Measuring ROI across several different marketing activities can often prove difficult for marketers. But just because it's difficult, doesn't mean its impossible! We explore how Marketing Automation can help you in your quest to demonstrate the best return on investment.
It’s the end of the financial year (or nearing the end of one of your marketing campaigns) and you’ve been asked to prepare a full report with analytics into how your strategies, or more importantly, how your spend has generated return on investment to help influence any further marketing budgets.
With several different activities running in conjunction, you’re now scrambling together stats from each trying to correlate where and what activity has generated results.
Does this sound familiar?
Well you’re not alone! According to research from LinkedIn,
With complex sales cycles typically encompassing multiple stages, resources, programmes and goals, it not surprising that over
53% of marketers said that a lack of process/tools to measure success prevents them from using marketing analytics more in the decision-making process.
Whatever your end goal is, often your key challenge is stitching together each activity or touch-point to provide that clear picture about where financial returns can be proved and the value you have provided your organisation.
Yes, Google Analytics can provide an overall picture of channel performance with anonymised aggregate data, but how do you link this to your offline data and track leads across your wider sales funnel to measure marketing ROI?
I’d be lying if I said there was a clean-cut, no hassle way to justify spend, however, there are certainly platforms that can help you.
Used in conjunction with multi-channel lead generation, Marketing Automation can act as a tool to align both online and offline channels, extract real-time statistics and measure ROI at different points along the customer journey.
Sounds good, right?
The Power of Visitor Tracking and Lead Scoring
According to Criminally Prolific, “97% of visitors to your website will leave without filling in a contact form”.
For the purposes of calculating ROI across the entire customer lifetime, this can be a big problem for marketers.
Even if that visitor has since gone on to ring your organisation directly and enquire, without real-time identifiable data, all the traffic generated from PPC, SEO and other digital marketing channels can be difficult to track back to actual conversions and the value can be missed.
Marketing Automation works by identifying those ‘anonymous’ web visitors to create leads, identifying exactly what they are interested in (i.e. their visitor journey on your website) and provide you with real stats that can help for targeting and determining future marketing decisions.
As leads are identified they are then assigned their own individual lead scores based on each prospect’s perceived value – helping you to determine estimated future revenue growth and effectiveness of your online and offline activities.
More Effective Reporting
Arguably, the hardest part of demonstrating ROI is not just collecting the raw data but presenting it in a way that isn’t going to send your boss to sleep!
Marketing Automation can work as an additional helping hand to point you in the right direction when it comes to reporting and comparing the efficiency of your marketing efforts.
Many platforms will formulate real-time, ready-made dashboards and reports which you can generate automatically to present to the wider team.
You can also customize reports based on key themes of interest, priority drivers or interesting analytics so, whether you’re presenting to one of you clients or to your CEO, you can accurately present where returns have been made and forecast future long term performance.
Making online & offline work together
As our customers invest more in multi-channel marketing and diversifying communications across both offline and online channels, getting a unified view of where return on investment lies can be difficult.
Tracking platforms like Google Analytics, can be useful in tracking the volume of leads and direct visitor source, but restrictions can become evident when a lead has hit multiple touch-points across your marketing activity.
For example, a member of your sales team could have spoken to a prospect at a trade show who has since gone on to visit your website and enquire for a free demo. Typically, this enquiry would be displayed as a completely new lead – which it isn’t!
Marketing automation helps you view the end-to-end picture of the customer journey, from first interaction to conversion and beyond.
So, you can easily track your lead journey and campaign effectiveness, whether your marketing encompasses email marketing, telemarketing, events, social media and more.