maybe 50/50, 60/40 on, like if it's specifically marketing-related things at the moment, or is it more general business problems that that are solved by going through processes and setting them up, you know, digitalizing them and giving transparency and tracking and data for other processes as well.

AE: What kind of customers do you work with? What industries?

JJ: Yeah, like the industry is a bad segmentation on like if I'm trying to niche down on what they are generally. Uh, especially with like, if we're talking about the processes and visualizing them and something where we utilize Monday.com, then it's like generally like larger companies. Why? Because, you know, if you have a process problem, if you have a problem in communication, it tends to multiply as the company increases. So these are, you know, it's easier to run poorly defined process without any proper tracking. If you're like a five-man team, you know, you meet up, you talk, you know, the information is transformed, the plants are transformed. The results, you know, are like communicated like informally easier. But then when you scale it up, then it, you know, often comes a big headache on like, what are we tracking? Like, where is the data? Like, who is doing this? And people doing duplicate work and all that kind of things that are inefficient. But we have and we work like industries we have. And then on the marketing side, we have, uh, we have e-commerce, we have like source technology, we have, uh, professional services firms. So it's not really, it can't really industry segment. It's just that generally that they have what, what it kind of like needs is that the companies that like to work with is that they really need to have like a feel that they need to improve things like I don't wish to be just somebody like we don't wish to be as a company just somebody that's like purely told to do something like you're checking box that okay let's you know, like, hey, we hire you to do Google ads.

Okay that's perfect. Like, why? And then well, because we need to do Google ads. And if that's the only reason and if after discussions we can't, like, figure out you can't, like, figure out why you're doing this or, you know, you can see that this you don't have any kind of a passion to actually, like think what you're doing. You're just bureaucratically checking down some some checklist. And those are no, but then any other industry that is willing to like, uh, think critically on what they are doing or think, you know, like want to improve how they do and, and want to improve it in a sense that they want to make decisions based on, uh, actual facts and that they also acknowledge that some things they don't know. And then to take things that you don't know is that you take it into consideration. And then basically you would you the work that you do to discover the things that need to be done. So it needs a little bit of a mindset. You don't have to have it originally when you're talking with us. But when we are going through it, it would be nice to basically guide you to that direction. And then if you're okay with that kind of mindset, then we can work on whether it's something related to digital marketing strategy and execution of that or general process improvements, digitalization of processes or business outcomes.

AE: Yeah. Cool. And so today we chose when we talked about what topic to talk about, we we made a decision to dive more into creating a data-driven marketing plan. Uh, I've been in contact with you before, and I know that you have a lot of different expertise. As you said, started out with an internship doing SEO email in China a couple of years ago. Now you more working with identifying KPIs for success. And can you explain more about the importance of having a data-driven marketing plan?

JJ: So yeah, if we first just think of what does it mean that you have like a data-driven marketing plan. That basically data-driven, at least to me, means that we are based the things that we are doing, the planning that we're doing, the things that we want to do is that we are actually based on some uh, data, some facts, something that we know that has happened so that we're not just like saying that, okay, we're going to be doing five email campaigns now and we're going to, you know, put, uh, we are going to put 15k on Google ads and then we're going to do this X, Y, and Z by, you know, we're just not randomly throwing things in it. It's like that we have actually some backing, like, why are we doing this? Uh, why we are choosing specifically to do these things? Why are these things in our marketing plan? And then usually, more importantly, what things are not there, what things we are consciously leaving out from that so that we would be ending up in running a marketing and marketing department so that it wouldn't be just that running, you know, around, uh, putting out those fires or some urgent needs. And the reason why we like why is that important, that if we have this plan in place. Then this is something where we can go back when somebody is like trying to request us. Things that are not, you know, according to the plan like that, we have something to defend, that we defend our time. We defend our team members, time that, hey, we have that's perfect.

