Written by Ailbhe Duffy, b2b different
Many tech companies struggle with the concept of setting a marketing budget and when the going gets tough that budget is usually the first to be cut! One of the drivers of this behaviour is a lack of belief in the effectiveness of marketing. Putting the money into an extra sales person for example can be perceived as yielding a more tangible outcome.
ROI – what are you measuring?
It is important therefore with any marketing spend to have some ROI parameters in place. With the introduction of newer more automated marketing and CRM platforms such as Hubspot or Salesforce, setting metrics and recording performance against those metrics has become easier. It doesn’t cover the full story however and not every business is using that level of marketing automation. But the basic concepts remain the same;
• What goals have you set for your marketing initiative or programme
• Are those marketing goals aligned with sales goals
• What metrics have you set that are indicators of success
• Are those metrics understood by the business
At its simplest, the ultimate way to measure marketing effectiveness is through the sales pipeline and revenue figures. A good marketing plan aligned to sales effort will generate quality leads and increase revenues. That’s the end game for any marketing spend and it’s important the business recognise the impact marketing has on supporting the generation of sales.
Setting the metrics
So what kind of marketing metrics could you set to prove your net worth to the business? You’ll need metrics specific to your particular tech business, but some ideas to get you going are as follows;
Website – google analytics and links to CRM make it easier to get real hard data to present to your management team. Measure traffic to the site – unique visitors, page views, time spent on the site, bounce rate. Measure search engine traffic, inbound links, referrals to the site. And measure conversion rate, such as a sales enquiry, downloading a whitepaper or signing up for your newsletter.
Tradeshows / events – it’s simple but often overlooked; if you invest time and money in a tradeshow you must record contacts, qualify them and follow up with those contacts after the event. Track eventual sales conversions and value of those sales – your ROI for the event!
Social Media and email campaigns can also be easily measured. How many leads did your marketing initiative attract? What level of engagement did you get from your campaign?
Sales tools – marketing can help the sales team to target, engage customers and convert leads through research and sales enabling tools– work with the sales team to track what tools are most effective.
PR and advertising – metrics for both PR and ad campaigns whether in print or online can be put in place and performance measured.
There are lots of ways to measure marketing effectiveness – just remember to set the metrics that make sense for your business and then measure your performance.