Marketing measurement do’s and don’ts

Wilson Raj, Global Director of Customer Intelligence, SAS


If you can’t measure the full impact of your marketing, you can’t invest wisely. Executives are always looking at ROI, so marketers who want to capture the C-suite’s attention need to draw a clear line between marketing activities and results.

Do: Express marketing measurements in business language

Speak the language of the business by understanding how your business leaders evaluate marketing performance. Financial measures such as revenue, profit and shareholder value frame the C-suite’s understanding of overall corporate health.

It’s the marketer’s job to connect marketing measurements to business results. In other words, you must frame marketing metrics as financial metrics. For example, campaign response rates links to incremental revenue; retention rates links to increased profitability; cost-per-lead links to reduced acquisition expenses; customer satisfaction scores links to reduced services cost, etc.

Do this, and you’ll raise the marketing department’s credibility within the C-suite.

It’s the marketer’s job to connect marketing measurements to business results.

Don’t: Focus only on past performance

Marketers typically report on marketing activity and associated costs, rather than reporting on metrics executives use to set direction. Instead of only reporting what has happened (e.g. marketing qualified leads, conversion rates, win rates), progressive marketing measurement programs should also answer the question: What will happen? Or even better: What must the business do to make that desired business outcome happen?

Including predictive elements such as campaign lift modeling, propensity to purchase (or churn), projected lifetime value measure, etc. are equally vital.

Conclusion: Marketing metrics are rarely perfect

As this well-known adage reminds us: not everything we count, counts; not everything that counts can be counted. The volume of data available today allows marketers to find measurement approaches and analytic opportunities that take advantage of customer and business insights; are understood and trusted by management; and provide proof of progress and confidence — all mandatory for marketing in a digital world.

Wilson Raj

Wilson Raj is the Global Director of Customer Intelligence in the Worldwide Alliances and Product Marketing Division at SAS. His responsibilities include collaborating with industry leaders, customers, alliances, sales, marketing and product teams to establish, evolve and evangelize SAS’s growth strategy for analytics-driven marketing capabilities. Twitter: @wilsonraj. LinkedIn:

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