4 Best Ways to Know If Your Marketing Works
No one can afford to guess what marketing programs work. Customers self-educate via digital channels, content marketing, industry events, and consultation with peers. They form opinions long before they become a “lead” in your demand creation funnel. So, what’s the best way to measure what’s working?
1. Measure Funnel Health
You should be able to see the health of your funnel in 5-10 charts. You need enough data to see results and trends, plus the ability to “double click” into the information. All of these charts must focus on the outcomes that make or break your business.
Here are some of the ones I most commonly see across different marketing teams:
- Traffic. Shows whether your owned or paid channels are drawing visitors.
- Traffic Source. Where’s your traffic coming from?
- Content engagement. What pages and content do they visit, click through, or register to get?
- Conversions. How many became marketing qualified? Sales qualified? How far down the funnel did they go?
- Revenue. What’d they buy? How’d that compare to what content they consumed and what you initially quoted them? How long before they became a lead for a cross-sell or upsell opportunity?
- Ownership Experience. How much service activity is there relative to their spend and number of products owned? What should it look like? How fast are you closing tickets or responding to their inquiries? Did you get their bill right?
- Re-Entry to Top of Funnel. What’s the relationship between your service stats and upsell / cross-sell opportunities? How about service experiences vs customer churn?
[Note: These metrics assume you operate with some version of a full funnel marketing model]
2. Track Funnel Flow and Quality
Get insights into funnel flow. Learn how fast web traffic, landing pages, events, and email marketing campaigns draw leads from casual interest into closed revenue. Is the speed different depending on the solution or product? Customer demographics? Other factors? Did your demand creation pipeline is slow down recently?
Watch out for the lead volume versus lead quality trap. A higher volume of leads doesn’t matter if you’re attracting the wrong buyers. Identify the ideal profile for customers. Next, target those buyers with compelling content, exciting programs, and engaging digital marketing. Now, pair this work with sales-driven focus on those same accounts for effective customer marketing.
3. Create Pipeline Forecasts with Program-Specific Insights
Marketers need to see what programs contribute to lead and pipeline forecasts. It’s the equivalent to sales reps knowing what accounts are likely to close for their forecasts. Do Webinars bring in 80% current customers, and 20% net new prospects? Do trade shows bring in few leads but rather serve to help reps secure meetings with busy customers? Did your social engagement rate rise up by covering the event via social channels? Great – track it. If you can see these insights, you can start forecasting how you’ll hit marketing pipeline results.
4. Elevate Use of Tribal Insights
Get insights from sales on what they see and hear in the field. I don’t mean talk to your 5 favorite smart sales friends. I assume you listen to top sales performers as a norm. Take it up a notch. Make informal, easy to take surveys for your sales teams a norm. Ideally, you should also use your marketing automation to see what content salespeople share with customers and prospects. There’s usually a gap between what you want them to use and what they share. And, don’t just ask them what they want once in a blue moon. Make it a habit to listen often and add quantitative insights to what your tribe says.