B2B Revenue Acceleration
B2B Revenue Acceleration

Episode · 1 year ago

78. Are We Measuring Marketing Excessively?

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Attribution and measuring ROI are incredibly important elements of marketing. 

But are we being victims of measuring marketing excessively and compromising on creativity?

In this episode, I interview Matt Fleming, Director of Marketing at Loadsmart, about measuring marketing.

We talk about: 3 flaws of over-measurement, how to measure brand awareness, the worst consequence of over measuring is loss of creativity, 20% of your budget should be brand affinity.

 

To hear this interview and many more like it, subscribe to The B2B Revenue Acceleration Podcast on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or our website.

You were listening to bb revenue acceleration, a podcast dedicated helping software executives stay on the cutting edge of sales andmarketing in their industry. Let's get into the show. Hi, welcome tobe to beer of a new acceleration. My name is Anim with you,and I'm here today with Matt Fleming, Director of marketing at load smart.How are you to day smart? Doing Great, thanks, and thanks forhaving me on the podcast. Absolute pleasure. So today we want to speak aboutmarketing activity and the topic is exactly how we measuring marketing excessively question mark, which is a great topic because I have been victim, or I've mademy marketing people victim, of my month measuring excessively sold me to. AreYour sorts on that? But before we get into the conversation, Matt,could you please introduce yourself and tell us a little bit more about the companyyou represent? Lot spots. Sure thing. My Name's Matt Flemming and I leadmarketing at load smart. What load smart does is loadsmarts of Technology Companyin we leverage technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning and combine those with deepindustry partnerships to help shippers like the Coca Cola Company is an example, andmove freight across the country a little bit more efficiently. Oh, son's excellent. So so, Matt as a market are you are obviously requiring to provethe value of the activities you drive and measure the the row I have toactivity. So I guess you can report to your management and to Y'all,bald as to I was successful your compings all. But do you believe thatmarket all focusing too much in driving shot term resorts and by doing that technicallycompromise activts at all fundamental from brand burnding perspective, but or so outdot tome Asah, yeah, so the short answer to that and I'll give youa caveat in one second, but the short answers yes, absolutely. Letme just say up front that, because I'm sure you know there's some verylike passionate views on either side of this.

So let me just say a attributionand measuring Roy are incredibly important parts of marketing. There's no way you'regoing to get around them. But what I'd say is what's happened over thepast, call it, ten to fifteen years, is that companies are lookingto attribution analysis to define their marketing playbook. So it's not so much like they'rethey're they're defining their marketing playbook and then using attribution analysis to kind ofmeasure, you know, what they should be working on right or what kindof had the best return, but they're using that attribution analysis to define everythingthat they do. Everything that marketing should be doing is kind of defined bythe attribution analysis and typically Roy is revenue, right, gross revenue, maybe insome cases margin to yeah, in my opinion is that, like thathas some real fundamental flaws, even more so if you're a BEDB technology companyand you have a longer sales cycle. Specifically, I think there's I thinkthere's like three problems, I think so. Number One, taking that example oflike a be to be company, you know, with a reasonable salecycle there are likely dozens upon dozens of touch points that occur over the courseof the six months sale cycle. Right in. The reality is is youprobably only track at best half of them. And then I think when you combinethat with the fact that the data we do track can be wildly misleading. So as an example of that, let's kind of take example of likehaving a PR or media relations function. How do you even measure the Roion that. The reality is you can't even measure the traffic from the referralitself, because how many people see an article and then just go directly toyour website or do a Google search? You're never going to get heavy shouldbut we all know internally, right, that media relations in PR is kindof an important component of marketing. And then I think the last point Ihad on that, or kind of the last big problem with people relying toomuch on attribution is that the models that we actually use to measure those touchpoints are not scientific at all. It's literally the equivalent of sticking your fingerin there and like trying to feel which way the wind blows and won't whetherit's, you know, like linear right,...

