B2B Reporting: What Your CEO Really Needs to See

by Oct 23, 20180 comments

You want to show your leader the metrics that prove your B2B marketing efforts are going well. But let’s face it, your CEO is a busy person and may not have the time to sift through 30 pages of detailed tables numbers for every social share.

When developing a B2B marketing report, it’s important to include all of the pertinent information without letting it overwhelm the real outcomes. So we’ve created a guide that will help you put together an overview of engagement metrics and comparisons to previous periods. From revenue numbers to PPC campaigns, you’ll have all the right information in one place.

Keep Track of Engagement Numbers

Some of the most important metrics to include in your B2B sales report are your engagement numbers. No matter how big your social presence is, you should always keep track of these statistics. Which means nearly everyone should keep an eye on them: 83 percent of B2B marketers use social media; making it the most common B2B marketing tactic, according to the Content Marketing Institute. Here are a few things to pay attention when tracking your engagement numbers:

  • Reach and shares: As long as your social media accounts are business accounts, you’ll have the option of looking deeper into metrics. Some platforms, such as Facebook, have a more comprehensive overview where you can look at reach, shares, organic likes, and even completion of videos. Other platforms, such as Twitter, aren’t as detailed, but provide monthly overviews if you’re looking for a brief summary. To get a more extensive view of social metrics, you can read Sprout Social’s guide.
  • Net promoter score (NPS): To find your NPS, ask customers to rate their likelihood of recommending a company to a friend or colleague by from 0 to 10. You can read about how to calculate your NPS here.
  • Growth in advocacy: Advocacy marketing is all about listening to customers and turning their concerns into capital. There are many ways to measure advocacy and it may take some time. A few ways to monitor growth are checking the number of leads over time, reading reviews, looking at social media shares, and tracking customer referrals.  

Since keeping track of engagement means you’ll be left with a ton of numbers, be sure to keep each line clear and concise and only include your final calculations. And most marketing automation solutions will let you connect directly to your social media accounts to both publish updates and pull in analytics so you can view your metrics all in one place.

Calculate Marketing-Attributed Revenue Numbers

The marketing-attributed revenue should be straightforward on your B2B report. It’s the dollar value revenue you get from marketing. Once you get this number, you’ll be able to plan more efficiently where future spending should go. But getting this information can be challenging if you aren’t able to detect the moment you brought in sales. To help give you a start, you can also look at the pros and cons of first and last touch attribution:

  • First touch attribution: This is the channel, page, or post that causes a lead to make that first engagement with your company. With first touch attribution, you can get a clear understanding of how many people clicked on the ad that brought them to your website. This is great for companies who have a short lead funnel that only requires a few touches, but those with longer pipelines may want to use a different attribution model to better understand what works for them.
  • Last touch attribution: Last touch attribution pays attention to the last piece of content, channel, or post that the lead saw just before converting. For example, a last touch attribution would recognize the email that included a discount code, which led to a purchase. The benefits of using last touch is that you see which campaign turned a lead into a customer. The downside is that you’re completely ignoring all of the steps that led to that last touch.
  • Multi-touch attribution: Here’s where you can find a balance. Multi-touch assigns a value at each touch point, from the initial social ads to the final checkout. That way, you can see which campaigns were most valuable in the customer journey. You will also be able to adjust this model over time so that each of the campaign’s efforts are maximized. It’s more time consuming, but you get more data to analyze.

Check Marketing Qualified Leads and Conversion Rates

A marketing qualified lead (MQL) is a lead who has engaged with marketing content and shown their readiness to become a customer based on that engagement. An MQL designation should look at not only the customer profile, but also his or her engagement levels, such as placing items in a shopping cart or subscribing to a newsletter, which may trigger different lead scores to show readiness to purchase.

MQLs are most often found by looking at who has engaged the most with your content, through views, downloads, or conversation with your team. Every company is different, so you’ll have to figure out which factors determine your lead scores and adjust it based on your campaign. Once you agree on these factors, you’ll be able to find your leads and hopefully nurture them toward a sale. Using a marketing automation tool that brings in data from your website analytics will help you attach scores to your leads, understand where those leads drop out of the funnel, and build nurture campaigns to move those MQLs toward a conversion.

While it might be tempting to focus on the amount of web traffic you get, be sure to note your conversion rates and goal completions. These percentages will tell you how many of your website viewers complete a goal (such as filling out a form or clicking on a link) out of the total number of viewers. A high percent of goal completions generally means your website is accessible and better optimized toward your funnel, and lower rates mean you should work on figuring out what’s stopping leads along the way.  

Analyze Turnout at Individual Initiatives

Your marketing strategy may include more components that extend beyond web views and social media reach. When you plan out your next event in your project management software, be sure to include your follow-up with attendees and measurement of success as tasks. This will help you stay on track and remember to measure before you’re off planning the next awesome event.

Here are important metrics for some common marketing initiatives:

  • Webinars: They are effective if you pay attention to the metrics. To determine whether or not your webinar was successful, you should take note of the following:

    • How many viewers tuned in
    • At what point did viewers drop off
    • Which device did viewers use to watch
    • The time and day the webinar aired
    • A brief summary of viewers’ feedback 
  • Pay-Per-Click: PPC campaigns can bring in lots of clicks when done right. Essentially, you’re paying for more people to view your online ads. The most common system is Google Ads, where you pay a fee for your ad to show up high in the search results. Multiple factors determine how successful your campaign is, so be sure to take note of your keywords, the content on your landing page, and your quality score.
  • Events: While so much engagement takes place online, it’s important to put time into face-to-face interaction. But the time put into organizing the event and selling tickets may not always seem worthwhile if your event isn’t a success. To keep track of whether or not your marketing event was beneficial to sales, here a few things to take note of in your report:

    • Post-event surveys: No matter how big or small the event, always ask attendees how they felt. Make sure your questions are quick, straightforward, and relevant, such as “After this event, would you recommend this product/service to a friend or family member?” Gather the results and put them in your report.
    • Revenue: Be sure to include the amount of money gone into the event and the amount you got out of it. Even if you spent a little more than you had gotten back, you should also note if your anticipated cost and revenue was higher or lower than the actual cost and revenue.
    • Sales post-event: This is pretty simple. Be sure to note if your sales have gone up weeks following the event, how many phone calls and emails you’ve received, and any new sign-ups for services.

Using Marketing Automation to Gather Data

While you’re calculating revenue and engagement numbers on your social platforms, it’s important to note that marketing automation tools will help not only track this data, but increase conversion rates as well. These tools can create personalized campaigns and test the customer experience. One of the biggest benefits is that you’ll also be able to analyze campaign performance and make improvements quickly. Pardot’s marketing automation software includes effortless email marketing, ROI reporting, smarter lead generation, and more.

A lot of data goes into an informative B2B report, so you can see why it’s so important to dig out the pertinent metrics and organize them in a clear and concise manner. Your CEO wants to see the numbers that suggest high engagement is leading to a high number of sales, so pay attention to your customers, social media analytics, and success of individual initiatives.

Gabriela Julia is a writer for TechnologyAdvice.com. She is a multimedia journalist and graduate student based in Central New York. You can connect with her on LinkedIn.

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