Four questions on Driving Revenue – An Interview with Warren Raisch

Author: Warren Raisch | Categories: Digital Marketing, Digital-Revenue-Engine

Success or failure in marketing centers on how effectively we drive results. Over the past several years, those results increasingly rely on tracking and proving revenue. In fact, according a recent edynamic conducted with the DMA, 79% marketers were held more accountable for revenue in 2014 than 2013, a significant shift.

But how does the C-Suite actually think about measuring revenue? To learn more about the Sr. Executive’s approach to ROI, we sat down with Warren Raisch at our last webinar, to cover four key questions marketers should incorporate to effectively measure revenue in their campaigns today.

Question 1: How important is the alignment of sales and marketing strategy when it comes to optimizing a firm’s digital initiatives?

You want to ensure that your attributes, that is to say, the ways in which you are paying attention to how your sales and marketing teams are attributing your leads, to make sure we understand what’s really driving our success.

I pay a lot of attention to attribution from a content perspective. A nice strategy is to do start with more top funnel content. And then, I want to see what actual channel or what actual pieces are really bringing in the most audience. Then, I can target my spending – my money and time and budget – into those channels that are truly producing for the team.

First, you need to start by establishing your baseline – to know where that base begins. You do that by assigning points to certain channels, putting an initial set of points down based on what you know, for example, based on what your analytics indicates where you have seen success in the past.

Then, you have to kind of watch it and monitor your success on an ongoing basis, see what’s really moving the needle in terms of revenue, and then adjust your strategies and channel outreach from there. Ultimately, attribution modeling falls into the test-and-learn model, at least in my mind.

Your thinking, your processes, what works will change over time. So, your weighting of these different attribution models will correspondingly change. In all reality, someone just has to monitor and optimize these processes over time.

Question Two: Does a revenue-focused approach to marketing contribute only to the bottom-line of the business, or is there a way to measure top line impact as well?

 To measure revenue, we look at holistically across the whole enterprise. We explore the revenue which is the top line impact. In terms of top line metrics, you want to evaluate:

  • How much are we moving the needle based against our baseline?
  • Are we getting more qualified leads down the funnel?
  • Is sales getting leads into the pipeline, and then across the finish line?

But, the other way to look at revenue measurement is to look at the customer service side and measure the lifetime value matrix of your leads.

There‘s a whole kind of science and art around measuring engagement, which can be difficult to clearly define in one fell swoop. But, if you establish an LTV matrix, you can also measure the cost-avoidance of having to drive new leads against your overall revenue goals, and that talks about the bottom-line profitability of the company.

As I see it, as digital becomes more and more pervasive, we can look at things like self-service as a function of ROI. If you know that people are actually avoiding calling your 1-800 number, then you can target develop a cost avoidance matrix to directly link marketing activities and their impact on both the top-and-bottom-line.

Question Three:  How can we connect social media investments with revenue?

Yeah, this is an interesting one. I have spoken a little bit about social media ROI in the past, specifically, on how people rushed into the social media ranks and then really struggled to effectively measure social results. The way I look at social is… this is just another set of channels you have to look at.

But, there is a paradigm that I would offer. Instead of looking at social media as a series of campaigns, I tend to frame it as how you begin to start conversations with prospects. So, you can define a new a matrix that turns on how many conversations you are creating. And you can have some fun with those matrices.

When it comes to measuring revenue, though, isn’t one large homogenous thing. The revenue metrics that you measure in each individual social channels will look a bit different. For example, you can really drive direct conversions from LinkedIn Groups pretty effectively, as that’s where people are sharing tools and offers about leadership. You just have to know the audience.

Even with the advanced tools available, people make the mistake of not understanding the nuances of their dedicated channels – and not tracking their channel-specific conversions.

We also see people mistarget social messaging. You will see it happens a lot that people just blast the same message in the same content all across multiple channels in an automated marketing. For my money, that’s not really what we mean by “automated marketing” – it’s really more automating a flawed strategy – which can be more harmful than good.

Question Four: What metrics will let us measure how are our leads being qualified – so that we establish high conversion rate?

Earlier, we talked about some of these qualification matrices. You have to establish a funnel that qualified the flow of leads from marketing to sales. And, to be honest, it’s the process that really matters as much as the metrics. In terms of specific metrics, they are going to be unique to your company. You have to establish your funnel to really look at your close-win rate.

That’s how we really convert sales – where you have a cohesive strategy where marketing is responsible for maturing leads until they are what we call “sales-ready.” Then, you have specific criteria when for sales-acceptability – where there are go/no go scores for a lead.

So, say you have a specific campaign. Based on your pre-established criteria – say, someone downloads an eBook or attends a webinar – sales can either accept the lead and move on it, or the lead can move back into the nurturing funnel.

There should also be some fluidity in this process – so you can have a sales-qualified opportunity that stalls for some reason, and you would want to send the op back into your nurture process again to try to revitalize it.

One thing I would examine is your behavioral attributes. Behavioral data can be really rich. You know you can look at things like their IP address, their segmentation and then see what your close and win rates look like by tracking specific scenarios.