...so like our linear attribution. FirstTouch, last touch, you know, middle touch. Like the point is, like there's dozens of these models, but at the end of the dayit's just some product manager or a marketer somewhere being like hey, like, I think this is the way we should go. Yeah, it solike stepping off my soapbox for a sec I guess. I think because ofthose reasons, what ends up happening is marketing is up over focused on someactivities and completely ignores others. In the bottom line is that, at leastin my opinion, too many companies look to attribution as a gps when it'sreally supposed to be used like a compass. And Yeah, okay, that's makessense. So what would you say? The activtet up being left to sitebecause of that relentless requirement to measure on that tribute, and that'stribution.Sure, I think it's a lot of things tied to brand. Anything squishy. Right. Here's another example, right, like let's say you can even factorin a website redesigned into that, because it's I think it's also tiedto the type of business here in so let's say, you know, wesaw take the example of load smart actually. So we sell to Fortune one hundredcompanies, really senior people at those companies, and it's really kind ofan outbound marketing motion. Yet the same time we know our website is really, really important. But how do you measure that in terms of Ouri?Right, like it's not transactional. They're not going to come to our websiteand do business through our website. But there's an impact. If one ofour sales people, for instance, gets like the VP of supply chain,let's say it's staples, on the phone, and then that VP goes to checkout our website and I can't find what they were just pitched on thephone. How do you qualify? How do you quantify that? You can't. So there's always kind of in so I one I think it's kind oftied to the type of business that you're in. But to I think therewill always be things that are hard to measure, that we know like deepin our gut are wildly important and even it's logical that they're important, butbecause attribution can only take you so far,...

...you get stuck and I see thathappening over and over again. Noun, that's time. So in jails areend then? Is that a way to measure bread a Lottess? Yeah, I think there are. You know, I think again it depends on thestage of company that you're at right in terms of what resources you canput into measuring that. I think number one, you can look at kindof organic branded searches for your company and how that trends over not over time. Hopefully you actually have like a unique company name that isn't like echo orsomething like that, right, but you could potentially manage kind of organic searchfor your brand. You can do stuff like a brand awareness surveys and,I think, perhaps to a lesser extent, just kind of thinking about the relationshipthat you have with your customers. You could potentially look at stuff that'ssimilar to MPs score, so kind of like how do people actually feel aboutyour company? Beyond just kind of being aware, and I think this isgoing to sound, I guess, a little bit sappy or too much pinethe sky, but I think when you've really focused on brand marketing activities andspecifically like building kind of brand affinity with the people you're trying to sell to, there is a buzz in the way that they engage with you. Ithink as an example of that, you know drifts spent a lot of time, I think, focused on brand marketing and as a result of that,you know, they were able to launch their own event and, you know, sell it to capacity. Is that a you know, like I thinkthat's actually kind of a latent effect of them kind of spending so much timedefining their brand and really focusing on it. Yeah, great, take exam putas I live done. They've done very wetter on that to be false. So a that that makes perffix sense. So in that case, do youbelieve that the marketels are being less creative? Seems I expected to spendmure time in doing it and then a key colle and res are driven typeof approach. Absolutely definitely. I think over the past ten to fifteen yearsthere's been a massive over focus on both tech and an analytics and as aresulted, as a result of that, I think marketing the game very transactional, right. So it was like how...

...many mq wells did you bring in? How many of those MQ wells turned to ask you, wells, howdid that turn into revenue? And we came, we became like so focusedon transactional mark marketing that it really came at the cost of building a brandand building affinity with that brand. And when I say that, I reallywant I'm talking about is like building a brand in building an authentic connection withthe people that you're actually trying to sell to. And it's crazy because Ithink you end up having like you have marketers who know how you know.They're like a grand wizard in Marquetto or hub spot, but they don't knowhow to write. They can't all a story and I believe that the overfocusedon analyt x has actually gotten US further from the results we want because again, right those attribution analysis are fundamentally flawed. They're only tracking the points you cantrack and then they're waiting those touch points very arbitral. So if anything, I think the overfocus on analytics, well it's important, it actually getsUS further away from the results that we want, which is, you know, for most people, revenue. So I would you suggest you obviously againand you mentioned it a couple of times in in the conversation so far.It does depends on the type of organization. So I don't know how big isyour team? A lot smart. I don't know if you're on yourown. But let's say you've got a small organization. You've got someone who'sgot maybe you know, a CMO and two three people in the organization worldwide. Of course they won't be able to as someone with marketing operations, someonewith content marketing, someone with online marketing, whatever it could be. You knowat the team that you would have in the Coca Cola and know allthose large organizations may have like thousands of people in marketing. So if you, if you are limited with resources, and I'm sure you'll say that,you look great at tools, and analytic is quite important. Is a partof it that you can't completely revoke from from your from your yours process.So how would you attribute the time, how much, how much should bespend on analytical driving results, commuting anything about what you are doing, versusactually, you know, being creative, thinking outside the box and making yourprospect thing that you know you coming up...

...with the greatest compaign wants to engagewith you. Yeah, so what I would say is I don't think they'remutually exclusive. Like the you know, keeping an eye on the analytics andthen also being able to think creatively. I think there's a balancing act tothat, right. Like I think that also plays into kind of how youthink about like the budget that supports those activities, right. That was kindof my next Question Time and budget. So yeah, it kind of I'lldo you spread that, because I completely understand what you're saying, but Iput, you know, putting my ceu at all. I still need toget some sort of measure. I need to get to feel saying, youknow, I might is driving the right thing. I made not begetting GMQures, but all the prospective meets everything at I'm reading about my company iswe are the new Ronics of you know, all the BMW or whatever I couldmean a go, all those brands being associated to success and everything froma client's perspective. And well, is that that could be just through conversation, you know. At the same time, I'm sure you need to justify thetools that you are using your marketing budgets. I'm kind of trying toask your question around. I'll do you go and get more money as amarketer without, you know, basically balancing get your sorts on that. Iknow you. Yeah, it's a hard question and it's a really good question, really really good, because I think that's kind of you know, itforces me to put my money where my mouth is. Right. So letme just say one thing up front, and it may not be the thingthing that you'd want to hear as a CEO. Right, right, well, there will be activities that your company should absolutely be doing that you willnever be able to measure. The RLIFE. However, Huh, and that soundsscary. It should be scary, but it's just it's the way itis, and you can kind of like talk around it a little bit,you know, like Oh, like, well, maybe it will increase ourconversion rate five percent on the website and that results in x many leads,x many opportunities, x many meetings, x many deals. Right, youcan do that, but it really like your you're you're just trying to makeyourself feel better for making that invest so,...

...yeah, maybe that's controversial, butthat's kind of how I think about they're always be things that you can'tmeasure. How does that relate to how I think about splitting budget and activity? Because at the end of the day, I think it's a compromise. Right. So how I am personally? Let me just start by saying that, like, I would right now invest more earn brand, but there's obviouslypressure from my boss, there's pressure from senior leadership to focus on like demandGen activities that are more kind of typically trackable. Right. So I'll tellyou kind of how I think about it and how I like the framework Iuse for doing that. So what I do is I first start with figuringout, basically doing the reverse funnel math to identify, to keep the restof it, to keep my peers and my boss and the management team happy, how many whether it's leads, mqls. You know, however, you definetop of the funnel right, use the reverse funnel math to basically backtrackout what you need to be spending in, you know, a typical demanjat programright, or demand M programs across a quarter to hit that quarterly target. Yeah, assuming revenue target, that's going to take a massive chunk ofchange out of your budget, right, like that's just good and you haveto do it because it is a compromise with other people on your team.So that's number one. So I'm using reverse funnel math to backtrack out thedemand end budget and that chunk is spoken for. Then there's also, youknow, the tools and tech. I need some carving that out, buttypically what ends up happening is is like, after you've kind of done your funnelanalysis, you've come up with your quarterly targets in terms of like whatyou need to hit, and then also the costs and campaigns that you knowyou need to run right to actually hit that target, there's going to bea chunk of budget that's left over. Almost always right, and typically theway I think about that is all go to senior management say hey, I'msigning up for this lead target, this opportunity target, this customer target.I'm going to use this amount of money to actually go out and get thoseleads or empty walls, however you wanted to find it. But there's thischunk of budget that's left over that I'm going to be using to build brandware, or not necessarily brand awareness, I...

...like to say brand affinity, brandaffinity with the people were trying to sell to. You know, that couldbe roughly twenty, two thirty percent of the budget. Typically it's closer totwenty. And the other thing I would say there is that what we dois we were in abm shop, right, so where account based, marketing,Account Bass sales. So what new is when I when we talk aboutthose brand activities, right, depending on the platform, you can get aglimpse into what companies are actually engaging with that brand content. Right. So, for instance, Linkedin, if I run sponsored video and target it tothe prospects and companies that were actively trying to get into I can see whetheror not those companies engage with the content. So that's kind of how I thinkabout it. You know, start with the demand, Jen figure outthe targets that you need to hit to one hit your revenue number, butto keep everyone happy, you know, carve out what you need for tools, but then, kind of with that chunk of budget that's left over,I would dedicate that to brand and, to be honest, like, ifI didn't have to make those compromises, I'd probably invest even more in brand, simply because not to like, you know, go on a diet tribe. But if you think about it, contents becoming more saturated. Ad Budgetsare going up, compounding roughly twenty percent year over year. So like thosetypical like demand employs or play book, you know that demand gend playbook israpidly becoming stale and more expensive. So I would actually argue that, youknow, going into the next five years, a company's ability to generate demand isactually going to be infinitely better or more efficient by do it by buildingbrand and building brand affinity, then it would be trying to do any typicalmarketing playbook, you know, like gated content, Gavid Webinar ad supporting thatstuff like that. Yeah, I talked a lot. I hope that makessense. That makes perfect sense, I think. I think you know you'reright, just kind of to de fitting you of good t when you group, when you go insight is show up and the websites you write. Imean the difficulty of the topic today is that I think you can of needto measure some stuff because you can't get away with it. But I thinkwhat we're saying is that, look, you still need to think about yourbrand. You need to think about the...

...longer term. Don't just get becauseif not, will everybody will do email campaigns, which is kind of alittle bit dead now, but very easy to manage, very easy to measurethe result. Someone respond to the email. What are interested? If they don'trespond, well, technically they're not interested. But I think, Ithink you can of eat the nail on the end with the with the wayto go about it. And and I guess for me, from my personalperspective, which is may not be the perspective of all the audience, whatI really wanted to get from you today is you know what sort of percentageof budgets, percentage of time would you be allocating the brand, and Ithink if we were to get a rough number, I would be around twentypersons, just like a fifth of time and the fifth of the of thebudget, which, you know, kind of makes sense to me. Youknow, it's it's it's it's important, I think, to invest. MayBe thinking about it from a different perspective because operatic is a company that Istarted. You know, I was there from day one. So the nameoperatics the brand really mean something to me. So I want the brand to dowell and the brand to thrive. And may be different when you arein an organization it is a bit larger and people may not say it insome perspective, but twenty person seems fair and I think that's that's emissively whatwe are trying to do. I've said that already on a few on afew episodes, but you know, it's it's kind of refreshing because I wasprobably on the opposite side thinking, you know, brand Pia, what's thepoint? You know our new complas, realize it's use less. Up untilthe point I started to get into conversation with prospect that I was meeting atevents or even people emailing me and saying, look, just would like to reallyinterested to work with the products which just you know, we cannot validatedthe references and stuff. We already spoke to people. Lots of people speakabout you, guys, and there is a good vibes around you. Thereis a buzz around you, but I just don't know if I can affordyour services. So I wanted to speak to you and see if, youknow, I made too small and made the right size to work with you. Petickuly, people approaching you saying or...

...you seem to be doing so greatthat I don't know if I've got enough money for you. You see,it's got to be very expensive for the reason that I believe you're delivery,and that's from a perspective. Is Actually is Brent and and we started thatreally three years ago to get that sort of feedback, and they keep ongoing since and but yeah, it's it's a lot of work to be done. It's a lot for us. It's community building. We're going to bewalking on our website this year as well because, you know, we've donea lot of things that are offline, if you will, that are notreally as you mentioned with your example, with staples, you can't find themonline. So we need to be more consistent. So we do know thosethings, but that twenty percent seems fail and I think you you, you, you ready the NAT on Tetz. That twin so much. If anyonea fologians would like to carry on the conversation, Weise you out of thepot. Get a note of decision today with what's the best way to getin touch with you? Yeah, sure, so people can find me on linkedinor shoot me an email. My linkedin is forward slash MC Fleming.Feel free to pick me there. I love talking about this kind of stuff. Alternatively, if you want to reach me up by email, you canhit me up at Matthew Dot Fleming, with one M at load smartcom.That's one enough food where. Thank you very much for you insight today,met it was a great pleasure to have you on the show. It wasa pleasure to be on. Thanks for having me. operatics has redefined themeaning of revenue generation for technology companies worldwide. While the traditional concepts of building andmanaging inside sales teams inhouse has existed for many years, companies are strugglingwith a lack of focus agility and scale required in today's fast and complex worldof enterprise technology sales. See How operatics can help your company accelerate pipeline atoperatics dotnet. You've been listening to be tob revenue acceleration. To ensure thatyou never miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time.

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