What Email Marketing Metrics Miss

If you’re monitoring your email marketing campaigns then of course you’re going to check open rates and click rates. You’re going to check which links get the most clicks – and from whom. Ideally, you’re going to document a connection between the email newsletter and the inflow of sales leads.

But sometimes, especially as companies get larger, owners and managers become removed from day to day sales and marketing activities. They begin to rely more heavily on metrics to make decisions. They use the metrics that are available and, unfortunately, those aren’t always the correct metrics when it comes to email marketing.

In email marketing, clicks tend to dominate the reporting and analysis. It’s easy to compare the click rate from one email blast to another and use the data to make decisions about content, distribution frequency, list segmenting, and other issues.

But over time, relying on clicks as the key metric leads to a focus on increasing clicks rather than focusing on the most important metric. Content development and design become slanted to play to the click metric but may not necessarily or fully advance the true goal – like teachers teaching to the test instead of educating their students.

The true goal, of course, and the most worthwhile metric to use for email marketing, is sales.

“But it’s hard to be sure that a sale came directly from this!” you say, despite the quote requests in the replies to the email newsletter lol. Yes, attribution and documentation are always a challenge for the marketing team, and just because counting clicks is easy doesn’t mean it’s a wholly accurate way to assess the impact on lead generation, lead nurturing, and sales.

Consider a few of the ways your email marketing contributes to sales that cannot show up on a click report:

  • replies to the email asking for a quote
  • phone calls asking for a quote
  • emails forwarded to colleagues
  • emails saved for upcoming purchase
  • direct traffic to Website and YouTube channel
  • increased trade show booth visits
  • improved name brand awareness
  • and more

Yes, clicks matter, and converting clicks into leads is a key part of using email to stay in touch with prospects and customers over long buying cycles. But your email news impacts sales in more ways than by clicks alone. See email marketing examples.

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Paul Entin’s Marketing In Real Life explores every facet of marketing from advertising, PR and lead generation to content marketing, direct response and the latest in marketing automation – and more. Paul Entin’s Marketing In Real Life provides real-life insight into the relationship among sales, marketing, and customer service – and the customer – plus quick commentary from epr founder, Paul Entin.