Closed-Loop Reporting aligns your data & teams

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3 min read

Working with the same data basis and aligning on each other's goals can help your marketing and sales teams to truly collaborate and optimize both their results.

What is Closed-Loop reporting?

Closed-loop reporting connects marketing and sales data as well as reports, to show all relevant numbers, activities and contact engagements to get a full picture of the customer journey but also help both business teams align their activities, goals and processes.

How many marketing teams never get to know what happened to their generated leads? And how many sales reps have no idea how an opportunity first got into contact with their company? But this information could be crucial to focus on relevant activities and gain more insights into the contacts.

Closed-loop reporting provides a 360° overview of data

Oftentimes, marketing works with a marketing automation tool and sales has their CRM system. Sometimes, these are loosely connected but often enough, not enough data is shared on either end which creates information silos that can actually hurt both teams and their efforts.


  • Contact and customer behavior is much more transparent, especially before and after the lead-handover from marketing to sales.
  • Thus, sales knows what initially motivated a contact to leave their data and get into contact.
  • On the other hand, marketing knows which leads actually grew into opportunities and/or customers and can therefore focus their efforts on activities that further engage these kind of contacts.
  • Marketing gets to know more about opportunities and customers and can use this information to optimize their content and activities.
  • More focus on successful activities as well as more transparency on the journey of opportunities can reduce the buying cycle.
  • The cost-per-lead decreases (and the return on investment increases) if marketing can generate leads that are more likely to turn into attractive opportunities.

What does closed-loop reporting require?


The marketing and sales systems need to be connected and use the same data base to enable closed-loop reporting. This either means a good API (application programming interface) or a system that offers both CRM and marketing automation capabilities, so everything runs on one single platform.


Especially between two different systems, a clear terminology is essential to make sure that data gets transferred properly. If sales uses different descriptions than marketing, it can cause messy or inaccurate synchronizations. This is especially important when it comes to developing lead forms, enriching contact info and using artificial intelligence and automation to further manage contacts.

Aligned goals

It's not unusual that sales and marketing have goals that not necessarily compliment each other. If marketing has to generate huge quantities of leads, it can happen that these leads don't measure up to the sales standards and are essentially useless.

It's important to get together and figure out, what marketing goals lead to the achievement of sales goals (and vice versa).

Actionable reportings

A good report does not just show numbers but also enables teams to take action. That's why the reporting needs to be able to provide detailed information depending on who views it.

For example, a simple page view does not mean anything, however, combined with the conversion rate (e.g., via a lead form), it can tell the marketing team how many people visit the page and how many actually fill out the form. Based on this information, the team can decide to optimize the page, e.g. to either increase the conversion rate or the page views.

For the sales team, meanwhile, the page views might not be relevant at all. Instead, a sales rep might need to know if the conversion rate goes down if contacts have to provide their phone numbers. This might indicate that the sales team needs to find other ways to contact opportunities.

Want to centralize your marketing and sales in a closed-loop reporting? We work with the best multi-cloud partners and have extensive data know-how. Find out more:

Succeed with the right data strategy





by Juliane Waack

Juliane Waack is Editor in Chief at DIGITALL and writes about the digital transformation, megatrends and why a healthy culture is essential for a successful business.

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