The 8 Most Important Marketing Metrics for Business Growth

Metrics often get a bad rap. But whilst they can appear intimidating or confusing, they are essential to understanding your company’s performance. And the beauty of metrics lies in their measurement. Being able to track various metrics over time provides you with the ability to:

  • Scrutinise the performance of your business (from departments to individuals)
  • Identify areas of weakness and address these head on
  • Work toward company objectives
  • Align your employees around your strategy
  • Focus your employees and resources on what’s most important

Yes, you should trust a gut-feeling every once in a while. But when it’s your company’s livelihood at stake, you should be conducting detailed analysis of your data in order to grow. And this is where metrics come into play.

Metrics come in all shapes and forms and their usefulness will often depend on your respective industry and goals. But there are some fundamental metrics that all businesses should keep a close tab on in order to plan.

 

1.Customer Acquisition Cost

A staple of quarterly meetings the world over, the customer acquisition cost (CAC) determines the overall effectiveness and ROI of your inbound and outbound marketing activities.

To calculate, take the total cost of marketing efforts for a period of time and divide by the number of customers gained during that time period. Simple.

This figure will then tell you how much it’s costing to acquire customers. Not only can you observe this over time, but you can also compare it to how much a customer spends with you. And if it’s costing more to acquire than a customer is spending, then you know it’s time to redirect your efforts.

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2.Customer Lifetime Value

One of your most important metrics is customer lifetime value (CLV). This forecasts how much an individual customer is worth to your company over their lifetime. For this reason, the metric forces you to focus on the long-term relationships with your customers—which is key in future-proofing the stability and health of your business.

You might acquire a new lead who places just one order and no more. But how much value have you really gained from this customer? Through measuring your CLV, you’ll be able to see the real value of your customers and identify ways to influence this.

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3. Cost per lead per channel/source

This metric allows you to understand how much you’ve spent on a particular marketing channel to attract a new lead.

By calculating cost per lead per channel, you can identify your most powerful sources of leads. This knowledge can then be used for future strategic investment. For example, calculating this metric across your social media platforms may reveal that one particular platform is more effective at bringing in leads for the same cost level. But you can also look further—compare social media against paid search, referral traffic, content downloads or email marketing campaigns.

You’ll then have a clearer idea of where to direct more resources and areas in which you might need to rethink your strategy.

 

4. Marketing originated customer %

This calculation shows exactly how much of your new business is directly influenced by marketing.

To calculate, divide the number of new customers from marketing leads (in a defined period) by the total number of new customers. This then gives you clear insight into how marketing efforts are impacting upon your company’s growth.

You’re not necessarily looking for a ‘right’ answer here as results will vary across industries, budgets and businesses. But measuring this over time will provide an indicator of the improvements your team is making and the contribution your marketing colleagues make to the overall success of the business.

 

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5. Marketing influenced customer %

This figure is similar to the above but as the heading indicates, includes cases where a prospect has been influenced by marketing materials along the way.

So now we’re looking beyond just where marketing originated the lead. This measure takes into account cases where marketing nurtured a lead in some form during the sales process. Perhaps a lead had already had contact from a salesperson but then later attended an event, downloaded an eBook or signed up to a webinar. These examples would be deemed as marketing influenced.

This can be calculated by dividing the total number of new customers that interacted with marketing by the total number of new customers. This then gives the total percentage of leads influence by marketing—which in turn provides a good indication of how well your marketing efforts help to close sales deals.

 

6. Top trafficked pages and content

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past few years, you’ll have likely heard the term, ‘content is king’ being bandied out in business and marketing circles.

And whilst it’s an easy proposition to make, it’s not always the easiest to deliver on.

Content (marketing) is crucial for your business in a number of ways:

  • It drives traffic to your website (through SEO)
  • It positions you as a thought-leader in your industry thereby increasing your credibility and trustworthiness
  • It allows your brand to showcase its voice with which to engage and build relationships with customers
  • You can use to connect with brand new customers, returning customers or customers that have dropped off the radar

Given the importance of content across these various headings, you’ll want to monitor its performance to see where you should direct your efforts.

There are no fancy calculations involved in this one.

Simply measure visits and clicks for each type of content piece you have, be it: a blog article, a landing page, a webinar, an infographic, a whitepaper, an interview. Then you can start to analyse these results at a higher level, picking out any trends or patterns and seeing what has the biggest impact on your customers.

Now with an idea of what content is being consumed the most, you can use this knowledge to replicate success in your next marketing campaign.

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7. MQLs

Marketing qualified leads (MQLs) are those leads that are more likely to become a customer compared to others, based on your own lead intelligence.

Found towards the top of your sales funnel, these leads have shown enough interest to become ‘qualified’ but have not yet shown enough intent to move further down your pipe. They may have downloaded a piece of content or signed up to your newsletter, but require further information or follow-up to move them to the next stage, which is...

  

8. SQLs

Sales qualified leads (SQLs). These are hot leads, which demonstrate a much stronger indication of lead quality. At this stage, an SQL has shown clear intent to buy and has the willingness to do so. An SQL will have been vetted from your company’s side and is now deemed a genuine prospect.

The process to acquire an MQL can take some time but, traditionally, things tend to speed up at the SQL stage. The lead is now hotter and has greater intent to purchase from you.

Taken with the above, you can measure MQLs and SQLs to see what leads are converting through your funnel and which are not. You can also investigate what content is driving your MQLs and calculate the conversion rate from MQL to SQL.

 

At Vaimo, we help brands, retailers and manufacturers all over the world to accelerate their online sales. Get in touch with our team today if you'd like to grow your digital capabilities!