You know, you need your pitch deck and, you know, we'll love to help with that. But what do you think is like the benefit? If we put like four hours on this one, what is the what is the case that we're getting out of it? Is this something that you could use, you know, next time? Is it something scalable? If not, then it's like, well, I mean, we're stuck here. We we know that when we are doing these things, I'm going to need to put my team time on doing this. You know, podcasts here, we know that through these podcasts we get X amount of, you know, visitors. We know that that we're getting those visitors, those people hearing us. We know that there's an effect that our brand recognition in our target group is going to be increasing like 4%. And that would basically mean then X amount of euros, kroners, pounds, whatever, that we're getting out of this. And if you're pushing this job to us, then we can't do this. So is this worth more than this, you know, so that we actually are like talking about that we are actually able to prioritize things and that we are able to defend our priorities inside an organization. Explain them. You know, like like not, of course, not in a hostile way, but like, it makes sense, like, oh, okay, you are doing all of this. Well, you know, maybe we can, you know, just do one hour of this. You know, the most important things, you know, to review the graphs on this and have our marketing team to do something else instead.

AE: So your customers do they most often have that data in place before before you do anything? Or do you spend time deciding what data to collect?

JJ: And then that's a good question. And generally there is is a lot of data, you know, like me and a certain type of data. But then there's a certain type of data that we're generally missing in marketing organizations like when we are working in a digital space of marketing, a lot of companies are. And you know, that's like a, uh, kind of like a, it seems like an easy source of data. You know, we have Google Analytics; if it's well set up, there are different kinds of events. We might have a CRM system or, you know, if we're e-commerce, we get the sales there directly. Okay, great. We can attribute them to different channels. Uh, all perfect. We can take from that. You know, if it's like an established brand, an established business, and we can start looking at what has been working and what hasn't and what are the new tests that we're going to be doing. But usually, uh, so in those cases, we have some kind of data there. But then often what is actually lacking is more in-depth information on what we have been doing right. Because that only gives us a partial view, you know, unless you're just only working on digital space, like you're not doing anything else, uh, you're not doing any other kind of activities, sales activities, marketing activities, advertising outside of it. You know, if you're looking at only this Google Analytics data, then you're actually missing probably a big piece of it, and that might be problematic.

Then you might be like, overfocused on the actual data that you have in hand. And if you're just purely then structuring everything according to that, you're going to throw all of that other stuff out of your marketing plan. It's like, okay, well, you know, we're doing great on Google ads. Massive amount of leads, great amount of, you know, uh, ROI. So let's go all in on that might be worthwhile on certain cases, but, but you have to acknowledge that you have in this case, left something out from the data set. And then the question is: Are we able to somehow bring it in? Are we able to somehow evaluate that? Uh, if not, then still, when we're making decisions, we have to understand that we did all of this other stuff as well. So and then also just within even like for the digital channels and stuff that you're doing on marketing, uh. When you go, they're like, okay, we have everything on Google Analytics. Generally what you actually have is then you have like sources and campaign names. You can figure out the budgets of those. If all is good, you might be able to check budgets on different other ad platforms as well, find them somewhere consolidated or not. But anyways, you might find it. But what often lacks is like what was the effort that people put into this and like structure and like, what was the actual this campaign? What did we do here? Did we test something here? What was the result of the test? And it's actually quite hard to then figure out, like because the perfect mind is like, okay, we're doing a data-driven marketing plan, so let's see what worked, what did we do? But actually the actual list of things that people did is often lacking. Like it's hard to understand actually what were all of the things that we did? We can only see what did we like spend or where did people come from. But what it actually took. We can find a good article we get. We can maybe know that podcast was listened X amount of time, but then we're missing actually the piece of information that is crucial is like what kind of resources we put in there, internal or external. Did we pay agency on this? How much this information might not be, you know, oftentimes not tied into the actual effort and also like who worked on it on our end? How much did they actually spend on time on this? And that might actually shift a lot the actual plan like what it is if we're just looking at certain online results compared to then if we would have a holistic view on it.

AE: So how do you ensure that the data you're tracking is accurate and reliable?

