Utilizing OKR To Optimize B2B Marketing Strategies And ROI
Recent data shows that 80% of B2B customers research a product online first before buying it. This places a significant focus on marketing strategies to gain qualified leads and retain clients. The OKR (objectives and key results) transforms your B2B marketing efforts by setting better goals and choosing relevant metrics to track success. Here’s how to leverage OKRs to drive marketing results.
Understanding OKRs In B2B Marketing
An OKR enables you to set and measure goals at a business level for teams and individual employees. A B2B marketing team benefits from OKRs by breaking down ambitious targets into achievable goals. They can track marketing metrics easily and align their efforts with organizational objectives. This is especially important because the B2B industry is constantly evolving; this holds even more significance for sales performance management, as marketers require real-time data to make informed decisions.
Examples of B2B Marketing Metrics and OKRs
Before applying a marketing OKR to your company, know which specific metrics you want to track. Some essential B2B marketing metrics include:
Lead generation metrics: number of new leads, cost per lead, lead-to-conversion rate
Sales metrics: average deal size, sales cycle length, revenue generated per channel
Customer metrics: churn rate, retention rate, lifetime value
Brand metrics: net promoter score (NPS), organic website traffic, social media engagement
ROI metrics: cost per marketing channel, cost per acquisition
Now, let’s consider some OKR examples that apply to B2B marketing strategies. Note that the OKRs below can be customized for your particular business.
Objective: Boost lead generation
- Gain 20% more qualified leads per month
- Optimize landing pages to increase conversion rates by 15%
- Increase lead quality by 10%
Objective: Align sales and marketing efforts
- Improve lead hand-off from marketing to sales by a 15% acceptance rate
- Upgrade the CRM system to attain 100% transparency between sales and marketing teams
- Increase sales and marketing reporting accuracy by 25% in Q4
OKR Case Studies to Consider
The OKR methodology is a tried-and-true approach to setting goals for B2B companies around the world. Here are some examples of how OKRs have improved performance in different contexts.
Upserve is a restaurant management platform that combines point-of-sale software, ordering, payments, loyalty, and marketing tools for full-service restaurants. The company uses OKRs to increase engagement, improve prospecting skills, and create new features to drive leads. Notably, Upserve allows 60% of their OKRs to be defined by employees rather than management, yielding better results for a rapidly growing team.
Similarly, LinkedIn allows team members to create up to five OKRs in any given quarter. These individual OKRs tie into team and organizational OKRs to improve efficiency. This approach helped LinkedIn become a multimillion-dollar company in a remarkably short period of time.
Another OKR example is Huawei, which shifted from KPIs to OKRs to improve overall performance comments both internally and externally. Since making the change in 2015, the company has seen greater motivation and independence in its employees and more challenging goals set by team members. This translated to a rapidly growing business model with consistently successful products on the market.
How to Implement OKRs In a B2B Organization
Use the success stories above as inspiration to adopt OKRs in your company. Follow these steps to establish an OKR framework in B2B marketing strategies today:
Step 1: Define Your Marketing Goals
Identify the particular objectives that capture what you want to achieve with your marketing OKR strategy. For example, you can focus on growing leads, improving website performance, or increasing your ROI.
Step 2: Determine Your Key Results
Find the metrics that best match each objective and generate valuable marketing data for your business. Implement only those that you can quantify as numbers, percentages, or dollar amounts, e.g., grow your email subscribers by 35%.
Step 3: Prioritize Feedback
Whether your OKRs come from management or employees, ensure everyone is on the same page. Use OKR software to encourage communication and collaboration so that your B2B marketing efforts align with your overall business goals. Also, consider everyone’s input to overcome challenges during OKR implementation.
Step 4: Pilot Your B2B Marketing OKRs
Select a small team to begin OKR implementation to test out the process before rolling it out across the organization. This way, you can work out challenges as they arise and create a knowledge base for others to follow.
Step 5: Implement OKRs Throughout Your Company
Learn from the pilot phase and extend the OKR implementation to all teams and departments. Consider establishing a change management strategy as well to improve OKR adoption and offer support for your stakeholders.
As you can see, the OKR methodology is a team-focused approach to setting achievable, measurable goals. Once you allow objectives and metrics to flow from your team, fostering their active involvement, you can achieve remarkable results not only for your ROI but also for overall performance and employee engagement. Commit to the OKR framework to align teams and drive innovation in your organization today.
In her current role, she leads the content marketing team with experience in various fields, such as science, education, law, and management. She is a well-rounded individual with diverse interests and skills.