“Make friends with Google”

In today’s episode, we’re going to take a broader view of how Google Analytics can be an incredibly powerful tool for understanding the performance of your content and marketing efforts on your websites. By connecting Google Analytics to your website, you can gain insights into how users are interacting with your content, where they are coming from, what pages they are spending the most time on, and much more. Colin Clapp talks about how optimization isn’t a one-and-done and isn’t something you can just set and then forget, but something you need to continually engage with. Find out how you can get the results you want without getting overwhelmed in the process, including knowing what your goals are and paying attention to the bigger picture.

 Key takeaways:

  1. Google is your friend! Think of it as going to the library and Google is the librarian. The goal is to help those looking for you to find you.
  2. Optimization is ongoing. Any change in conditions will require new adjustments.
  3. Test what works, play the long game, and don’t forget the big picture!

What You Can Do

Rather than feeling overwhelmed about all the possible things that you could measure, focus on your goals and how you can use tools like Google Analytics to help you see if you’re getting where you want to go and whether the things you try are more effective or less effective.


Colin’s LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/colinclapp

  • Online Marketing Done For You – Website

Click to read the auto-generated transcript of today’s episode

Alexandra Mannerings:
Today, we are going to take a broad view of how Google Analytics can connect with the work that we’re doing in our content and our marketing on our websites so that we understand an overarching data strategy to really help us figure out how to optimize. My guest, Colin Klopp, talks about how optimization by definition is not a one and done.

It’s not something you can just set and forget. It is something you have to continue to engage with. And in today’s discussion, we really do keep it high level. There is so much that can happen in Google Analytics. There’s so many nuances and it can honestly, I will admit, feel overwhelming because even when I sign into my Google Analytics platform, there’s so much to click on and explore.

And sometimes it can just feel like too much and you don’t know where to look first. So today we’re going to really focus on what are our goals, how do we keep our eye on the ball? Pay attention to the bigger picture so that we don’t get lost in the weeds when we try to figure out how we can use data to help us achieve our goals, which is reach our audience, make sure they know about us when they’re looking for us, and allow us to serve them with incredible things that we do.

So enjoy today’s episode. It likely will be the first of a couple of installments around Google Analytics, especially with some big changes that are happening, and we touch on those today to enjoy.

Hello and welcome to Heart, Soul and Data, where we explore the human side of analytics to help amplify the impact of those out to change the world. With me, Alexandra mannarino, I’m delighted today to be joined by Colin Clapp, who is going to help us learn how to use data to drive our content and make choices to help us be effectively found and spread our message.

So, Colin, I’d love for you to introduce yourself how you come to this states and where you’re talking to us from today.

Colin Clapp:
Hello, everyone. My name is Colin Alexander. I’m originally from the UK. I was born in the UK, but I’m a New Zealand citizen and I’m coming at you from India in terms of record him. But by the time this is published, I think I’ll be in Malaysia. So get your head around that. I run a content optimization small SEO agency focused on content optimization and creation through content calendars, new content calendars and optimizing existing content.

So very nice to do the whole going to try to be everything SEO. We just work very much around this content niche and the idea is to help your content, your website make friends with Google and in plain English that is really search engine optimization. How do you make your data? How do you make your content get seen by the search engines?

Primarily Google and that yeah, that’s where we’re coming from today.

Alexandra Mannerings:
I love that same English approach because I think even for me as I run my own business, we’ve worked together that sometimes it does feel overwhelming where you’re like, I’m trying to have this discussion with a machine that I don’t get. I don’t understand how it makes decisions. I know I have a message that’s really important to get out there, and I want the people who are out there looking for it to be able to find it.

But where do I even begin? How do I even start to think about that? So I was wondering if we could start there, where you’re a small nonprofit, a small organization, you have this really important message. How do you even go about thinking of a content strategy or content optimization? Where do you start?

