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B2B marketing ROI – does anything else matter?

Posted by Kenneth Connolly on 22-Sep-2015 17:00:00

As the number of communication channels available to B2B marketers continues to grow, so too does the metrics which can be tracked and measured – e.g. Likes, shares, Retweets. But are any of these as important as measuring ROI? According to CMO.com, ‘93% of chief marketing officers say that they are under more pressure to deliver measurable ROI’ – so apparently not.

 

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Given that savvy CMOs are becoming aware that their organisation can’t pay bills with Retweets and LinkedIn shares, the focus has once again returned to tracking the most vital of all metrics – ROI. Only by measuring this number can marketers prove their worth to the board and secure budget for the next financial year. So what does this mean for all the other metrics? Are they simply a waste of time? The answer is no, and here’s why…

Engagement matters

Metrics such as open rates, click through rates, Likes, shares, Retweets etc. may not directly affect a business’ bottom line. What they do however, is effectively show engagement levels. If your emails have an open rate of 0% then it’s safe to say that none of your prospects are engaging with them, and something needs to change. Similarly, if one of your social media posts attracts thousands of shares, then you know it is keeping the prospects engaged with your organisation. So, just because there’s not a clear financial benefit to these measurements, doesn’t mean they are of no value.

The best combination of metrics

When a lead becomes a customer, it’s possible to retrospectively review their buying journey and see which marketing channels kept them engaged. Using this technique, it’s possible to determine the ROI of each piece of activity and see what is working and what isn’t. However, during the everyday marketing activities of a business, ‘engagement’ metrics are a way to quickly and easily see if the communication has ‘worked’. If an email has low open rates or if social posts aren’t shared, then it’s safe to say the activity needs to be addressed and amended quickly.

But never forget what counts

So, engagement metrics have their place and they have their use within the B2B marketing realm. They help determine what is keeping prospects, leads and customers engaged, and can prove to the board that your activity is generating responses. However, never forget that ROI is the champion of all metrics. Only by determining the ROI of your activities can you truly prove to the C-suite that what you are doing is helping the business generate revenue and grow. Engagement is good, but ROI is outstanding!

 

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Topics: B2B marketing, B2B Marketing ROI, Marketing ROI