The universe of markets and buyers are incredibly diverse and your decisions about where and whom to target can make or break your revenue performance. A company can’t be all things to all buyers in all markets. As the competitive landscape is always changing, with more players vying for prospects’ time and attention, it is vital to select markets where you can effectively compete and win then continuously segment the market to isolate specific audiences to engage at the right time and right place with the right message.
Do you have a focused SALES business recovery plan? Does it allow for current year goal achievement post-crisis?
Most businesses have a business continuity and resiliency plan that allows for continued operation in the event of an unforeseen circumstance, but most businesses do not have a revenue recovery plan! The pandemic crisis has forced new ways of working and impaired business performance, but companies must anticipate coming out of the crisis and being prepared for the new environment. This is the time to take advantage of the crisis by examining and addressing ineffective and unproductive elements of your revenue architecture including systems and talent.
An informal survey of CXO’s conducted by Revenue Architects over the last 6 weeks indicates that sales and marketing organizations are functioning differently through the uncharted waters of the COVID-19 pandemic. The results confirmed that 90% have been materially impacted.
- 60% of participants stated that they have or plan to layoff/furlough part or all of their sales and marketing teams
- 50% stated they do not have a formal recovery plan to return to Pre Covid-19 performance.
- 100% stated that working remotely had a positive impact on their productivity while also representing new management challenges
- 80% indicated that it was harder to bring some staff given the reverse incentives of government programs.
Conducting business under current constraints with social distancing, remote working and the reduction of capital expenditures is a new challenge. It can be harder to sell if you are not in front of the client. Yet even before the pandemic the skills and profile of sales superstars were changing. And the B2B buyer, already digital savvy, was becoming more educated and self-sufficient using online resources to self-sell.
“If you give me a techno-savvy, Internet-friendly, google ranked, instant responding, collaborating, differentiated, social media savvy, value-driven, a value-based messaging, salesperson who uses the voice of the customer testimonials and is interested in how the customer profits…then, I will give you sales results”.
But how do we infuse these talents and skills along with sales best practices into our selling team and drive sales, take market share, and position for the upcoming market expansion?
The CRO is Responsible for Predictable and Sustainable Revenue Growth
This post is updated. It was originally published in July 2016
Today, companies recognize the need for a company-wide revenue focus and a more integrated approach across marketing and sales. The CRO oversees the traditional responsibilities of the VP of Sales and the Chief Marketing Officer and is a member of the senior team overseeing go-to-market strategy and execution. The CRO is responsible for aligning company resources, defining differentiated go-to-market strategies and delivering on the company’s revenue performance goals.
Accelerated, predictable, and sustainable revenue growth requires a company-wide commitment. When developing a marketing plan, consider these questions. These can help you develop your Revenue Architecture and expand your revenue performance potential.
The 9 dimensions take a broad view of revenue growth dimensions and help you focus your sales and marketing planning.
Accelerated, predictable and sustainable revenue growth requires alignment around an architecture for marketing and sales and a commitment from the senior team. Coordination for buyer engagement across the full-funnel is vital. A realistic evaluation of capabilities and alignment on revenue strategies is the first step in building a revenue organization to capture customer value.
A $10M B2B tech company is looking to get to the next level of accelerated, predictable and sustainable revenue growth. The company has been in business for over 10 years, offering a variety of managed services, support services and applications to support IT Infrastructure requirements. They have about 350 active clients that contribute to the companies ARR revenue base. The customer base is loyal with low attrition and there remains good demand for additional services resulting in a continuous pipeline for “up-sell”.
The first dimension in constructing a Revenue Architecture is Markets and Buyers. The output includes the identification of the Total Addressable Market (TAM).
Once we have made a market selection – considering market strengths and weaknesses, offering portfolio and a range of competitive and market forces, we can measure TAM. TAM works particularly well in B2B and account-based marketing, but it is useful as well in B2C. Here are some ways we think about TAM linked to S.M.A.R.T goals and as input for funnel analysis and segmentation for targeted buyer engagement.
More insights for the 85% of B2B marketers that don’t have effective personas!
Mapping out your buyers’ pain and organizing via Pain Maps™ to enable the ULTIMATE Goal: Informing Engagement Personas™.
There are many different perspectives and philosophies on persona development. This makes sense, as they’re the most critical element of creating messaging and informing Message Maps™…then identifying and developing content aligned with the buy cycle…and ultimately validating the various components of a true buyer engagement strategy. In the end, persona development should be defined by how it’ll be used – in terms of purpose and context that will drive messaging, and ultimately content strategy. Other marketers will use it more as a “playbook” of all possible or available buyer insights. I’m not saying either is right or wrong, but it’s why we’ve created a new category called Engagement Personas™.
Ending Content Confusion: Differentiating Between “Domain-Centric” and “Engagement-Focused” Content.
There’s a significant problem with content today that can no longer be ignored. It’s the “elephant in the room”—and some organizations and marketers are aware of it, and some aren’t. It’s that the vast majority of the data from marketing practitioners, benchmark reports, industry analysts, and a multitude of other sources suggests that the #1 objective of content is lead generation and account/buyer conversion, sometimes expressed as “engagement”: (and yes, brand awareness tops some lists). Yet, almost universally, content strategy and content creation is “owned” by Product and/or Corporate Marketing in 60% – 80% of organizations. It’s driven by the Demand Generation team in only 5% – 10% of organizations!
