I saw a video of Alex Schultz who heads growth and analytics for Facebook talk about metrics and growth. He uses the analogy of a North Star. The founder of the startup steers the ship and should know the directions.
To sum up — The North Star is the most critical metric you should measure.
The metric which is most valuable to your startup is contextual to your business. I have several metrics going on in my hyper-local venture. There is the most important one which is how much money the business makes? Data points are spread across social media, the various websites, support requests, advertising enquiry forms, etc. The metrics on Google analytics and social media can itself be very difficult to analyse.
My North Star — Inbound Leads
I will measure the number of inbound leads I get from all platforms. i.e. 1) Social media 2) Website 3) Telephone calls 4) Referrals etc. Increasing this metric means I don’t need to spend time and efforts on marketing, sales and advertising. This would create a direct impact to the business volume growth. Once I measure and test where I am getting most of my leads, I would work backwards and try to make the process of these inbound leads generation smoother. These inbound leads are easier to measure, than the other metrics like social media engagements, content analysis, etc.
I have found my North Star, What’s your’s?