Peyton Manning just passed Brett Favre for the all-time pro football touchdown passes record. Rafael Nadal has only one loss at the French Open in the last 10 years…ONE! Wayne Gretzky has the most career points ever in pro hockey, at 2,857. Lionel Messi scored 79 goals for his club team in 2012, the most ever by one player in one year. Martina Navratilova won six Wimbledon singles titles in a row.
What’s with all the sports stats? Well, it’s easier to talk about top performers in sports than in the B2B business world. We don’t often get a glimpse into their inner workings and stats, so it’s hard to compare them.
Top performers however, always know where they stack up against their competitors. They may SAY they don’t care about the records, or that they don’t KNOW where they are in the chase, but don’t believe them. These athletes know EXACTLY where they are in the chase. They’re not driven by them, but they certainly know how they stack up against their fellow athletes.
This is one of the reasons that they are the best at what they do. Sure, they’ve got natural talent or skill, but they work hard to make sure they’re ready to take on all comers. They want to ensure that in any competition, THEY come out on top.
Translate this idea of “measuring up” in the B2B business world, and you end up with metrics. To understand how your business is doing, look at your metrics.
Let’s take a look at lead generation metrics. In order to know if your marketing programs are effective, you’ve got to start measuring them.
In sports it’s much easier to get those metrics, as there are times, scores, and championship wins. It’s obvious who the top performers are. In the B2B world, it’s a little more challenging to get that information. While you may not know what your competitors are up to, you can definitely take a look at your own programs and see how you’re doing.
The Lenskold Group recently did a survey where they asked B2B marketers about their programs’ effectiveness. What they found out about the top performers was interesting.
Top performers measure their marketing ROI more than the rest
By a margin of almost three to one, the top performing B2B companies in the survey measured the return on investment (ROI) of their marketing programs more often than the rest. They wanted to see how much they were earning for every marketing dollar they spent.
To use the sports analogy, they wanted to see how much they improved for every hour of training they spent. Did all of that training time result in more wins, goals, or championships?
For a marketing team, it’s the same thing. You want to know if your efforts are being rewarded with more leads and sales. Whether it’s by using modelling and statistical analysis of your numbers, a comparison of pre-campaign numbers and post-campaign results, or just basic tracking of open and click rates, the fact is START MEASURING.
B2B companies that track their marketing stats are growing more than those who don’t
The top performers are acutely aware of their marketing stats, and how it’s affecting their business (41% vs 19%). In fact, the numbers show that these companies are growing at a faster rate than their non-measuring competitors.
They understand how their marketing activities affect the company’s bottom line. This gives them a greater investment in their work and planning, so that they truly believe in their actions. This belief has a tremendous impact on their individual work, and if everyone’s pulling in the same direction, then the company grows more easily.
Top performers use both traditional tracking methods, as well as marketing automation apps
In order to save time and effort, the top performing companies are using marketing automation (MA) apps to track their efforts. Everything from content views to response inquiries and participation in consuming content like webinars. They’re tracking it all through their MA apps and are saving a ton of time doing it.
The one area that these tools are helping is mainly in the tracking of sales conversion. Often it’s difficult to track the conversion from initial engagement to lead to final sales conversion, as these metrics can be held by different teams in your company. An MA app helps with this as everyone’s looking at a centralized repository of those metrics, and upper management can pull reports from them at any time.
Start tracking your marketing efforts now, and see your B2B business grow
Marketing in today’s B2B world is changing. First it was simply a matter of getting a website out there. Then it was using social media for customer service. Now it’s content marketing and lead management. The evolution continues. And just like those pro athletes who compare themselves to their competitors in order to see how well they’re doing, you can do the same. Use those stats and metrics to evolve and change your B2B marketing programs to maximize their effectiveness. Grow your business by measuring.
What stats are you using to determine your marketing effectiveness? ROI? Lead conversions? Hit the comments and let me know.