Putting together a dashboard to keep track of your law firm’s marketing KPIs (key performance indicators) is one of the best ways to organize and visually display the results of your marketing campaigns. A well-built dashboard can help your team to stay on point and to ease communication between marketers and decision makers, making it easier for everyone to stay on the same page and keep things moving in the right direction.
The exact KPIs that should be tracked will depend largely on what your law firm is trying to do with its current marketing campaigns. They may be consistent for long periods of time, or they may change somewhat frequently as you go after different goals. No matter what metrics you’re tracking, though, there are some dashboard design practices you can use to make sure that the end result is both easily understandable and thoroughly informative.
Choose Your Platform
There are several paid services on the web that will allow you to build different types of dashboards, but in many cases all you need is a spreadsheet program like Excel or Google Sheets. Google Sheets, in particular, makes it very easy to share your finished product with colleagues. See: Useful Google Sheets Add-ons For Law Firm Marketers.
Clearly Define Your Purpose And Audience
Both the information you will include in your dashboard and how you present it will depend on what the purpose of the dashboard is and who it is intended for. The firm’s partners and the marketing department should be in sync about the purpose and type of information to track. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. The information in your dashboard should adhere tightly to what your audience wants.
Group Metrics Logically
You will most likely have data that falls into several distinct groups. These groups of information should be laid out together on your dashboard to make everything as easy to understand as possible.
For example, you may have several statistics covering what users do on your firm’s website and another group of statistics showing how people have reacted to social media advertisements. These two groups should be clearly separated in their own respective spaces.
Use Charts Where It Makes Sense
Solid numbers are good, but charts in the right places help people to absorb key information points quickly and easily. You shouldn’t go overboard and start dropping charts in just because you can, but think about places where they’ll help to illustrate the overall picture your dashboard is designed to convey.
Use Consistent Naming Conventions
Some words can mean different things to different people depending on their point of view. On the other hand, one person might use two different words that mean the same thing and confuse others. Neither is a good outcome. This is why it’s important to establish and use consistent names for each of the statistics included in your KPI dashboard.
Stick To One Time Frame
Dashboards are often used to see how things compare or correlate with each other over a specific period of time. If statistics are presented in different time frames, making these comparisons becomes much more difficult. It’s important to make sure that all statistics are based on the same amount of time, such as monthly, quarterly, or yearly.
Avoid Unnecessary Clutter
Once you get going, it’s easy to just keep tacking on more numbers. This, however, can lead to a lot of unnecessary clutter that actually makes your dashboard harder to understand rather than conveying more information. It’s important to think about whether or not each piece of data is really relevant to what you are trying to do.
This is not to say that you should have a hard limit for the number of KPIs you include in any dashboard. The point is just to be aware of what is, indeed, relevant. In some cases, five or six stats might be all you need. In other cases it may be totally justified to include 15 or 20.
Think About Viewing Devices
With modern computers, tablets, and cellular phones, it’s important to consider where your KPI dashboard will be viewed most often. There is obviously a big difference between what you can easily read on a 24-inch desktop monitor and a seven inch tablet.
Keeping track of your law firm’s marketing KPIs on a dashboard is a great way to gain valuable insights into what’s working and what’s not. With the right information and good design practices, you’ll have a tool that helps both inform and guide your organization as you set new marketing goals.