Colin Clapp:
Yeah, not maybe something that you and I talked about not long ago and now it seems obvious to repeat. BRC You might not remember and your clients have never heard it, but it kind of goes back to basics of thinking about so upfront would say, if I use any analogies like SEO or acronyms, just sort of slap me around and say it is about making friends with the search engine and the reason for that.

And that’s really simplified analogy. Go back to the simple case of have you ever been into a library to do your research and you’ve got a couple of scenarios that could play out on a big day of studying or researching content in a library, And one is you walk in and with your agenda, I want to do this, I want to do that.

But you’re saying like, you know, what’s New York’s famous big library? You know, it’s huge. Where do you start? How do you make sure you find what you want to find? You spend hours going up and down the floors and around the corridors and up and down the aisles and you don’t find what you want yet. The second scenario is you go to the front desk and you walk up to the chief librarian and you say, My objective today is to find this information.

This is what I’m searching for. And the librarian says, You come with me, young man, and I take you up to the third floor to aisle four to shelf, three to Section B has three books by X, Y, Z, and by the time you finish today, you will have everything you need. And if you can understand that simple concept of how you saved yourself a lot of work Googles the librarians and like the really qualified, experienced librarians, they need to understand the books on their shelves.

So there’s a process that the librarian goes through to understand what is coming. They obviously don’t read every single book, just like Google does, not read every single website, but they have tools and techniques that makes them realize this book has got this type of content and it will serve this purpose well. Google is exactly the same as the tools and techniques, robot algorithms, those sorts of things to massively speed up the search process for you.

Researcher So how do you, as the content publisher or the content creator, let the librarian know that the content that you have to offer is going to make the search process much easier for that person? Am I right so far?

Alexandra Mannerings:
Absolutely. And I think that is such a great analogy because it does remind us that while it can feel mystifying of how the librarians making, you know, its decisions, that really that’s all that’s happening is. And to your point that because even Google can’t read and understand every single piece of information out there, Google like us is using some shortcuts where they’ve created some correlations, essentially where they say, I know when I see this pattern of activity, whether that’s backlinks or whether that’s sets of words, which I talk about with keywords, whatever that patterns, those patterns of activity are, that when it sees those, it says this is a good site for blank or a trusted source for blank. And we can talk a little bit about trust versus accuracy and fit for search. So yeah, I think that’s really helpful to say, okay, that’s what’s actually happening. So our job is to figure out how we show the librarians that we’re what they’re looking for.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah, and that’s it. So say whether you employ someone to do search optimization or you sort of buy what I’m talking about making friends with Google and acknowledge that the same thing when you employ someone to do that or you employ the processes yourself, whether it’s DIY, if you can just keep that in mind, that is what you’re trying to do.

You’re trying to make the content on your site, do that job, pass the tests or the the filtering process that Google is trying to use because Google wants you to succeed. It’s not like Google’s got no, it’s not attached to any different content, but you need to work to its guidelines so that when prospective or client A is looking for a topic and B or C you related to your goods and services or your nonprofit mission, Google knows that of all the websites it could serve that you’ve given all the signals it needs to choose you in your pages and your website as opposed to your books that you’ve published in the library.

So that fundamentally is what’s going on. So then everything else is just nuances of how you use the data and play with the data. The fundamentally, that’s what you’re doing.

Alexandra Mannerings:
And I over and over in so many different areas, when I talk about data, I always come back to that of the idea of are you clear about what the ultimate goal is? Because data are just numbers without a goal. One of my guests just a few weeks ago shared that, and that was resonated so much with me because.

Yes, but that’s the point. If you’re not clear on what you’re trying to achieve, it doesn’t matter how much data you have, it’s not going to help you do it. And I think knowing and remembering that whatever you’re experimenting with, whatever methods you’re trying, whatever tools you’re bringing to the case, that what you always want to come back to you, is this helping me be found by the people who are looking for me And so we can use data to help us achieve that, but we can also use just a few really simple numbers to see if we’re achieving that right, like our page rank, how often we’re being served up to the people who

are looking for us, and then how often we see people actually visiting our page from those searches so we can use that information to try to double check our final goal, which I think is perfect to keep in mind.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah, I mean, I’ve given a lot of presentations myself recently, and just sometimes I have to remind someone, you know, the very term optimization by definition is ongoing. You know, it’s like if you’re running a Formula One car or you’re building a business, it’s ongoing. You can’t just race one Formula one race and have a set up that’s going to work.

