Onboarded a new client? “Yes!” Great!
Ready to fix their marketing and produce better results? “Absolutely!” Amazing!
But have you conducted an in-depth marketing audit? “Now, what is that?”
Don’t make any changes before you do it.
“Why?” Remember how they say in medicine, “The best treatment can only be given if the problem is diagnosed”? Well, it’s also true in marketing.
Your client came to you with a problem(s) they can’t identify. Your job isn’t only to fix these issues — it starts by identifying them.
And you can identify problems only by seeing the complete picture — by conducting an in-depth marketing audit.
Don’t know what I’m talking about, but still feel it may be important? Keep reading.
You’ll learn everything about marketing audits, including:
- Why they are necessary
- Types of marketing audits
- How to conduct one
- What is a marketing audit report
…with many examples, checklists, and resources so you know exactly how to conduct a successful marketing audit after onboarding new clients.
What is a marketing audit?
A marketing audit is a way to analyze where a business’s marketing growth is at any current moment in time.
By conducting a marketing strategy audit, you assess a company's marketing efforts, strategies, and performance to identify areas for improvement that could be optimized for overall effectiveness.
Objectives of a marketing audit
Conducting marketing audits helps categorize activities into three parts:
- Where they need to make adjustments
- Where they’re making progress
- Where they need to stop putting in efforts
Suppose, as a Facebook agency owner, you onboarded a new client who hired you to increase their conversion rates. Many things could affect conversion rates, so will you change their current marketing strategy?
You’ll try to find the loopholes by conducting a marketing strategy audit. You’ll see if the ad copy is suitable, the target audience is accurate, the graphics are well-designed, and every other aspect that could affect the campaign’s performance.
You'll identify opportunities and threats once you’ve analyzed the ad strategy. Then, you’ll customize the plan by prioritizing what needs improvement or elimination. This approach will help you get better results in less time and a limited marketing budget.
Why conducting a marketing audit is crucial
Marketing audits help you identify and avoid threats that, if ignored, can lead to serious problems. Let’s take the famous Blockbuster bankruptcy as an example.
Today, it’s gone, but did you know it was the market leader in the mid-2000s when Netflix struggled with a similar movie-rental model?
Two decades later, Netflix became a famous brand, and Blockbuster went bankrupt. So, what did Netflix do right and Blockbuster wrong?
Marketing audits revealed that Blockbuster underestimated the speed at which online streaming gained popularity, but Netflix adopted the upgrade graciously.
Ignoring the change, Blockbuster remained a movie rental company, while Netflix became an online streaming platform.
As a result of digitization and mobile popularity, no one wants to go to a Blockbuster store and pay to rent movies because they can stream online from the comfort of their homes. That’s why Blockbuster went down.
If only Blockbuster conducted a marketing audit early and adopted the model, it would still be known. Lesson learned: Marketing audits can help you identify potential threats early to fix them on time.
Elements of a marketing audit
Marketing audits can be complete or partial, depending on the assets assigned.
If your client hired you to manage Facebook ads, you’ll audit the ad strategy only. But if they hired you for complete marketing, you’ll conduct a comprehensive marketing audit.
However, these elements in a marketing audit are non-negotiables in both cases to set the foundation right:
- SWOT analysis: Identify and categorize Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats in your client’s business.
- Market research: Identify the exact market size, demand, and ideal customer for better targeting.
- Competitive analysis: Identify their strengths and weaknesses and your client’s unique business aspect.
After an in-depth analysis of these elements, you’ll have the latest picture of your client’s business performance. By studying competitors, you’ll know what’s not working for them and how to make it work for your client.
But don’t leave it here. To solidify your findings, you’ll conduct a marketing strategy audit.
What are the types of marketing audits for new clients?
- If your client hired you to improve their marketing strategies, you must conduct the following types of marketing audits.
- If your client hired you for a unique requirement, skip to that specific marketing audit.
1. Internal marketing audit
Internal marketing audits are about understanding the inner resources that may touch your marketing strategy. It includes reviewing the business structure, systems, brand values, identity, employees, and strategy.
When done regularly, an internal marketing audit helps you identify the availability of financial and internal resources to craft a budget-friendly marketing strategy.
It can also save you from unnecessary expenses. Understand this with an example of a business heavily investing in Facebook ads to acquire customers. Even with a bi budget, the sales were below average.
An internal marketing audit report revealed that duplicate campaigns were being created due to the lack of communication in the marketing team, which led to increased ad spending.
To avoid such a situation, a business should ideally conduct internal marketing audits periodically — quarterly or semiannually.
Here’s the internal marketing audit template for use.
2. External marketing audit
An external marketing audit helps you determine how factors outside the business affect your marketing strategy. It includes competitor analysis, market research, and audience behavior to benchmark your client’s marketing objectives.
Your client might have done it before launching their business or a new product to figure out their differentiating factor.
For marketing, conduct external marketing audits before launching new marketing campaigns to set clear expectations.
It can also save you from investing in the wrong resources. How? Suppose an organic beauty product brand wants to launch a new campaign to create brand awareness.
