Data Storytelling for Marketers | Jennifer Nelson | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

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Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

9 Lessons (30m)
    • 1. Intro to Course

    • 2. What You Will Learn

    • 3. Traditional Storytelling Framework

    • 4. Crafting A Main Point

    • 5. Visuals

    • 6. Using Canva to Create Charts & Graphs

    • 7. Narratives in Data Storytelling

    • 8. In-Person Presenting Tips

    • 9. Final Thoughts

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About This Class

In this class you will learn the are of crafting a story out of your marketing analytics. If you are a marketer or if you run and manage marketing campaigns, you've probably been asked the question: "How is my campaign doing?" Did you know that there is an art to telling an analytics story so that action can be taken based on your findings?

This class will teach you the framework for putting together a compelling marketing presentation. You will learn how to identify interesting data points and turn them into stories that your audience (aka your client or boss) will want to hear. This class will also give you the skills to enlighten your audience on campaigns and prompt action.

Meet Your Teacher

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Jennifer Nelson

Let the bots do the repetitive tasks




Hey there, I'm Jenny! People IRL know me as the email girl :) Thank you for stopping  by! You'll find many classes are geared towards email marketing and other budget friendly channels that you control! I try to make my classes fun and engaging, and most important - PRACTICAL. Every single one of my classes include strategies that you can do TODAY!

A bit more about me‍:  I work with companies to implement marketing automation tools and develop automation strategies that drive engagement and increase revenue. I've spent over 15 years in the media and ad tech industry. My core experience comes from working in the heart of New York City’s advertising hub. My professional experience stems from working for both The New ... See full profile