JJ: Okay. So yeah, of course, if we're just talking about the Google Analytics side of or of other analytics, the thing is just to go through and test it, you know, like test the different parts and test the different conversions and see that they work. Uh, probably would be also good to test it every time when somebody makes a major changes, you know, for example, development makes changes on the website, that's like the most common thing that, that breaks down is like that you have like a separate development team. They have their own, you know, plan that they go through and the stuff that they fix. And then there's like a disconnection between that and for example, marketing team and somebody, you know, marketing has built some kind of tracking based on, uh, maybe something that's visible in the UI, like tracking some elements or it's based on just URLs and the dev goes and changes something, the URLs completely. And then you just notice it, you know, a few days later and you're missing a big chunk of data, right? So not syncing and not testing the analytics when changes happen is that I would say probably the most common reason why this kind of like issue happens. But then, of course, we have all of the other parts of like the data are like what have been done and how to make sure that that's accurate and reliable. Like that's what I think that most organizations are missing like we you probably are not often tracking these properly at all.

So the first step would be to start tracking. Then the data-driven marketing plan would actually have parts, which is like, okay, we don't know these. So this year, 2023, we are putting this amount of effort, you know, like Doug is here now then responsible actually, uh, figuring out how are we going to be tracking the time that we put on different campaigns or different pieces of the article. You know, that's, that's one part of the marketing plan. So the next year, you know, in the middle of the year, we might start to get data on like, what have we been actually working on? Andthen next year we have something to based on that and the year after that we are having a lot better picture and we can start actually doing improvements. Uh. So think those are those are like the key things. So we always have this thing that we're generally everybody is tracking at least to some level nowadays. And then there's this big black box that is just, you know, dark and marketing is doing that, you know, like that how it goes in the organization. Like we have this guy who does that and there's tons of his plate and nobody, even yourself, you're not sure what what have you been like actually doing altogether?

AE: So a dream scenario is that you track 100% of the activities like time spent. And if that's the dream scenario, what would you say is the average percentage that companies actually track and succeed?

JJ: Ten and I might be having a too positive view. Generally, companies track the time when they are doing production,.Right People go into the production line. You track the time on like how long it takes, you know, stuff to go through. Production companies track time. If they bill accordingly, you know, then they track client project time, you know. But then basically when you are in a situation where you're doing this work, you're allocated like 37.5 hours, 40 hours a week, you know that you're getting paid for. Companies generally don't track it, the pod. It's like, okay, well, this is a cost of dark and then we're just going to throw stuff at him and, you know, we'll see how he does it, you know, But then we don't know what what we have been doing. So that's, that's a very that's like a like really like a black box. And I think that causes a lot of problems and companies and maybe in the society as a whole like it causes like that people are getting, uh, you know, like overworked. It causes problems that we might be, you know, doing, uh, not enough hiring. Sometimes we might be doing unnecessary hiring, you know, because we're just having a stuff there that shouldn't be there, that's not aligned with what we have been planning that doesn't actually generate anything on our objectives or on our KPIs. And we still keep doing it because we didn't know and we didn't pay attention on that. That part of the cost data basically, that's what it is. 

AE: Yeah. Understand. So how do you go about identifying the KPIs for a marketing plan? 

JJ: So, yeah, so. So basically now, now we've been generating a some kind of a marketing plan based that has a reason to be there. So of course, just a step back. So what the marketing plan should be doing is that we have planned activities that will achieve the goal that we have. And the goal should be then, you know, attached to what the company wants to do. The company wants to draw 25% more on revenue. Okay. What marketing needs to be doing that? Well, we estimate that maybe we need to increase our, you know, brand recognition on the target audience by X percent. We need to generate, you know, 500 new leads in a quarter, something like that. And then we've created the marketing plan based on like, okay, these activities we are estimating to to do that 500% increase in leads. So then the KPIs, so what we need to be measuring? Basically, we need to be measuring the stuff that is connected to that goal. We were talking about leads now, so we should be then picking up probably the amount of amount of leads. So that would be of course reasonable. And then we should probably also track a couple of steps, how those leads end up in there. So if we're thinking that it comes through our webinar series that we're doing so we should probably then measure that step also how much people were getting into the webinars and then how many of those end up to be leads.