They were planning to target middle-aged women. But the external marketing audit report revealed that the young population in their late twenties is a better target based on their online buying habits.
Conduct external marketing audits regularly and before launches to set achievable targets.
3. Website audit
A website audit will help you improve your client’s online presence. It includes reviewing all parameters related to a website:
- Website design: Is it modern and attractive?
- User experience: Is the website quick to load? Easy to navigate?
- Topical authority: Is the website content following the cluster structure? Is the website positioning your client as an expert?
- Website page structure: Are there proper CTAs with each page? Is it easy to find contact information quickly?
In some cases, businesses do everything right, but the problem is their poorly performing website that takes minutes to load. Leaving it can affect your conversion rates negatively.
The classic example is Renault’s 1-second improve led to an increase in conversions by 13%.
Here’s the website audit template.
4. SEO marketing audit
An SEO marketing audit is a part of a website audit, but it’s better to do it separately to cover various aspects of SEO. You’ll audit in two parts: Technical and non-technical SEO.
- Technical SEO: Includes website speed, crawlability, indexability, mobile friendliness, website security, broken links, 404-page errors, structured data, mobile-friendliness, etc.
- Non-technical SEO: Includes content quality, on-page SEO (title tags, meta description, URLs, keyword optimization,) images, E-E-A-T guidelines, etc.
By conducting SEO marketing audits, you identify ignored areas.
For example, SinkusStudio noticed that their client’s website had 404 redirects and un-updated sitemaps. Once they fixed both, the traffic grew by 700% in 12 months.
To efficiently perform an SEO marketing audit, you must access your client’s Search Console to review current performance. Using Leadsie, you can get it in one click, simply by sharing your Leadsie link.
5. Content marketing audit
A content marketing audit is also part of a website audit, but it’s a good idea to do it separately because content is the deciding factor for your website’s performance.
By auditing website content, you’ll determine the following:
- Publishing frequency
- Good/poor performing pages
- Topical depth
- Topical authority
- Content strategy (TOFU-MOFU-BOFU)
- Image optimization
- On-page SEO
- Search intent
Content marketing audits will also help you understand audience behavior based on engagement and generate new ideas.
For example, Influence & Co audited content for FitOn (a fitness company) and found that they needed an authority-building approach to promote their new partnership.
The solution: Creating thought leadership content.
Here’s a content marketing audit template for your client’s website.
6. Google Analytics audit
You'll conduct a Google Analytics audit to analyze a website’s organic performance. The goal would be to increase website traffic and ensure GA collects data accurately.
Incorrect Google Analytics setup is a common reason businesses fail to understand user behavior. Remember the recent switch to the GA4 property, which no longer tracked audiences separately?
InFlow identified the problem for KEH (its client) by conducting an audit and creating a new data-collection solution to segment audiences.
In a regular analytics audit, look for factors like poor-performing pages, traffic sources, integration with other tools, account setup, data collection settings, etc.
Request access to your client’s Google Analytics data, which is easy to do using your Leadsie link.
Once you get it, use this Google Analytics audit template.
7. Social media marketing audit
A social media marketing audit should include analyzing your client’s presence on the marketing channel, its algorithms, content strategy, audience engagement, and branding to understand how to maximize the results.
There can be many reasons social media may not work for your client. The most common is the lack of understanding of the target audience.
Coca-Cola’s creative campaigns succeed because of its ability to conduct social media marketing audits and extract insights to understand its target audience, segment them, and create hyper-focused messaging.
To conduct a social media marketing audit, you’ll need access to your client’s social media accounts, which can be bothersome if you ask for access to individual accounts. Leadsie solves this problem by allowing clients to grant access using only one Leadsie link.
Here’s an Instagram marketing audit template that can be customized and used for other social media platforms.
8. PPC audit
If your client asked you to manage their ad strategy, begin with conducting an in-depth PPC audit. Examine factors like campaign settings, keyword targeting, ad copy, landing page quality, bid management, conversion tracking, budget allocation, etc., to understand their current position.
Businesses often struggle with ad creatives. An audit can tell you whether it’s the ad copy or the graphics you need to change. Diligent faced a similar problem. ScandiWeb identified and redefined Diligent’s product positioning towards software-based test instruments.
The result: increased revenue by 731%!
9. Sales audit
Identify the loopholes in your client’s sales strategy by reviewing factors like sales revenue growth, sales funnel effectiveness, sales team productivity, customer acquisition cost (CAC), customer lifetime value (CLV), sales process efficiency, sales forecasting accuracy, etc.
Fast-growing companies’ sales teams often can’t keep up with expansion — that’s why it’s crucial to understand the key products instead of launching more. Identify and prioritize your customers’ favorite products by performing a sales audit.
Use this sales audit template after getting access to your client’s CRM.
How to do a marketing audit for a new client
Once you identify what type of marketing audit you need to perform for your client, it’s time to plan how you’ll do it. Follow the steps below:
1. Set SMART marketing goals
The outcome of any marketing audit should be that it’s effective. And you can verify that only if you understand and achieve your marketing goals.
Set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound) goals with your client to set clear expectations.
