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Closed Loop Reporting – What It Is And Why You Should Be Doing It

If you are new to the world of Inbound Marketing, then you are also likely new to closed loop reporting.

This article covers all the basics by covering what exactly what closed loop reporting is to how you can include it into your marketing strategy.

Called by some as closed loop marketing, here’s the bottom line definition: “closing the loop” between data gathered by sales teams kept in a CRM and data collected in your marketing automation system.

The best inbound marketing agencies in Los Angeles studies this data to study actions made further down the funnel on what actually drives the highest revenue for clients.


What is the Value of Closed Loop Reporting?

The value of closed loop reporting is extremely high. All too often marketers focus on top-of-funnel lead generation but when adding closed loop reporting into the service it allows agencies to report and show their value in the world of contributing to the business pipeline.

The Content Marketing Institute published shocking results showing that less than 22% of B2B marketers are successfully able to track revenue generation for their clients. This is why closed loop reporting not only allows agencies to show their value; it helps businesses owners know where to pump the breaks and where to increase spend in their marketing.


Where to Start – First Touch Attribution Model

An ideal starting point is examining where, exactly, the worst and best lead sources come from. This can be done through a first-touch attribution model, and as your models develop you can move to more advanced reporting arenas.

Look at the original source pinpointing where the lead found your brand. Determine which sources turned the highest quality leads and then examine the channels they came from to engage with the right content to start moving them through a sales funnel.

Your first touch attribution model shows where earned revenue came from at the original source level–something clients highly value in your monthly reporting.


Closed Loop Reporting Helps Build Relationships

Once you determine which traffic channels brought the most conversions, direct your focus to building relationships with these individuals.

If SEO is part of the engagement then build relationships with influential domains to get valuable backlink and referral links.

Closed loop reporting also shows marketers where to invest their efforts. For example, knowing which lists to target with the right messaging in email marketing can be sourced from closed loop reporting data.

email-marketing-list

This data is also valuable to use for a blogging strategy in terms of building organic search rankings for the right buyers and for testing social media content to improve conversion rate and traction.

Building relationships also stems from the educational content you provide your customers. Closed loop reporting creates opportunities for determining the initial conversation driving the most revenue.

A good asset, such as a buyer’s guide, a webinar or a white paper encompasses the types of content that are the most effective.


Closed Loop Reporting Removes Guess Work

Your business growth goals aren’t a Vegas model; making money shouldn’t be based on a hunch or the odds. Closed loop reporting eliminates the guesswork from creating marketing strategies and the content that nurtures your buyers through the funnel.

Using actual data and statistical analysis will present the clear direction to take in starting or improving a campaign.

Finally, there is a difference between guessing and predicting. Closed loop reporting actually helps you predict future outcomes by providing data to analyze past and present conversion rates.

This in turn grants insight into prospect patterns that provide guidance for making changes to upcoming campaigns. Start taking advantage of this tool to direct your business in the right direction.


Be Sure to Truly know Your Audience

Before you can use the most of the data gathered from closed loop reporting, you must first understand your buyers, what their needs are, and how the products and services at hand offer the best solution to their problems.

know-your-audience-buyer-personas

Once you create thorough buyer personas, you can still use closed loop reporting to gather even more insights into your customers because you gain a spy’s view at your audience’s behaviour and actions revealing just how they approach and engage your content.

You are able to discover with blogs, topics and content formats generate the best results. This will reveal linear attributions that directly drive leads down the funnel.


Back to Buyer Personas and How Closed Loop Reporting Helps Define Them

We already briefly touched on buyer personas. Remember that a huge part of Inbound Marketing is building comprehensive buyer personas to help you understand your audiences.

You need to determine who you are targeting, what their buyer pains are, and how the business can fulfill the ultimate solution to their challenges.

Remember that buyer personas live in an agile climate. As technology rapidly advances, so too do various industry trends.

Some industries evolve quicker than others, and therefore business goals and challenges transform along with the times. Various surveys reveal that few marketing agencies revisit their buyer personas. Failing to do this can waste opportunities to reach the best quality buyers.

Thankfully, closed loop reporting allows insight into the buyer persona evolution. This can be discovered by revisiting your lead history as you look for new pain points exhibited by the behavior your leads are exhibiting.

Look at the blog posts they read, which white papers and guides get the most downloads, and see if any new marketing channels are growing or decreasing in engagement metrics. See if the steps your prospects take before converting into paying customers have changed.

This is the type of reconnaissance that will help you define lead nurturing areas that need improvement, and missed opportunities for sales team engagement in earlier stages of the buying process.


Closed Loop Reporting Makes Great Marketing Campaigns Better

Start using closed loop reporting to point your business down the right strategic path. Not only will you be able to increase your value by showing a greater depth of reporting that most agencies drop the ball on, but you will be able to improve conversions by finding those weaknesses and gaps.

You will be paving them in with some strategic tweaks that will improve user engagement while improving opportunities to hit those high revenue goals.

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