And then basically we can be adjusting during the year based on that. If we notice that, okay, we're getting a lot of people in webinars, but none of them will turn into leads. What can we do? You know, start figuring out should we have a better punch there in the webinar like some offering that puts them there? Or is our webinar topics you know, something that is too unrelated to our service and so forth, So we could then act on that? Then, of course, other KPIs, you know, this is very case dependent, but just what we need to pick what actually makes sense for our plan. So if we had this problem that, you know, we noticed that we are only measuring like half of our cost data, we only measuring our ad spend, but we are not paying attention on what our, you know, human resources are doing. We don't know if we're allocating them properly. And then that has been given a little project there to do that during the year to figure out what is our company's way of measuring it. Then of course there's like a KPIs of, uh, have we been able to, you know, make progress there? Have we been able to split it maybe into two steps. We're asking our employees, like, what do they think about this? What would be their easy way for them to track themselves first? You know, that might be your, you know, then an activity.

So we're just going through like has Doug been able to do, for example, these activities during the year? So that's that's one KPI. So, so it's based on what we are actually needing and that's basically based on that. We started to make that marketing plan. But then we have maybe noticed that and the marketing plan is based on what the, you know, the whole company is expecting to achieve. And then we might notice that, okay, we are unable to answer this, for example, that we we don't know. We notice that there's a big like unknown, like we might throw some activities, but we know that we are unsure of it. So then we would need to build, you know, like the the way of testing and figuring out and that's that would be part of our plan. And then of course, we would need to track that. Are we doing these tests and what are the test results? But if we have it all unclear, then it would be whatever it is that driving the revenue. It could be in the end that we, you know, e-commerce, we are seeing that, uh, we're just tracking, you know, what's our revenue growth there, you know, that's the big KPI. And then when there's issues, then we are digging deeper on like, where are we missing it? Uh, is it like a channel problem? Is it, is it a problem of pricing problem and so forth.

AE: So how do you like communicate the process and the success of a marketing plan based on the data and KPIs to stakeholders?

JJ: Yeah. So, so the the main part here is that these KPIs are there like that. There's an objective that we're going to be that is clear. You know, that is, that is clear to us. And then that it is clear to the stakeholders. So having some initial discussion on the objective and on the KPIs with the stakeholders in the beginning of the year is like crucial that we know that is what is expected from us. Like take a real life example. We had a client where we have been, you know, like, like we think that we're doing great, you know, like we have, uh, from our understanding, we're meeting, you know, the sales targets are lead price. Looks like it's like a printing. Money, you know, But then we go in and then there's a meeting, and then they are like, we're not we're not happy about, you know, like you can see that they are not happy on what's going on marketing. And we need something new, you know, in this marketing. And then it's like then there has been like when you are in that situation, then there clearly has been a miscommunication. On. What are we like targeting here? Like first it then goes through the fact that, okay, is this data correct? Like, I mean, we're seeing those this amount of sales, like do you see these sales and. Okay. Yeah we we see these sales.

Okay. Do you have this same amount of leads? Do you do you agree that this is the least. Yeah. And this is what we spend. Yeah. So this is all good. So. So what's the problem? And then the problem can be like, you know, we just don't feel, you know, you don't put enough effort or, you know, we don't like these, you know, we need to change these seasonal, you know, images faster, something like that. Yeah. That is like a miscommunication Then. Then we haven't been able to talk, you know, the main like an agency, like the main the client or, you know, the boss the something we haven't we've missed that that what we are actually doing is we are only focusing on this, you know, this bottom line, this hard stuff here. And you're expecting us to do something else, you know, So that's a miscommunication, like mean client or a boss. They can do that, you know, like they can say that if it's important for them to change these seasonally, these all of these, you know, images or, you know, like these these Facebook copy, like going very deep on that, even though it doesn't seem to make sense data wise, like they can do that. But then the thing is that then we should be knowing that, okay, what we are actually tracking here, what do you actually want is that, you know, we have a certain schedule dates when we are changing this imagery or something, something like, like that.

Uh, but then of course that we have this plan in place, then what, what, what I generally end up then doing is also like, of course depending on the situation, like if we're doing managerial, like why is this, you know, like is this in the end important? Like, can we take another look on if doing all of that additional stuff is important. But, but but here you can see it's like it seems like the things that you are been thinking of communicating to them, boss, stakeholder, client employees. It might not be unless you have like clearly gone through it and communicated it might actually be the thing that they are looking at. This is like a realization for me. Like just like in a recent years, I'm starting to actually understand the fact that people. Can think very differently. Like think it's like, does it come from the Bible or something like that that treat the other person like you would want to treat yourself, which kind of then maybe turns into a thinking of like, okay, I can use my own perception to know what the other person wants by thinking what I want or what I would think important. But I think that that's actually I think that's actually a horrible advice on that book because because it like leads into thinking that other people are thinking the same as you.

