Is Your Organization Ready for an Advanced Attribution Tool?

July 24, 2018 Justin Norris

Exploring the path to advanced attribution tools

Ten instances of Salesforce, eight instances of Marketo, and one giant, disparate hot mess. That’s how Brandon Isom, Director of Marketing Analytics at TIBCO, described his reporting and analytics environment three years ago in our recent webinar, Bizible Essentials for Marketo Users.

Making sense of data from hundreds of products and multiple channels required many, many hours of team time and as he described, “sheer willpower to pull together.” Additionally, his marketing department had very little respect or perceived value within the company, and a cohesive alignment between marketing and sales did not exist—in fact, the two departments had an adversarial relationship.

Unfortunately, Brandon’s story is not unique. Marketing vs. sales, disjointed metrics—for many marketing departments, it’s the same story, different day. For TIBCO, the quest to make a radical change and create a data-driven organization began by developing a single source of truth using the tools they had, defining KPI’s, and establishing accountability for different areas of the business. “It was a step in the right direction, but what we learned was that as people accepted accountability, they also began asking more complex questions which our current tools were unable to answer, such as digital channel performance, landing page tracking and marketing contribution to revenue,” shared Brandon. “We had reached a measuring plateau—the point in which our data and insights could no longer provide answers to the information we needed.”

Complex Questions, Progressive Answers

It’s not uncommon that as an organization attempts to gain deeper insight into marketing influence, both the questions and the answers get more complex. TIBCO is an excellent example of a company reaching a level of reporting sophistication and readiness to bring on a more advanced solution.

What are the primary indicators?

Multi-Channel Usage

As I discussed in our webinar and previous blog posts, most marketers track offers and outcomes reasonably well but struggle with tracking channels, especially if marketing across multiple channels. To illustrate, below is a report of Perkuto’s webinar marketing showing registrants by channel. With Marketo and Revenue Explorer, this report would entail about 50 programs per initiative to track our channels and subchannels, but with Bizible, it required no special effort and was quickly built in Salesforce, saving substantial time and streamlining the process for our marketing operations team.

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Complex Questions That Are Difficult to Answer

If your organization is asking complex questions that are difficult to answer using Marketo attribution reporting, this is another sign you may be ready for an advanced attribution tool. These questions might include:

  • What is the relationship between a channel and an offer? Which channel is most effective in moving a lead through the pipeline?
  • What keywords are most effective for driving leads?
  • What is the effectiveness of my media spend?
  • What is the cross-channel interaction in my pipeline?
  • What is the contribution of marketing to revenue?
  • Marketing interactions by account: which personas are buying? What content are they consuming?

Process Maturity

While advanced attribution does not necessitate technical sophistication or hiring a data scientist, it does require a level of process maturity. You’ll be more successful if your team has developed consistency in using UTM parameters, for example.

Positioning Your Company to Win

Returning to our story of Brandon’s reporting challenges, TIBCO’s journey eventually led them to the implementation of Bizible, attracted by the tool’s multi-touch attribution options. “Our goal was to see activity end-to-end: which channels are bringing in qualified leads, which leads are driving pipeline value and which opportunities are won.”

One year after implementing Bizible, Brandon’s “hot mess” is a thing of the past. “The relationship between sales and marketing has dramatically improved—marketing has a better understanding of how sales functions, sales has a clear view of the activity marketing is generating, budgets can be optimized, and funds can be quickly pivoted from one effort to another based on performance. Being able to drive the conversation has repositioned marketing from an activity-based department to a trusted partner in our organization. Best of all, Bizible has enabled us to get our arms around the business, understand our metrics and best position our company to win.”

 

To learn more about Brandon’s journey, attribution tools and the functional differences between Revenue Explorer and Bizible, view the on-demand presentation of Bizible Essentials for Marketo Users.

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