You go to a different track or different temperatures, and I’m not a petrolhead by any chance, any stretch of the imagination, but any entity that’s ongoing. So whether it’s a website, a business or some sporting entity or whatever to be the best or to improve, you’ve constantly got to be optimizing whether it’s player performance, nutrition, whatever. Well, content is the same.

You’ve got to be testing it, measuring it. So and the beauty, as you just alluded to, Alexandra, the beauty is when you do step forward into the search engine optimization world data is available, you can test to measure things. You need to have got analytics, you have got split testing, you have got scenarios and goals and event tracking.

You’ve got all those things so you can when you’re not trying to play a short game, you can put these tests in place to say, Well, if we clarify our message in this way, let’s have a look in three months and see if that resonates with our audience or any variation of that. And so it’s accepting that we contain it isn’t about setting forget, right, one piece of content, right.

But actually what’s on page or a blog post, if you can understand it, for it to perform as an asset and you and I have talked about is content is an asset. So it doesn’t matter whether you’re not for profit or profit when you create content, you are creating something that should be able to be leveraged to you.

You know, forgive me if I sound like a schoolteacher here, but I don’t see the content as a standalone thing is an asset that can be optimized. So when you publish it in 2023, with all the research that you’ve put in, that doesn’t mean that in 2024 or even at the end of 2023, you couldn’t go back and improve that just like you couldn’t, you know, you could improve your recipe if you were a chef or your business processes.

If you’re running a business or, you know, a manufacturing plant, optimization by definition is ongoing. So yes, you need data analysis to test, to measure. But I think a lot of people think content is esthetic. Clarifying your message and content is static. It’s not. And that shift in mindset to make a big difference.

Alexandra Mannerings:
And that’s why content and data are really inseparable because there is no way to optimize if you can’t measure whether you’re getting closer to or farther away from your goal.

Colin Clapp:
Right? Yeah, Yeah.

Alexandra Mannerings:
So what are some of the key measures that we need to be using for our optimization? So I love we’ve set what you know, we have this goal. We want to make sure we’re getting found so we can measure that. I sort of throughout, but let’s double check that. We can measure that by looking at our page rank, right?

Like the idea of when someone searches a term that’s related to us, what page does our name show up on or does our content show up on? Right. Yeah. So and then the other half was then the idea was we can also use whether people click through to us, right? So it’s one thing to get an impression right, which I’ll ask you to explain a little bit about, but it’s another then if somebody actually clicks on our page and comes to see the content that we’ve created because it did answer their question, so can we talk about measuring that, that ultimate goal and then we’ll talk about refining that.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah. I don’t mean for your listeners benefits. There are so many things that you could measure. So depending on your level of sophistication, depending on your level of resources, whether those are technical resources or knowledge, you’ve got to be careful about just how much you can actually handle. But the point is there are variables that could be tested just about anywhere for any level of sophistication.

So you, Alexandra, would you be familiar with your would your listeners be familiar with the concept of top of the funnel, middle of the funnel, Bottom of the funnel.

Alexandra Mannerings:
I think yeah. Yeah. Like the idea of because we do that with whether it’s with donations or whether it’s with programing, right? Like the idea is that you have to like you have to find your audience top of the funnel. Are they out there, Are they, do they know about you middle. Like do they have a relationship with you?

Have they connected with you? Are they following you? Are they visiting your page? Right. Depending what funnel we’re pointing them to you. That middle is a little bit different. And then the bottom is, did they actually do the thing you wanted them to do? Did they donate? Did they join your program? Did they volunteer with you? Right. Okay.