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1. Intro to Course: Hi, guys. Is Jenny here? So for today's class, we're gonna learn about storytelling in Data Analytics when it comes to marketing campaigns . So if your marketing analysts a marketing coordinator, social media coordinator or anyone in your company who has to do some kind of explanation of how a campaign did, then you're gonna want to take this class story telling in Data analytics and marketing content to be a little bit confusing. Most students don't even know where to start. When it comes to thinking about what story are they telling? How are they even gonna pull the data and talk about it in a way that's interesting. There's so many data and numbers to report, How do you pick one main thing to talk about or one central storyline to focus on, So this class will be a great one for you. I hope that this is one that you can use and refer to whenever you're asked or tasked with putting together our Marketing Analytics campaign. So your class project for this course will be to put together ah, visual slide that tells a story of a piece of data that you found in one of the more recent marketing campaigns that you ran, I look forward to seeing what you came up with. Leave any questions, comments in the community section and be sure to leave a review I look forward to hearing from you. 2. What You Will Learn: welcome to storytelling for digital marketers. Before we get started, we're going to go into talking about what you'll specifically learn in this class. What are going to be some of the take aways you'll have so you can get out there and start creating your digital marketing presentations for analytics and campaign reporting, but will also just make sure you're in the right class and this is a class for you. So to start, we're gonna talk about traditional storytelling frameworks and how we can use those in our marketing presentations. That can be incredible tools when we want to actually tell a story that's narrative and interesting and entertaining and enlightening all at the same time. And we could do that by using traditional storytelling frameworks that writers and creators all use when they're crafting their own stories. We're gonna talk about How do you find particular out liars that help you craft an interesting data story and what's gonna be the main point of your analytics story? Believe it or not, when we're presenting data and Analytics, it's not just to the point is not to tell about everything that happened that be too much and way too boring. We want to pick out mean things that make this particular story interesting. We're gonna also talk about how to use visuals in your presentations, and we'll actually have a walk through of using camp, which is a very easy tool for graphic design. And you don't have to be a graphic designer to use it. You also don't have to be an Excel wizard to use it. We'll also talk about forming interesting stories and narratives for your presentations. And then the last power it will end with is me talking a little bit more about public speaking and presenting marketing stories, but any kind of stories that you're telling on stage in person. So on LinkedIn In their 2018 most needed skill sets, they ranked data storytelling data presentation as number seven under lists. And you can see here just with the going salaries for these types of rules are so you may want to consider being able to one, have the skill set and then looking for jobs that really require the skill sets needed within a marketing role. And one of those is being the single person, the one person who can basically pull the data and tell a compelling story and be able to provoke action that needs to be done. So why I learned how to tell compelling data stories. Well, like I said, the need for more data storytellers it's going to increase in the future. So you're gonna lock yourself into a very ready, important job market if you do learn how to, um, tell interesting stories. Also, because the amount of increasing self service marketing platforms we can all run Facebook ads for ourselves, we can all do a B testing for ourselves. Using interesting tools, we can create landing paid optimization tools. All these things are self service tools. You don't have a dedicated sales rep for account management team to come back and pull the reports for you. If you're doing anything self service, you also have to self service your own reports. So being able to be the person that can pull those reports and tell that story or just yourself, you're gonna need to pull out data and be able to craft a story. It's going to be important. Communication of insight is super important. Just because we see the data, it doesn't mean, it means anything to us until we pull it together into a compelling story. And then any insights that we're going to present, they just need to be understood before you even act on them. You can't just see that. Hey, open rates were 30% and decide what to do. You don't know what to do, and you're until you're able to compare until you're able to understand historical benchmarks or anything like that. So now that we've got that out of the way, now we're ready to talk about traditional storytelling frameworks used in marketing. 3. Traditional Storytelling Framework : so there's a particular craft of telling great stories, and we're gonna use the frameworks that many amazing writers and filmmakers have used in order to create compelling stories. We're gonna use free tech storytelling framework. You've probably seen this framework before. It's pretty typical when it comes to great writing and storytelling. You start with an introduction. You have your rising points or supporting fax. Then there's a climax. And then there's a downfall, which slowly sleeps into the conclusion. We're gonna use this for our marketing presentations saying concept. Nothing really has to change. So let's put this in the context of marketing. So for the introduction, you want to set the hook. You want to tell your audience why this presentation matters. You want to make sure use that you keep them interested in sticking around for you to present that main point that's coming up later. You want us just kind of introduced. Hey, I noticed that