Marketer’s Guide To Salesforce Influence and Marketing Attribution

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Marketers can unlock data in Salesforce to improve campaign performance and determine which marketing channels drive the most valuable leads.

All marketers need to be able to optimise and justify their media spend so that they can generate the best possible results from their marketing efforts.

That said, in a recent study, we found that 18% of marketers find connecting marketing activity with sales revenue a challenge.

In an ideal world, marketers would have a single view of which marketing leads converted into a sale so that they could evidence their impact on revenue success.

Unfortunately, however, traditional reporting tools alone do not provide this single source of truth.

While Google Analytics unearths a wealth of data on lead generation, marketers often lose visibility when the lead is passed to the sales team, with valuable revenue data locked within CRM solutions such as Salesforce.

Previously, Salesforce was used exclusively by sales teams, but it’s become an essential tool for marketers to improve customer understanding and evidence their impact on revenue.

Using marketing activity, combined with engagement and conversion revenue data, marketers can understand the ROI and prioritise marketing spend in the right areas.

So for this article, we’re going to take a look at the following topics:

  • What is Campaign Influence in Salesforce
  • The disadvantages of Salesforce Tracking
  • How Ruler Analytics can help improve the visibility of marketing’s impact across the entire sales cycle.
Editors Note: Your marketing is bringing in leads, but you don’t know which campaign or channel generated them? If any of that sounds familiar, download the free handbook and learn how to populate your Salesforce CRM with 60+ marketing source variables such as keyword data, first and last-click source attribution to evidence your impact on revenue growth.

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What is Campaign Influence in Salesforce?

For those of you that don’t know, Salesforce has a built-in feature called ‘Campaign Influence’ which allows marketers to measure and report on multiple campaigns that have influenced an ‘opportunity’.

Not only can you identify how many leads a campaign has influenced, but you can see how much revenue it has added to the pipeline.

Salesforce Campaign Influence is essentially an out-of-the-box solution which you can use to leverage CRM data so that you can connect the dots between opportunity revenue and campaign data.

 

Disadvantages of Campaign Influence in Salesforce

As impressive as this all sounds, Campaign Influence does come with its limitations.

Which I’ve highlighted below.

 

Campaign tracking only available ‘after’ a lead is created

As Campaign Influence is a “built-in feature”, tracking the customer journey in Salesforce can only start once a lead has been created.

For example:

Let’s say you send out an email campaign with a link to download your eBook. Someone clicks the link and converts into a lead. Salesforce would consider this as the first touchpoint.

But, how did this lead end up on your mailing list? Did they visit your website via a Google Paid ad and subscribed to your newsletter? Maybe they found you via organic search?

Using Campaign Influence alone, you’d never know.

It’s said that 72% of consumers prefer to connect with brands through multiple channels before making contact. So, with Campaign Influence, you lose out on many interactions that led to a conversion.

 

Lack of Multi-Channel Reporting

While campaign performance data is readily available in Salesforce, Campaign Influence doesn’t provide insight into multi-channel data, and as marketers, we want to know the following:

1. WHERE our leads originated (social paid, organic search).

2. HOW our leads converted (eBook download, demo request).

Although, more importantly, we want to see how our efforts influence the pipeline. Combining Salesforce activity with multi-channel data provides you with a better understanding of your sales cycle and can help you prioritise marketing spend in the right areas. Unfortunately, Salesforce was designed specifically for sales teams, so doesn’t have access to this level of data.

That said, if you manage lots of multi-channel and multi-device campaigns, then you can invest in a 3rd party platform that supports Multi-Channel Attribution to help solve this disconnect (we will get to this shortly).

 

Only Effective With Gated Content

Typically, Salesforce campaigns are commonly associated with gated content. This is to ensure that the lead consuming your content is an existing contact in your CRM system. Otherwise, it wouldn’t work.

The issue is that the majority of the content on your website is ‘ungated’, such as your blog posts, landing pages and videos. So, it’s likely that these crucial touchpoints are going unattributed if you’re using Campaign Influence in isolation.

 

Time Consuming and Inconsistent

Setting up Campaign Influence is time-consuming. There’s a lot of configuring and testing involved, and even then it’s never perfect. With that said, Campaign Influence is often used infrequently for selected activities. It’s near impossible to drill down to your daily marketing tasks, and it’s usually these initiatives that have the biggest impact on your performance.

 

Opportunities in Salesforce can only have “One Primary Campaign”

As it stands, Campaign Influence in Salesforce does allow you to associate one opportunity with multiple campaigns. With that, the opportunity can only be attributed to a primary campaign when it comes to ROI reporting. Not very useful if you attract your customers through multi-channel campaigns.

 

Going Beyond Campaign Influence with Ruler Analytics

As we’ve just discussed, Campaign Influence is a powerful tool for marketers that experience short sales cycles and run a limited number of campaigns. But, what about the rest of us marketers trying to connect the dots between multi-channel customer journeys and sales revenue?

Believe it or not, most modern marketers do have the data they need to track the effectiveness of their marketing across the entire conversion path. The problem is that it’s disconnected and stored in various data points.

To unlock this data and justify the effectiveness of your marketing activities, you need a solution that can:

1. Capture all interactions throughout an individual customer journey, such as the first and last-click source.

2. Integrate with Salesforce along with other data sources, such as Google Analytics and Google ads to gain complete visibility of the conversion path.

Ruler Analytics is a marketing attribution solution which aligns revenue from your Salesforce CRM with marketing data and can track your visitor’s multiple touchpoints and page journey to measure and attribute value accurately across the entire sales cycle.

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Connecting Ruler Analytics with your Salesforce CRM allows you to sync data captured from web forms, phone calls or live chat to enrich your sales pipeline.

Here’s how it works:

1. Ruler tracks each anonymous visitor to the website over multiple sessions, traffic sources and keywords.

2. When a visitor converts, data is captured via form, call tracking or live chat on your website.

3. Ruler matches the real user’s details with their marketing touchpoints.

4. The marketing and conversion data is sent to your Salesforce CRM. Marketing data includes channel, source, campaign, keyword and/or landing page.

5. Ruler’s attribution solution allows you to analyse the impact throughout the entire sales cycle. Once the opportunity is closed into revenue, Ruler passes this data back to your analytics and paid media tools so that you can report on revenue.

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Benefits of Salesforce and Ruler Analytics Marketing Attribution

There are a number of benefits to connecting Ruler Analytics with your Salesforce CRM.

60+ marketing variables available: Ruler Analytics can populate your Salesforce data with 60+ marketing variables so that you can view your customer’s interactions across the entire conversion path. Marketing variables include First/Last Click marketing source, landing page and keyword data.

Data where you need it most: Ruler Analytics can sync revenue data back to Google Analytics, your Salesforce CRM or paid media solutions to give insight where you need it most.

Offline tracking: Ruler Analytics offline conversion tracking allows marketers to attribute leads to revenue and can prove which campaigns and channels are driving the most offline sales.

Report on revenue success: Remove speculation and guesswork. Optimise your marketing based on the amount of revenue generated.

 

Final Thoughts

Marketing attribution in Salesforce is an essential solution for marketers who are serious about scaling their marketing and want to connect their efforts with revenue performance.

Download our Salesforce CRM enrichment handbook to learn how to update your Salesforce leads with marketing source variables to evidence the impact of your multi-channel campaigns. Or alternatively, book a demo to speak with one of our attribution experts.

Book a demo Ruler Analytics

Written by

Digital Marketing Manager at Ruler Analytics with a background in SEO, analytics, content marketing and paid social. I help people (like me) close the loop between marketing-generated leads and revenue.