By Stephen Lackey

There are numerous priorities shared between the C-suite, board of directors, private equity investors, and other stakeholders within your business. Some of those priorities include sales growth, improving efficiencies, and improved collaboration within the organization—all of which have an underlying question, “What is the value you brought to the company today, this week, this month, this quarter, and this year?”

As marketers, we are creative team members. Don’t get caught off-guard by this question; have factual data in-hand to attribute the ROI of your campaigns and the value your contributions are bringing to the company.

These efforts can tell a data-driven story through Attribution Reports in HubSpot. One of my colleagues wrote about properly analyzing multi-touch attribution reports. In a nutshell, these attribution reports allow marketers to analyze which activities (or types of content) generate the most revenue.

In order to successfully measure sales and marketing attribution in HubSpot, let’s break down the best ways to showcase your hard work into a few different steps.

1. Ensure your data is clean.

This is your “HubSpot hygiene.” In order to have quality attribution, you need several elements accurately identified and maintained within HubSpot. The deals data must include the following:

  • A closed-won stage
  • At least one contact associated to it
  • Property values in the “Amount” property
  • A “Create date” property
  • A “Close date” property

Without these key pieces of data, the attribution report will not be fully completed and will skew your overall data and outlook.

Before you start playing around with HubSpot’s attribution models, it’s  important to understand how ready you are. Take our HubSpot Attribution  Reporting Readiness Assessment to find out where you land—it takes just a few  minutes.

2. Determine what the C-suite cares about.

Of course, the C-suite cares about new logo revenue and existing client upsell revenue, but many of these leaders come with some sort of attribution bias. The leaders may have a heavy focus on seeing the business growth through the lens of new leads from paid ads (first-touch attribution) or what channel the sales team member used to get the existing leads across the finish line (last-touch attribution). While it’s important to analyze the data across different methods to help optimize your existing campaigns, it’s also beneficial to understand what the C-suite cares about and to showcase that data. 

3. Set a baseline of metrics.

All of the elements of your attribution reporting will add up to 100 percent, but set a baseline of metrics to understand how much content, the content types (e.g., infographics, guides, case studies, and so on), and the product campaigns you’re running will all impact the overall metrics. If you’re heavily invested in awareness content on one specific product line, there will be much more of an emphasis in the reporting on the first-touch attribution than if you have only one consultation request landing page for an obscure product offering. Knowing what content—and the specific types of content—will help you set a proper frame of mind for the overall metrics you should expect to see.

4. Start with the sample reports.

When reporting on attribution—or anything else—for the C-suite, don’t go out trying to slay the dragon or boil the ocean. Ensure your data is clean, and then start exploring the sample reports. These are fairly easy to comprehend, and it is easy to introduce these reports throughout the organization. They give a full understanding of all of the metrics. Ensure you can speak with knowledge and thoroughness about the reports, and starting with the sample reports is a great first step.

5. Optimize, Optimize, Optimize.

Now that you’ve successfully measured the data, the critical next step is to optimize. This can be done by doubling down on the metrics that are working (e.g., premium content downloads), elements that need to be modified to reach their fullest potential (e.g., paid media), or the elements that need a total overhaul (e.g., sales email sequences). When you compare actual data against the C-suite bias plus initial performance projections, you may find surprises. For instance, some content types and campaigns may outperform expectations, while others may underperform.

Taking these five steps into account while measuring your sales and marketing efforts will guide you down a path to focus your time and efforts in upcoming weeks, months, quarters, and years. Create a regular cadence of reviewing how the reports change over time, and how the optimizations you’re making impact the new revenue for the company.

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Stephen Lackey

About the author

Stephen Lackey is an Inbound Marketing Manager out of Charlotte, NC. His background is hyperfocused on marketing and sales enablement, working at Fortune 500 companies, startups, and other industry disruptors. His marketing degree is paired with an MBA where Stephen seeks to uncover the 'why behind the why' within marketing data to drive top line revenue. Read more articles by Stephen Lackey.

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