Unique B2B Marketing KPIs You Should Be Leveraging

Nov 12, 2020 7:07:09 AM

By Cathy Cain-Blank

There is a world of difference between consumer-focused marketing and marketing campaigns targeting business decision makers. If you’re a B2B marketer, you probably already know that generic key performance indicators (KPIs) are not helpful in tracking the performance of your marketing campaigns.

Instead, you need unique B2B marketing KPIs that speak volumes about the success of your marketing initiatives, including account-based and enterprise marketing.

The metrics should only be relevant to B2B businesses, not B2C businesses. If you’ve been following B2C metrics, it’s time to formulate new, unique B2B marketing KPIs.

To implement the right demand generation and account-based marketing (ABM), it’s important to understand how measuring B2B performance metrics is different from B2C.

Some critical details that B2B marketers require to assess the performance of their campaigns include: 

  • Revenue generated by each marketing campaign
  • Leads generated by each account
  • Lead quality information

Let’s dive into unique B2B marketing KPIs, so you can take your campaigns to the next level.

Why You Should Have Unique B2B Marketing KPIs

The key difference between B2B and B2C marketing KPIs is the size of the target customer base. Unlike B2C businesses, B2B and account-based marketing (ABM) companies often focus on only a handful of prospects and/or customers. Nevertheless, these select businesses can become the major portion of the B2B company's revenue.

On one hand, B2C companies typically rely on the following performance metrics:

  • Overall traffic and number of leads
  • Number of individual leads 
  • Total email subscribers
  • Bounce rates

On the other hand, B2B companies focus on accounts (other companies), and how their marketing reaches the prospects and drives them toward conversion. This is why B2B marketers should focus on the following performance metrics or B2B marketing KPIs:

  • Marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and sales qualified leads (SQL)
  • Quality of the leads 
  • Revenue generated by marketing campaigns
  • Return on investment (ROI)
  • Customer lifetime value

Let’s look at each KPI in detail.

Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) and Sales Qualified Leads (SQL)

The most important metrics for B2B companies should be annual and quarterly MQLs and SQLs. The benefits of measuring MQLs include:

  • Understanding whether your marketing campaigns are driving the right prospects to the B2B website
  • Assessing the effectiveness of your marketing content for lead nurturing and sales
  • Evaluating the impact your website has on prospects and its potential to convert leads

Ideally, your marketing and sales teams should work together to measure MQLs and SQLs.

Quality of the Leads

So, you have evaluated the number of marketing qualified leads but what about their quality? How likely are they to convert into customers? B2B marketing is not only about converting website visitors into leads but also driving the leads to become lifetime customers. To ensure you make the most of your MQLs, you need to analyze the quality of the leads. To measure the quality of the leads, you can track the following KPIs:

  • Ratio of leads to opportunities
  • Time taken to convert each lead
  • Number of visitors converted to leads

Revenue Generated by Marketing Campaigns

Irrespective of how well your B2B marketing campaigns fare on the MQL side, it’s critical to identify how much revenue your B2B marketing campaigns are generating. You can measure the revenue by tracking conversions through:

  • Landing pages
  • UTM Codes used in social media campaigns, affiliate campaigns and so on
  • All other marketing activities that result in revenue generation

As a B2B marketer, you should remember that revenue and performance are not the same; they are mutually exclusive.

Return on Investment (ROI)

Another B2B marketing KPI that you should track is your marketing spend. Are you making a good ROI? It's a simple example, but if you spend $2,000 and end up generating $2,000, the ROI is 0%. If the revenue generated is $4,000, your marketing initiatives will be greatly appreciated.

There are two ways to measure ROI:

  • The holistic approach: Look at the marketing department as a whole, identifying different investments and assessing the financial results.
  • The tactical approach: Look at individual marketing campaigns, assessing their performance and studying their impact on the revenue.

The first approach can provide you with an idea of whether your marketing team is moving in the right direction. The second approach can help you identify your top-performing marketing campaigns.

Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)

The LTV is a critical KPI for B2B companies that rely on recurring customer revenue, such as professional services, software as a service (SaaS), and contracts. For B2B companies, the LTV can also help in measuring:

  • Customer marketing
  • Customer satisfaction
  • Customer loyalty
  • Revenue health

Bottom line? As management guru Peter Drucker once said, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.” So, if you want to take your company to the next level, you need to get busy monitoring and measuring the performance of your marketing activities.