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Measure the True ROI of Your Programs with Salesforce Campaigns

You can’t manage what you don’t measure.

Salesforce campaigns are a powerful and often underutilized way to track business impact and align teams around shared success. When you tie Salesforce campaigns to your sales motions, you can answer key business questions like:

  • Do Marketing supported campaigns perform better?
  • Do SDRs perform better than Marketing automation?
  • What content mix leads to greater velocity?
  • Which activities lead to shorter deal cycles?
  • Which messaging leads to closed/won business?
  • Which reps are driving the most pipeline?
  • Which industries are we getting the most traction with?
  • Who needs to be involved in the deal to increase its likelihood to close?

Salesforce campaigns — What questions do you want answered?The Goal for GTM teams: to understand how sales initiatives and processes are performing — and to be able to associate them to ROI. Tracking performance and ROI is more important than ever. COVID and the resulting digital transformation shook out the teams and people who weren’t optimizing their revenue-driving activities. Reporting means that you don’t need to guess what’s working. It also helps GTM teams increase internal visibility and can help stoke competition between reps.

Measuring ROI: The Ideal State

GTM leaders and teams should be able to associate every lead, contact, activity, and engagement to a Salesforce campaign, and therefore to closed/won or closed/lost business. This allows them to double down on the actions that are making a true impact. From a high level, here’s how it should look:

  1. Automatically capture leads and contacts from inbound emails and calendar invites
  2. Map your initiatives, messaging Flows, leads, and opportunities to Salesforce campaigns
  3. Slice and dice the captured data to uncover key insights
  4. Use insights and learnings to optimize your GTM plays
  5. Repeat for new initiatives and teams

Connor Jeffers, CEO of Aptitude 8, regularly works with GTM leaders and teams to implement processes for tying sales activities to revenue for increased visibility and optimization. He recently shared Best Practices for setting up and leveraging Salesforce campaigns to provide visibility and effectiveness at RevenueNext, Groove’s customer conference.

In this blog, we’ll recap his session and give you the tools you need to accurately report on your GTM motions.

Start here: Identifying Your Flow Types

Take stock of your GTM team’s goals and initiatives — and use that to inform the campaigns you set up in Salesforce. Each business-specific initiative that your team is running should map to a campaign in Salesforce so that you can understand and track the impact of each. An initiative could be an ABM campaign, event promotion, cross-sells & upsells, persona-driven outbound, or 1:1 personal gifting campaigns. Later on, you’ll be able to slice the data to see how each initiative contributed to ROI.

Building the Salesforce Campaign Architecture

The top-level concept is simple: Mirror your team’s GTM motions in Salesforce and track their performance using Salesforce campaigns. Here’s how to think about the architecture:

Salesforce campaigns - SFDC Campaign architecture

Map each program to either a Parent Campaign or Child Campaign in Salesforce like the diagram below:

GTM Program Salesforce Mapping
Asset / Offer

(Ex. ABM Campaign)

Parent Campaign
Specific Channel / Messaging

(Ex. incentivized-offer, marketing ad air-cover, persona-specific messaging)

Child Campaign


For each step in the architecture building process, ask yourself: what’s the campaign goal? For most campaign goals, there should be an associated parent campaign, and additional drill-down child campaigns for greater detail and visibility.

Using individual campaigns, you can slice and dice the data so you can finally report on the performance of individual initiatives. You can even allow reps to take parent campaigns, clone them, and iterate to create their own — all while associating any data collected to the parent campaign of your choosing for even greater visibility.

Viewing Campaign Performance

So what does setting up this parent-child architecture get you? With this framework in place, every time a deal closes (both won and lost), you’ll be able to see the assets, offers, channels, messages, and activities that contributed to the result.

Proactive leaders will create Salesforce reports to optimize around the individual strategy or flows (ie. child campaigns) that are driving the most value for the initiative (ie. parent campaign). Groove customers can leverage the many standard reports provided with “Groove Insights” to track this information.

1. Look at the metrics from your parent campaign. Which assets and offers are actually leading to closed/won business (not just vanity metrics like “open rate”)?

Salesforce campaigns

2. Dig into the metrics for your child campaigns. How are different channels, messages, target audiences performing within those broader campaigns? Salesforce allows you to go three campaign layers deep and get creative to uncover insights.

Salesforce campaigns

The Challenge: In order for this to work properly, reps need to add the right leads and contacts to the right campaign. Unfortunately, making this a repeatable process is a lot easier said than done. When the process is manual, leads and contacts slip through the cracks, and reporting accuracy is lost, along with deal insights.

