We just want a basic report please

How many times has a B2B client said to you….”We just want a basic report, you know, just the top level stuff”.

Only you know deep inside that most of the actionable insights and the golden nuggets lay hidden deep inside the data chucked (puked) out by your analytics software. It’s where the sexy stuff is but only you and I know that and it does take time to find those golden nuggets.

A ‘top level stuff report’ means Visits, Pageviews, Time spent on site, Overall site bounce rate and all the other aggregated data presented on dashboards. It’s only this data that c-level execs understand and can get to grips with easily so it’s all they require and as a result many strategies go stagnant after a few months or buy-in for further improvements take longer. As soon as you mention:

“75% of traffic has been generated from non-brand related keywords, an increase of 15% from last quarter, therefore the SEO strategy seems to be working so we should drill deeper to see how we can further optimise the strategy”.


Further silence.

“All I want to know is top level stuff ok?”

So as us #measure peeps seek to further our knowledge and keep up with the latest technology and new ways of measuring new channels, what are we also doing to educate the so-called non-#measure generation? How do we educate clients to accept more complex reports/presentations and action the insights presented to them.

I am talking here about the HIPPO’s who were brought up without the Internet, their website has only just become an importants part of their business and measurement was never a REAL priority for them?

In the next few months I will be running workshops for our clients so I can a) break em into the #measure world b) get them over the ‘i just want a top level report’ requirement and c) make them think harder about their next campaign, strategy and plans.

I’d be interested to hear from others how they overcame the ‘top level stuff only please’ type clients and how they nurtured clients to educate and understand the importance of #measure.

5 thoughts on “We just want a basic report please

  1. Stephane Hamel at immeria.net

    It’s not for them to adapt to you, it’s for you to adapt to them.

    When the CEO ask for the “top level stuff” it means “show me the $ and provide insight about how to get more”. That’s it, that’s all. Speak the business language, not the #measure language.

    Who freaking care about visits and page views anyway? 🙂

  2. sabsavos

    Simple: Don’t report to c-level execs.

    Depending on the size and breath of positions in the company, report your #measure nuggets to the employee / redaction in power of moving the needle on it. Then you can weave THOSE performances back to the A level.

    “Electronics increased ROI by 30%, Wellness articles dropped by 15% due to a technical issue we now fixed, remaining tickets to artist X were all sold in time thanks to a bannering campaign.”

  3. priteshpatel9

    Thanks for your comment Stephane.

    You are right that measurer’s need to adapt to clients and talk about money. My only concern with that is the clients appreciation and knowledge of website values in order for measure peeps to talk about money. Should they not need to adapt to us too? In order to give you want you want you need to give us what we want.

    “I don’t know” is a common answer to the question “What is the value of a web enquiry?” or “What is the value of a white paper download?” or “What is the value of a RSS feed subscription?” Therefore there is a need to educate clients as to why this info is so important in working out ROI’s and revenues etc.

    Once the client can identify the answer and monetary value to each web goal only then can a measure peep talk money right?

    Sabsavos – Thanks for your comments too.

    C-Level execs are also the decision makers in some companies.

  4. Mark

    I’m all for top level reports, as opposed to regular reporting that covers virtualy every metric a ‘c-level exec’ can think of.

    Why not give them their top level report but accompanied with your actionable insight that churning out a basic report has allowed you the time to do?

  5. Lawrence

    Nice post! Surely it’s about reporting on the KPIs which are best aligned to their goals? Then you can provide a commentary on other metrics which relate to those KPIs and talk about the trends and changes that influenced them. This way you get the best of both worlds, by giving them the good stuff, but in a way that engages them & encourages them to ask the questions that make life more interesting…


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *