We already went over four proven tips to help you accurately and reliably gauge the ROI of B2B email lists. Now, let’s revisit those crucial ideas and explore new ways for determining your list’s impact on overall marketing and sales results.
It’s typically hard to correctly determine the ROI of most targeted email lists since they’re mostly used for top-of-funnel activities. This means that, by the time a lead becomes a customer, the touch points associated with the contact list that contributed to the sale are often difficult to trace since they took place at earlier stages in the process.
To get around this, the following tips can help you reliably measure how much revenue your B2B email lists enabled your campaigns to generate:
1. Determine precisely where contacts come from
In order to accurately gauge ROI, you need to find out where every contact that becomes part of your list originated from. Did a lead come from organic sources? Which paid source did a particular database record pass through before entering your funnel?
For your B2B email list, this means having separate fields that report where and how you got the contact information.
2. Refine your sales funnel stages
There’s a surprising statistic from MarketingSherpa being thrown around that claims 68% of marketers haven’t yet identified their sales funnel. If you happen to be part of this group, you need to define and refine the stages in your sales funnel right now.
What are the steps a prospect goes through before being deemed sales-ready? What actions constitute a conversion in each of these steps?
3. Track and score leads throughout your funnel
Once you’ve established the precise steps that a prospect has to go through in order to turn into an opportunity, you now need to assign points that indicate how sales-qualified that particular lead is.
This is called lead scoring and is a crucial component of accurately measuring marketing ROI. Points are assigned based on the lead’s attributes (demographic and firmographic details) and their actions (interest and intent).
4. Match closed deals with past touch points
Now that you’ve got contact source information and lead scores recorded in your custom targeted database, it’s time to take a look at the data for deal closes. These closes should be tied back to the series of touch points that preceded the deal.
Marketingprofs says there are four categories of closes based on source and nurture history. It’s important that you identify the right classification for a particular deal, so that credit and attribution can be correctly given.
5. Apply a suitable attribution model
An attribution model is a set of rules that tell you how to distribute credit for results among the different channels and tactics in your sales process. Typically, attribution models are used to determine how much a given channel or tactic contributes to revenues.
There are different types of attribution models. You need to find the best one that fits your process and requirements. Bizible provides a helpful overview on various attribution models, which include:
- Last touch: The touch point immediately before the sale gets 100% of the credit
- First touch: The first touch in the sales cycle gets all the credit
- Linear: Credit is evenly distributed among the channels/touch points
- Time decay: Touch points closer to sale get bigger share of credit
- U-shaped: First and final touch points get 40% each, while the rest get the remaining share
With these five best practices, you can now reliably and consistently measure the ROI of B2B email lists. The main idea is that your targeted database does contribute to the revenues your marketing and sales processes generate, provided that you’re using it correctly in your campaigns.
This article was originally posted in September 2017 and has been updated to reflect developments in the topic.