Do you have a performance marketing mindset?

Mindset and discipline are the keys to mastery. Mindset is deciding that you will master something. Discipline involves identifying habits that lead to incremental improvement, then maintaining them over time as you incorporate new learnings that improve them.

At Infogain, we think of performance marketing as a pre-customer practice. To oversimplify a bit, performance marketing turns people into customers. To execute it, you separate signals from noise, understand their significance, then respond in the best possible way.

Here are the habits that we’ve identified as enablers of a performance marketing mindset.

Focus on customers.

Lots of brands focus too much on internal goals and initiatives. They end up talking to themselves about themselves, then wonder why sales slump even as they hit their internal goals. Instead, look at what your customers want now, next month, and next year. How can you help them achieve those goals?

Use data to look forward.

Brands today have so much data that leveraging AI is the only way to uncover and act on the insights it contains. Most brands already use AI to analyze historic performance, but performance marketing requires you to combine it with human users to develop and test hypotheses about what will create measurable increases in sales and customer acquisition.

Repeat your work.

Customer expectations change constantly, so your performance marketing cycle never ends. Refine your understanding of customer data, identify and target ideal customers and prospects, then optimize your campaigns in real time to maximize conversion. Then do it all again.

Data drives decisions.

AI-enabled insights from your data let you make smarter decisions about budget allocation and targeting. They even let you optimize your marketing mixes. As always, test, optimize, and repeat.

Leverage learnings everywhere.

Insights from your performance marketing practice can supercharge your marketing automation, making it easier and faster to plan and run campaigns. It can inform your segmentation and targeting so your brand personalizes messages more precisely and deliver communications and experiences that resonate with your customers. It can even let you optimize the channels that you use to reach audiences, ultimately enabling them buy from you the instant they meet your brand.

As you instill a performance marketing mindset in your team, you’ll need to help them quantify and understand your results. Return on ad spend (ROAS) tells you how much you earn for every dollar spent on advertising. To find it, divide revenue by ad spend. A ROAS of 100% means you broke even, so you’ll want better numbers than that.

Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is the cost of winning new customers. Total what you spent on sales and marketing in a set time and divide it by the number of new customers you won in that time. That may seem simple, but not all orgs calculate CAC in the same way. Some also include support cost during free trials, cost of on-boarding, and other costs, so CAC can vary wildly for the same effort depending on how you define “cost.” Align on common definitions before you compare figures.

Customer lifetime value (CLV) predicts how much your brand will earn from the average customer while they remain a customer. Like CAC, CLV can include many variables. Start with the total average revenue that a customer generates and the total average profit. Segment, seasonality, quarter, other macro influences can affect CLV. Your goal is to identify high-value segments, determine why they’re so valuable, then use that insight to increase the value of other segments.

Improving ROAS, CAC, and CLV requires time, dedication, and a performance marketing mindset. The process of calculating these metrics and working with them can enable your junior team members to better understand how their roles relate to your brand and your customers. As they internalize that knowledge, they’ll develop a performance marketing mindset and show even greater results.

If you have questions about how to stand up or supercharge your performance marketing practice, contact me at

About the Author

Andrew Line

Andrew is the VP Head of Sales at Infogain,  focusing on growth of our Performance Marketing & AI/ML clients, technology alliances, and geographies.