measuring the success of lead generation

Measuring the Success of Lead Nurturing and Marketing Automation

Marketing automation can simplify your inbound marketing, allowing you to make better use of marketing and reach a more engaged audience. The term ‘marketing automation’ is most commonly used to describe the software marketers use to manage leads from first contact to purchase. Marketing automation tools can be used to trigger a series of introductory emails to educate leads about what you offer. They can also help you segment your leads and deliver intelligence about leads to your sales team.

1.     Segmentation Intelligence

Segment your leads for targeted marketingSegmentation intelligence includes visitor behaviors, personas, demographics, etc. that can be used to segment your audience in order to send more targeted content and offers based on their individual wants and needs at a given point in the sales process

What to Look For

Marketing automation helps you to be a smarter marketer by enabling you to identify and differentiate between segments of leads. Marketing automation tools can help you to identify these points of differentiation, such as various pages your leads visit, the specific topics they’re interested in, their previous activity on your site, their demographic information, how they’re engaging with you, etc.

How to Improve

Use this intelligence to segment your leads into different lead nurturing campaigns. In other words, the person who downloaded your ebook on “What is social media” should not automatically receive all the same communications as the existing customer who enjoys reading about the latest in lead generation techniques and PPC.

If leads are spending time on your product pages, you might consider entering them into a campaign that nurtures them with more product-focused content like a free trial or information to help them evaluate your solutions compared with others they may be considering.

2.     Click-Through Rates

The proportion of the audience who clicked on one more links contained in a lead nurturing email message. See Measuring the Success of Email Marketing.

Calculate CTR either by dividing unique clicks by the number of emails delivered, or by dividing total clicks – including multiple clicks by the same recipient – by the number of emails delivered. Either method works, as long as you use the same approach consistently. Most email providers such as HubSpot, MailChimp, AWeber and Constant Contact will figure it for you. See the help file of each to learn which method they use.

What to Look For

Click-through rates can help you determine whether the content you’re offering in your lead nurturing campaigns is appropriate both for the audience you’re segmenting as well as their point in the sales process. The higher the better!

How to Improve

If you’re offering product-focused content such as a free product trial and your click-through rates are low, this may mean they aren’t ready for this type of content and may still need to be nurtured with more top-of-the-funnel content like educational ebooks, webinars, or blog posts.

On the other hand, if your recipients are still opening your messages, but are no longer clicking on top-of-the-funnel offers, you might conclude that they’re ready for more product-focused offers.

3.     Conversion Rates

The percentage of recipients who clicked on a link within an email and completed a desired action such as filling out an offer form or purchasing a product. See Measuring the Success of Email Marketing.

What to Look For

Like click-through rates, conversion rates can also be an indication of the effectiveness of the offer you’re sending compared to a lead’s point in the sales process. Look for higher numbers, and for this rate to increase as you become more skilled at properly targeting your leads.

How to Improve

Review your workflows. Do you need to adjust the types of offers you’re sending at different points in the nurturing process?

4.     Timing and Frequency of Lead Nurturing Email Sends

The length of time between one lead nurturing email and another, and how many emails to include in a given campaign.

What to Look For

Review your click-through rate and conversion rates. If things seem stagnant. It may be time to adjust this aspect of your lead nurturing plan.

How to Improve

There are no hard and fast rules for how many total emails should be included in a nurturing campaign and how long you should wait between email campaign sends. The best way to determine your optimal timing and frequency is to test it.

One segment of your audience may prefer more content over a longer period of time. While those interested in a particular topic may tend to have a shorter sales cycle and require fewer messages but more product-focused offers.


Some of this can be logically inferred. For example, if you are offering a product or service that costs $99 one-time, that lead nurturing campaign might reasonably be shorter than another of your products or services that costs $2000/month.  Still, your best bet is to test!

5.     Sales Cycle LengthMarketing automation and lead nurturing can shorten your sales cycle.

The length of time it takes for a lead to become a customer.

What to Look For

As you become more skilled in lead nurturing and sales, your sales cycle should decrease in length.

How to Improve

Figure out how long it usually takes for a lead to become a customer after his or her first inquiry. Does the sales cycle vary for different types of purchases?

Lead nurturing is all about understanding your own leads’ timing and needs. Watch your analytics, and talk to your sales team. If it typically takes your leads a month to make a purchasing decision, then make sure you’re spreading out your communications to keep them engaged throughout the month.

Monitor what’s working, test different methods, and analyze and optimize their campaigns based on what works for them individually. Make sure you keep your sales people involved. Their insights will be invaluable in improving this metric.

Summary
Article Name
Measuring the Success of Lead Nurturing and Marketing Automation
Description
Lead nurturing and marketing automation can help build a business – but only if they’re working. Find out how you’re doing by becoming familiar with key numbers.
Author

About the Author Alisa Meredith (311 Posts)

As co-owner and chief inbound marketing consultant at Scalable Social Media, Alisa Meredith spends a lot of time keeping up with online marketing trends for the benefit of our customers. Computers have been a passion of hers since her first T1-99, so inbound and social media marketing is a natural fit.

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