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Roll-Up Reporting and Why Multi-Channel Marketers Need It

May 11, 2021
July 20, 2023

One of the many challenges facing a business with multiple locations or channels is aggregating data to report on the performance and effectiveness of the entire brand into a single report. If the GM wants to see all the marketing performance data across multiple locations in one marketing dashboard, you can either VLook up in Excel and cry yourself to sleep in spreadsheets, or set up a roll-up report.

Equipped with data sets you trust and a solid strategy on how to measure marketing performance at a high level, the experience of creating a reliable roll up report can be less painful.    

Let’s define roll-up reporting and then discover how franchise and multi-channel marketers all utilize the technique to measure holistic health of their brand.

What is Roll Up Reporting?

Roll up reporting enables an agency, or brand managing several locations, websites, domains, or mobile apps, to compare individual units, as well as overall performance.

Whether it’s multiple Google Ads accounts, geofenced programmatic campaigns, or Facebook campaigns for multiple retail locations, roll up reports leverage one report to provide a concise snapshot.

Creating a Multichannel Roll Up Report

The higher the level of insights required from a multichannel or roll up report, the more important the data pipelines leading to those outputs. 

In order to take advantage and implement roll up reporting, it’s important to be familiar with the way marketing data pipelines are structured and channels measured, before reports are prepared.

Establish Marketing Performance Metrics

Only the most salient and insightful data is required in a roll up report. It’s important to ensure the metrics you use to measure the efficacy of multi-location/channel campaigns matches your business goals and strategy. 

  • What are you seeking to measure in your roll up report? The metrics for brand performance or market share are different from channel-specific metrics, so understanding the types of effects you’d like to see can dictate how you set up measurements in your reporting.

  • How are you going to present the data? Visualizations need to be aligned with the marketing strategy and stated goals. To create a sense of momentum, illustrate insights that can be attached to action items. 

Source the Data

Reliable high level reporting is only possible with datasets and calculations you can trust. Whether it’s in a spreadsheet or on a dashboard, marketing performance data lives in countless different proprietary boxes these days, and in various states of preparedness. 

Connecting all of your marketing performance data into one presentation is time consuming and integrity can be an issue. Ensuring data integrity at the granular level is the only way to create trustworthy high level reporting. 

A few important questions to ask about data sources before jumping into a roll up report are;

  • Where is the data?
  • What shape is it in?
  • Does it require special processing?
  • Any extra calculations required?
  • Can data pipelines be automated at scale?

Creating The Roll Up

With a clear vision on the final presentation and a firm grasp on scalable data pipelines you can trust, creating a multichannel rollup report is much easier, as long as you create a compelling data story. It can be easy to fill a deck with disassociated graphs and charts that don’t really say anything about marketing performance at a high level. To avoid that, make sure your roll up reports on:

  • Conversions. How is marketing driving total conversions, across all channels?
  • Channel Effectiveness. Which channels or locations are performing best?
  • Pathways. Does aggregate data reveal alternative pathways to purchase? 

Benefits of Roll Up Reporting

With roll-up reporting, marketers don’t have to export data from different destinations and process it manually in order to measure overall performance.  Roll up reporting automates this process. 

Roll up reports show data that is aggregated from the properties you’re seeking to measure. Collective acquisition, behavior, and conversion data can all be linked into a roll up property.

Another interesting benefit to roll up reporting, is improved accuracy for tracking session data across domains. Roll-up reports also can provide insight into cross site, or cross-app customer journeys. 

Other global performance metrics like total unique visitors are a great use case for roll up reports, but aggregating data can also reveal larger trends in sub categories that might be missed at a granular level. 

While it’s possible and indeed necessary to gather data on every touch point, following isolated swings and shifts without comparing them to larger trends can create volatility. 

Other benefits of roll-up reporting include;

  • Multi-Channel Attribution. Assign values to each sales channel to measure growth.
  • Identify Acquisition Channels. Group and categorize your touchpoints and sales channels.
  • Identify Assisted Conversions. Multi-channel reporting can reveal broad attribution models.
  • Clarify Conversion Paths. Identify customer trends that lead to high conversion rates.

An Example of A Proficient Roll-Up Report

Here’s an example of a digital marketing report for a multi-location business, that clearly gives the reader at-a-glance metrics on ad campaign performance, while also providing insights and interpretation. 

In Conclusion

Curating high level, trusted insights from marketing campaigns performing on various channels in various locations is the modern marketers headache; roll-up reporting is the cure. With data pipelines you trust, metrics that reflect your goals, and presentations that illustrate and iterate toward the next campaign, roll up reports are an essential addition to your marketing reporting stack. 

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