Colin Clapp:
So those concepts. Yes, they did. Regardless of what the appropriate nonprofit they do apply. The reason I asked about that for the listeners benefit is that they will dictate the type of things you’ll be measured. So at the top of the funnel, yes, you’re you’re just trying to get impressions and move up the rankings. So you might have some rank checking tools in place, you might have some analytics for page views, you might be looking at click through on your Google search console data.

I don’t want to bore anyone with this, but at the top of the funnel, you’re just looking at all you moving the dial on this and this for example. But the middle of the funnel, it might be the you’re you’re looking for the average time on slack to improve because they’re seeing maybe your company can help with X, Y, Z, but they also need to find out is this a you have an internal link in strategy that allows them to go, Well, you’re going to help me with that.

But then after that, can you help me with this and this? And so you want to see that as your content is improved and you’re linking back to different content that answers the questions as the search engine. So for the Millers, so we often say that the top of the funnel is a sort of what it is and why it’s important.

So, you know, you’re trying to draw in a new audience. The middle of the funnel is like, how do I to what are the next steps, etc., etc.. And then the bottom of the funnel was they are actually taking some significant action depending on, like you say, the funnel. So as I say, the middle of the funnel top content, you might be setting up different types of tests to.

Are they clicking on this link. Can I see of like maybe some event tracking you might put in some buttons or you might put in some certain phrases that might put in some split testing to see if featuring this feature in there. Is it making a difference for, like I say, from an adult’s point of view, are they staying on the site longer?

Is that dwell time longer? So there might the does whereas the bottom of the funnel, the conversion you go down to very specific events and maybe you don’t even need to look at the analytics. It might be how many people were on your email list compared to last month, how much money is in your bank account compared to last month, etc., etc..

So does that answer the question, The different different types of the funnel will require different measuring tools.

Alexandra Mannerings:
That makes a lot of sense and the idea of getting clear of what your journey is. Because I think to some extent it’s easy for us to skip that and be like, I need content because I want volunteers. Like, okay, let’s write a cool article and as you said, set it, forget it, and voila, more volunteers to just show up.

But what you’re breaking out is, no, it’s not that simple. It’s much more complicated because there are so many steps that people have to take to actually become a volunteer, even if these steps might happen quite quickly or they might we might not see them happening, they still have to happen. So the person has to find your page.

They have to spend enough time on your page or visit the right number of pages to figure out that, Oh, not only do you have a solution for them or not only are you a good fit for them, but then there’s a step they could take that would solve their problem or invite them to be a closer partner of yours.

They have to get there and then they have to do it. And so watching different metrics along the journey can help you know where along the way you’re losing them and where that optimization might need to happen. And I love that you mentioned that you can experiment, you can try things, You can say, does putting the button at the top of the bottom make a difference?

Does changing the colors of the buttons make a difference to changing the pictures we have? Make a difference to changing the words we use? Make a difference. And you can follow that by saying, Did more people click through or did more people bounce? You know, did they come to the page and leave first, come to the page and continue on the journey?

Colin Clapp:
Yeah. And you guys will be familiar. You know, you mentioned bounce and that’s a universal analytics data point that’s disappearing with the disappearance of G-4. I’ll back up. Just you guys are making an assumption that is not there for any of you to plugged into the long standing do as it’s known as universal analytics will guys rate this being recorded in March is going to come out in April.

By July, Universal Analytics is disappearing from the Internet forced off. Google will not be tracking all of that and the majority of the websites in the world. I have not manually got their act together to have the new version set up and be very specific here. It’s not an invalid version of universal analytics. The new one is called Die For.

It doesn’t have any other name and it is a brand new version. And so I’m backtracking a little bit to come to the reason why I brought this up yet. So it’s not something you let evolve. It’s a completely different way of analyzing a website. And so that is why Google is letting go of UI. But if you haven’t manually set up your own what’s called go for data stream, Google is going to do it for you.

Now, that might be that might be financially like that. The reason they’re doing it for you and this is already started, by the way, is because they’ve seen that the majority of the websites around the world have not been proactively going to set up their own data stream. If you had been proactive, you would have died two years ago.

