One of the most challenging aspects of a marketing manager’s job is trying to get your boss to understand your marketing efforts.
You know you’re working away night and day to advance your company’s marketing. But… your boss may not understand what you’re actually doing.
Marketing managers have had a disconnect with CEOs and CFOs for some time. The problem isn’t always that the C-suite executives don’t care or are incompetent. Often, they just need to see marketing data in a new light.
In this article, you’ll discover how to help your boss understand your efforts and successes as a marketing manager. You’ll learn 3 common mistakes in reporting and exactly how to make a marketing report that shines.
Let’s dive in.
Why Effective Reporting Matters
Whenever you present a marketing report, it can either be clear and insightful, or complex and confusing.
It’s not easy presenting marketing data that clearly outlines your goals, progress, and key opportunities in a way that everyone understands.
Great reporting is important for 2 reasons: accountability and rapport.
Accountability is crucial to building trust between you and your colleagues, especially your superiors. By presenting factual data, recommending solutions, and building credibility, you’ll be able to create understanding on both sides.
Rapport is built through solid reporting. When you understand both parties' goals and values, you’ll be able to collaborate with your boss better. This also makes it much easier to set up meetings at a convenient time, improve information retention, and keep the ship moving forward.
3 Common Mistakes in Reporting
There are 3 common mistakes you need to avoid if you want to ensure your reports are well-received by your boss.
1. Wrong Format
First off, you need to ensure your report is in the desired format of your boss. If you aren’t sure what format they prefer, then it’s simple. Ask them.
It’s always best to ask rather than guess what format they prefer. Some prefer PDFs. Others prefer PowerPoint. And for yet another, they want something else entirely. Your format is the starting point for an effective marketing presentation.
2. Adding Useless Elements & Numbers
Filling a report with as much as possible isn’t the best solution. In fact, it can make things worse.
Adding extra KPIs or data that isn’t relevant or adds more value is going to distract your viewers. It will make it harder for them to notice the numbers that really matter. Don’t just put in data for the sake of having more.
3. Listing Facts or Achievements Without Action Steps
Obviously you want your boss to see where you’re excelling. You want to make sure they know you’re good at what you do. But, this doesn’t mean you should list every achievement or fact without justifying why it’s important.
Typically, you’ll mention something positive from a campaign. That’s good, but you can’t end there. Explain why it’s important this achievement happened. Talk about why it matters. For instance, you should add something like, “Because of this, we should apply this tactic to our other campaigns to improve A, B, and C.”
3 Tips to Improve Your Marketing Reports
Now that we’ve covered the 3 most common mistakes in reporting, it’s time to look at 3 ways you can improve your marketing reports.
1. Always Cover These Crucial Reporting Metrics
Your most important digital marketing metrics are goal, items progress, budget pacing, and goal pacing. Everything should revolve around these metrics.
Goal: Your goal should be set in stone before you start any work. While you can have multiple goals, you should always have one main goal or objective to move towards.
Budget Pacing: This goal helps you stay ahead of your pay-per-click (PPC) budget. It also shows you how well your campaign is performing, so you don’t under or overspend.
You should look for ways to automate your budget analysis. You can use software or you can create a spreadsheet. These will help you see what’s been spent, how much you have left to spend, and how you could divide what’s left by each channel.
Items Progress: You should be talking with your colleagues to figure out what has or hasn’t moved. If certain tasks aren’t complete or have any progress, find out why.
Goal Pacing: Goal pacing is simply recapping your main goal. You should talk about how all elements impact the goal. Also, talk about any new tasks your team needs to work on to get to the goal. Storytelling will help you greatly here.
2. Automate When Possible
Creating brand new reports from scratch every week can take up a ton of time. This can be draining and will pull from your other tasks. When building weekly or monthly reports, try to optimize the process, so it’s automated.
You can use different tools to help you automatically refresh your data for you. One example is using Google Sheets or Excel to create your Budget Pacing formulas.
3. Check-In With Your Boss Regularly
It’s important to build accountability and rapport with your boss since it will greatly affect how well your reports are received. One of the best (and easiest) ways to do this is by checking in with them once a week.
Schedule a weekly phone call with your boss to follow up on the 4 areas mentioned earlier (goal, budget pacing, items progress, goal pacing). It doesn’t have to be an hour-long call. A couple minutes will do. In fact, you could just send an email if you’d prefer.
This subtle move will relieve your boss of any potential doubts regarding your marketing efforts and will help them receive and understand your reports since they’ll be on the same page.
Bonus Tip: Set up an automatic weekly reminder in your calendar to send an email. That way, you don’t even have to think about it throughout the week. Simply set and forget. And when the time comes, write a quick 5-minute email and you’re done.
If You’re a Marketing Manager, Partner With Rizen Today
By following these tips above, you’ll be able to present marketing data your boss will understand, which will make your job much easier.
Crafting a clear and impactful marketing report is just one of the many challenges a marketing manager has to face. If you’re wanting to streamline your operations and grow your business, then the best solution is to partner with an inbound marketing agency.
Rizen is an inbound marketing agency based in Miami, Florida, that offers custom-tailored solutions to all of your marketing challenges.
We’ve worked with clients all across the United States to grow their ROI, deliver valuable content to their audience, and streamline their marketing efforts.
Reach out today to see if your business qualifies!