While open and click- through rates are essential for email marketing campaign reporting, it’s also important to focus on the bigger picture and closely track the most valuable metric of all – revenue. Just as critical is understanding how email marketing efforts support and impact the bottom line.
New research by Heinz Marketing confirms this crucial point, demonstrating that marketers are under more scrutiny than ever and that “revenue is the ultimate metric” for gauging success. Here are some other key report takeaways:
- Sales and marketing must work well as a team: The top success factor for achieving revenue goals is an effective marketing and sales partnership. If marketers are not obtaining feedback to the leads they provide to sales or (worse) don’t know whether those leads are turning into new business, they should immediately engage with sales management to establish regular communications.
- Management is watching: Don’t think that because you’re in marketing, you’re immune from the intense scrutiny levied on your sales team, which is typically tasked to hit their numbers or face the consequences. The Heinz study shows that 71.3% of marketing organizations have increased accountability for revenue goals, and that 3 out of 4 companies do not reach their revenue goals without increased marketing accountability. That means your executives expect to see how (exactly) your campaigns are generating revenue in exchange for their investment. (If you’re not able to accurately show this, it will be YOU who will soon face the consequences.)
- It’s all about revenue generation: The majority (2 out of 3) of executives queried in the report say “revenue pipeline opportunities” is the top metric that determines marketing success. Period.
- Be good at communicating this: Marketers need to be sure they are able to effectively track and clearly report on how their activities contribute to sales opportunities. Don’t try to impress (or worse confuse) sales management with other data that, to them, may come across as “marketing mumbo jumbo.” According to the report, only 12% of sales reps and less than 8% of sales management believes their marketing organizations effectively use revenue performance metrics.
- Keep the marketing metrics for marketers: It’s OK to track additional success metrics such as open and click-through rates, but know that these are really more measures of the performance of your campaign elements (e.g. the design, call to action, subject line, etc.) as well as the health of your email lists and database. They are important elements for marketers to track, but are more intended for marketers themselves – as opposed to higher level executives who will likely be less impressed by them – and more interested in how revenue is being impacted.
- Embrace the inspection: While consistently reporting on marketing activities might be intimidating, it actually can work in a marketer’s favor. Over 60% of companies’ sales performance improves with increased revenue responsibility, and 62.5% of sales managers believe sales performance is improved because of marketing’s increased revenue responsibility. That means sales and marketing are, essentially, “in the same boat” when it comes to delivering revenue and should work closely together to ensure mutual success.
Marketers and sales people must work together – not be adversaries or opponents – to deliver a single, ultimate goal: revenue. It’s that simple.
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