Welcome to Part 2 of our Pipeline Marketing discussion, a highlight reel of our recently released “What is Pipeline Marketing?” slideshare presentation. In the process of looking for a more comprehensive approach to our most pressing marketing-related questions, we pursued a different marketing approach that has come to be known as “Pipeline Marketing.”
Our discussion picks up right after Alexis made the insightful point that marketers these days tend to optimize for the wrong KPIs. While pageviews, bounce rates, average visit duration, and even website traffic are all valid metrics to maintain, the real question seems to be, “Well, we might have 3,520 visitors a month, but how much revenue did those visits generate?”
We Need to Follow The Funnel From Beginning to End
Once we made the switch to Pipeline Marketing, we could watch the buyer’s journey from beginning to end. Let’s say a visitor found our website through a paid search ad, visited our blog content and clicked through to a landing page. They filled out a form, became a lead in our CRM, and had three emails sent to them over the course of two weeks. They opened the second email and clicked-through to a landing page where they signed up for a product demo. Three weeks after the product demo, they closed for a total of $36,000 ARR.
With a Pipeline Marketing approach, that’s the kind of visibility we saw. And it was powerful. In a marketing status meeting, we could specifically report that this month’s marketing efforts generated ‘X’ amount of dollars in revenue. Not only that, but we could also know how well each AdWords keyword performed, not based on it’s CTR, but on revenue-generation.
When marketers can’t see a buyer’s journey from beginning to end, they’re unable to optimize their marketing dollars to generate more customers.
When we, as marketers, couldn’t see a comprehensive view of the funnel (visitor, lead, MQL, SQL, opp, customer), we couldn’t optimize our efforts to begin sending better leads to the sales team.
Marketing can’t only be about generating leads. If it is, then you run into discouraging stats, like we were...
Although these stats paint a decidedly gloomy picture, it only took one pivot to a pipeline marketing approach to alleviate our difficulties with mal-performing lead generation tactics.
The question became - could we take that 1% of success, cut any ineffective channels, optimize the revenue-generating channels, and focus our efforts on the spends that were generating revenue? It turns out, yes, we could. Here’s how...
1. Connect online marketing to the CRM - In order to achieve CRM integration with marketing data, marketers should use an application that connects their tracked web-based leads with the lead data inside their CRM.
2. Follow leads through the sales funnel - Then, as the CRM was updated with the status (opp, closed-lost, closed-win, etc.), we were able to use that data to inform our marketing efforts, knowing the entire story of every visitor that came to our site.
3. Optimize marketing channels - As a result, we were able to optimize channels such as emails, AdWords, paid social, and even our blog content. This post explains more about optimizing marketing channels by integrating your website data with your CRM database.
At the end of the day, we were able to do the following…
1. Show Our Value as Marketers
Now it wasn’t just the sales team that got to talk about revenue. Pipeline marketing turned our marketing team into a powerful band of revenue-generating heroes, who no longer had to stand on their tiptoes next to the sales team. Needless to say, it was a very exciting day for all of us.
2. Speak the Same Language as the Sales Team
Pipeline marketing allowed us to share in the revenue discussion and track the results our our efforts all the way through the funnel. We could have practical conversations with the sales team, because we had the whole string of full-funnel data and metrics in front of us.
So, we told our friends. And the ideology of pipeline marketing was as popular with other marketers as it was with our team. There’s been a widespread buy-in to this ideology because it generates astounding success for marketers nationwide...
And that’s the story of how Bizible’s marketing strategy became accountable to revenue-generation. Gone are the days when we send untracked leads to the sales team, only to watch them vaporize when they reach the CRM. Now, there’s always a string attached to every lead, and we always know where they came from, where they’ve gone to, and how much revenue we made along the way.
We hope you’ve enjoyed the tale of our Pipeline Marketing journey. If you’re interested in joining the ranks of revenue-focused marketers, take a look at www.pipelinemarketing.com. Here, you can sign up to receive a curated selection of the best revenue-driven marketing content from across the web, as well as find your local Pipeline Marketing Playbooks event.