So GFR has been available about two years. So people who were proactive two years ago have actually got to two years of data in the new version. So even if they never look to there, the data is there. Where is all the historical data of three universality is gone in July. So maybe something for you to remind your listeners, just as an aside, that they should do that.

But so the reason I brought that up is the J4 is better set. The reason has come about it’s going to recognize that there’s a pathway for the way we want to test the measure. So the new guide for these splits, the initial analysis is around engagement. So in acquisition, you know, who are we finding? Who’s finding us?

Who are we finding? The second part is engagement. So that’s very much that. You know, the first part is the top of the funnel. The second part is the middle and the third part to force to monetization. In other words, Google now set up analytics to pretty much deal with top of the fundamentals of funnel and bottom of the funnel, regardless of whether you are profit nonprofit, it’s still acquisition, engagement and monetization.

So for a nonprofit, it’s still monetization or conversion of some edge. So the new analytics, you know, having someone on your team understands the content strategy can now be set up in a way that it can be measured, and that’s a good thing. So the learning curve is going to be awkward. You know, it’s going to be it’s new, but the rationale I think, is exciting.

You know, it’s going to help. It’s going to help non techies. The old data to maps is not into it, whereas the new one, even the techies will be able to talk in language of market as you’re trying this, but it’s failing at that level. You’re trying this, but it’s succeeding at this level. Does that make.

Alexandra Mannerings:
Sense? Yeah. The idea that it’s really designing the analytics to fit the business uses that we have for it, right? That we’re all trying to reach our audiences, make sure that they connect with us and that they convert, right? Whatever that means. They join our tribe and that we need them to be part of it. And so the fact that new analytics is really going to be updated and adjusted to match what we’re trying to get out of it is exciting.

Now, you mentioned that this will work for even non techies if you’re a small nonprofit or like I said, even for me as a small business, again, you can open up Google Analytics and immediately becomes very overwhelming. You look at it and you’re just like, Oh God, no.

Colin Clapp:
I should set the caveat to what I said is that it’s still going to be overwhelming to someone who is not used to seeing that exact thing. But how do you explain to a non techie what balance right is right? And there was promise to try and comes to balance, right? So it really was a polarizing metric where some people would say, Oh, we’ve got to change this because it’s too high.

But they didn’t understand intention. Oreo’s Everything high achieved the objective, but if you didn’t understand that nuance, you could go around making changes and it’s a backward step. So people try. It’s been a very polarizing number that’s misled a lot of people’s decision making. So I’m glad to see the back of it because it just gets really algorithmic.

Alexandra Mannerings:
What it’s been replaced with.

Colin Clapp:
What if that’s the thing in J four? It’s not a replacement. It’s a brand new evolution of new metrics. Okay, So what I was getting around saying is that even if you don’t understand the dashboard or find the dashboard overwhelming, you can take a non techie and just show on the left hand panel that says, look, a lot of this is going to look too much.

But if you want understand, acquisition is about marketing and top of the funnel type of content as you’re dealing with engagement is about the middle of the funnel marketing conversation you’re having. And the monetization is about how we achieving our business goals now, right? So you forget the dashboards and all of that. Yes. You want me to employ someone to understand that, but at least you can make the link between the market on your team and the data, which you can never do with the existing analytics.

Alexandra Mannerings:
So that makes sense.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah. So yes, you still got to employ someone who’s a bit more or you’ve got to go on a course to understand. But something I’ve said to because it’s brand new, the playing fields a lot more level. So there’s nothing stopping an organization with limiting resources. If you’ve got someone in your or you need someone in your team to have a better understanding.

The causes of J are all brand.

Alexandra Mannerings:
New, right?

Colin Clapp:
There’s no specialists out there that have been doing it for years because it’s not been around used. So anyone who’s created it will be a data analytics person, but they’ve only got one or two years at best, right, explaining it. So you can put some of your team on a beginners course on Udemy or something like that and upskilling for as much as the next person and start making sense of it.

