Marketing automation can be baffling at times. It’s a series of automatic systems and workflows working behind the scenes, which makes us question how we can actually gauge their effectiveness.

Sure, you’ll likely have one backbone marketing automation tool, such as ActiveCampaign. Yet there’s a good chance you’ll also have a number of other programs integrated into that one. And each integration causes different triggers and workflows to happen.

In other words, it can all seem like a big spider web of confusion.

Luckily I’m here to clear things up! To simplify things, there are several marketing automation metrics that can tell you how effective your automations actually are. In this post, you’ll learn about the key metrics you should always be tracking.

What is Marketing Automation?

Marketing automation is the process of leveraging tools, systems, and technology to automate your marketing tasks. For example, I use Active Campaign to automate my email campaigns. Overall, you can use several different marketing tools to automate your entire marketing strategy.

The main goal behind automating your business’s marketing arm is to help you acquire new leads and customers, nurture them and provide long-term value. However, automation can include several activities beyond just marketing tasks, including client scheduling, sales processes and invoicing and payments.

Marketing Animation Metrics: New Contact Engagement

The first marketing automation metric worth tracking is new contact engagement.

Imagine that a brand new contact finds your blog through Google search and opts in to your newsletter. Congratulations! There is now an exciting fresh face on your email list. Your goal is to turn this new contact into an engaged contact.

Not only do you want your new contact to open your emails, but you also want him or her to click them. It’s important to establish good engagement with a new contact right away because it helps boost your email deliverability. The more this contact engages with your emails, the better your deliverability becomes.

However, if the contact enters one of your automations and never opens an email, your deliverability can suffer.

New contact engagement is the marketing automation metric that tells you whether or not your automations are capturing your new contacts’ attention. If you’re seeing poor results in this area, then it may be a good idea to tweak campaigns directed at new contacts.

Key metrics to measure in marketing automation

Long-Term Contact Engagement

The next marketing automation metric to look at is long-term contact engagement. Your long-term contacts are ones who have stuck around beyond 30 days. The goal here is to observe how contacts have engaged with your emails after 90 days or even a year.

You should always aim to keep your contacts engaged, regardless of how much time has passed. Ideally, all of your contacts should continue to open your newsletters, click on your promotions, and purchase your products. This is especially important for long-term contacts, since converting an existing contact into a paying customer is easier than acquiring a new lead.

This is why you should always keep track of how your long-term contacts are interacting with your emails. It’s one of the key marketing automation metrics to follow to ensure your business is growing healthily.

Measuring contact engagement

Why Automation Statistics Matter

The third marketing automation metric to look at is the statistics available for each of your automations.

When you send an automation through Active Campaign, for example, you’ll find a number of statistics unique to that automation. These can include open rates, click rates and click to open rates. These stats provide you with valuable data about how your contacts are actually interacting with your automations.

One of the main campaign-specific marketing automation metrics to track is open rates. You should always aim to have a minimum open rate of 17%, though ideally that number could be a lot higher. Depending on the automation, I’d shoot for a 40% to 50% open rate.

You’ll also want to look at your click-to-open rate, which is the number of clicks on an email compared to the number of times it’s been opened. (It can also be the amount of clicks based on the number of cents.)

This marketing automation metric helps you evaluate your email’s subject line versus the content inside of it. A high number of opens could mean a great subject line. Yet a low number of clicks might mean that your call-to-action in the email could use some improvement.

Paying attention to these automation statistics can help you understand where there’s room for improvements in your email campaigns.

Evaluate Individual Campaigns

The final marketing automation metric I recommend evaluating is your individual email campaigns. Whether it’s a standalone campaign or a campaign within an automation, you want to aim for a minimum open rate of 17%. Ideally, you’d aim for even double that. Your click rate, on the other hand, should be at least 3%.

Campaigns can help you identify what kind of content your contacts like and engage with the most. When you pinpoint a particularly successful campaign, you’re then able to replicate that same strategy onto other automations and workflows.

Do You Track Your Marketing Automation Metrics?

The overarching theme here is that the only way to ensure your marketing automations are actually helping grow your business is to continuously track them.

Marketing automation measures

Overall, the most important marketing automation metrics I recommend tracking are new contact engagement, long-term contact engagement, automation statistics and individual campaigns.

Tracking these metrics will help you understand exactly what’s happening with your automations and allow you to continuously improve upon them.

Do you track your marketing automation metrics? Is there another metric you recommend tracking? Tell me in the comments below!

How to measure automation performance
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