there was this deviation from last month and let them know that you're about to present what that deviation was and what you found out about it and give some little background and some contacts. Maybe you want to present some benchmarks of historical data that you talked about or you looked at the month previous. After you have your introduction, then you want to go into the rise in insights. So these are just basically your findings, your simple data sets that you need to present in order to build up to where you're gonna get to when you get to your climax. So just report to data, as is. It could be very, you know, bullets. Here's the Here's our data and we're gonna talk about how you incorporate these into visual data. But you just want to tell us what happened and let us know interesting problems that you found along the way. And then, of course, you're holding on until you get to your main point. And once you get to your main point, that climax this should be your ah ha moment. You want to tell us what was the main insight that you found the main thing that you wanted particularly work on for next month? In order to get anything done, we need to have focused. We need to have goals done so you can't work on and improve 18 different things at a time. So the point of your Anna looks presentation is to choose one main thing that is gonna be a particular focus for the month coming up the climax of your presentation or that Ah ha moment should present what it is that you found as your main insights. So anything that was particularly interesting out of all the data that you looked at, what particular thing do you want to craft out and say, Hey, audience, listen to this. And this was my ah ha moment, cause I found out why this happened, and that's when we will get into our conclusion. So your solution to this this ah ha moment that you found, what is it that you recommend doing? How do you plan to solve this problem? What are your next steps after you figured out what the problem was, And then how do you What's your recommendation? You're going to use visuals to show any kind of results, should take your audience into what it was that you found when you went ahead and found that particular main insight that you were looking for 4. Crafting A Main Point: In order to find the main point for your analytics presentations, you need to find the most interesting story that you can tell. And the way you do that is you're gonna need to start training your eye toe. Look for outliers now. Typical steps in reporting data's that first we have to download. Ah, very exhaustive. See SV Excel spreadsheet. Now, no one likes to just look at those. There's a lot of data to look at. So how do we find the thing that's most interesting? We're gonna look at a sample, see, SV file That has a ton of data that we can look at. And I'm going to start helping you train your eye toe. Look for something that's interesting within that particular CSD. Now, when it comes to looking for outliers what we're really looking for our deviations, deviations from the norm. So now when I say deviations, I'm saying something that looks like the campaign did amazingly well. So that's a good deviation or something that makes look makes it look like the campaign did not so well. I'd call that a bad deviation. So a good deviation is great. We can present it as a win and an opportunity that we can further act upon to keep on improving those winds. Now, bad deviation you don't want to ignore, does you don't want to just exclude those from your reports because they don't make you look good. No, you want to present them as opportunities for improvement. And you can come in as a superhero because you particularly found that bad deviation, and you're gonna present what you're going to do about it. Let's have a look at this. CSP. This is a CSP download from a campaign And is it? These are a couple of email campaigns that ran over several days in a month, and we're gonna particularly look at this and start to train our eyes for something to look for. So if you're an email marketer, you're pretty used to looking at reports such open rates click through rates, revenue conversion rates, etcetera. So that's what this is now. We want us first choose a particular metric that we're gonna focus on. So for this particular case, I'm going to say, Let's focus on revenue. So if you guys look at the revenue column about six columns down, I want you to start to just take about 20 seconds and look for two outliers. I want you to look for a good outlier. So good deviation. So something that basically tells you that Well, one of these campaigns did amazingly well, and I want you to look for a bad deviation. So a lower outlier something that tells you Whoa, this campaign didn't do so well, I'll give you 10 seconds. Okay, So if you were looking really closely, you would have found that something that was particularly great in this report was a campaign that ran on October 5th. Now that's an outlier in the revenue metric, because if you look at all the other campaigns, they're nowhere near $700. That should basically pose your question of why did this particular campaign generates $700 while the other campaigns on average, generate about 203 $100 or $100? Really? Okay, so that's a good deviation. That's something that we want to present as a win. So that could be one of our topics for a presentation. The second deviation is a bad deviation. So it deviate this campaign on October knife deviated from the norm, but not in a great way. It produced $35 compared to the rest of the campaigns. Why? Why was it so low on that day? So that's what we're looking for. That's what we're training or I two c when it comes to looking for outliers in this massive spreadsheet that we pulled. So when it comes to the good deviation that I discussed with the $700 that should kind of make us wonder. OK, what was it in that particular campaign? We may find that well, we promoted this one day sale, and it did amazing for us. So there might be something about putting urgency in our email campaigns that weaken Dio when it comes to outlier that didn't perform as well. $35 email campaign. We may deduce. Well, you know what? We look into that campaign and we noticed that there wasn't a call to action button, so that could be one of the out takes from that is saying, Well, you know what? When we put a call to action button in our email campaigns, it hopes to improve revenue per email campaigns so that might be your recommendation for the next campaigns going forward. Don't do this next time. Don't not put a call to action in your email campaign. So that's the way we want to create this main point and this Ah ha moment for presentations . 5. Visuals: visuals are an important part of your marketing presentations. They help to enlighten your audience, to see the data presented in chart format or in crafts, and it basically makes your presentations easier to understand. And it helps to demonstrate those outliers that we just discussed. So we can say average order value had a sharp increase this month. Or better yet, we can show that, and that's gonna have a more impactful effect to your audience, being able to show them that. Hey, there was a sharp increase, an average order value from $20 at the beginning of October to mid October, where it jumped up to $80 then trended on average. From there, it's better to show your data than to simply just tell it so ways to visualize your data, you can use charts you can use. InfoGraphics definitely use images where they fall into place and then interactive visualizations. If you have tools that allow for that in the next video, we're gonna show you how you can use a tool called Camba. Teoh easily create charts for your marketing presentations. You don't need any design skills at all, and you don't need excel skills 6. Using Canva to Create Charts & Graphs: Alright, guys. So we're gonna look at a particular tool called Camba, which can help you create charts and graphs using the data that you have from your see SV or Excel file. It's really easy to use and it's actually free forever, so you can use the free version just fine. But of course, if you want to upgrade you, certainly can they believe they have their particular price points that you can choose from . So, in order to create our first presentation, I'm just gonna go into my account. And what we're looking at is the main page of campus. So I would assume that you guys are presenting a presentation from scratch, which you can use camel toe, actually, put all of your data into your presentation. So start with the headline of your presentation and do whatever you need to from there. There's some beautiful templates in here that you can use, but I'm not gonna focus on that for this presentation. When I'm particularly going to focus on is where you can find the charts that you need to use in order to create the graphs that you will need. So let me just supply this over. So in Canada, when you're in the main page section of your first presentation, there's a section called Elements. Go ahead and click on elements and then scroll down over here to this chart section. Someone just gonna open all of them up. So you'll see here that you have a lot of different types of charts that you can choose from bar charts, line charts, pie charts. Usually you're probably going to be using the bar chart. So let's choose that. And right now we're just looking at a particular bar chart. We can see the different items for the X Y X axis and why access If you guys are familiar with that when it comes to charts, but we don't need to pay attention. Is that one particular feature that I love about canvas down here, where it says pace data from spreadsheet? That's all we need to do Paste that copied that data from the spreadsheet that were using to collect the data and then paste it here. Now, one thing to note when we're pasting that data canvas bar charts are super simple. Let's look at my data from my Excel spreadsheet so As you can see here I have my campaign month, which is January, February, March, all the way down to April and then I have my open rate. Okay, So all I'm gonna do actually, for this it's just copy and paste of data, because what's going to go on the vertical line is basically going to be my months, if that's the way I want it. And then maybe I'll in a report, my open rates, um, showing them across the Y axis. So I'm just gonna copy and paste that go back into my presentation, gonna pace the data that I just got from my Excel spreadsheet. And as you can see, it will pee here very easily. Now that's all I have to do. Now. I have a beautiful chart that shows me my open rates presented by month, and I could see here April was awesome. It was amazing. And I may want to do some tweaks. Let me just maybe increased that that size of that fun. Let's try 28. That looks great. And we're only presenting one columns. We don't really have these colors to choose from or just we just have one column. So we'll see it here. And that's all we have to do. Now we have a chart that we have that shows open rates across, um, our campaigns over the different months, the next thing I don't want to do it is of course, just label that I'm gonna go ahead and add text here and now title my char e. Let's go ahead and increase that font a bit and oh, been raised by And there you have it. That's it. You're ready present to present this data as open rates by month, and now it's individual format. 7. Narratives in Data Storytelling: having a narrative is key. When it comes to telling your marketing stories, it allows you to explain the data that you're presenting in a more interesting way. As we know, data is boring. It's not fun at all. It's not fun to look at. Definitely not fun to hear about unless you make it fun. So married have allows you to give context and commentary to the story that you're trying to present. Decisions are based on emotion, not logic. So when we're presenting data just because you present the numbers, anything condemn E V eight from there. So you being able to frame the contacts will allow your audience to get a deeper emotion for that particular number data set that you're presenting. So let's say revenue was up this month instead of saying revenue was up $2000 this month. Give it some context and say revenue was $2000 this month, up from 20% from the last month, due to a small tweak in the headline. Now that makes that data set particularly more interesting because it frames the story. So our audience knows Well, this is why this happened, so maybe we should do this, so they're already thinking ahead as you want them to. And you already have the answer for that because you basically presented to it in front of them. So that's why it's important to have a narrative to the data that you're presenting. Once you have your visuals created, it helps to also give back radar contact. So your audience is gonna look at a chart that shows open rate variations month to month being able to give context to that. So don't just show that you can say open rates increased in April because of the subject line changes that you made last month. 