I’m not trying to say it’s easy, but it is to join the dots between the analytics and the real world. So it’s like a achieve now.

Alexandra Mannerings:
Do you think that you need somebody sort of permanently on your team who could do this, or would this be something like you said? Because it connects a little bit more to us laypeople that we could work with somebody like you to configure it, right? Make sure it’s set up, walk us through the things we need to be looking at so we know where to go to get the data to test things like acquisition or engagement.

And then once that’s configured for us, we could monitor it and use the information coming in to make these tweaks to our content. Or is it something where we do really need to have somebody sort of continually on staff.

Colin Clapp:
That’s that one’s like, how long is a piece of string? You know, that’s true. And you know, where are you in your journey? What resources do you have? Like you said, if many of your clients are small operators with limited resources and I turn around and say, you need someone on your team optimizing all the time and looking at things all the time, that’s just break you out.

Go back to what I said earlier is exit optimization, by definition, clarifying your message, by definition, event tracking by definition, you don’t want to be doing that on an ongoing basis. If you don’t have the resources, you just understand that maybe you just need to adjust your mindset tactics, like, okay, we can’t do this every week, but maybe we could do it every quarter, you know?

So instead of it being someone’s given us some keyword research, we’ve learned a bit about how to write content with nothing to know about how to look at a dashboard. But we need to build in a discipline that says we go back and look at this every quarter, right? We’re the junior on. Our team gets trained to do that or the more sophisticated person on that team, but someone in the team just has to accept that that’s what optimization is, because otherwise you’re just burying your head in the sand.

Well, we did that last year. That’s the same. Forget the landscape is change. And if you go back to where I started with the analogy of the librarian person who goes into the library in 2023 with a goal, an objective to do this research. But during 2023, three new books get published on that and the librarian gets to hear about that.

So when another person walks in 2024 with the same objective, the librarians go, Well, if you’d walked in a year ago, I would have told you to go here. And if it’s your lucky day, I’m going to take you to here. And I know there is some better stuff. So we as the content creator have to accept that’s real.

It doesn’t matter how good your your mission is as a nonprofit or a profit if you do not keep your content up to date relevant. And I’ll get into the nuances of search engine optimization. You if you do not keep it up to date and relevant competition, will write better content and they will be found instead of you.

So if you achieve short term success, you know you’re of getting more. We’re getting more clicks, we’re getting more conversions, but you don’t have a quarterly review or a half yearly review, depending on the resources you have available. Don’t be surprised when the results start to taper off. It’s because the competition’s come in and started to do get better.

Alexandra Mannerings:
I love that because one of the things that I have really struggled with is, is entrenching this idea that data is not a one time thing, but you don’t run an experiment, collect some information on it and say, okay, we got it, and then you move on. What it has to be is something that you put in place so that you can constantly check, right?

Like that would be like looking at your compass as you navigate across the Atlantic and like, Yep, I’m headed in the right direction and then shutting your compass and never looking at it again, right? Like, no, it needs to be a based in part of what you do to the level that your resources allow.

Colin Clapp:
Absolutely. And using your compass analogy, you’d expect to have that out all the time because you can’t afford to buy wrong direction. The beauty of using content analytics is that it is you don’t need to be doing it everywhere. Content does need time. If you’re looking at it on a daily basis, you want to be changing content on a daily basis, right?

I would say you just need to evolve from the set forget mentality to to bring in at least a half yearly and maybe a quarterly mentality that says, is this content still delivering the message or the objectives that we set out for when we made the decision to create that content.

Alexandra Mannerings:
That makes sense. And I like that idea of quarterly because that does not feel overwhelming. That’s a perfectly achievable thing and I think it gives a length of time where you can see if something’s been working. Even if you have fairly low traffic, you’ll get some engagement over 90 days and then you have a chance to try something new for the next quarter.

