If You Don’t Measure It, You Can’t Manage It

Every business must track its marketing results. By now, most companies know

its importance and track and report on their marketing.

But just tracking and reporting on marketing results is meaningless. Marketing frequently fails for dental practices because no one truly knows what to do with the reported and tracked data.

Dental practices generate marketing reports like any other business. However, like any other business, not every dental practice can analyze and draw the correct conclusions from the reports they or their marketing company produce.

The reality is that reports often tend to be put aside until there is time to review them. But that time usually never comes as the “stacks” of reports grow, and the appetite to deal with them diminishes. It’s human nature.

It is also true that business owners frequently fall into the trap of thinking the job is done because reports have been created. Dentists are no exception. Unfortunately, reports that are not scrutinized and analyzed are worthless.

Reporting and Analysis are two different metrics.

Reporting: is the process that organizes data into easy-to-read and easy-to-understand chunks of information or stats and summaries. The aim is to show how the different areas of your marketing and strategies are doing. In a nutshell, Reports show you only the results. That’s it.

On the other hand, Analysis is the process we use to extract detailed information the generated reports provide.

Reporting and Analysis differ in their purpose, even though both deal with collected data. By understanding the difference between the two, a business can fully utilize the collected data.

The significant difference between reporting and Analysis is that the former gives you no context while the latter does.

I am confident that most marketing reports you receive show little or no context at all. That means that you are just looking at figures. They alone do not provide the solutions or the information you need at your fingertips. You need a professionally conducted analysis that adds context to the data. Without it, you remain in the dark.

For example, a sudden drop in phone calls or appointments for a particular month may be a reason to be alarmed. On the other hand, context may make it clear that this specific month has historically been slower for your office over several years. Without careful data analysis, you don’t know whether to panic or relax when presented with this data point.

In the beginning, I said that marketing frequently fails for dental practices. Besides the reasons I already covered, another one might be the most important. Whether your marketing will be successful depends heavily on two things.

A. That the Analysis of your reports is evaluated correctly, the correct conclusions drawn and put into the relevant context.

B. That the Marketing Agency (if you are working with one) has enough experience to create a unique marketing strategy based on the result of the Analysis. This unique strategy must ensure that your marketing gets back on the right track and starts to deliver results.

Analytics gives you valuable insights into what is and isn’t working. If your company doesn’t understand (and remember) what mistakes it has made with its websites, campaigns, or mobile apps, it will keep making those same errors.