By Claire Robinson
Research shows that a good nurture strategy results in 20% increase in sales opportunities* and that companies who excel with their lead nurturing efforts generate 50% more sales at a 33% lower cost**. But setting up campaigns is just the first step. What happens next?
Analyzing the results of your nurture program. Everyone needs to know: are my efforts really working, how many reports are there to pull, and is there anything else I need to be aware of?
Your marketing automation platform will most likely offer you more metrics than you know what to do with. So where do you start? Here are 5 key factors to consider:
- Plan your reporting before your nurture program is live
When building out your nurture program, put thought into the types of metrics you want to report on. Consider the objective of your reporting; new leads, opportunities, revenue? If you want to report on trends over time between campaign activity and other metrics such as opportunities, you will need to start pulling point-in-time reports to build a picture over time.
It is extremely difficult and time-consuming to try and retrieve historical data; so always consider what you want to report on whilst building your nurture tracks.
- Ensure you fully understand your integration
Make sure you aren’t trying to report on something that can’t be done. For example, if your CRM is not using Leads, your reports on Leads are going to be very limited. There is often a way to conquer these challenges though — you could use a work-around or a number of different reports to try and manually work this out, or it may be that you need to piece together reports from both your marketing automation platform and your CRM.
Once you are confident that you know what you want to report on, and that your integration can support it, you need to know how to read the reports. Look out for a blog on reading reports coming soon.
- Email Performance
Email engagement metrics over time are really important in assessing email performance.
When your nurture activity is primarily a series of emails, it is logical to think that reporting on email engagement with metrics such as unique opens and unique clicks will hold the insight that you need. But reporting on those metrics doesn’t really tell you how successful your nurture efforts are, unless you also consider the email engagement metrics over time. In doing so, you will be able to highlight any trends that suggest your nurture efforts are causing a positive effect upon the engagement.
For example, your first email may have an average, or even low, unique open and click rate but provided that you’re sending relevant, timely emails, you may find that over time, with more emails, the engagement you are receiving is high quality, i.e. you are getting leads rather than simply opens.
- Lead Score
You may have decided to implement your nurture program because too many of your leads aren’t engaging. A great way to show that your nurture efforts are working is to show an increase in lead score over time. Again, it is all about taking snapshots in time which can be linked back to your campaign launch dates.
A good way of proving the value in your nurture efforts is to show the change in % of active versus inactive contacts within your database. Pulling reports prior to your nurture program, then again mid-way will show any change in re-engagement of your less active contacts.
Because nurture happens over time, ideally you are warming your prospects into hot leads, the reports you generate are themselves going to be more useful when looked at over time. So don’t panic when you pull the first reports and you cannot glean masses of insight. Your reports will come into their own as you build up the picture with regular reports that can be compared and contrasted.
Good luck — don’t forget that my colleagues at Sojourn Solutions and I are the world’s leading Eloqua consultants so if you need any help drop us a line.