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18th January 2019 Rebecca Moore

Data-driven decisions for website redevelopment #DigiLab

Ray Clenshaw and Emma Rowan at Belgrade Theatre, Coventry discuss their Digital Lab experience so far

We were both incredibly excited to be accepted onto the AMA’s Digital Lab. For a long time we’d discussed the increasing importance of making more data-driven decisions and whilst we use Google Analytics and other digital platforms regularly, we felt we were not unlocking their full potential.

In our first meeting with Devon we focused on gaining a better understanding of analytics which would inform our future experiments. Devon was great at helping to demystify some of the terms used and to identify key reports which would provide invaluable data moving forward.

With a greater understanding of what we could learn via analytics we started to think about what we really wanted to know. With a rebrand of our website on the horizon, we were keen to learn more about the user journey on our current site. We were also keen to explore Facebook advertising in more detail, to examine elements of the platform which we weren’t currently using.


Using data to inform website redevelopment

Our website is getting on a little bit now and we’re just starting to formulate our plan to redevelop the site. It’s been incredibly useful to discuss that with Devon and to identify some of the information we can gain from analytics to inform decisions we make going into that process.

The plan is to explore conversions and the user journey behaviour to see how people currently use our site and to gauge what people want most from what we offer. We’ll also be listing assumptions we have as an organisation about the content on the site and how people engage with it, and then finding ways to test those assumptions to see if the data backs them up or not.

Making ‘data driven decisions’ is something we talk about a lot, and we obviously use data from our CRM and ticketing systems all the time, but we’ve always felt there’s so much more we could be taking from google analytics to inform all kinds of activity, and that’s exactly what the Digital Lab experience is allowing us to do now. It’s really exciting and will no doubt prove incredibly valuable as we increase our knowledge and understanding.


Remarketing versus boosted Posts

Facebook advertising is a key component of all of our marketing campaigns but we felt there were elements of Facebook’s advertising platform that we were yet to explore, particularly the remarketing function. Whilst we’d both been exposed to remarketing ads personally we’d never used them as part of our social media advertising strategy. We were keen to examine whether they were more successful than the boosted posts and newsfeed ads we’ve traditionally used.

Devon was really helpful in talking through the logistics of setting up a remarketing campaign and helping us to ascertain what our goals were and how to track them via analytics. Once we’d established our goals we decided to set up an experiment to compare the success rate of a remarketing campaign versus a boosted post. Focusing on one of our upcoming Christmas shows we set up a 2 week remarketing campaign with, ‘number of transactions’ as the trackable goal. Once the advert has run its course we’ll run a boosted post with the same budget and compare the results.

Making changes to tried and tested marketing tactics can be scary, particularly when budgets are tight and the results are unknown. Being part of the Digital Lab has helped to increase my confidence in taking ‘risks’ by improving my knowledge of analytics and how to set goals, track and evaluate the success rate of campaigns. It’s been great to have the opportunity to test some of our ‘what ifs’ and I can’t wait to see what the results show us.

Header image courtesy of People United © Janetka Platun — BELONGING

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