Let’s try a new strategy. And we can see how it worked compared to last quarter. And it’s something that again, you can just you can relate to of this is going to be a cadence that we’re going to keep up and keep doing every quarter.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah, Yeah. And as a maybe as a I’m trying to think of a comparison because I’m not just a search engine optimization, a content specialist. We do not do anything in the advertising world. We are not places where we do not do any of that. But in contrast, if you would employed an agency to help you with advertising campaigns and you are using that strategy to grow your business, it is highly possible that you are looking at analytics on an hour by hour, day by day, week by week basis because you are spending money and more.

One is working. So if you are seeing organic optimization as a alternative to paper or advertising strategy, it’s very important to understand that you have a need to give it the same analytics approach because it doesn’t work like that. So the idea of organic is that it might take longer to get the strategy and the rinse and repeat process is to reach more audience and engagement.

But then the optimization comes in and it starts working for you on a year by year, month by month, quarter by quarter, and you’re not getting your credit card out. You’re not spending your marketing budget on advertising, trying to gain short term wins. Do you might have to put in a three month, six month, 12 month content plan and it will take a bit of time, but one of the fundamentals start working.

It becomes that machine, your content becomes a machine, your analytics starts feeding decision making. If your marketing budget is not being poured through, I hope this advertising campaign works. Does that might it?

Alexandra Mannerings:
It does. And I think that is really important to remember that the level of consistency and engagement with your analytics will depend on what you’re looking at, where you’re trying to engage. And that’s why that’s one of the strengths of a content based marketing approach. With the analytics in place. Like you have to have that data style. But for a low resourced organization, the idea that we can take a kind of longer approach to this lower resource intensity, lower frequency, but longer term gains, right?

Like the idea that you are building up something that will be successful for a longer period of time and you’re not going to have to make changes to it every single day or every single, you know, hourly, as you were mentioning, that that makes a lot of sense for a smaller, less resourced organization.

Colin Clapp:
Yeah, certainly if you as a listener, please don’t panic. Think to thinking that you need to, you know, whoever your investors is or whoever your backers, if you suddenly feel under pressure that you should be spending your money on advertising to speed it up. I’m not to say that’s not a strategy, but it’s not the only strategy. And it comes with risks, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing with advertising.

You can burn through a lot of startup capital very quickly and have nothing to show for it. Whereas with an organic strategy, you will always be able to refine it and improve it because it’s your in your investments time.

Alexandra Mannerings:
And I really appreciate that with the idea of data and in picking things that you try that, I think experimentation can be scary. And I have this conversation like the weakness of data is it can’t tell you what will happen. It can tell you what has happened and give you suggestions for what might work better in the future.

And that can be scary if you feel like you’re putting resources on or if you are putting resources on the line in terms of trying these new things. And so to have a careful think about the data that you have available, the resources that you have available, and how you can best that optimize your experimentation in a way that doesn’t risk too much.

Right? That risks a little bit, but with a good enough payoff and the possibility of improvement that it’s worth, like you said, the risk of a couple of hours of writing some new content versus the risk of potentially putting short money resources on the line. Right. Especially when we’re on donations. Right. Like there aren’t often a lot of extra to go around.

And so I like I really like that reminder that there are different ways to approach the experimentation and the trying. And some of those are much less risky than others, and we can take a safer route, though it still requires the same devotion to data.

Colin Clapp:

Alexandra Mannerings:
So excellent. Well, thank you so much. I feel I’ve got notes in the notes to talk about, which I think is really, really helpful. And I love this idea of we don’t have to be too overwhelmed about it. We can think about where we’re trying to go. I do agree that I think we also need to feel, even if we’re really small, that we don’t have to do it ourselves, that there are people like you that we can work with for very low investment rate to help us get started.

And we can, like you said, how long is the length of string? It can start out short. It’s okay if we just do something small. We take that first step to pick just a few measures. Like I said, whether it’s impressions, people finding your page, people spending a certain amount of time on your page and like we can work with something to help us set up a few goals because Google Analytics allows us to set goals so someone can help you configure that.

And then all you have to do is look at the goal. How many people made it there? How many people did the thing were hoping that they were doing. So I feel like this is a really good conversation to have to say This doesn’t have to be super scary, but it is something we have to do. So thank you.

Thank you so much for your time. If people wanted to connect with you and find out more about you, where could they go?

Colin Clapp:
Online marketing done for you with a four is a digit dot com and just go to the contact page or reach out to Alexandra and she’ll to me.

Alexandra Mannerings:
Yes and we’ll definitely have your links on our show notes. So don’t forget to check out our show notes. Those links will be there. And Colin, thank you so much for your time today, as always.

Colin Clapp:
My pleasure. Thank you, everyone.

Alexandra Mannerings:
That was my friend Colin Clapp from online marketing done for you. I hope that again, rather than feeling overwhelmed about all the possible things that you could measure, the way you take away from this is that we really have just a few goals, things that we’re trying to do, and we can use tools like Google Analytics and the constant presence of key metrics to help us see if we’re getting where we want to go and allow us to try things and see whether the things we try are more effective or less effective or have some trade off in terms of helping us in one place but hurting us in another place.

After all, that’s what optimization is all about. And I’d like to reiterate something that Colin said, which is with the sunsetting of the old Google Analytics and this creation of an entirely new Google Analytics platform, again, even if you’re not an expert in this area, actually, especially if you’re not an expert in this area, now is the time to kind of pull up your pants and say, We’re going to do this because everyone else is in the same boat.

We’re all trying to figure it out. And so for the first time, you don’t have to be an expert in this because there aren’t any experts right now in this. We’re all learning an entirely new way of doing analytics. If you’re using Google Analytics at all, which is the majority of us. And so we really have a chance to say, what of this?

Could I bite off, What of this could I tackle with the resources that I have even if this isn’t usually my wheelhouse and be able to figure out how to just take that one step forward? One of my past guests, Kristin, mentioned the fact that analytic maturity is not about complexity, it is about consistency. And Colin mentioned that exact thing about can you put a cadence in place where you check just a few things, just the things you can handle on a cadence that works for you and your resources and your time to be able to just get that little bit better.

And so I’d like to issue that challenge, that recommendation. Now, which is there someone on your team who could set aside a little bit of time to learn just the basics of Google Analytics so that they could empower your team to take one step forward, Right? There are some great resources and training out there, some paid, some free.

You can work with people like Colin for not that much money to get you started, to get some configuration set up, Make sure that your Google Analytics is plugged into your website the right way with some simple tools. And once you do that, you can start to develop that habit, that consistency of looking at some key metrics that align with your specific goals, right?

What you’re trying to achieve with your website so that it allows you consistently over time to optimize and get better results. So maybe we’ll check in in six months, see what people tried doing, whether they were able to engage with this new analytics tool, especially since it’s coming out this summer officially where you have no other option, right?

The old versions going away in July. So I hope that a few of you at least will will take me up on that and I’d love to hear how it goes. So again, you have all the show notes here in the podcast app or if you want to go to heart soul data dot com. This is episode 60 so you can see us at Hartsville data dot com slash e p hyphen 60 get all of the show notes, links to Colin’s site and other resources that we have there and you want to drop me a comment or a line about what you might have tried out of this episode.

You can do that on the Contact US page or drop a comment directly here on your podcast app. As always, thank you so much for listening. It is an honor to walk this analytic journey with you. You have been listening to Heart, Soul and Data. This podcast is brought to you by Moroccan is an analytics education, consulting and data services company devoted to helping nonprofits and social enterprises amplify their impact and thrive through data.

You can learn more at Moroccan o Scott m he r a k i A.S. dot com.

Colin Clapp

Colin Clapp is the Co-Founder of Online Marketing Done For You, an online marketing solutions catering to people who are too busy to market online. His purpose in life is to inspire “Significance through a philosophy of Give. Take. Invest. Enjoy.” and help other people reach their potential by staying accountable to their dreams. He likes to spend his time with his wife, who he considers his first accountability partner, and his two children. Connect with Colin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/colinclapp/

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