Automating Salesforce Campaign Association the Right Way

Once you have a defined campaign hierarchy, automation will help you associate new people to those campaigns. You need an automation that scans inbound emails and calendar invites for new contacts, and then adds them to your CRM while linking them to the right campaign. There are two Salesforce campaign connections that are necessary for this all to work:

  1. Prospects linked to Campaignscan be done automatically with Groove’s Auto-Contact-Capture
  2. Opportunities linked to Campaigns usually requires admin set-up

Associate Opportunities to Salesforce campaigns

Automatically Linking Prospects to Campaigns

Often, the unknown contacts that are CC’d on emails and added to calendar invites are important members of the buying committee. Capturing them manually is time-consuming – not to mention the added time it takes to associate them to the correct campaign for accurate reporting. That’s why using a sales engagement platform with Auto-Contact Capture functionality like Groove becomes even more valuable. For example, Groove’s Auto-Contact-Capture automatically identifies new and relevant business contacts from emails and meeting invites that do not exist in Salesforce today and creates them as contacts in Salesforce without reps having to lift a finger.

Capturing every member of the buying committee is crucial to executing orchestrated GTM plays and making sure no deals are lost due to lack of visibility.

Linking Opportunities to Campaigns (using a Salesforce Automation)

In order to achieve accurate ROI reporting, you need to link opportunities to campaigns. There’s an important detail you need to understand in order to configure this properly: Default Salesforce behavior dictates that if a rep opens an opportunity from a contact or a lead, Salesforce auto-associates that new opportunity with the last campaign that contact was enrolled in (the most recent one from the contact, tagged under campaign source).

This Salesforce behavior has two key limitations that you should be aware of:

  1. To achieve accurate reporting, reps need to be opening opportunities from the individual contact or lead record, so that all of the primary campaign data associated with the lead is attached to the new opportunity. If the opp is opened from the account, you’ll have gaps. Pro Tip: Use Contact roles. Selling is all about connecting with people, not accounts.
  2. The last campaign that the contact was associated with is the only campaign that Salesforce tags to the opportunity. This isn’t always appropriate — the last associated campaign touch may have been months ago, or the contact might not have responded to that campaign. Relying on this logic can result in misattribution.

How do you overcome these limitations? With a Salesforce Automation.

In Salesforce, create a Flow builder powered off of the contact role (this will allow you to trigger the automation regardless of how or when a role is added). Configure the automation to fetch the “contact ID” from the “contact role”. Next, filter this down by your desired criteria to optimize who you’re associating, and what you’re sending them. For example, you could only associate people who responded to an email, or campaign members from the last 60 days.

Salesforce campaigns

Rinsing and Repeating

With your parent-child reporting structure in place, and automations configured to streamline the process, you can adapt the entire structure to the Marketing and Customer Success initiatives at your company. Aligning pre- and post-sales teams around this structure multiplies its impact as you can tie pre-sales and marketing activities to post-sales outcomes.

*For Groove Customers* Leveraging Groove Insights – Salesforce Reporting Tailored for Your Business KPIs

Groove is native to Salesforce, which means that all of your data is slice-able and dice-able within Salesforce. You don’t need to rely on out-of-the-box reporting that may not map to your business goals. With Groove Insights, an advanced reporting suite for Salesforce, you can customize, clone, and drill down into any number of reports, including:

  1. Flow Insights — which Flows are driving deals (not just topline engagement)?
  2. Last Flow fields — what was the last touch that a contact went through (win, unsub, meeting booked, etc.)?
  3. Trends — how many activities did it take to get a meeting?
  4. Opportunity Close rates — if we respond faster, do we win more often?

Having all of this data up-to-date and in one place, allows you to uncover key insights and run better 1-on-1s. Instead of asking for a status report, leaders can gain insights on open opportunities, stalled accounts, large accounts, and more in real-time.

Putting it all together: Understanding Your Entire Revenue Funnel

Once it’s all tied together, you can unlock powerful ROI reporting. Tag your spend back to your Salesforce campaign to figure out how much you spent across all of your campaigns. Then build campaign member reports: which channels, initiatives, and teams are driving ROI and business impact? This allows leaders to optimize their engagement strategy based on the behavior that you’re seeing across your campaigns.

Groove Enhanced ROI Reporting

Want to dive deeper on this topic? Watch the recording of Connor’s 30-minute session, Measurement Matters: Best Practices for Enhanced ROI Reporting from RevenueNext Fall 2021.


For more information on Groove’s sales engagement platform, check out our Platform page or our Definitive Guide to Sales Engagement Platforms.

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