6 Components to Understand When Evaluating Performance and Cost Per Lead of a B2B Marketing Campaign


Lead generation can be a challenge for B2B marketers. On the surface, the more leads you generate, the lower the cost per lead (CPL) and the better you feel about the elements of the marketing campaign. Going further, it’s essential to understand who these leads are, what they’re costing you, and what are the next steps you need to take to ensure leads are targeted to the audience you want to reach. This information can help your organization set goals and budgets for the current and future marketing campaign.

In this blog, we’ll walk you through key lead generation math, techniques, and best practices that can help you understand campaign results and take actionable steps for an optimized and successful marketing campaign.

1. Determine the overall campaign budget

The first thing to do for your marketing campaign is to determine the overall budget you have. This will vary by campaign and organization, but it should be the starting point for all campaigns. Often campaigns will have a certain amount of time to run, such as a month or twelve weeks. The budget could then be determined by a certain amount per week or per month, but it depends on how the marketing campaign is planned. The more accurate the figures for the overall budget, the better. This will then give you the constraints of how much you can spend on ads, other marketing costs, and any additional tools. For example:

  • CRM cost ($550/month) + Paid ads ($150/month) + Marketing costs ($400) = $1,100 monthly spend / $13,200 annual spend

2. Establish a target number of leads

Now that you know how much you need to spend on your marketing efforts, you want to calculate how many leads you want to generate from the campaign. Then, over time, you can track your progress to see if it matches your goal. Given the overall budget available, it is important to know what an acceptable CPL is. Will it be several hundred dollars per lead? Will it be close to a thousand dollars per lead? Establishing a target CPL amount or CPL range can help you gauge the performance of the marketing campaign and what your leads are costing you. At the end of the campaign period, you can evaluate performance and see progress.

3. Research Industry Cost References

It’s important to keep in mind that the cost of a lead varies by industry. For example, banking and healthcare are two very different industries that require different types of marketing, which means their average cost per lead will most likely be different. Some websites have collected industry data and presented their findings on the average cost per lead. These sites are great for comparing the performance of your marketing campaigns and the total cost per lead. Through this research, you will also be able to find out if the marketing tools you are using are effective for your particular industry.

4. Pay attention to the budget

Now that you know what you’re spending, you want to be very careful with the budget. Depending on the marketing efforts included in your campaign, you may need to track weekly or even daily to make sure you’re not overspending or even underspending. While this information is critical right now, it can also be useful for future marketing campaigns. This can allow you to set goals and find new areas where you can acquire leads and generate revenue. Plus, it gives you data to make future decisions. If an aspect of the campaign didn’t work as well as expected, it may be worth switching to a different tactic or reassessing how to make improvements.

5. Analyze and filter leads

It would be an ideal situation if every lead you received from your marketing campaign was an exact match to your target audience and the ideal people to target. But often, you’ll generate leads that aren’t entirely relevant or mismatched with incumbent buyers. So, filtering the leads you receive and performing analysis will ensure that those you follow up with, place in a nurturing email cadence, or target ads to are those that match the characteristics of the target audience.

6. Assess the cost per lead

As the elements of your marketing campaign come into play, it’s essential to track changes in cost per lead and overall spend. When each activity has run its course or a certain period of time has passed and it’s time to evaluate, focus on the cost per lead. Was it in line with industry averages? Does this match the target range you set earlier? Would there be an advantage to reevaluate and rework the component to potentially decrease the CPL? Asking and answering these questions can help make the best decisions moving forward.

Understanding the results of your marketing campaign and the cost per lead, in particular, can give you insight into the performance and effectiveness of the marketing tactics used.


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