And I think it's just finally, like the last couple of years, I've like realized that, okay, like I can't I can't expect people to think the same way. There is like a certain segment of people who are like me, who think like me. But then there's a lot of people who think very differently. And if I want to communicate with them, if I want to market to them, if I want to sell them with them, like, you know, in a business wise or, you know, relationship wise or anything, you need to understand that they might think completely different. They might focus on completely different things. And the step to overcome that is that there is a, you know, like a common dialogue and that we actually clearly communicated what it is. And into this context, it means like these KPIs we've set up, let's make sure to communicate that these are that we are tracking because they help. What do you want? Yes, you want your company to grow, you want your revenue. We're tracking these and we tracking these two to make sure that that happens. If this happens, are we getting into your goal? Yes. Okay. Now, we are in clear of that. And what I think what I'm looking at, my plan there was not this thing that you want to do on the plan.

 We can try it, you know, let's try it. Let's see how it affects these numbers. Does it bring us, you know, more revenue or not? But let's agree that, you know, the after the test is done, we look at the result. If it doesn't, then we're going to be stop doing that. And we again, we focus on these all of these things we do that seem to have worked already. Right. Is that okay? And then it's okay for everybody. And then we know that we're looking at the same same KPIs, the same things. We're actually trying to get the same same thing done. And then we're focusing on the right thing. And this should then also help to get rid of that, whether you're in, you know, marketing agency or if you're in a internal. Marketing person. This should be able to fend off the stuff that it just randomly comes into your table because somebody thinks it's a good idea. There could be a good idea, but then, you know, it needs to be validated somehow. There needs to be like a testing process on it because otherwise we're just throwing good ideas and we're not paying attention if they work and we don't know if they help in our end KPIs and we can't learn anything and we're just using time to basically make somebody momentarily happy by, you know, like accommodating with their with their idea.

AE: Would you say that that's a common mistake broadly?

JJ: Yeah, I, I would say it's a yeah. A common mistake broadly. So if we're summarizing the mistake here would have been that we weren't not aligned on what our KPIs were, not aligned on what has been expected to us. And that's, that's a common thing. You know, it's a marketing in life in general. I think that that can happen quite easily a lot. That's, you know, like people are just not on the same page. And it would just make sense to say that, Hey, this is what I, this is how I understood it. Do you understood it the same way as me? And then you could repeating that, you know, when you're dealing with the boss or the client, you just every time you just you can repeat it so it doesn't like change. And if it change, if it if they're, you know, feeling of it changes, then you know it. So just clarify, let's be clear what we're doing. Did we understand everything correctly? And if we want to do something else, how can we basically baked it in here so that we are actually getting that data driven value of that if we want to put new ideas? Yes, great. Let's put them. But we need to have them in place. We need to have enough time to execute them. We need to have enough budget to, you know, get whatever, you know, uh, impressions on it, enough people to actually try it so that we can get some relevant, statistically relevant results out of that. Do you want to do that? Okay, well, we can't put more budget on that. Well, we can't. Well, okay, let's take it here. We have this backlog here. It comes to next year. When I make a plan next year, I'll put it there. So let's see if we can allocate, you know, money on that next year. But let's continue with that since it's, you know, since we can see that if we are aligning with these KPIs, the revenue loss, look, it all looks good, right, to you. Okay. It does. So shouldn't we continue with that? Okay. We'll continue with.

AE: You mentioned that you're a monday.com partner. Do you track everything in Monday.com? Could you explain a bit for the listeners who don't know what it is?

