Building a basic dashboard in looker Data Studio is easy, you add your data source, select your charts, select your dimensions and metrics. But what value does that add to you? After all most digital platforms allow you some kind of visualization. So what value can your Looker expert bring to your data?

  1. Strategy for analytics and data visualization – Majority of marketing managers and marketing agencies report on the “what”, with very limited if any information on “why”. For example, reporting on impressions or cost does not provide any context. Showing year over year, or quarter over quarter has trending, adding a line graph can show you seasonality. As DataStudio Freelancer, focusing on the strategy of the dashboard is important, every metric and widget, has to explain why, and why does it matter. Having too much information may cause the wrong conclusion to be made, not enough data or data that is not useful, makes the dashboard not useful. Therefore, hiring a strategic analyst for your dashboard visualization is so important.
  1. Combining Data Sources in DataStudio – The value of a looker expert is to be able to merge different data sources in the right way. For example, you may want to use historical conversions from google analytics universal and combine it with GA4 conversions based on dates. Your Looker Data Studio Expert can make sure it is done the right way. Another example, is if you want to combine your cost from multiple channels and do a custom calculation on cost per acquisition for overall marketing spend. There is a maximum number of sources you can combine with your DataStudio, however, there are third party tools such as Funnel that would be able to do it, alternatively, your looker freelancer can find other solutions.
  2. Normalizing Dimensions – The normalization of dimensions such as campaigns,  ad groups, channels or any other dimension you may have. This can be done by using the CASE formula. Being a Looker DataStudio expert, there are many ways to group different dimensions. The reason to normalize your data is if you are combining your Google Analytics source/medium with your channels, you want the names to match. Another reason if you are doing pacing for multiple campaigns under the same budget. There are many other reasons to categorize, group or standardize your data and your looker expert can help you.
  3. Custom Calculations – Displaying data in a bar graph is easy, what’s hard is doing custom calculations, an example would be calculating your MROI on your combined data. Another example, is custom calculations on combined data for example, your DRR or pacing adjustment that you should make. Another example of a custom calculation, is if you are a retailer and you want to estimate how much revenue a button is generating in the live store. What an As a DataStudio Expert, we help marketing agencies build out dashboards with the calculations that make sense for their business.
  4.  Automation – despite having Looker DataStudio or another BI tool, that can be automated many agencies still copy and paste graphs from excel and load it as an image into data visualization tool. This defeats the purpose of having such a tool. Looker is used to display data in real time or close to it. While some use Google Sheet to populate the data manually, and while sometimes its one of the only solutions, there are third party API tools that can be used to automate it. For example, on a cheaper scale you have PowerMyAnalytics which connects most of your digital marketing sources, a bit more pricy is Supermetrics which has more connectors and finally the most expensive is Funnel.io which can ingest automatic reports by email and help with some normalization as well. The right analyst can find the right solution for your business, based on requirements, budgets and sources.
  5. Getting Insights Out of DataStudio – Looker DataStudio has many ways to gain insights, from trendline add-ons to your line graphs to pivots, maps and waterfalls, visualizing the data they way it makes the most sense for the metrics make it easy to get insights. If your analytics freelancer sets it up the right way, anyone should be able to look at your dashboard and get to the same conclusion. This is the power of the image, if your agency is spending time describing or explaining, then your dashboard was not set up in the right way. After all, numbers are universal.
  6. Advanced Features – There are advanced features that analysts can use to help with insights and visualization. Here are some features of Looker DataStudio that can be useful:
    • Conditional Formatting – In pivot or table view if you want to highlight an insight you can do it automatically, for example, if cost per lead has increased or if number of leads go below a certain number, you can let your team know to pay attention.
    • Trendline – This is useful to see directionally if your trend is going in the right direction. We often use it to exclude seasonality, and when you have large amounts of data it maybe hard to see the bigger picture.
    • Sharing – You can schedule a report to be sent at a specific time interval. This will ensure that everyone gets the data they need when they need it.
    • Theme Layout– You can use theme to customize your pages to match your brand colors, this is especially helpful when working with marketing agencies who have multiple clients. This will ensure consistency as well as being on brand.
    • Embedding Report – You can embed DataStudio into your other BI reports or add it to internal website, or even external. This way your KPIs can be accessed at the right time and the right place. For those who value security, you can customize who can view it with sharing permissions.

These are just some advantages of working with a looker DataStudio expert.  From their strategic approach to building your dashboard, to implementation and automation. Typically, there should be no or very limited Looker DataStudio maintenance if the report was build correctly. There are many benefits of hiring a DataStudio Freelancer including:

  • Strategic Build – Most agencies or companies have marketing managers build their own dashboards where majority do not really understand what data is available and how to get insights from it, others have analysts that understand data, but do not understand business or marketing strategy to support the data available. That is where a DataStudio strategist comes in place.
  • Utilizing Best Practices – A DataStudio Expert can implement best practices for your data visualization. For example, using a widget for Month Over Month for your digital marketing activities, building a table to look at your cost per lead per source, as well as a trendline for leads over time is just some of the widgets that are necessary for your dashboard.
  • Automation – They can make sure that your team does not waste time by pulling reports manually, but rather work with your team to find a solution that is automatically generating the providing the insights they need to optimize their marketing.
  • Decreasing Time – Typically building a dashboard takes less than a week from strategy to concept to execution. There is no need to delay launching a dashboard due to internal resource constraints. Also, an expert can do it at a fraction of the time it would take someone internal to build.
  • Cost Savings – While there is a cost involved in hiring a freelancer, typically it is cheaper than having a full-time analyst.

Hiring a Looker Expert:

When hiring a DataStudio Freelancer, it is important to consider a few things. Their experience, what solutions they offer to your specific needs as well as the time and cost of building your dashboards. At StrategicDB a DataStudio consulting company, we typically build dashboards from a few days to 2-3 weeks for Fortune 500 complicated dashboards with nine-digit marketing budgets. We have build hundreds of dashboards on multiple platforms and we start with understanding your business and marketing strategy followed by what data is available, and finally we build out the concept. Once the reports are build, we will discuss what changes are needed before finalizing the process.  We typically do not make any changes to the dashboards unless there is a new data source that is needed to be added or strategically there is a different need.

Whatever your business, B2B or B2C, you have a small marketing budget or a large one, you want to focus on your product, sales or marketing data, or app data, we got you covered. Contact us to schedule a quick 15 minute call to discuss how we can help your company or agency.