Suppose I’m redefining a client’s Instagram ad strategy for a new product launch series to get better conversion than previous marketing campaigns. Here’s the SMART goal I’ve created for them:
Increase launch sign-ups by 20,000 (100%) using targeted Instagram ads in the next two months tracked through unique UTM parameters by boosting weekly conversions by 100% and cutting cost per sign-up by 15%.
Let’s see if this goal checks off each SMART element:
- Specific: It specifies the exact numbers, target platform, and medium (paid ads.)
- Measurable: It highlights I’ll measure sign-ups through UTM parameters in Instagram ads.
- Attainable: I’ve decided on this goal after reviewing past performance, competitive analysis, trends, and marketing investment. It’s not unrealistic but attainable.
- Relevant: The clients' marketing objectives and my SMART goals are the same — get more sign-ups.
- Timely: The target must be achieved within the next two months.
2. Get access to your client’s assets
The next step is to access your client’s assets you’ll be auditing. One way is to do this manually by contacting your client and requesting access to multiple accounts — it’s overwhelming and not fun.
A better way is the Leadsie way.
You’ll simply share your Leadsie link with your client, requesting access to all the marketing assets you need. They’ll grant the permission, and you’ll get access — a much simpler and fun way to provide seamless onboarding to your new client and build a great first impression!
Create your account on Leadsie and share your Leadsie link to get access quickly.
3. Collect data
Once you get asset access, conduct an in-depth marketing audit.
Start by asking your client if there’s any specific setting you should know about. Review basic settings, every feature, current marketing performance, and numbers, and document everything — at this stage, you shouldn’t make any changes but gather data.
4. Identify issues and organize data
After you have enough data, it’s time to organize it. Analyze data and start identifying opportunities and threats. You’ll divide the insights into three parts: needs improvement, doing well, and stop putting effort.
Once you’ve categorized the findings, deciding what you want to prioritize will be easier. Ideally, you’ll want a mix of short-term and long-term fixes to show quick results to your client while also improving their long-term strategy.
5. Create marketing strategies for each improvement
Based on your priority list, create marketing strategies for each modification. Determine how you’ll fix something and write processes in concrete action steps. Once all are done, solidify your marketing strategy by creating a final marketing audit report (more on this below.)
Talk with your client and show them your marketing audit report. Explain critical findings and your marketing strategy plan. Tell them exactly why you’re doing things this way and what to expect in the next few months.
6. Implement recommendations, track, and optimize
Start implementing the changes after your client approves your marketing strategies. But don’t just stop there — keep documenting every change and tracking results.
This will help you optimize for better results and brief your clients well.
How to do a marketing audit report
To explain the key findings and your action plan to your client, you must prepare a marketing audit report. Whatever you learned during the marketing audit process, you’ll document it in a marketing audit report to present to your client.
Elements of a marketing audit report
This marketing audit report should include essential elements like:
- A summary of the key findings and recommendations.
- The methodology used to conduct the marketing audit.
- Objectives and SMART goals decided.
- Findings and suggestions for improvement.
- Marketing strategies with actionable steps.
- Conclusion with results to be expected.
You may also want to include a SWOT analysis, target audience persona, competitor analysis, and market analysis if your client’s identified business profile does not match your findings.
Is this possible?
Yes, when it’s been a while since your client started the business, and they haven’t audited the market. Going back to the external marketing audit example, the organic beauty brand accidentally targeted the wrong audience segment (middle-aged women) for its new product launch.
If your client’s version differs from what you discovered, you must include everything in your report and explain the findings.
An effective audit report should cover every aspect of your marketing audit process. Ideally, after reading your marketing audit report, the client should clearly understand what’s wrong and what you’re doing to fix it.
Here’s a marketing audit report template for inspiration.
Case study: How Leadsie helped EmberTribe simplify marketing audits and client onboarding
EmberTribe is a growth marketing agency helping e-commerce companies scale their business into bigger brands, and they like to do it fast. Before Leadsie, the EmberTribe team often struggled with onboarding clients through marketing audits.
As EmberTribe believes, “The unmeasurable part is the client experience,” and onboarding is the first impression you make, so it has to be perfect.
Using Leadsie, EmberTribe now audits up to 50 clients and onboards at least 15 clients per month hassle-free while providing top-class onboarding.
Happy clients, happy agency, happy us. 🎉 Read the full case study here >>
Ready to supercharge your marketing audit process with Leadsie?
An effective marketing audit is essential to improve marketing efforts for your clients.
Requesting access to different marketing channels one by one can be tiresome and time-consuming, and let’s not forget the unpleasant client onboarding experience 😩
We don’t want you to upset your clients by making a dull first impression. We want you to take it to the next step by oversimplifying the process for them so they appreciate you!
That’s why we created Leadsie — to simplify conducting marketing audits and onboarding new clients for you. Request access to as many marketing platforms as you want in one go. Simply choose the assets you’d like access to and share your Leadsie link with your client.
They will grant permission, and you’ll get access. It doesn’t have to be complicated for you and your clients!
It’s more secure for everyone and saves a ton of time! Give Leadsie a try with our 14-day free trial…enter your email in the box below!