Measuring Campaign ROI

Marketers and executive teams are becoming increasingly focused on the all-important campaign ROI number. The problem with this of course is that in our multi-touch campaign roi
marketing world there is rarely just one campaign responsible for generating an entire opportunity. We’ve gotten so caught up in the idea that ROI is attached to one program it might actually be driving us to make the wrong investment decisions.

This is only exacerbated by the fact that in salesforce.com the last campaign associated with a lead or contact prior to opportunity creation always gets the ROI credit. Now, imagine the following scenario:

John Doe watches a webinar about your amazing product. The inside sales team follows up with him and encourages him to download a free trial as the next step to make sure the product meets his needs. John does this and communicates to the rep he is interested in making a purchase. The rep creates the opportunity and the free trial gets credit.

With the existing logic in salesforce.com the free trial gets all the credit for this opportunity, and while it did help move the deal along, what about the webinar that generated the lead? Shouldn’t it get some credit for this opportunity? By looking only at traditional 1-campaign-to-1-opportunity ROI metrics, your marketing team assumes the webinar didn’t produce any revenue and potentially stops funding the program. The problem with this is without the webinar you would have never gotten the lead in the first place.

In most B2B environments, especially ones with longer sales cycles & heavy investments in field marketing, there tend to be multiple touches between the creation and close of an opportunity. Having the ability to distribute the opportunity’s value down to all relevant touches is critical to truly understanding the impact of your marketing programs and knowing where to invest your budget.

This is why campaign influence reporting has become a critical KPI for sophisticated marketers.  Instead of relying on simplistic first touch, last touch, or uniform spread allocation modes, marketers need to set up a series of business rules to determine how opportunity value gets allocated among every campaign touch based on their unique business requirements. For some companies this might be as simple as the first touch gets 5 points, last touch gets 10 points, and all other touches get 2 points. Or it could be more complex, such as any campaign associated to the decision maker gets 5 points, if the product is widget A then only count responses that occurred in the last 2 months but if its product B look as far as 6 months back.

Whatever the logic, the key outcome is that each touch in the cycle gets a piece of the pie so when it comes to quarterly budgeting and planning you’re able to see all the campaigns that drive revenue, not just the last touch associated with every deal.

Andrea Wildt

About Andrea Wildt

Andrea is an advisor to Full Circle Insights. Formerly Director of Product Management for the Salesforce.com Marketing product line, Andrea has nearly 10 years of salesforce.com experience with organizations of all sizes. She is a salesforce marketing enthusiast who is passionate about sales and marketing processes and all things data.