ROI Feed

Gambling is based on Luck and Marketing has no place for Luck

Why It Matters

"You have to ask yourself, ‘Can I  forecast the sales results for a lead generation campaign?’  “ If you can't, this is called gambling.  Gambling is based on Luck and Marketing has no place for gamblers."

James W. Obermayer

Tweet This

Continue reading "Gambling is based on Luck and Marketing has no place for Luck" »

"Well done is better than well said."

Benjamin Franklin said "Well done is better than well said." about 229 years ago and it is still fresh today.

Ben FranklinsWith the talk we have heard about CRM and the progress marketing automation has made for the last ten years, most marketing managers are still not walking the talk when it comes to measuring ROI for lead generation. I just didn’t realize how much insight Ben had into marketing.

James Lenskold the author of Marketing ROI certainly nailed it when he taught marketers how to stop talking about marketing ROI and start proving it. I am sure every marketer would like to hear “Well done" instead of just well said.

Continue reading ""Well done is better than well said."" »

Sunday Musings: Bodhidharma: All know the way; few actually walk it.

This blog entry is one of our most read and visited.  

6a0147e05adc32970b0168e7fc350a970c-320wiBodhidharma was a Buddhist monk who lived during the 5th/6th century CE.  (1)  His famous words echo today for marketing. 

After the bruising, battering, beating marketers and their companies have taken for the last three years, and with all the seminars, webinars, books, articles and blog posts on how to measure marketing ROI, everyone knows the way to prove the ROI for lead generation programs, right?  So if this is true, and everyone knows the way, why do so few take the walk?    

I think there is a dose of fear or anxiety over reporting results that might be mixed, and fright that if each lead generation program doesn’t do well, the whole department will be held dreadfully accountable.

(Bodhidharma, woodblock print by Yoshitoshi, 1887.)

Get over it.  

Continue reading "Sunday Musings: Bodhidharma: All know the way; few actually walk it. " »

A Story: How a Marketing Manager Learned to Build a Demand Creation Plan Based on Sales Quotas

IStock_000018180137Small“How do you know,” I asked the marketing manager, “how much money to spend on marketing, and how many inquiries and leads to produce?”

Continue reading "A Story: How a Marketing Manager Learned to Build a Demand Creation Plan Based on Sales Quotas " »

Listen While You Work: Mike Hollison - uncensored - How to Increase Sales 30% in 90 Days

This program is an authentic, unscripted, exchange of ideas which broadcast live on October 8th, 2015.  

Increasing sales by 30% in 90 days is a bold statement and we asked Mike Hollison, CMO of how it can be done.  Of course following up all leads increases sales, but Inside Sales claims its self-learning engine drives predicative sales communications and engagement usinNeuralytics®.

Continue reading "Listen While You Work: Mike Hollison - uncensored - How to Increase Sales 30% in 90 Days" »

SLMWeek: Ruth Stevens uncensored - Why there's lip service and so little action in Marketing ROI Reporting?

2011-stevensIs there really a marketing ROI?  Ruth P. Steven's tells the uncensored truth!" This is a replay of a show that is evergreen. How do you weigh in on it?

 SLMA Radio host Jim Obermayer interviews Ruth P. Stevens about the reality of the holy grail of proving marketing's return investment. 


Is it as easy as some say or as difficult as some others say;

Continue reading "SLMWeek: Ruth Stevens uncensored - Why there's lip service and so little action in Marketing ROI Reporting?" »

How to Measure Revenue with your CRM (Especially Salesforce)


Bonnie Crater Headshot
Of all the reasons to install and use Salesforce as a CRM system, measuring marketing performance is one of the biggies.   In this interview with industry veteran Bonnie Crater, CEO of Full Circle CRM, we explore how can you get intelligence to make decisions and not hum and haw when the CEO says, “What does Salesforce report on our marketing spend?  Bonnie talks about marketing artists and scientists and who is most likely to want to be measured.   Within the 25 minute interview she covers the five steps that marketing and sales must take to measure revenue from marketing. 


About Bonnie Crater
Prior to joining Full Circle CRM, Bonnie Crater was Vice President of Marketing for VoiceObjects

Continue reading "How to Measure Revenue with your CRM (Especially Salesforce)" »

Winners never “try.” Winners only win. Trying is for Losers.

