There’s a famous saying in the advertising trade, “I know that half of my marketing spend is wasted, I just don’t know which half.” This highlights an age-old problem in business – how to track the relationship between the money you spend on marketing and the returns it generates in the form of new sales.
Traditionally, when businesses have wanted to evaluate their marketing ROI they just subtract their marketing spend from their profits. If you spent £20,000 on advertising but made £60,000 in sales for a £40,000 net profit then you can say that your advertising is profitable, right?
Well, not exactly. The fact is, you have no idea how your marketing contributed to your sales figures.
- How many customers came to your website after seeing a digital ad?
- How many came via your social media profile?
- How many came through your website SEO?
For all you know, you might have made all those sales without spending a single penny on advertising.
If you want to measure the value of your marketing spend, you need to be able to answer certain key questions:
- How much are you spending per lead?
- How many of your leads are converting into customers?
- Which channels are customers using to find your business?
If you can’t produce concrete numbers in response to these questions, then you’ve got no idea whether your marketing spend is value for money. You can only make your best guess.
Introducing the Business Catalyst’s Lifecycle Reporting
Fortunately, there’s another way to go about measuring the value of your marketing spend: the Business Catalyst’s Lifecycle Reporting. This tool integrates with your existing digital marketing systems to provide you with complete end-to-end visibility over your entire sales funnel.
No more guesswork! With this product, you can see exactly how each of your leads came into contact with your business, and measure the value of each advertising campaign down to the last penny.
Lifecycle Reporting dynamically creates event reports at key points throughout the sales and marketing process. These could mark the first moment a prospect makes contact with your business through your webform/landing page, or the first time they speak to your staff on the phone. Or they could be more granular – when did they engage with their first email? The choice is yours.
For example, you could track the journey of a lead all the way through the following stages, from first contact to sale:
- When did they first click on your social media ad?
- When did they make their discovery call?
- When did they receive their follow-up email?
- When did they make their first purchase?
- When were they informed about other opportunities to purchase products or services from your business?
With Lifecycle Reporting, each of these actions becomes a datapoint that you can use to evaluate your marketing process.
What can Lifecycle Reporting do for you?
With this tool in play, business owners have a whole range of new possibilities at their fingertips:
Break down your ad spend: Are you getting more prospects from your SEO, Facebook, or Google? Which of your Facebook ads is the most successful? How many leads are being generated by each part of your campaign, and how much revenue?
Measure lead velocity: How long does it take to turn a lead into a paying customer? Where in the sales funnel are people getting stuck or checking out? What sort of training or other processes do you need to implement to get more customers into your business faster?
Track cash flow: What is the interval between spending money on marketing and seeing the return in sales? If I spend £2,000 on advertising in June, how many pounds in sales will I have made by September?
Receive Status Reports: Status Reports collate all the leads currently in your system, so you have a complete overview of your sales funnel. This can be queried in any number of ways. How many people are booked for a discovery call, and how many are at the discovery stage? How many leads were generated in January, and where are they now?
Tackling Data Overload
These days, it’s easier than ever to generate data about a business’ activities. You can purchase reports which will give you pages and pages of numbers related to your digital performance. But how do you know which of those figures is meaningful to your bottom line, and which is completely irrelevant? Without proper guidance, many business owners get blinded by the flurry of numbers.
This is why the Lifecycle Reporting is tailored to provide you with the key metrics you need to guide strategic decision making. As a business owner, is it important that you know how many seconds on average each visitor spends on your website? Probably not. But knowing how much sales value was generated by your Google Ads in the last quarter? That’s how you know whether your marketing campaign was a success or a failure.
We collate only the data you need to see in a beautifully clean and clear dashboard, with simple, intuitive visualisations. No hunting around to find the relevant figures, and no burning brain calories trying to understand convoluted tables and charts. Everything in one dashboard, ready whenever you are.
The Power of Numbers
We’re really excited to show what Lifecycle Reporting can do for clients of all shapes and sizes, but the conversation doesn’t stop there. At Business Catalyst, we believe that having access to the right numbers is key to improving performance in every aspect of business, from marketing to finance, operations to delivery.
Quite simply, you cannot grow a business in the twenty-first century without knowing the data. The numbers show you where you need to act to impact your bottom line. What gets measured, gets done.