So, let’s get this straight. The primary objective for content is to top-of-funnel inquiries, leads and converting full-funnel opportunities, yet the very people tasked with creating integrated programs to drive that objective DO NOT control the #1 MOST IMPORTANT element which is critical to achieving it? HUH?! Seriously?! That’s like having a plumber wiring your house and an electrician installing the pipes. This can truly blow your mind!
OK, as I step back from the ledge, please allow me to share a highly-informed perspective on this based on a nearly 25 year career in B2B marketing, buyer engagement and demand generation. It’s critically important to acknowledge and understand the difference between “domain-centric” and “engagement-focused” content. Is this starting to make a bit more sense?
The CMO of a “Top 50” B2B technology company said he saw tremendous efficacy in our buyer engagement frameworks and methodologies…but asked himself, and me, the question: why would he need our help with content when he has an dedicated, well-staffed team of product marketers producing it? Then bam…the ability to articulate this difference, which was percolating in my subconscious, hit me right between the eyes. I framed it as “domain-centric” vs. “engagement-focused” content, and the CMO immediately embraced the distinction.
Seems like I sort of threw Product Marketing under the bus, right? Actually, quite the contrary. Product Marketing sits at the intersection of Product Development/Management, Sales, Corporate Marketing, Demand Generation and Field Marketing. As such, they are the single most important information resource in content marketing today. They arguably know more about your products, value proposition, market segments, buyers, market trends, etc. than anyone else in your organization. The disconnect I see, universally across organizations, is that most are classically trained product marketers…schooled in research, creating and articulating value propositions, describing features and benefits, and creating stellar product collateral.
That’s where we Demand Marketers come in and the hand-off begins. By looking through the various white papers, data sheets, collateral, and sales playbooks the Product Marketers have created, Demand Marketers can find what they (and you) are looking for. It’s content that’s embedded and buried within, and it serves a different purpose and context than what is truly useful for buyer engagement. There, in the guise of product and benefit information, you’ll find the buyer’s key pain points, as well as an articulation of how your company, products and solutions help address them. Then you can apply all the insights in our new game-changing eBook entitled Exposed. The False Promises of Revenue Marketing. to create truly effective engagement-focused content.
To discover more in-depth insights on this topic, download a copy of the eBook by simply clicking on the link below to discover 9 principles to exponentially increase leads, conversion and pipeline velocity:
Many so-called “Revenue Marketers” are writing checks that their companies simply can’t cash! According to a recent study by HubSpot, only 23% of marketers are exceeding their revenue goals. Yet, Revenue Marketing has become a ubiquitous concept and is getting tons of hype in today’s market. And rightfully so. No question – it’s the “holy grail” of today’s senior stakeholders.
Here’s the problem—all the verbiage around it was generated by companies and people deeply invested in its success. These include companies that are predominantly staffed by marketing automation technologists and solutions engineers, who are actually software people, not demand marketers. And all the talk isn’t limited to the marketing operations and automation folks who are making claims. There are also many strategic consulting firms and agencies that do the same, but they don’t have enough experience as practitioners to execute on the very recommendations they are prescribing to clients.
Don’t get me wrong, the modern marketing technology stack forms the most powerful marketing enablement toolkit I’ve witnessed in a nearly 25-year career. But it’s just that…an enablement toolkit. It’s a partial solution. You ALSO need effective buyer engagement strategy and execution or the monetization of your marketing investments won’t even come close to its potential.
Quite simply, revenue marketing can work—when (and only when) it’s driven by a worthy buyer engagement strategy. But the primary challenge, which we address in our new eBook entitled Exposed. The False Promises of Revenue Marketing., is all the confusion, misinterpretation and general lack of understanding that exists around revenue marketing and the buyer engagement strategies that are essential to its success.
These points of confusion include:
- The fundamental deficit in buyer understanding that is killing marketing performance at most companies
- What’s wrong with persona development
- How messaging is largely missing the mark
- Why most B2B content is lousy as it’s “domain-centric,” not “engagement-focused”
- How most marketers are focused on all the wrong metrics
- Why so very few marketers are capable of aligning all the requisite elements of a high-performance buyer engagement strategy
In the eBook we highlight these critical elements (and many more) that are too frequently being ignored, simply misunderstood or not fully embraced, but that are vital for true revenue marketing. In it we address 9 foundational principles that when used as a roadmap for marketing automation and social media propagation are the surest way to develop a sound buyer engagement strategy that transforms you into a true rock star of revenue marketing.
Download a copy of the eBook to discover 9 ways to exponentially increase leads, conversion, pipeline velocity and revenue impact:
Go-to-Market strategy is the foundation of a company’s revenue producing structure. To generate revenue, it is necessary to have defined channels to interact with customers.
To achieve this, a company needs an effective Go to Market strategy that makes the company easy to buy from and easy to sell for. A go-to-market strategy and plan is a blueprint for how the company will reach customers.
In a world where customers are becoming increasingly inundated with competitive options, it is more important than ever to effectively engage over the right channels. Your Go-to-market strategy allows you to reach customers at their various touch-points and optimize your service processes; customers can more easily interact with your company and, in turn, you can be more responsive and personalized in your customer responses.
Go-to-market is particularly crucial for services businesses that require heavy customer interaction. Go-to-market strategy streamlines and establishes a strong focus on the steps that a company must take to co-create value with customers.
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