JJ: Yeah. So, so Monday.com it's a platform that we've found is very good at this kind of like a data gathering when we want to also include the. The human resources, the time and effort that we put on different tasks. It's basically I think it was, uh, I think it was the Swedish mandate that companies that have very nicely put it, it's like a Lego blocks of organizations. So it is a very visual system for project management, for CRM, for marketing, planning, activity, tracking, pulling, you know, like a different type of marketing data from ads platform into one place. And that helps us to actually connect the fact that we are having a campaign. We can track what goes, you know, monitoring the campaign, like pull the data out of out of ads, platforms or Google Analytics, but also, hey, we did these things for it. This is like, you know, and it also gives the standardization of the process. Like we have a new campaign. Okay, what are we going to do for that? Well, we are going to be doing you know, we need the copy, we need the images, so forth and so forth. But what we actually know, what we need actually the step before that is to go through some kind of a maybe a positioning exercise. And we can have all these tasks there like ready made. So it goes like, okay, we need to answer now the question that we're going to do this campaign, who is it going to be for what's domain? You know, like what's the main benefit? How does it look compared to the competitors when we're doing this campaign? And then from that, create the copy, the text, should it live and then track the actual we get, you know, how much time we put on this? What did we actually do for it? And then after that, the usual day down, like we spent this much and this was the result. So we can kind of like we can aim to close that gap that comes with the doing and. Paying and getting results.

AE: Okay. Yeah. So I think we have covered most of the questions I prepared. And to to summarize, is there what advice would you get any give any company that that wants to start a more data-driven approach.

JJ: Yeah. So the good thing is the start, the start from what do we currently have, what are we currently tracking, what's the data that we have here? And then from that, what is the data that we're missing? What are we doing? Start somewhere, start tracking on things that you're doing. You you can do it for, for just a test period of, you know, somewhere on Excel or whatever. Take a monday.com trial, whatever, whatever you want to do on it and just track what am I doing, you know, each day, where is it going? And then you probably start getting in a very short period of time some understanding on like where does it go? And then start thinking about those goals that you actually have and how many of these things that I've been doing personally, you know, actually benefit directly of any of those goals? How do they benefit if they don't then start looking critically on what you are doing? And then for that whole like, uh, marketing plan context, uh, basically, are you able to think, think first, are you able to, from the data information that you have, are you currently able to actually do your, for example, 2023 marketing plan by thinking that we're going to do activity X, we need to get this goal out of it and to get that we can we we are estimating that we need to, you know, have this budget spend or or do all of these articles.

If you are able to do that, then you just start doing that. And if you're not able to do that, if you notice like I don't know how to like, I mean, I can't tell then what you actually need to do is start thinking of, okay, how can I avoid this question next year? So my today's this year's plan is to figure this out. Then I'm just testing, you know, we have a lot of like companies where we are launching, for example, some new completely new service. So we don't really know what to base on it. So then our marketing plan just need to be testing. We're going to be testing, you know, certain channel we're going to budget, certain channel for, uh, you know, this month we're going to do some kind of a LinkedIn, uh, let's say uh, to webinar sales funnel. You know, we're going to do that on January. That's my plan then. And then what I'm going to do is now track what it take for me to actually do it. The human hours, How much money did I actually put there? What kind of results did I did Great. Next, uh, next month, you know, and some other channel.

The same thing. You track it, you track it, uh, being, you know, around the half year, you know, maybe you do just one half of a year time and then you go through what was working here. What did we do on these different steps? How much time did it took? What looks, uh, profitable. Okay, we're going to start trying to scale that out comes Autumn. You know, you take the same channel and same thing, You start to trying to put maybe more budget on it. You start trying different variations then within, you know, within the ad and so forth, but that you just acknowledge what is your current situation? Are you able to do data-driven things? Are you able to which means when I'm talking about data-driven, it just means that do I have some facts that I can use to actually make this decision, or am I actually just making this decision like blindfolded, that it's based on my hunch or my think? And when I'm doing that, that is fine because then, you know, it might be the situation where I am, but when I'm then doing these hunch things, I need to make sure that I'm gathering the data when I'm doing it. So the next year I don't have to do that hunch thing.

AE: And that's a very clear and good brief on how to start. You're a very knowledgeable person in this area. So very nice to have you on the podcast and thank you for participating.

JJ: Thank you for having me. Thanks all.

Alexander Evjenth
Alexander is a content creator who has a great interest in learning new things. What he enjoys even more is creating knowledge content.
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