It’s an early, awkward conversation many marketers hold when they join a new company. And it’s one Drew Noel remembers well.
When Noel joined e.Republic as Director of Marketing Automation, he sat down with a colleague who had worked within the company for ten years. He wanted to know what metrics she used to measure success. Her reply: What metrics?
“For the longest time she would send out stuff and she would get anecdotes from sales reps like, ‘That campaign really worked,’” Noel said. “She said, ‘I only base my job success on whether people are happy with me.’”
Noel knew measuring purely by anecdote was no way to work. But the problem was e.Republic, a publisher of resources on the education and government industries, had outgrown its email marketing system. It didn’t track open rates, managing unsubscribes was such a mess that the company faced threats of getting cut off by its web service providers, and building forms required bringing in IT and took as long as three weeks.
So Noel turned to Eloqua and it didn’t take long to see the results. That marketing colleague, she now drives every email to a form, which is tied back to leads. “She adores this level of insight,” Noel said. “Now the marketing team can say, ‘We create stuff that the sales team uses at this level, this often, and this many people engage with it.’ The marketing listlessness is gone.”
For Noel, just getting unsubscribes under control delivered immediate ROI. But eRepublic’s investment in automation was about a lot more than email. It’s about building a robust lead management system, focusing on creative messaging rather than nitpicking through vast reams of data and, most importantly, it was about closing the loop between sales and marketing.
“You’re going to waste a lot of time looking at the individual activities of a large group of people but not knowing the aggregate value,” Noel said. “When you have multiple product lines, with multiple sales teams, you need something that can help manage the focus. People aren’t going to return your calls or just give you unlimited amounts of time. You need these automation tools to be able to know who should you really be talking to right now to maximize the efficiency of your sales and marketing teams.”
Best yet, e.Republic’s marketing automation investment has meant a lot less awkward conversations and a lot more high-fives.