What is closed-loop marketing?
Closed-loop marketing is a strategy that involves collecting data throughout the marketing process, analyzing it, and using it to make informed decisions to optimize future marketing efforts. The term itself is a helpful visual. To close the loop, marketers must analyze customers throughout their journey, from their first interaction with the brand to the final sale.
The closed-loop process allows a marketer to connect with customers at every stage of their journey while also gaining a better understanding of which campaigns were the most effective: website, blog, SEO, email, social media, and so forth.
Here’s an overview of the closed-loop cycle:
- Attract potential customers through various marketing channels
- Engage with prospects to capture their contact information
- Convert these leads by nurturing them through targeted and personalized campaigns
- Close a lead, then track the sources and activities that led to the conversion
- Analyze the data to understand which marketing efforts are most effective
- Adjust messaging, budgets, and goals based on the analysis
- Repeat the closed-loop marketing process with ongoing data collection, research, and adjustments
Why is closed-loop marketing important?
Closed-loop marketing creates a cycle of data-driven decision-making. By analyzing the data, marketers can identify the most effective channels, customer segments, and campaigns, enabling them to focus their efforts on those that generate the highest return on investment (ROI). This leads to more precise targeting and better allocation of resources.
This cyclical data-gathering process also enables better alignment between marketing and sales teams. By tracking the customer journey from initial engagement to conversion, sales teams can gain insights into the effectiveness of marketing efforts.
The closed-loop marketing process reveals more areas for collaboration and enables both teams to work toward common goals. This level of clarity ultimately improves conversion rates, lead quality, and overall business performance.
Three closed-loop marketing do’s
Do focus on what’s working for your company.
Closed-loop marketing is an opportunity to gain better insights into your company and its customers. Use the data and insights to your advantage by pivoting your efforts to what’s driving sales and customer retention. ROI is always the goal, so keep that in mind as you parse the data to determine your company’s next steps.
Do invest in analytics tools.
To benefit from closed-loop marketing, you must pay upfront for tracking tools (Hubspot, Google Analytics, and Salesforce are popular) and a customer relationship management system. Together, these tools will give you a complete picture of what’s drawing your customers in, how they interact with your site, and the time and number of steps to convert to a sale.
Do change your benchmarks over time.
The longer you analyze data, the more accurate your information will be. Over time, change your company’s goals to meet the insights you’ve gathered. No matter what type of sales tactic or marketing innovation you use, the customer should be at the heart of your progress. This means paying attention to what’s working and what’s not so you can adjust your measures of success.
Three closed-loop marketing don’ts
Don’t commit halfway.
For closed-loop marketing to be beneficial, you need to track data at every step of the process, from the moment a user visits your website to the sale. That means it’s up to you to ensure that you have the proper tracking and CRM tools in place to gather information about your customer’s habits, everything from the products they click on to the time it takes to complete a sale. If you fail to collect data at one of the touchpoints, you won’t get a 360-view of the customer.
Don’t lose time or patience.
All good things take time, and this is especially true when it comes to closed-loop marketing. You’ll need to collect information over a long period to get the most accurate view of your customer, so be patient. Sometimes it might happen immediately; other times, it could take months or years, but the investment is vital for your inbound marketing strategy.
Don’t forget to implement standard language and tracking metrics.
Put a system in place to ensure that everyone at your company tracks and analyzes the data in the same way. This uniformity will make it easier for everyone to work through the information and find ways to use it in everyday business.
An example of a closed-loop marketing tactic
The best way to illustrate closed-loop marketing is through a series of steps:
- A potential customer is in the market for a new dining room table. They begin searching for options online.
- They end up on your website, which sells dining room tables. Thanks to search engine optimization, this is considered organic traffic.
- While on your website, they end up on a landing page with a promotion, information, or another effective marketing tool that makes them buy a dining room table from you.
- Because they searched, they found you, they followed your guidance and became a customer, and you closed the loop.
To help create content for your closed-loop marketing efforts, talk to a content specialist at ClearVoice about all your marketing needs.