News article

The 12 data points you need to record to reduce your marketing costs

Note: This blog was updated on 30 November 2022.

Great marketers understand the power of data.

They know that their marketing will be improved by collecting and analysing data, then making evidence-led decisions. Data also gives them confidence that their marketing is working.

Time and time again though, we find otherwise great firms failing to collect even basic information about new enquiries. There are many reasons why:

  • Some don’t have the right processes in place
  • Others don’t realise the importance of collecting data
  • Some start with the best of intentions but these soon fall by the wayside.

Whatever the reason, the result is the same; the inability to understand which parts of their marketing are working, and which aren’t.

So, this week we want to explain the 12 data points you should be collecting for every new enquiry.

The 12 data points you should collect

The first five are quite straightforward:

  1. First name and ‘known by’ name (so you can personalise email communications and maximise open rates)
  2. Last name
  3. Email address
  4. Telephone number
  5. Date enquiry received

Nothing too difficult or controversial so far!

The next few are rarely collected in sufficient detail but are where the data gets really useful.

6. Do you want to work with the prospect?

It can take many months to convert a prospect into a client and, consequently, a relatively long time to understand your conversion rate. That’s dangerous. It could mean you’re spending money on tactics that aren’t working and not doubling down on those which do.

The solution? The 6th of the data fields we recommend you collect.

The answer should be recorded early in the engagement process, perhaps even after the first phone call. And it’s an initial indication of whether your marketing is generating enquiries from the right type of people.

7. Was a first meeting agreed?

The answer to this question helps to confirm that your marketing is creating the right opportunities and whether your engagement process is working effectively.

8. Did the prospect become a client?

The fact we need to record this information won’t surprise anyone!

It allows us to understand:

  • Your overall conversion rate (all new enquiries to engaged clients)
  • Your conversion rate from first meeting to engaging a new client.

9. The reason the prospect didn’t become a client

This allows you to understand the reasons why prospects didn’t become a client, identify trends and put solutions in place.

10. The source of the enquiry

This is often missed or poorly recorded, yet it’s vital if you’re going to understand which elements of your marketing strategy work, and which don’t.

We recommend using predefined fields to ensure data is consistently recorded, and training your team to ask the right questions so the correct source is identified. Too often ‘source’ is recorded as ‘email’ or ‘phone call’. This isn’t the source, it’s the method of communication. Instead, sources could be:

  • Recommendation from an existing client or professional connection
  • Social media
  • Walk-in
  • Website visit
  • Google search
  • Directory,

And so on.

The source is how a prospective client first heard about you, not how they contacted you.

11. The name of the existing client or professional connection who made the recommendation

Recording which clients and professional connections recommended you to others means you can:

  • Understand the key centres of influence
  • Appropriately, thank the person who made the recommendation

12. Revenue generated

Why would you spend money marketing your business if you’re not going to measure your Return on Investment (ROI)?

The return you get is a function of initial fees, plus the capitalisation of ongoing fees over a sensible period of time. Recording both allows you to calculate return on investment. Assets under management is also an important metric for some firms. If that’s the case for you, add it to the data you record.

Record data for every new enquiry (and we mean every enquiry!)

Many firms only start to record data for new enquiries once the prospect has agreed to a first meeting. Some won’t record enquiries from prospects which fall at the first hurdle.

Both are dangerous because only recording the ‘good’ enquiries creates a falsely positive picture of your marketing.

Instead, record every new enquiry; the good, the bad and the ugly (yes, even the person who wants to pop in this afternoon to get you to sign their final salary transfer forms so they can take the money out to buy a caravan in Ingoldmells!).

We completely get that spending time recording an enquiry that isn’t going anywhere might feel like a waste of time. We’re here to tell  you though that it isn’t.

Recording data for every new enquiry:

  • Means you can nurture the prospects you want to work with, but who don’t immediately become clients. If you don’t have their contact details, you can’t stay in touch, adding value, demonstrating knowledge and positioning yourself as the ‘go back to’ firm when they are ready to engage
  • Gives you a true picture of the opportunities, both in terms of number and quality, that your marketing is creating. As we said, if you only record the ‘good’ enquiries, you won’t see a true reflection of what’s actually happening.

We have developed a simple enquiry recording spreadsheet for you to use. If you would like a copy please click here to drop us an email. We’d be delighted to send it to you.

Look back to 2020 and 2021 for opportunities

In the meantime, though, go and look at your enquiry data for 2020 and 2021 and consider which data points you’re missing. Now’s a perfect time, at the start of the new year, to start collecting data properly. The benefits of getting into good habits?

  • A genuine understanding of what’s working with your marketing, and what isn’t
  • Lower marketing costs because you can do more of what works and less of what doesn’t
  • An understanding of the return you’re getting from your marketing investment.

If you need our help, feel free to get in touch by emailing or by calling 0115 8965 300.,

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