Just because your inbound marketing efforts are generating leads doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be enjoying tons of sales. Transforming a lead into a buyer involves building and strengthening a relationship, which is the main aim of a lead nurturing campaign.
Lead nurturing campaigns consist of a specific series of activities used to deepen relationships. Campaigns can target potential purchasers at any stage of the sales funnel, encouraging them to move forward toward the ultimate goal of a sale. A number of metrics can help you gauge if your campaigns are on the right track.
Click-through rates measure the percentage of viewers that clicked on one or more links contained in a marketing email. This measurement is a worthy one, as it instantly shows you if you’re inbound marketing efforts are generating interest.
Low click-through rates of a particular lead nurturing campaign can indicate your content is not properly segmented to align with your audience’s needs. The same holds true for high unsubscribe rates after sending out an email that’s part of a lead nurturing campaign. Your audience simply isn’t interested in the information you’re providing.
Conversion rates are the gold star of lead nurturing success, as they measure the percentage of your audience that clicked a link and completed the action you wanted them to complete. They may have downloaded content from a landing page, clicked a “buy now” email link and actually purchased something, or otherwise followed your call-to-action’s instructions for completing the desired activity.
Time-to-customer conversion rates indicate how long it takes your leads to become customers. A prime target to shoot for is no more than 18 days. While a time-to-customer conversion rate that’s longer than 18 days may still produce paying customers, it can also point to inefficient lead nurturing.
You can increase the time-to-customer conversion by reviewing how effectively your lead nurturing generates marketing qualified leads (MQLs), which are the leads more likely to become customers. Lead nurturing that produces a healthy batch of MQLs is more likely to likewise produce shorter time-to-customer conversion rates.
Cost per Customer
Cost per customer looks at the actual marketing cost of acquiring a new customer. If that cost exceeds the amount a customer is expected to bring your company in return, that particular customer is losing you money.
Closed-loop analytics, which follows a lead’s journey from start to finish, can determine if the leads you’re nurturing eventually turn into customers and how much that transformation cost. Your ultimate goal as a marketer is to generate customers at the most efficient cost, and checking this metric regularly can help ensure you stay on track.
Customer Lifetime Value
Customer lifetime value predicts the net profit your company will receive over the lifetime of your customer relationships. This metric does double duty by not only showcasing what a customer is worth, but by giving you an indication of how much of your budget you can spend acquiring new customers to keep ROI high.
Content Accessed by Purchasers
Content performance is an important metric for all inbound marketing, and it can play a key role with lead nurturing campaigns if you can pinpoint the content accessed by leads who became buyers. This includes yet goes beyond the click-throughs and downloads associated with a lead nurturing email.
Here you want to look at all interactions with your content, which includes tracking any web pages, blog posts and other content pieces leads found on their own on their way to becoming a customer. You may be surprised at the type of content that appears to lead to sales, as it’s not always the most popular content on a website. A piece that resulted in 300 downloads and two sales, for instance, may not be as valuable as one that only prompted 30 downloads but 13 sales.
While content accessed by purchasers may be a tad tougher to measure than the typical lineup of metrics, the extra effort can be worth it. You’ll be able to uncover what content is bringing in the most revenue and results.
Each metric uncovers important information you can use to continuously improve your lead nurturing campaigns, yet no single metric is the end-all indication of success. The ultimate sign of success is being able to effectively and efficiently transform leads into lifetime customers that come back again and again.