This article comes from Robert Solby’s talk, ‘Building a Business Case for Customer Marketing: Communicating Metrics That Matter’, at our 2022 Customer Marketing Summit, check out his full presentation here

As customer marketers, we've all been there - trying to prove the value of our programs to leadership but struggling to find the right data to back it up. I know I have!

For years, metrics and reporting felt intimidating and daunting. But I've come to realize that having data fluency is actually key to communicating customer marketing's impact across an organization.

My journey at Adobe has shown me the power of using data as a language to showcase that customer marketing isn't just a cost center, but an indispensable, top-line-producing revenue driver

By building a strong metrics and reporting practice, I've been able to influence stakeholders to view our team as a strategic partner, not just a group handling customer references and reviews.

In this article, I'll share the framework I followed to construct a metrics program that proves customer marketing's value to the business. Get ready to go from metrics-phobic to a data-driven pro!

Why customer marketing metrics matter

At the end of the day, quantitative data and hard numbers are what leadership cares about most. 

We can wax poetic about the benefits of customer engagement all we want, but without tying those efforts to revenue, retention, or other key business goals, it's an uphill battle to get buy-in and resources.

That's why building data literacy and a solid metrics foundation is so crucial for customer marketers. It allows us to communicate in a language that executive teams understand and respect. 

When you can show clearly how your customer marketing programs are impacting the business pipeline, reducing churn, or increasing sales cycle efficiency, you suddenly have a seat at the strategic table.

I like to think of customer marketing as an ecosystem of different tactics and programs - customer advisory boards, communities, advocacy initiatives, and more. 

Data is the bridge that connects that ecosystem to quantifiable business impact. 

Leverage the right metrics, and you can definitively prove customer marketing isn't just a nice-to-have, but an essential function that top-performing companies can't do without.

Cetiera Carmona | Five types of customer data to leverage during the growth stage of the customer journey | Customer Marketing Catch-up
In this episode of Customer Marketing Catch-up, we talk to Cetiera Carmona, Senior Manager, Customer Growth at BigCommerce, about the five types of customer data to leverage during the growth stage of the customer journey.

My framework: Plan, execute, drive insights

Of course, saying you need to build a metrics practice is a lot easier than actually doing it. When I first started down this path at Adobe, I'll admit I was pretty lost and overwhelmed. 

But I knew I had to be bold, take some risks, and form a methodology to do it right, that's what led me to this three-phase framework: