Silverpop - Actionable Dashboard Reports = Enhanced Lead Management Solutions and Happy C-Suite Executives
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Actionable Dashboard Reports = Enhanced Lead Management Solutions and Happy C-Suite Executives

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by: Will Schnabel (@wschnabel)
04 September 2008

As we all know, marketing greatly impacts the success of a company. Yet, measuring marketing effectiveness has never been easy for BtoB marketers and their bosses. At the beginning and end of the day, C-Suite executives and stakeholder's want to know if budgets are being well spent. This concern lingers even greater over marketing departments who are tasked with tracking data from multiple campaigns and making sure the results are producing a return on their marketing investment.

Perhaps out of desperation or false advertising, many marketers fall prey to thinking lead management solutions that offer dashboard reporting features will track all the important data to secure their place at the table. Unbeknownst to them is the fact that all dashboard reporting features are not created equal. But having a dashboard reporting feature equipped to capture and summarize actionable data and analytics can turn an ordinary marketer into a BtoB Rock Star.

For starters, a good dashboard reporting feature will include insightful marketing information on where demand is generated, as well as graphic summarizations of various, key lead funnel metrics. Also, the appeal of any dashboard reporting feature should be its easily accessible data, which can help build credibility for marketing initiatives from C-Suite executives and strengthen a marketer's ability to keep successful programs fully funded.

Since measurement tools that provide insight into marketing activities and help defend spending are now sought after, I will share with you several must-haves for a dashboard reporting feature and how you can use the data to market to your C-Suite executives.

Marketing and Sales Qualified Leads
Marketers know neither the hour nor the day when their CMO will want to find out how many qualified leads are in the queue. If your qualified lead tracking device is a spreadsheet, it probably won't tell your C-Suite executive which leads have been qualified by marketing or sales and which have been qualified by both teams. And if the funnel is getting too full, or there is a lack of leads, having real-time information can allow you to adjust ongoing marketing spending to get back on track. This feature can help close the loop between marketing and sales and reiterate the power of integrated metrics, especially when the qualified leads turn into new clients.   

Top-Performing Lead Sources
Is it the Webinar, the customer conference or the online white paper advertisement that brings in the most qualified leads? A BtoB marketers' livelihood is nestled in knowing where most of his leads are coming from. This information gives marketers the opportunity to effectively evaluate and restructure campaigns to keep from spending energy, time and money on fruitless endeavors. This can keep key executives from chasing certain BtoB trends for too long. 

ROI by Campaign
C-Suite executives want to know if the e-mail campaign lost money, broke even or turned a profit. This feature can easily help you defend successful campaigns and guide advocates of unsuccessful campaigns to the light. And it can boost employee morale. According to Forrester Research, three out of four marketers say the ability to track marketing ROI gives them more respect in their organization.

Dashboard reports should supplement your hard work and lend credibility to your marketing genius. It should be able to offer features that can easily quantify data so you can benchmark it later and compare trends over time.  And, remember, C-Suite executives don't always care about the granular details, but more so what works, what doesn't and how is it affecting the bottom line.




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