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Making decisions from data can be the hardest thing to do as a marketer. There are questions that arise anytime you see a data set, but it’s your job to figure out what it means. With “Big Data” taking hold, there is now even more data to decipher. One tool you can use to manage and store all of this data is CRM, Customer Relationship Management.

Make Marketing Decisions

CRM has one common component to help you make marketing decisions. Leads. Lead data allows you to gauge how healthy your marketing is, what works and what doesn’t, and lets you understand lead quality. In today’s post, we’ll provide some lead data sources from CRM you can use to help make marketing decisions.

Lead Source: Where are your leads coming from?

Understanding your lead source data is important not only for front-end decisions, but also back-end. To start, you need to make sure your marketing and sales teams are using this field properly. Limiting the sources your teams can choose from allows your company to quickly decide which source to attribute to the lead to, thereby keeping your data clean. The selection of lead source can also be done automatically depending how the lead is added to CRM.

Some examples of lead sources include outbound cold calls, email, chat, website form submission, and events. Keeping the lead source simple lets you use a different field, source campaign, to describe the lead source in more detail as needed.

This insight into where leads are coming from helps organizations make future business decisions such as:

  • Number of employees needed for the inside sales team
  • Budget disbursement for paid advertising
  • Landing page success
  • P&L for events attended

The Power of the Funnel

Having a marketing funnel run through your CRM is plain and simple, smart. Being able to monitor leads and the content they’ve consumed before, during, and after the sales process can set your marketing and sales teams up for success. As digital marketing changes over the next 5-10 years, you’ll see even more reasons to implement a funnel, including the benefits of personalization that give brands an edge. Not to mention the added benefit of organic search. If you’re giving visitors something they want or need, they’re more likely to stay on and return to your site, which helps place your website in organic search results.

Using a funnel to score leads on a cold/warm/hot level lets you see what content they have consumed, lets you nurture leads by email, and creates personas to personalize the messages leads receive. Some business decisions that could stem from funnel data include:

  • Campaign success rates
  • Nurture email success
  • Top converting marketing material
  • Persona paths/UX

Turning Data into Demographics

Data collected for marketing decisions should encompass all the information found within your CRM. This includes the demographics of your leads and your customers. Being able to use the location of your leads or top customers, the business size, or the titles of frequent buyers, can give you the information you need to create personas and then the content to attract more of the same.

This type of information can be gathered a couple of ways. It can be done by the sales team, but it can also be done using web forms attached to your website content. This is sometimes referred to as “gating” your content. To gate content, you need to understand the value of what you’re providing the lead and then require the proper information from them to “pay” for that content. Oftentimes, “top-of-the-funnel” content like newsletters or infographics require less, or no, information from a lead than “bottom-of-the-funnel” content like a whitepaper or eBook. Tailor each individual web form based on what you feel the content is worth.

Some business decisions that could stem from demographic data includes:

  • Persona demographics
  • Ideal size of your company
  • Most active job titles
  • Top performing cities, states, and countries

Closed as Won: The Measure of Success

The data you receive from leads that turn into opportunities and then end up as customers is a goldmine. This data alone can give your company direction and help you find your niche. That’s why when you use your closed as won accounts it should be for a macro view of your marketing processes.

This is the data executives want to see from marketing because it helps prove ROI or that the money spent was worthwhile. A great data point to use is your customer acquisition costs and the lifetime value. Using these two points gives insight into what campaigns actually turned into business by finding what it cost to acquire a customer and comparing it to the value they bring to your organization.

Some decisions that could stem from closed as won data are:

  • Customer acquisition costs
  • Lifetime value
  • ROI
  • Best media for your budget

Using CRM data to help with marketing decisions should be done on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly basis. The hardest thing to do, however, is deciding to take action from what you find. What CRM data do you use to help make marketing decisions? If you aren’t sure and need some help getting started, download our FREE eBook, Getting Started with Marketing Automation and CRM, today!

Happy CRM’ing!

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Joe CRM is a CRM superhero who runs on pure Microsoft Dynamics CRM adrenaline. As the face of PowerObjects, Joe CRM’s mission is to reveal innovative ways to use Dynamics CRM and bring the application to more businesses and organizations around the world.