What is Performance Marketing?

What is Performance Marketing?

what is performance marketing

Performance marketing is, in its own right, a distinct type of marketing that requires strategic analysis, optimization and direct results that deliver a solid ROI. Like all marketing campaigns, performance marketing is about reaching the right audience at the right time. However, while most traditional digital marketing campaigns focus on the volume of clicks, impressions or views as key performance metrics, performance marketing gets straight to the crux and requires direct actions such as sign ups, downloads, and conversions - essentially lead generation.

Pay Per Click vs Pay Per Result

You’ve just got your head around CPC, CTR and impressions, only to find out that there’s a whole new myriad of metrics about to land in your lap.

Most PPC digital advertising platforms from Google Ads to social media, AdRoll and beyond allow us to drive engagement and this is what you pay for. Whether you pay per click, or per 1,000 impressions, you’re spending your budget on passive and active interactions with no guarantee of a direct return on investment.

Performance marketing, on the other hand, removes the guesswork and unpredictability that can come with digital advertising as you get what you pay for, or should I say, you pay for what you get.

This approach allows marketers to exert more control over their budget and often makes it easier to get sign off from stakeholders and directors.

Brand Awareness is a By-Product

By its nature, performance marketing is not about driving brand awareness, however that’s an added bonus that comes at no extra cost. Your ad is likely to be seen by thousands of prospects, many of whom will not complete your desired action, nonetheless they still come into contact with your brand and your message.

Better Measure Your ROI

If you’re a digital marketer, you’ll no doubt understand the struggle is real. No, really, closing the loop on the source of all leads? Sounds simple, but let’s be honest and admit - we’re still not quite there yet!

However, performance marketing is the answer to all our reporting worries. By paying per desirable, completed action we can directly attribute every penny spent to a solid ROI – hallelujah!

What’s more, with clearly defined goals and an increased transparency of performance metrics, such as cost per lead, marketers can draw conclusions from their analysis more quickly and thus optimize strategies much faster than usual.

How to Get Started with Performance Marketing

Here are a few ways that you can dabble in performance marketing with channels you’re already familiar with…

Twitter allows you to set up campaigns that drive prospects to download an app. Importantly, you can choose whether you pay per click or per app install.

Facebook lets you collect your prospects’ names and email addresses using lead generation forms. Again, don’t forget to check when you are charged, you’ll want to pay per lead not per impression.

Google’s Display Network provides the option to pay per conversion when you use Smart Display campaigns or a standard display campaign with a target CPA. This way you won’t pay per click or per impression but rather when someone converts on your website.

LinkedIn lead generation forms make collecting new leads streamlined and seamless. The forms are pre-filled with users’ profile data allowing them to register their interest in just a couple of clicks. What’s more, they can be integrated with the most common CRM systems so your new leads are automatically added to the platform you use. However, LinkedIn doesn’t allow you to pay per lead. You have the option to pay per click or per impression.


Freelance Digital Marketing Consultant  |  Fintech & Financial Services