8. In-Person Presenting Tips: presenting in person is an excruciating experience. None of us want to do it. But I'll tell you, once you start getting better practice at it, it becomes something that is easy to do, just like walking on the street, talking with your friends. So we're gonna use this section of the course to talk about presentation tips when you're presenting live in front of an audience. Also know that these tips are not just representing marketing data analytics tips. This can go for any kind of live presentations that you're doing. I remember in college I was the worst presenter ever, and there was a time when I actually cried on stage. It was when I was getting my master's degree, was about 24 years old, really young at that time, compared to the rest of the students in my class who had experience in the corporate world and had experience presenting myself none at all. And in order to pass any of the classes, you had to do a final presentation on state, and I remember one of those days really well had a presentation partner. He was completely ready. I, on the other hand, was not When I came on stage, I got to about three words. And then I just started. My voice started cracking and I started crying. And my professor at the time was not forgiving. And he pretty much told me that I'm not gonna get far in the world if I do not know how to present on stage. And that devastated me. And I thought, Oh, my gosh, I This is horrible. I can't even do this. And this professor told me that I won't succeed because of my horrible presentation skills , and it was just a matter of me being completely shy and completely introverted. Now there's something about me. If someone tells me that I can't do something, figure out a way to get really good at it. So I fast forward. A few years I went into a sales role and trust me, all of my sales presentations weren't great when I just started. But the simple method of practicing and practicing because I had to do it was part of my job. Everyday sales pitch of presentation, and through the years, you get comfortable with it. You're not completely better at it, but you get comfortable And then after that I joined Toastmasters, which is basically a public speaking group that's pretty much like a safe zone for learning how to speak. So I do recommend joining something like that if you have a little stage fright or have a fear of public speaking and then fast forward even more years later, I started teaching and doing instructional classes for students live in front of me, and that is the ultimate practice of it all, because I'm presenting a deck for an hour or two hours, every single class I haven't that is the best level of training that you can have. So for me, it just became a matter of putting myself in situations where I actually had to present. And it helped for me and you learn as you go and now it's I'm at a point or I'm on stage and it doesn't even matter whom, speaking to the nervousness in the cracks and my voice actually don't even happen. So I want to teach you some techniques that you can use, and they're the same techniques that I use and that sometimes they'll still use them today if I need to, to make sure that I can deliver a presentation, live on stage or live in front of her room and delivered in a way that is supposed to be very comfortable for me. And then, obviously my audience understands story that I'm trying to tell. So tip number one, I'll tell you, is about loosening your body and taking a few breaths before you do even get on stage. And this could be a simple as it's an hour long meeting that you have, and you're the last one to present 15 minutes. You have whatever it is and before you're about to present, just got the room for a little bit and do a couple of stretching exercises now stretching exercise. It's nothing big. All you have to do is just one thing that I do is take take my arm here when it put it over my head and just kind of stretch. Usually that's one of the best ones for me. I'll do it on both sides. Also do one that's raising. It's really about kind of stretching this upper torso area, so that way you just loosening because one thing that kind of gets our voice cracking and gets really nervous. And when our joints and our body is just super tightened up because getting on stage in front of people, it's just a nervous thing where our body tightens up and that's exactly what's happening. So if you do those stretching exercises before, it's really like your prepping your body to yes, it's still gonna type typing up a bit. But it's gonna take a lot longer to do that and trust me as your own stage and you see that your audience is with you, not against you. Those nerves start to succeed, but you come on stage immediately and tense up. It's kind of like it goes downhill from there, so you just want to get loosened up before you get on stage. The other thing that I do before presenting it take beat breast. So again you know that you're gonna do some stretching exercises for about 60 seconds. And in those 60 seconds as well, take a deep breath because that calms you down. Also, I actually have to remember if you noticed that I speak very fast. Taking deep rough allows me to kind of slow that pace. That's one of my little things that I tend to do a lot. So whatever it is for you, just make sure that those deep breaths just tend to level you out and just calm you down. Okay, so that's what tip number one tip number two is all about. So it's this body position in this body movement and one of the things that we tend to do a lot of myself. I do it a lot, too. Is move our hands a lot when we're