Gerry Spence
* said, “I warn you: a winning stance is never achieved by trying.  I hear some say, ‘I will try as hard as I can.’ Trying is for losers.  Trying implies the possibility of losing.  ‘I will try to win.  I will try not to lose.’ If after trying they have lost, well they tried, did they not?  Losers always try.  Winners never try.  Winners only win.” 

There are many memorable things that Gerry Spence says in his book “How to Argue and Win Every Time,”* * and my paraphrase in this blog post title is one of them.  My dog- eared copy of

Continue reading "Winners never “try.” Winners only win. Trying is for Losers." »

Tired of Trying to Answer the ROI Question?

Yogi Berra said it best when he commented “I wish I had an answer to that, because I'm tired of answering that question.”    His statement reminds me that marketing managers seldom give a good answer to the ROI question.  I guess they wish people would stop asking and maybe things will just get better by themselves.  Not gonna happen.

IStock_000018180137SmallSooner or later Marketing will have to stand up and tell management what the ROI is for the demand generation budget.  Are you sure you want to hear something similar to what Casey Stengel said when counseling a young ball player?  "Son, we'd like to keep you around this season, but we're going to try and win a pennant."

Why It Matters

                                 If you don’t solve the revenue ROI question for demand generation, management will find someone who can!

How can management keep a marketing team on board if they can’t create demand in a predictable way?  A way that creates revenue in a predictable fashion so that they can be number one in their marketplace?

Marketing managers used to say they couldn’t prove the ROI on marketing because:

  1. They didn’t have a CRM system. - This doesn’t pertain any more.  90% of all companies have a CRM system; the ones that don’t can’t use cost as an excuse.  It’s cheap; pocket change.   This excuse no longer applies.
  2. Salespeople don’t report on the disposition of leads. - This is a matter of sales management policy.  Make reporting on lead disposition a matter of policy.  It’s a must-have rule; one not to be broken.  (Those who don’t report are usually the top salesperson in the organization, or those not making quota.) 
  3. Salespeople don’t follow-up leads. - Gee, this is similar to number two.  It’s a matter of sales management policy.  Make lead follow-up a matter of policy; a rule.  Rules are not to be broken. 
  4. Marketing has no control over follow-up. - Marketing is now equipped with CRM and marketing automation tools, making follow-up a part of their job and an easily automated chore.  No excuses any more. 
  5. They don’t work for me! - It doesn’t make any difference if the salespeople work for you or not.   As the marketing manager, create a lead nurturing follow-up system.  Create reports that show who is following up and who isn’t.  If nothing else works, embarrass them. 
  6. They do work for me but they won’t follow-up! - If the salespeople work for you and you can’t get them to follow up leads, time to fire yourself for being a poor leader.

 If your company wants to ‘win the pennant,’ make sure you have the right people and processes in place. Sales managers - do your part and enforce the follow-up rules.  Marketing managers - do your part and perform follow-up of your own using one of the cheap and ready marketing automation tools.  


Ok, so maybe this is the formula for fiction.  Women’s fiction.  Romantic fiction.  But when I think about it, this is not unlike most redemptive stories from successful people. 

They sinned: did things wrong, caused issues and problems for those around them and in their businesses.  

Why it matters

Marketing is a learned skill that comes from trial and error, and learning from others. Longevity in the discipline helps. Be a “learner."

In this process they suffered.  Of course, there may have been some success, but not total success.  No matter how they managed their lives and their businesses, they had suffering which they didn’t take the time to tie back to the wrong doing, the failures. 

Eventually they learned, matured and repented.  They changed and found salvation.  Through their repentance, they learned how to be successful. 

This formula isn’t a far stretch to those of us in marketing.  Take me for instance.  I have a degree in English literature.  After a short stint as a technical writer (interesting but not overly successful, although I did write the testing specs for the Wankle engine), I moved into marketing.   As a marketing specialist without training I sinned again and again:

  • I created inquiries for sales, but not qualified leads.
  • I launched marketing programs without telling the salespeople before they were launched.
  • I didn’t understand the principles of direct marketing until much later, so I created direct mail without a complete offer, with too much copy, and using bad lists.
  • I used lists for mailers that were old and had never been cleaned up.
  • I managed trade shows without understanding the reason for the show: leads.
  • I ran advertising without a call to action.
  • CRM systems?  I used a spreadsheet.