They say a CRM is only as useful as the data in it. Millions of marketers use Salesforce, but few have a solid understanding of the data that they are pulling, what metrics to measure, where it comes from, and how much they can trust it. As marketing continues to become more data-driven, this amplifies the need to understand what is happening behind-the-scenes with Salesforce, as well as other tools.
Here are four reasons why marketers need to know their data inside and out, and the keys to understanding that data.
Track lead volume through your funnel
Lead volume is one of the most straightforward measurements, and the first metric every marketer should look at. Volume tells you the raw number of leads that marketing (and other departments) have generated. It also gives you a sense for whether you can hit your goals for inquiries, marketing qualified leads (MQL), and closed deals.
You can track volume metrics in Salesforce by setting up reports to track your volumes by each funnel stage, and then setting up a dashboards to visualize that data. You will be able to see the volume of records that achieved each stage.
Use your funnel volume data to calculate your conversion rates between stages
As leads move through the funnel, it is important to understand how they convert from stage to stage. This enables you to understand how well marketing programs perform throughout the sales cycle, as well as identify problem areas (i.e. low conversions from one stage to the next). This calculation provides more insight than the raw volume numbers because it reveals which campaigns have the highest sales acceptance rates and deal close rates.
You can use these insights to improve your sales process and provide higher quality leads to sales. It can be challenging to track conversion rates in standard Salesforce, but if you build custom formulas and reports, then you can also visualize them in dashboards. Summary formulas are a good option, because they allow you to filter and group your report to see your conversion rates by different dimensions.
Time stamp every marketing response to track funnel velocity
Velocity is the last important funnel metric to track. Velocity shows you how quickly leads progress through your marketing and sales funnels. It also reveals how long your sales cycle is and shows bottlenecks between stages. If you see that leads from a specific campaign get clogged in a funnel stage for a long period, this could reflect miscommunication, slow response times, or an inconsistent approach. Armed with this information, marketers can work on addressing that problem and subsequently speed up leads’ progress through the funnel.
You can track funnel velocity in Salesforce reports with third-party marketing performance management apps, such at Full Circle.
Go beyond traditional single touch attribution and measure campaign influence
While you can track last touch attribution natively in Salesforce, marketers often need a deeper understanding of their campaign's performance. It is rare that one campaign will be responsible for the creation of an opportunity. Apps like Full Circle Campaign Influence help you get better marketing data with multi-touch attribution and weighted campaign influence models. These allow you to attribute the right amount of revenue to every campaign on an opportunity and show exactly which campaigns were the most influential in generating an opportunity for sales.