How Marketo Performance Insights improves marketing performance, reporting, and attribution

By Chuck Leddy

Marketo has recently launched a new reporting module called Marketo Performance Insights (“MPI”), which enables marketers to improve campaign performance and reporting, as well as attribute marketing activities to revenues. We asked Diane LoBiondo, senior marketing automation specialist for Sojourn Solutions, about how MPI works and how it benefits marketers.

Why did Marketo decide to introduce Performance Insights?

LoBiondo: Marketo is looking to bolster its reporting and they’ve been putting more focus on it. Especially since their acquisition by Adobe, Marketo is folding more robust reporting into the Adobe suite of products, trying to really provide that end-to-end experience for customers. 

Why is uncovering and sharing performance insights so important for marketers?

LoBiondo: Marketing needs to prove ROI. All marketers need to show that their platform investment is generating results. The kind of insights MPI provides are great for customers that use the platform to its full extent, who use all the available channels, whether social content that’s syndicated, nurture campaigns, or regular blast campaigns. MPI gives these marketers a great opportunity to see results from a program level, even drilling down into specific channels.

How does MPI work and how can customers set it up?

LoBiondo: Setup is extremely easy. It’s really a matter of making sure there are specific fields in your CRM that are attached to MPI. It works quite well with Salesforce.com. A best practice with MPI is when you’re creating a program, you assign a period cost to it. For example, if you have a monthly newsletter program for a 12 month span and you have a $12,000 line item in your budget for it, you’d assign a period cost of $1000 per month. Having a period cost attached helps Marketo start to associate ROI with your programs.

How should users get ready to implement MPI?

LoBiondo: It’s very important to have a solid sales process and the tracking of sales activity in your CRM. If those data points are not there, MPI is not going to work for you. So there’s some responsibility on the sales side to ensure that certain data points or attributions are getting captured. For example, ensuring that an opportunity is opened and also that opportunities are cleaned up. I’ve worked in instances where clients have opportunities that have been open for two or three years, and the sales rep never went back and closed them out. You need to have a buttoned up process on the sales side, as well as on the marketing side, for MPI to work. 

How does MPI enable marketers to show their contribution to pipeline and revenues? 

LoBiondo: What I love about MPI is that it enables you to look at channels individually. Marketo is so fluid in enabling marketers to stop one program and start something else, maybe change messaging while a program is running, With the pandemic going on, your live events now need to become virtual. Email is huge, but there’s different types of emails. You’ve maybe got programs aimed at certain audiences, like prospects versus customers. You’ve got webinars, batch campaigns, nurture campaigns, and more. 

MPI allows visibility and insight into how your marketing dollars are being spent across channels and lets you see what’s working and what’s not. When you go into Performance Insight, it’s going to automatically show you the number of people that successfully engaged with your channel programs, but you can also switch easily to a pipeline and a revenue view.

How might MPI enhance the credibility of marketing?

LoBiondo: The numbers don’t lie. What MPI does is step away from strategy and show you concrete numbers related to revenues. Too often, it’s been marketing’s responsibility to bring marketing qualified leads, and then turn them over to sales. These MQLs go into a black hole where marketing doesn’t know what happens to them afterwards. Then sales might start grumbling six months later about what marketing is or isn’t doing. MPI changes that dynamic: marketing and sales have more shared visibility into what happens with leads. 

How might MPI facilitate the alignment of marketing and sales? 

LoBiondo: Marketo does a very good job of displaying information. MPI produces the information in a way that’s easy to see and share with sales. Marketing can then say, “this is what we’re seeing — is this aligning to what’s happening on your end?”  Usually, if it’s a very buttoned up organization, sales has a pipeline. They have quarterly goals they need to meet, and so this gives marketers an opportunity to say, sales met these goals. And guess what? This was specifically how marketing influenced that success.

Once again, MPI is a conduit to facilitate a discussion between sales and marketing. The most successful organizations have a really good relationship between marketing and sales. 

How might customers approach driving adoption and internal use of MPI?

LoBiondo: From the sales side, it’s just a matter of making sure there’s diligence in opening up opportunities. That’s easy to achieve. Again, if you’ve got a buttoned up sales organization, where from the top down they’re saying we live and breathe in salesforce.com, that makes it easier.

I once worked for an organization where the CEO said, “every Friday morning, I’m going to go into that pipeline dashboard in salesforce.com, and I’m going to look at the sales.” The reps knew that by Thursday night they needed to go into salesforce.com and input their notes, make sure their opportunities were accounted for, buttoned up, closed if they were won, closed if they were lost. Because it was an imperative from the top down.

What else would you like to add about MPI? 

LoBiondo: Sometimes marketers are so down in the weeds, executing on programs, running a team of program managers, and ensuring that everything is going out on time that they can neglect the reporting side. They might have a big meeting and then have to scramble to get all the reporting done hours before. Not good. But with MPI, marketers can just click on a module and pretty much have everything they need right there.

For more information about Marketo Performance Insights – and/or performance reporting in general – please reach out to us!

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