Closed-Loop Reporting: Driving Adoption on Your Sales Team

The influx of marketing automation tools nowadays selling their ability to show "Closed Loop Reporting" marks marketers' growing emphasis upon proving value. These metrics are the holy grail for any marketing department, as ROI is ultimately what matters. I wish I could say that getting to the holy grail of metrics is a breeze (as it is sometimes portrayed to be by product companies). Here at Bluewolf, we definitely know that technology solutions are only part of the overall solution. What I mean by this is that we can't get to the end goal of Closed Loop Reporting by solely using the technology; our people and our processes have to adapt to leverage the new technology, the necessary fields we are relying on, and so forth. Only through this aligned effort can we take advantage of Closed Loop Reporting metrics to gain visibility into individual campaign effectiveness to better inform future marketing decisions.

A good example of this at Bluewolf is our usage of the related list in our Salesforce CRM called "Contact Roles." The marketing team here relies heavily on Contact Roles on Opportunities (which sync with Campaign Influence — another blog post in and of itself!) to close the loop on our reporting. However, we can't get anywhere on our tracking if our Sales team doesn't use Contact Roles. We've realized that subjecting every required field to a validation rule is a major headache for our Sales team — and, it ultimately leads to them not using the CRM, which is the worst possible outcome. Based on this challenge, we’ve had to get creative in what we can do outside of validation rules to drive adoption of our required fields. Here are three key steps we came up with:

  1. Identify and communicate the "WIIFM"
    If you want anyone to do anything for you, it's extremely effective to clearly articulate their "What's In It For Me" (WIIFM). In our case, we had to confront the question, “Why should Sales care about Contact Roles?” To address this, we ran an internal campaign, complete with branded graphics, to explain the "WIIFM" of adopting Contact Roles for our Sales team.

    Closed Loop Reporting: What's In It For Me - Bluewolf
  2. Gamify desired behaviors
    We believe in the power of gamification at Bluewolf, and we use it across our organization. To incentivize our Sales team, we award five points per addition of any Contact Role to an Opportunity. Users are able to redeem their points at their leisure for cool prizes in our rewards store. To give recognition to our top users, we also have a leaderboard that lives in our CRM to show the top point earners of all time, of the quarter, and so forth. It's basic human psychology that we are all motivated by a little competition and, of course, by rewards!
  3. Get executive buy-in
    This is an integral step in driving adoption. If your executive or management team doesn't know or doesn’t buy into your goals, then you can't have your messages to encourage behavior to come from the people with authority in your organization. Having our Sales Managing Directors really understand and believe in our goal of tracking Closed Loop Reporting was crucial in the actual field Sales team adopting this process. If the "WIIFM" messaging can come from the Managing Director, it will have much more impact.

Interested in learning more about Bluewolf's approach to driving technology adoption? Connect with an expert.


Bluewolf, an IBM Company, is a global consulting agency and proven Salesforce strategic partner that builds digital solutions designed to create results. Now.