speaking, and that's all fine, because that's the way we speak when we're speaking to our friends, right? But it can get a little distracting on stage. So one thing I advise you to do is just take your pinky finger. If you find that you you have unearthed move your hands a lot, take your pinkie finger and just hold it down in front of you. Trust me, no one will even care. Pay attention that you're holding your your pinky finger. I don't think that that's distracting at all. It's way less distracting than kind of constantly doing this for the whole time you're speaking. So take your pinky finger, hold it, let it ground. There's something about touching, you know, You just your hand or yourself that just grounds you and calm is your down a bit. So that's another tip. But I'll say it also had just has to do with body position. Right? So if you're presenting and you have a screen right here in front of you that you're presenting on, make sure you're to the side of it. Whichever side works best for you. No, this that your audience is not looking at you the whole time while you're presenting, they're probably looking at that screen. Even if that scream has said the same thing for the last five minutes, they don't really know where to look because they're just They hear what you're saying. But they're looking at the screen. Yes, you look great. They want to look at you, but really, a lot of times you'll see they're looking at the screen. And that actually may help calm you down because I think one of the big fears is that Oh my gosh, everyone's looking at me. Pictures is they're really not, Um, we want them to look at us. We want them to be engaging and that may happen as you kind of learn to really, how do you work the stage in a life format? But until you're there, just have that confidence. You kind of couldn't stay still. That's not a bad thing to just stay still a little bit, especially if it helps ground you and make sure that you have your presentations of the side of you and you can present in that way another tip that I have for you have to do with preparation for any kind of questions or surprise things that might come up during the presentation. One of the things that makes us nervous is when we feel that we're not competent enough to be on stage, and that happens from questions that maybe ask. Listen, we don't know any and all of the questions that could possibly be asked from anyone in our audience at any given time, no matter how much of an expert we are. So be prepared to answer the questions that you may know, of course. But then also to hold off for a kind of give a little diversion from the questions that you don't know and when you know a question. So you know you're the expert in your field. You know what you've done. You know what you're presenting? Have a little bit of kind of primitive insight into questions that might be asked if there's something in your presentation that you know is not totally clear just from looking at it or even from use discussing it a bit. Have, ah, question that you know that the audience may ask and haven't answer, ready for it and just kind of keep it in your head. And that way, if someone asked, you're ready because one of the things that trips us up is were not expecting a question. Very easy Question that someone may asked. We know the answer, but because we're on stage and we're already nervous, we don't deliver that answer correctly, and it does make us look incompetent when we're really not incompetent at all. We know the answer just that on the spot questioning can be kind of hard to try to predict the questions that you think will happen, being able to predict a lot of things that within presentations helps a ton. Now for those questions that you don't know the answer to. Don't worry about those. You can always divert them and just say, I'll get back to you on that. I'll look further into the details on that and answer that question. I'll shoot an email with all the answers, So don't go too crazy about those kind of questions. Just know that you can come back to them. Listen, speaking on stage for anyone is not always a fun thing. We just have to know that our audience is here to support us. They have are black, they're not looking to see us fail. So if you know that, that will hope. You know that. Hey, I can do this. I'm in this presentation. Everyone wants to hear what I have to say. So it's my job to do the best job that I can do and just deliver something that conveys the point across and keeps my audience engaged. So one thing that you can always do is add a little humor gifts. I feel work really well in presentation, and those are just the little animated images or videos that you can put on. Screen means work really well. If you have a funny mean that support your presentation. Go ahead and put that in. Make a little joke on stage. Usually, when you get the audience laughing with you, it's a good reminder that hates the audience is on my side. So do anything that you can before you start your presentation to just loosen the room and loosen yourself. Everyone is on your side. So you have this presentation. It's yours, own it and do a great job at it because you know you can. 9. Final Thoughts: Alright, guys. So you've just gone through an overview of how to put together a digital marketing analytics report for the campaigns that you've run for your company, for your team or as an agency for one of your clients? I hope that this has been helpful, really. It's just all about putting the steps together in your report, making sure you form an interesting story. So that way your audience is compelled and they understand what are the actionable next steps? The particular site that's useful is slide share. Now I'm gonna point you to a specific link that is on an e book on how the pros turned marketing analytics into effective marketing strategies. I'll send that linked to you, and you can go through all the types of digital marketing campaigns out there, whether you're in a CEO, whether you're doing email marketing, whether you're doing social media, you can understand how the pros actually turn analytics into interesting and compelling stories, and I look forward to seeing a sample from one of your marketing presentations in the class projects