The quarter is almost over. The VP of Marketing just got a report from the Director of Marketing and the marketing department isn’t looking on track with respect to marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and marketing sourced deals. The team worked hard and most of them were overwhelmed with all sorts of deliverables throughout the quarter. They had too many tactics on their plates, opening the door for underperformance. What can the team do now to bridge the lead gap? Is there a way to still meet goals regardless of the situation and underperformance? Where is the low-hanging fruit?
Sound familiar? Are you a data-driven marketer frantically trying to meet your quarter’s MQL goal? Do you feel as though there are so many lead sources and drivers you don’t know which campaign to use to meet the MQL goal?
#1: Drill Into Your Funnel Velocity and Pick “Fast” Campaigns
Sample Campaign-Level Velocity Table
The first way to resolve this problem is by looking into the velocity of every campaign implemented during the quarter. Which campaigns led to the fastest close-won deals? Which campaigns had the highest velocity rate from MQL to close? In the webinar campaign below you can see that it takes an average of eight days to convert an “MQL to SAL” (marketing qualified response to a sales accepted response), an average of two days to convert an “SAL to SQL” and seven additional days for the deal to convert to closed-won. This Webinar campaign was the fastest performing campaign compared to the other campaigns in the given quarter.
You can see that the conference campaign took an average of twenty-two days to convert from an “MQL to SAL.” Then it took an additional two-day average to convert from an “SAL to SQL.” Finally, eight more days to convert from an “SQL to closed-won.”
During this crunch time you can’t afford to take a hodgepodge approach. You must focus on the top revenue-generating activities that will result in marketing sourced deals. According to this Salesforce report, the best campaign to implement (given the time constraint) is the Webinar campaign.
#2: Identify High Conversion Rate Campaigns
The next tool you have for your “Defcon 5” situation is the conversion rate report of every campaign in the given quarter. This report helps you focus on the campaign that yielded the highest amount of conversions. You can see that the Web campaign had a conversion rate of 7.4%. This campaign had the most converted closed-won deals. Even though the conversion rates from “Inquiry to MQL” were low they were made up at the end where the conversion rate was nearly 79%! The quarter is coming to a close and its time to go back into your campaigns and focus on the activities that delivered the most MQLs to closed-won deals. So whatever activity filled your 260 records in that campaign, do more of it and buy more of it!
#3: Tap into the Other Data Silo: Your Sales Team’s Brains
Yes! It’s time to have a heart-to-heart talk with Sales concerning the issue around the marketing sourced deals. You want to know: what materials help your Sales team source more deals and move opportunities faster? Ask if you can have an inside look at their current opportunities. Ask if there is a trend in stalled opportunities. Then see what you can supply them to dislodge the logjam and win the deals. Do the prospects want to see a webinar before they choose your product? Do they want to see a comparison chart among your other competitors? Do they want to see case studies before they decide to purchase?
Ask Sales and act fast!
#4: Fix the Sales-to-Marketing Handoff
In a perfect world, Sales would start working the lead once it enters in the MQL stage. In the chart above you can see that Marketing is hitting its MQL numbers and bringing in the volume of leads, but there seems to be a bottleneck when an MQL converts to an SAL (Sales Accepted Lead). The “Marketing Qualified Leads” chart looks at the amount of leads Marketing has brought into the pipeline. Then there is a big drop in conversions to SAL. Why the drop? Is the Sales team on vacation? Is Marketing bringing in qualified leads? Or are they not qualified?
This bottleneck could be resolved fast and at that point Marketing still has a chance to win the marketing sourced deals and meet their goals at the same time!
#5: Salesforce + Full Circle Insights = One Source of Truth
The great reports, charts and visualizations above would not be possible without Full Circle Insights Response Management reporting. The out-of-the-box reports help you manage and optimize your funnel at every stage. This means anything from an “inquiry” to “closed-won opportunity.” The best part? All your data is stored in one place, Salesforce. Why is this important? Without us, the best case scenario: your marketing analytics data is out-of-sync with Salesforce, so your CMO and CFO have different sales numbers. Worst case? Your marketing analytics tool is a shoddy, unintegrated system of record for MQL’s and your marketing team has no way to drill down from MQL to closed deals. Does that remind you of an awkward meeting with your Director? Does that remind you of last-minute spreadsheet modeling and exports, which realistically takes hours? Marketers don’t have time for that. Full Circle Insights allows you to slice and dice your data so you can easily pinpoint bottlenecks, fix them, and make your CEO happy!
The end of the quarter is approaching, don’t panic though. These five tips will help you find the right campaign to implement at the right time.
Sweta Patel is the founder of Silicon Valley Startup Marketing, is the author of three best-selling books, a marketing enthusiast, and was previously the Manager of Demand Generation at Full Circle Insights. Sweta’s passion is turning strangers into passionate customers.