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Rachel Matthews 7 marketing metrics L&D need to be using

All L&D teams track their success, and there are many measures that are used to do this. These may include number of attendees, satisfaction rates, improvement in performance and, for some (but not all) organisations, learning ROI.

But what often isn’t tracked within learning departments, is how effective their ‘behind-the-scenes’ work is. It’s great, and important, to track final results, but looking at how you get there can help make a huge improvement in results.

How? Using marketing metrics.

Bear with me here – it’s not as scary as it sounds.

In marketing, it’s important to not just track the final results, such as how many leads have been passed to sales, but also the marketing activity that leads to this. Making incremental changes and testing how things are done continuously can help improve activity hugely.

Stephanie Morgan has talked about how important it is for L&D to adopt marketing skills to engage learners, so we’re going to take a look at how these metrics can support your success. Here are seven marketing metrics that could help transform your results.

Total Visits

This is an easy track for marketers – how much traffic you are driving to your desired pages - but it’s not always so easy for L&D. However, if you can get a dedicated page on your website, intranet or LMS that lists what solutions you have available for your learners, you can start to track.

This can help you drive traffic here through email campaigns, word of mouth and offline measures, such as posters around the office. Once you know how many learners are heading to your solutions page, you can start to increase bookings.

Email Click Rates

You might currently send emails through your company email, but there are tons of free email providers that you could use to track activity (such as Mailchimp).

Once you start sending emails through a system like this, you can see how many learners are reading them, clicking through to your solutions page and who is disengaged. Then you can test things; such as when you send the email (time of day, day of the week etc.), who you send it from (Learning, or an individual), subject lines and call-to-actions (click through options, directing people to where you want them to go). Move things around to see what gets you the best results, and try different terminology and learner challenges to gain interest.Marketing Metrics For L&D

Number of Enquiries

This is a key one for marketers, and it should be for L&D too. I’m sure we all want learners to be requesting learning, and trying to book onto programmes. Once you start tracking the number of enquiries you receive, you can start thinking about, and testing, ways to increase this.

Enquiries to Sales

This is another vital one for anyone tracking enquiries. Having 200 enquiries is great, but if you know that it takes 100 enquiries to convert into a booked place on a programme, then you know that, in order to fill a programme with 10 seats, you need 1000 enquiries.

That may sound daunting, but don’t worry. This figure can also be used to try and reduce it by looking at how you respond to enquiries and the wording you use to advertise it (are you attracting the right people?).

Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

This is a really interesting one. It is your total sales and marketing cost - add up any advertising spend, salaries and overhead - in a time period, divided by the number of learners in that time period. For example, if you spent £1000 on activity in a month and had 30 learners that month, then your CAC is £33.

But the next stat is why this one is important…

Time to Payback CAC

Marketers (generally) use this to identify the value of the customer, but L&D can put their own spin on this. If you’re calculating ROI (if not, take a look at our Learning Metrics that Matter whitepaper) then you should have an idea of the average ROI for each learner for each programme.

Let’s say that a Time Management course saves a learner five hours per week in interruptions. If that person is on minimum wage of £7.50 per hour that’s £37.50 saved each week, which shows that your time to payback CAC is less than one week! 

This is a great tool to use when planning budgets and strategies for following years. It can provide a compelling argument to the importance of adding marketing solutions into your L&D strategy, and can persuasive for encouraging learners and managers to give up time in their day for L&D.

Churn Rate

Your churn rate is learner losses divided by learners at the start of year. The benefit of this for L&D is that it enables you to identify learners who have become disengaged, and try to reengage them (using your emails, solution pages and any other methods) to undertake learning.

Having this knowledge on your learners means you can use targeted messaging for your solutions, reducing your enquiries to sales figure, increasing relevant enquiries and reducing your CAC.


I appreciate that implementing all of these at once can be a bit much, so figure out which result would be most beneficial for you, and would help you achieve your KPI’s, and give it a go.

Want to talk further? Get in touch with us today to discuss how our learning consultancy can help you engage your learners.

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Rachel Matthews

Rachel Matthews, Strategic Marketing Manager

In my blogs I will look at industry constraints and issues and problems that employees face in their day-to-day work lives.


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