Performance Marketing Demystified

Conversion Rate Optimisation
Digital Marketing
Paid Media

Performance Marketing Demystified

Describing performance marketing is hard. Why? Because we “digital folk” are generally terrible at explaining things in everyday language.

We struggled to find a good definition for performance marketing anywhere on the web, even the large global agencies are guilty of diving into three letter acronyms and fuzziness. We thought that we would have a go at simplifying things.

We have referred to SEO (or Organic Search) as the engine of your supercar. For example the designing of a website that looks beautiful but with no SEO basics in place is akin to buying a supercar with no engine. So we expanded on this analogy to try and explain the role of the four main disciplines that constitute digital performance marketing, namely:

  1. SEO (Organic Search)
  2. Paid Search (Pay Per Click)
  3. Data and Analytics (Measurement)
  4. CRO (Conversion Rate Optimisation)

Lets start with the analogy, a Formula 1 car on a race track…

South Africa Digital Performance Marketing


The Race Track

The race is against all your competitors.  You might not be able to win every race, so you need to be consistent to win the drivers title. It involves strategy and planning based on data and competitive insight. One such example could be a competitor search gap analysis, which would help you choose where to fight and pick your battles.

The Business

This is you, in the driving seat. You need to decide the team that you want to race with. Which group of specialist or agencies is going to help you top that drivers table? Choosing the right agency or staff requires careful consideration, as one such example, see our guide to choosing an SEO agency. Sometimes you may need to change teams or car components. The best performance marketing agency will be one that has all aspects covered, as ideally these four aspects of performance need to work in unison.

The Front Wing (Paid Media)

Quick to set up or change and normally the first thing to “take you to market”. You can set up a paid media campaigns in hours and get feedback in the form of “race data” almost immediately. The key here is that anyone can bolt on a front wing. The winners will be determined by refining the angles, weights and dimensions of the “optimal racing wing”. Make sure your paid media strategist or agency, is always testing and learning, ideally in unison with testing and refining the tire selection. How many A v B tests have your carried out in the last few months?

The Engine (SEO / Organic Search)

The key component that needs to last for the long term and take you through the racing season. Choosing the right engine involves getting all the SEO fundamentals in place. A fast accessible engine is no different to a site that needs to be fast and accessible on all devices. Ongoing SEO is like adding the right oil to the engine to make sure that it stays at the same pace as your competition.

The Tires (Conversion Rate Optimisation)

Tires play a massive part in the tactics of winning a race. The same is true for Conversion Optimisation in performance marketing. Squeezing every last drop out of your ROI by relentlessly testing variations of headlines, copy, form fields, call to action buttons, is where you can make a real difference to a campaign and website. The sad thing is that CRO is very much under utilised or understood in South Africa.

The Chassis (Data & Analytics)

The metrics that come back from the car, are what the driver and engineers need to watch like a hawk. The telemetry in a race will enable both driver and mechanics to see future problems or areas of opportunity, by looking at trends in data. This is like the chassis of the car, because it underpins everything attached to the car. The right data and accurate data are more important than ever.

Are You Winning The Race?

We hope this helps paint the picture in a more user friendly manner and demonstrates how your performance marketing agency needs to be good at all the above the squeeze out the very best results for your brand or business.

If you wish to speak to us about your performance marketing, please contact us, for a free consultation session.