Nine out of ten cats, my dentist and a sales funnel

...And why there’s probably a better way to look at your sales data.
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by | Nov 11, 2020 | Blog

The problem with marketing and sales data is that it’s subjective. Logically it can’t be. Emotionally it has to be. Because with data it’s not what we see it’s what we can’t see. Data itself isn’t the problem. It’s the fact that we can’t help but view it based on, or influenced by, personal feelings, tastes, opinions and whether it’s framed positively or negatively.

Four out of 5 dentists recommend using toothpaste.

20% of dentists would not recommend you using toothpaste.

The data is the same. But the sales outcome based on how that data is framed and how we subjectively look at it means statement one has a positive impact on sales whereas statement two would have a negative impact.

The data set is also only relevant when it is used in comparison to another data set. The much used ‘9 out of 10 cats prefer…’ TV advert cleverly reduces the companion data set to the foot notes. We subjectively use feeling to then ‘analyse’ the data used to come to the conclusion that the product is better. But better than what, and at what additional cost is removed from the analysis.

“Reframing the data allowed a Client to increase revenues by £1.9M”

Simply put, how the data makes you feel is more important than the actual data itself. How you look at the data, and what you have to compare it to, impacts how you feel about it.

To put that in layman terms, we recently worked with a Client on improving their sales and marketing funnel. They were rightly proud of their ‘data’; they had a closing rate of over 33% from initial enquiry – one of the best in their industry. But we asked them to start to look at the data differently. We asked the question, ‘what can we do about the 67% who don’t make it through the sales funnel?’. By reframing how they looked at the data, and subsequently how they felt about it, we were able to put together marketing and sales strategies that have so far amounted to an additional £1.9 million in sales since February – simply by framing our questions around the ‘lost’ 67%.

All data is equal. But some data is more equal than others.

A badly paraphrased literary classic but hopefully it highlights the point we are trying to make. There will be certain metrics that are key to your business that drive growth and others that might seem relevant but actually take you off focus. We once had a Client who’s obsession with email open rates continuously led to us fighting fires away from the front line. Open rates on things like emails are what we call secondary metrics. The key metrics to any campaign, marketing or sales activity are the ones related to the desired final outcomes. That could be a sale, a booking, a download or a store visit etc.

Focusing, on a secondary metric can have serious repercussions on the desired goal. For example, which is better; an email open rate of 25% and £100k in sales or an email open rate of 3% but £105,000 in sales.

Primary Data Metrics

For every secondary data metric there is usually a primary metric equivalent that will move the needle in terms of sales and business growth. When working with a Client this is one of the first conversations we have. It will vary from business to business but the key to your marketing and sales funnel is agreeing on the right metrics that drive growth. The most effective parameters normally involve a combination of cost and/or conversion. For example, these are all primary data metrics;

  • Cost per visitor
  • Cost per lead
  • Cost per call
  • Cost per acquisition
  • Cost per earned revenue
  • Lifetime value of customer

By reverse engineering back from the sale (or ultimate desired outcome) you can create a set of data points that will drive sales not hinder it. With this core data in hand you can then work across the the full length of your sales funnel to improve conversions, increase sales and ultimately drive revenue.

Can we help?

If you’d like us to take a look at your current sales or marketing funnels to see if we can use our experience and knowledge to unlock untapped revenue in your business then click below to set up an initial call…