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Three Ways Marketers Can Measure the Impact of Sales Content

Posted in:  Sales and Marketing Management

Every marketer knows how to measure content created for demand generation campaigns. You can report on pageviews, report downloads, email opens — metrics abound. But when it comes to measuring the impact of sales content, it’s a different story.

Marketers are often challenged with understanding which metrics matter, how to measure them, and where this data lives within their tech stack. Luckily, the solution to these problems can be found within a tool you likely already have: your sales enablement platform.

By diving deep into your enablement platform’s analytics, marketers uncover trends in content consumption and impact for internal and external assets. With these insights in hand, marketers not only ensure that salespeople have effective content for every customer engagement — but more easily demonstrate an ROI on content investments. Here’s how to get started.

How to Measure Internal Engagement with Sales Content

It’s an oft-stated fact that only 65% of content created by marketing gets used. A core set of metrics available within most sales enablement platforms can help uncover why consumption remains low. For every asset you upload, you should regularly review:

  • Internal views
  • Internal downloads or pitches
  • Ratings 

You should also be prepared to compare this data against certain audience segments, like teams, tenure, geography, or vertical.

Gartner explains:

“By analyzing access and engagement, you can begin to understand which content assets resonate with specific sales teams organized by account segment, geography, industry or product. These insights can help you optimize the creation of future content assets and address content ‘gaps’ or opportunities for improvement based on sales feedback” (Gartner, Measure Sales and Buyer Enablement Content to Quantify the Influence on Revenue Growth, Ray Pun, Michele Buckley, 20 February 2020).

Low views might suggest you need to “relaunch” an asset to heighten visibility (perhaps via a sales play). Poor ratings, on the other hand, may indicate the need for a fresh start.

By regularly reviewing these metrics, you’ll have a clear understanding of how core assets are performing and whether new campaigns are being utilized, allowing you to make smarter decisions on where to invest your time and how to package and deliver content for optimal sales consumption.

How to Measure External Engagement with Sales Content

Marketers aren’t typically on customer calls — but that doesn’t mean they can’t see how buyers engage with sales content.

Your sales enablement platform should allow you to see how buyers interact with content that has been sent or “pitched” via email, social, or other channels to buyers. You’ll want to look at:

  • External downloads
  • External views
  • Total viewing time
  • Viewing time per asset
  • Viewing time per page/slide of multi-page asset

According to Gartner, there’s one thing to keep in mind when pulling this data:

“One complexity that is introduced with buyer enablement content is the ability for sales or partners to personalize or customize the content for their audiences. In those instances, the content delivered to buyers is based on a source document originally created by product marketing. For example, many sellers will share a ‘customized’ product overview presentation with buyers, whereby slides have been added or removed. However, the original presentation was created by product marketers. Consequently, to ensure comprehensive analysis, you will need the ability to track consumption and engagement of any content variations (e.g., versions of source presentation) that are used by sellers. To obtain this type of insight, you should partner with your sales and marketing analytics teams to build or buy the appropriate solution” (Gartner, Measure Sales and Buyer Enablement Content to Quantify the Influence on Revenue Growth, Ray Pun, Michele Buckley, 20 February 2020).

The ability to track a parent asset as well as its child variations is what we call “Content Genomics” — and this is critical to ensuring marketers get the full view of how sellers personalize content, and how buyers engage with those new assets.

By investing in a solution that captures this type of data, you’ll be able to see what your salespeople need and get a deeper understanding of what resonates with your customers.

How to Measure the Impact of Sales Content on Revenue

The final category is the most difficult to measure for many businesses: impact of sales content on revenue. The challenge stems from a lack of clarity on which assets influence which deals. After all, there are any number of reasons why a customer may have chosen your solution, from a rep’s personality to your pricing.

However, modern sales enablement platforms are making it easier than ever for marketers to prove impact. There are two ways you can approach this:

  • Influence (revenue, pipeline)
  • Correlation (content consumption)

To obtain data in the first category, you’ll need a sales enablement platform that can run an influenced revenue report. This report should tell you who is using what content and which deals are closed because of them. As the name implies, this report shows how assets are “influencing” deals. Again, it’s unlikely a single eBook would convince a stubborn buyer, but trends in certain content usage by topic, format, or other vectors can help you identify which assets move deals forward.

The second category focuses on internal content consumption. Businesses like Hootsuite have found that the more their salespeople engaged with content, the better they performed. You can replicate Hootsuite’s success by performing content performance correlation analysis.

Start by examining how often an individual salesperson engages with resources such as a sales play for an integrated marketing campaign. Then, map individual seller engagement with key assets against quota attainment to understand how content consumption drives revenue and further demonstrate the impact of your marketing efforts.

Looking at both the influenced revenue and performance correlation, you should have a deeper understanding of exactly how your sales assets are empowering reps to elevate customer conversations and driving revenue.

Driving the Analytics Engine to Content Success

Don’t let confusion or ambiguity around content analytics stop you from proving the ROI of your sales assets. With the right metrics in hand and regular reporting, you’ll be able to demonstrate business impact — and continue to optimize your seller and buyer experiences.

Start your journey to data-driven marketing with our content mapping toolkit.