Why are C-levels still focused on Page Views and Hits? Because other C-levels are. When bosses are told Page Views are important, that is what they will consider important even if page views aren’t germane to their business goals.

I have never hidden the fact that I am a professional wrestling fan, and have been since I can remember. This may embarrass my parents, colleagues, ex-girlfriends and future ex-girlfriends, but I unapologetically love professional wrestling.

Currently fans of wrestling are complaining about WWE’s “Did You Know” graphics during the commercial breaks.

What follows is an innocuous factoid, usually about the vastness of WWE’s viewing audience (branded the WWE Universe). On the 900th episode of Monday Night RAW, one of the factoids shown from the “Did You Know” Graphic was:

WWE is watched in over 40 countries. WWE.com gets more hits every day than ESPN.com, MSNBC.com and CNN.com.

Traditional WWE fans seriously hate this. They believe that WWE owner Vince McMahon is so insecure that these graphics appear only to stroke his ego; he wants to be accepted as a cultural institution rather than just a pro rasslin’ show.

What fans don’t realize is that these bumpers are not because McMahon needs to tell himself how great he is; they are a not so subtle B2B marketing campaign. They are looking for new advertisers, screaming “Look at all our traffic! You should advertise with us!” McMahon is hoping that during their broadcasts, influential executives with deep pockets will be watching and think, “holy shit, that’s a lot of hits! Get me all the banner space on WWE.com!”

These decision makers are told “hits are important,” regardless of website type. If they are told hits are important on websites, then hits must be important on their website.

Changing the conversation:

CEOs are told that Internet Marketing is a War; a battle that if they aren’t winning they must be losing. How do you win the internet? Obviously it must mean being number one on Google for everything. How do you win Facebook? You have the most followers. The chart has to always be moving up, all the time. As internet marketers, we know traffic is cyclical. Most websites aren’t going to have must-see content all the time. Not everyone is going to like your brand always.

And it’s something we perpetuate. Instead of focusing on sustainable business, we have companies whose names imply higher search engine placements, our job titles imply we know the mysterious ins and outs of social media, or that we have millions of followers because we have a dynamic, in-your-face personality.

We are the ones that present industry as a war, and only we can navigate the smoke and mirrors, and then chastise our clients for not getting it. And when we imply the idea of “always more” to CEOs that are still fixated on hits, company strategy becomes based around that, not sustaining business goals via their website.

Until we are willing to stop perpetuating culture of more by acquiescing to routine data pulls and promising ever increasing gains we will always be wrestling with “hits.”