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Executive Report - By Thomas Baekdal - May 2014

The KPI Frameworks for Brands and Media

One of the key things my clients almost always ask me is what to measure? How do you make sure you get the right picture, or what we in industry-speak call 'Key Performance Indicators' (KPIs). And it's such an important question.

It's important to note though that what KPIs you focus on depends entirely on your specific business. No business should measure the same things. It all depends what you do as a brand, what products you make, your business and pricing models, where your income is coming from (direct, indirect, advertising), your distribution networks and so forth. And each approach has a different set of KPIs.

But in this report I will outline a number of KPI frameworks that you can use as a guide to make sure you are starting off in the right way. And I will be outlining good models for both media companies and brands.

Overall, though, any good KPI framework must cover a number of overall metrics, regardless of how you achieve them. These are metrics for:

Another, and equally important, thing to keep in mind is no metric can stand alone. I wrote much more about this in 'End to End Media Management and Planning". And my good friend Avinash Kaushik recently wrote an article about how "Every Key Metric Should have a BFF". The idea is that, for every metric you have, you should attach another metric that puts it into perspective.

Note: BFF is short for 'Best Friends Forever', in case you didn't already know.

It's such a simple but wonderful concept which I also use in this article.

The lessons learned from running a business

Before we start though, there is one major problem facing the industry when it comes to analytics, and it is that too many people are distanced from the actual process of running a business.

One of the key things you learn as an owner of a business is that all metrics are useless unless they can help you get real money into a real bank account. It's the first thing you learn as a business owner. Fancy terms like engagement, awareness, recall rates, traffic, pageviews, time on site, assisted conversions, and so on, are completely meaningless... unless you also get real money.

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Baekdal is a magazine for media professionals, focusing on media analysis, trends, patterns, strategy, journalistic focus, and newsroom optimization. Since 2010, it has helped publishers in more than 40 countries, including big and small publishers like Condé Nast, Bonnier, Schibsted, NRC, and others, as well as companies like Google and Microsoft.

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Thomas Baekdal

Founder, media analyst, author, and publisher. Follow on Twitter

"Thomas Baekdal is one of Scandinavia's most sought-after experts in the digitization of media companies. He has made ​​himself known for his analysis of how digitization has changed the way we consume media."
Swedish business magazine, Resumé


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