Marketing automation is a highly effective way to give your audiences the personal, consistent communication they crave. No matter what stage of the sales funnel they may be in, content helps prospects make decisions and become customers. However, if you aren’t tracking your efforts, you might not be making the most effective use of your marketing automation budget. In this post, we’ll talk about how to measure marketing automation and the types of metrics that prove the value of your efforts.

Activity Metrics

Activity metrics are metrics that speak to your team’s activity. This might include the number of campaigns launched, the volume of blogs published, or the number of emails sent. Activity metrics also speak to your team’s performance, including the number of new contacts added to the database or the number of appointments scheduled by the marketing team and more. If your team isn’t using your marketing automation software to add new contacts and work deals, chances are, you won’t be making the most of your investment. Be sure to also include general productivity metrics in your monthly goals and measurement, including a month-over-month assessment to show how marketing automation is helping your team work more efficiently.

Here are some suggestions for starting activity metrics. Over time, you can refine your goals and specific activities that are meaningful to your business:

  • Number of new leads
  • Number of form fills
  • Number of emails sent
  • Number of campaigns launched
  • Number of calls made
  • Number of sales closed/won

Response & Engagement Metrics

So, how to measure marketing automation success? The response and engagement metrics speak to how prospects and leads are engaging with your content. It includes site traffic and landing page metrics, email marketing metrics, and social media metrics. Some response metrics you might be familiar with for email marketing include open rate and click through rate (CTR). For site traffic, look at traffic source and session duration to determine how well your website and landing pages are performing.

For social media, look at shares, likes and comments to understand who is engaging with your brand, and how they choose to do so. Engagement metrics also include direct measurement of your remarketing — indicating how many previously cold leads were recaptured through re-engagement efforts.

Just as it’s important to understand what’s working, you need to have a clear picture of what isn’t working in order to improve your future campaigns. Look at negative response metrics, such as lost followers, unsubscribes and spam flags to get an understanding of how your audience is responding to specific messages. Try to understand why they’re responding negatively.

Value Metrics

The marketing KPIs that map back to ROI most clearly are those that are value-focused. These are the measurements that your stakeholders care most about — they want to know if they’re getting their money’s worth. These metrics include conversion rate, marketing qualified leads (MQLs) generated, revenue generated and cost per lead. When considering value metrics, take it one step further and try to understand what happens to those leads once they get handed from marketing to sales.

  • How many MQLs were accepted by sales?
  • Of those leads, how many deals were closed?

If the sales team isn’t working the leads generated by marketing automation, you won’t have an accurate value-driven assessment of your marketing automation performance.

How to Measure Marketing Automation

Effective use of marketing automation is equal parts art and science. To prove the value of your marketing automation, work with your stakeholders to establish which digital marketing KPIs are most important to your business objectives. This will guide your team on how to measure marketing automation performance.

Like most marketing, automation won’t provide overnight results. That said, marketing automation might start to deliver more quickly than you thought. Be sure to include current or baseline data in your reports and also look at historical comparison.

At the end of a specific campaign or budget period, compile all of the data to demonstrate how marketing automation has helped your team over time, rather than just providing performance metrics with no context.

To know more about how to measure marketing automation performance, contact us or sign up for a demo.


How to Measure Marketing Automation Success is part 4 of 4 in our new “Measuring Marketing Success” series! Be sure to check our the rest of the series.

Katrina McAfee
Over the past 10 years, Katrina has created and implemented marketing plans for industries ranging from health care, transportation, animal welfare and rescue, hospice communities, and much more. At SharpSpring, Katrina’s main focus is coordinating lead generation marketing activities to boost sales for the company.