Lou Holtz, the legendary football coach said this,* and how true it is in the sales lead management industry. In spite of all of the software tools available and the lip service given to proving the ROI for sales leads, I see marginally few marketing managers step forward to actually prove lead gen ROI. They have good intent, they say they're going to get to it, maybe this year, as soon as the salespeople cooperate, but then again maybe next year.
It’s discussed and hammered on in webinars, seminars and workshops, and by keynote speakers and vendors. It’s included in most proposals by CRM and marketing automation companies. So why is it talked about more than it is done?
Samuel Johnson said,
“Depend upon it, sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.”
What this means for the marketing manager is that if the CEO has the guts to call marketing management in and demand an ROI or the marketing manager will be hanged (fired), it might clear his or her mind wonderfully well.
I have learned that there are basically two reasons people don’t do something: they don’t know how or they don’t want to. Often, these issues are interconnected. When it comes to lead management and marketing ROI, there are subsets of these two thoughts:
• They don’t know how to measure the ROI.
• They don’t want to measure the ROI for lead generation.
• Being held accountable is not their first choice.
• No one asked them to be accountable.
• They don’t know it can be done.
• Fear of the results.
• They don’t have the tools.
• They don’t know how to use the tools they have.
• They don’t have control over salespeople who report on results.
Why it Matters:
"In spite of this fear, doubt and uncertainty, I have seen very few lead generation programs that, when measured for sales results, fail to produce a sufficient margin to make the investment worthwhile."
I believe that marketing managers must have the courage of their convictions to prove that lead generation budgets are well spent. Because the tools are there for measuring the lead generation ROI, it IS possible to measure it. This is settled science.
In a previous blog entry, I said it’s “Time to stop cussing the mule and load the wagon.” It isn’t difficult; you just have to make the decision that you’ll do it to the best of your ability, stop talking and start doing. You’ll find your job to be more secure and satisfying when you do. and you may avoid a hanging in a fortnight.