Have you ever found yourself about to setup a CRM Campaign and wondered:
- Should I create one Campaign record for all my activities?
- Should I create a Campaign record for each of my activities?
- What about for each of the channels that I plan to use to drive people to my offers?
- What about for each offer?
If your organization doesn’t already have an established campaign framework, making these decisions for each campaign can be time-consuming — and make your head spin.
You’ve probably also encountered campaign reports where there are no apples-to-apples comparisons; some lines represent individual offers and others a whole program, for example, which makes decision-making very challenging.
As marketers, we often think about reporting last once we’ve finished up all our planning and execution. However, defining a campaign reporting framework first — starting with the end in mind — will facilitate those tasks and make your reporting much more effective.
A key part of this exercise is one we often see organizations skip: establishing a taxonomy and definitions for the components of your framework. The table below breaks down some of the core components, which you can tweak as needed to align with your business requirements:
|Campaign||Campaigns (not CRM Campaign records in this case) are theme-based and tie the programs and tactics together.|
|Program||Execution families that are typically tied to a single audience or outcome in the buyer’s journey (e.g., awareness, demand creation, sales enablement).|
|Tactic||Specific actions used to drive customers to an outcome: the intersection of one Channel and one Offer. Answers the question, “Why is this traffic coming to me?”|
|Channel||Also referred to as Type or Medium. Answers the question, “How is my traffic coming to me?” Examples include: banner ad, direct mail, email, etc.|
|Offer||The format of the offer. Answers the question, “Where is the traffic going?” Examples include: white paper, webinar, analyst report, event, etc.|
|Source||The referring source you use. Answers the question, “Where is the traffic coming from?” Examples include: LinkedIn, newsletter, blog, etc.|
Completing this exercise first will help inform how you structure your marketing campaign data, which you can then use to pivot your campaign reporting as granularly as needed.
But this can become a lot to govern. There is a balance needed between the overhead of tracking and the actual ability of the business to act on that resulting information. Before you jump into the deep end, there are three key questions you should answer to determine that threshold.
1. How do you want to measure campaign investment?
Determining how to measure your campaign cost is probably the hardest decision you’ll need to make. Why? When you contract with outside vendors, you often do so for multiple tactics and/or assets, and it can be tricky to divide up those invoices accurately. Conversely, when you do all the work with in-house resources, unless you calculate an hourly effort and rate, the cost looks like zero.
Once you’ve defined cost amounts, the question you need to answer is if you want to attribute that investment to the program, campaign, tactic, channel, etc. This decision matters, because what you select will drive what is represented at the lowest, most granular tier in the structure of your CRM Campaign hierarchy.
For example, if you want to track investment at the Offer level, you will need to create a single CRM Campaign record per offer. In the diagram below, you can see how a framework following this outcome is aligned to the Campaign Object.
However, most marketing teams use multiple channels to drive to the same offer. If this is the case, you must decide if you want to track investment at the channel level as well, which requires that you create a single CRM Campaign per offer/channel — with the unique associated cost of that intersection to avoid double-counting.
In the scenario above, the channel exists at the Campaign Member record level, eliminating the need to create different campaigns for each channel, saving quite a bit of time. A single Campaign record is also used to store multiple components of a taxonomy, such as Business Unit, Region, Program, etc.
Please Note: We do not recommend using the SFDC Campaign Hierarchy capability native to Salesforce to break these components apart, as it’s actually quite inflexible when you need to make adjustments.
Two recommendations here: 1) keep it simple to start, and 2) keep it consistent. If you decide to track investment at the tactic level for one campaign, your reporting will not be consistent if you then track investment at the program level for another campaign.
2. How does your sales team want to see or read campaign engagement?
Engagement with marketing campaigns is a key indicator of intent, and many marketing organizations will surface this information in the CRM system in both the Lead and the Contact records. Enabling a rep to consume and act on it requires that it be intelligible — a mish-mash of codes and abbreviations for Campaign record names will not be helpful.
Typically, of most importance to the rep is the offer, both the name and the type. Reps who are familiar with the inventory of content available should be able to quickly recognize if the prospect is consuming meatier content like white papers or webinars, versus fact sheets or infographics. Detail about when the offer was available or consumed is also important, like year and quarter or month.
Less important perhaps to the rep, but key for marketing, is detail on the region, business unit, and product. For example, if I were creating a Campaign record name for this article that you’re reading now, it would be “2018-03 3CRMCampaignQuestions Blog SI AMS,” where the codes at the end refer to a business unit and region.
Very few CRM users will click into the Campaign record for the additional detail. The Campaign naming convention is actually very critical — not only for your reps, but also for anyone consuming Campaign reporting where only the name is visible.
3. How will you measure campaign return?
“Return” is the value (amount) of the Opportunities attributed to a campaign. Attribution can take many forms, but for most tools that calculate this, it’s highly dependent on the use of the Campaign record.
Your marketing organization will need to decide which attribution models are the best fit for your objectives, and whether they are focused on the top, middle, or bottom of funnel, or across the entire buyer’s journey.
Typical attribution models are either single-touch, meaning the entire Opportunity amount is attributed to just one Campaign, or multi-touch, where the Opportunity amount is split across multiple Campaigns. (You can learn much more about attribution models in this blog post.)
If you’ve answered the first question from this post, you have figured out Investment for your campaign, however granular you chose to break that down. If you’ve now answered the last question, you have Return. Pull out your calculator, Excel spreadsheet formula, or BI tool, and you can now easily calculate that holy grail KPI for all marketers: ROI!
Jump-start your campaign framework
If you’re having trouble wrapping your head around these different components of what may have seemed a straightforward exercise of “creating the CRM Campaign,” DemandGen can help.
Our Campaign Reporting Framework service combines consulting to help you answer those questions (down to the data model and picklist values) with how to implement in your respective systems so as much as possible of the setup and tracking can be automated. Your campaign managers and your data analysts will thank you!
Gaea Connary, Consultant at DemandGen, focuses on helping organizations strengthen their lead management processes, lead scoring, nurturing strategy, and reporting and analysis to get the best return on their technology investment and meet their marketing objectives.