Today is stressful -- it's the end of the month. Maybe you had a fabulous month where traffic and leads flowed in without you lifting a finger. Maybe you worked your tail off to hit your goal and you just made it. Or maybe, despite your hard work, you came in under the waterfall line.
Regardless of how this month went, today is stressful.
Tomorrow, your score gets set back to zero -- but first, you've got to figure out what your leads goal is actually going to be.
You shouldn't just pick a number out of thin air, or even assume that you should be increasing your previous month by X%. There's a much better way to figure it out that's rooted in your company's larger goals. Keep on reading to figure how to simply and scientifically calculate next month's lead goal.
(If you want an easy-to-use template to calculate these numbers for you, download one here.)
Find Your Leads Goal by Working Backwards
The key to figuring out your lead goal is all about working backwards. Figure out how much revenue your team needs to contribute to the company's bottom line, and then use some simple math to work your way back up the funnel. Here's how you can calculate it.
Step 1: Figure out how much revenue your team needs to contribute.
Ask your sales leadership how much revenue Sales needs to book this month and how much of that needs to come from inbound marketing. For this example, let's say your sales team needs to generate $100,000 in revenue with 80% of it coming from inbound.
$100,000 in revenue * .8 = $80,000 inbound revenue.
Step 2: Figure out how many customers you need to close to satisfy that revenue.
Next, you need to figure out roughly how many customers you need to close to generate that revenue. To do that, you'll divide the number from the previous step by the average revenue generated per customer.
Here's what that looks like in the example we're using:
This means that you need to close five customers to create that much inbound revenue.
Step 3: Figure out how many leads you need in order to close that many customers.
Then, you need to work your way up one step in the marketing funnel to figure out how many leads you need to get to generate that many customers. To do this, you'll need your average lead-to-customer conversion rate -- aka the percentage of leads that become customers.
For example's sake, let's say your lead-to-customer-conversion rate is 2%. Then, you'd figure out how many leads you need by completing this equation:
Ta-da! You have your lead goal for the month, unless you choose to complete the next step. Otherwise, skip to Step 5.
Step 4 (Optional): Adjust the goal to reflect the previous month's progress.
Some people prefer to adjust this number based on whether they hit the goal the previous month to help increase employee morale -- if your team isn't hitting your goals one month, it can be demotivating to see the waterfall line climb even higher the next month. That being said, adjusting it each month could give your team a false sense of security if they're trending each month, as it may make you still miss your long-term lead goals. It's all personal preference on what you decide to do, but keep these considerations in mind while you're setting these goals.
Step 5: Add your leads goal to a waterfall graph.
Last, but certainly not least, you should add your final lead total to a waterfall graph that gets distributed to your team. This way, everyone can see how you're trending toward your end of month goal throughout the month and react accordingly. If you have HubSpot, setting up a waterfall graph is easy to do in the Reports tool, and you can automatically send out daily waterfall updates to teammates. You can create on using Excel and manually update your team on their progress.
And that's it, folks! You don't have to guesstimate your goals anymore. You can use this simple, scientific calculation every month to give accurate projections to your sales team and encourage your team to drive significant, measurable results.
Good luck next month!
Originally published Apr 30, 2014 3:30:00 PM, updated July 28 2017