Lean Marketing for the ROI-Focused CMO

[fa icon="calendar"] Sep 23, 2013 7:30:00 AM / by Katrice Svanda

Katrice Svanda

Lean Marketing for the ROI-Focused CMO.png

CMOs have a tough job. You have to prove your efforts produce a return on investment and show your decisions make a clear impact on generating revenue. With the mass array of social and online tactics, it can be difficult to measure your efforts to show a direct correlation to improved sales. Consider the non-marketer’s perspective. We understand brand positioning and identity is important, but to an outsider, it can be too much of a big idea to tie it to profit. By shifting your attitude toward that of a ROI-focused, lean marketer, you’ll establish yourself as a strong value to your company.

Harness Your Inner Business Chi

CEOs need a CMO who cares as much about the bottom line as they do. In order to maintain trust and confidence from your CEO, you need to establish a system that clearly defines your decisions and places a measurement capability to everything you can possibly measure. You can do this through a lead intelligence and automated marketing program.

CMO, CEO and CTO Working Together

Lock yourself in a room with your CEO and CTO.  Marketing today requires technological systems in place to fully capture and decipher big data necessary to show ROI.  Pulling your CTO in can help facilitate a discussion where all the important parties are represented fairly, and you have a real conversation about your needs in having a CRM and automated marketing system.  There are several options for what system you use, whether it’s internal through your IT department, or an external system such as HubSpot. Discuss the budget you will need to create and manage this operation and then create a measurement plan so you can re-evaluate in six months or a year to ensure (and prove) it’s cost-justified.

Implement KPIs

There are three types of KPIs we focus on: internal, external and “show me the money” KPIs.

Internal: The goals you set in place to manage production to keep on track. Examples include:

  • We will publish X amount of blogs per week
  • We will publish to social media X times per week
  • We will produce a webinar X times per month

External: The measurement of how much your content is interacted with in order to determine effectiveness. Examples include:

  • Blog articles shared X amount of times
  • Number of offer downloads per month
  • Number of inbound links to blog articles per month

Show Me the Money: The measurement of your content directly related to sales (to show you what’s working and what isn’t). This is essentially the number of leads you receive from each piece of content.

Learn more about KPIs here.

Create an SLA between Sales and Marketing

Take your KPIs a step further. Your marketing efforts are the key to attracting sales-qualified leads. Without sales conversion, all efforts are pointless and will not produce ROI. This will not make your CEO happy – or your marketing department for that matter. This is where a Service Level Agreement (SLA) between marketing and sales comes in handy.

Align Sales and Marketing to Create “Smarketing”

“Smarketing” is a fun term coined by Dan Tyre at HubSpot. The concept is now it’s sales and marketing’s turn to be locked in a room to hammer out goals and how to work together. Determine your desired (and attainable) lead conversion rate to determine the number and quality of leads marketing needs to deliver to sales each month and what efforts sales needs to put forth to properly court each lead for maximum close rate.

(Article featured on Business 2 Community, Yahoo Small Business, and

About Digital Impact Agency

Digital Impact Agency is a creative firm specializing in interactive media and inbound marketing strategies for manufacturing and technology companies, professional service firms (architectural, engineering, construction, legal and consulting), nonprofits and enterprise companies. We are a team of innovative entrepreneurs focused on creating the most strategic and effective communication channels for our clients.

Topics: marketing strategy, enterprise inbound marketing

Katrice Svanda

Written by Katrice Svanda

Katrice Svanda is a Founder and CEO for Digital Impact Agency, a Houston-based digital media and inbound marketing agency. Her background includes over 15 years of experience in the technology industry from marketing emerging technologies to participating in several technology spin-offs. Katrice has created successful marketing campaigns for business-to-business, business-to-consumer, and business-to-government.