Is your brand out of breath?
Are you wondering how to maximize ROI? You run in the race for the client, passing the lead baton between teams. If it falls, are you so focused on pointing out whose fault it was that you lose sight of the main goal?
If so, it’s high time for a change.
What exactly needs to change? You must transform your approach: you no longer should pursuit aggressive growth and rather focus on sustainable and conscious development.
What’s exactly is it about? And how this new approach can integrate marketing and sales teams in their work on wise acquisition of revenue growth? Let’s find the answers.
7 sins of the traditional approach to marketing and sales in b2b
B2B buyers spend only 17% of the buying process meeting with potential vendors1 — which gets shared across multiple vendors, meaning each one may only get 5% or 6%. In contrast, they spend almost a quarter of the time meeting with other members of the buying committee. – Gartner
It happens before your eyes.
Changes in the specificity of the B2B purchasing process have been taking place for many years – customer journeys are becoming more and more confusing, multi-threaded and multi-channel. Customers obtain information everywhere – especially online and from their friends, and salespeople appear only at the end of the purchasing path, at the end of the funnel (which, actually, ceases to be a typical funnel).
This was combined with a number of other factors caused by the pandemic, economic crisis and marketing acceleration stimulated by the development of AI.
The competition is getting stronger and the costs of acquiring and retaining a customer are increasing.
Prospects are tired of cold mailing, and its personalization techniques are becoming more and more sophisticated. Many companies feel stuck – the pipeline seems to be clogged and the fresh leads are no longer flowing.
What needs to happen? There must come an end to ineffective actions based on unfavorable patterns.
These 7 sins must disappear right now:
- The blame game – teams should not work separately in silos, and marketing and sales should not blame each other for not being sufficiently engaged.
- A linear understanding of customer acquisition, where marketing “generated leads”, passed them on to sales, and sales ignored leads that were not ready to close and eventually, were lost in the depths of CRM.
- Seeing marketing as a cost centre rather than a key and initial piece of the revenue generation puzzle.
- Ignoring marketing content and basic marketing awareness by the sales.
- Fighting over which department should assign the leads.
- Focus on WE – client-centricity and focus on YOU is necessary.
- Including the marketing department only at the very end of the project.
What is the cure for these 7 sins? A profound cultural change in the organization. A holistic approach is needed to work together on the common goal of maximizing ROI.
So, what is the answer? Revenue (driven) marketing.
Let’s take a closer look and check what it is, what benefits it brings and how to take care of it.
Revenue marketing as a response to b2b challenges in 2023
Businesses that invest in creating great experiences grow revenue 40% faster, improve retention by 70%, and increase customer lifetime value 1.6x more than other companies.- Demandbase
What is revenue marketing?
It is based on a holistic process of identifying channels that generate revenue, and then aligning sales & marketing efforts with revenue and working together to maximize ROI.
What are the key goals of revenue marketing? Their main objective is to increase revenue and maximize ROI – in a more predictable, repeatable and measurable way.
It happens through:
- Optimizing marketing spend and demand generation
- Increasing customer acquisition: identifying, ensuring smooth customer journey across touch points and capturing leads
- Improving customer retention by upgrading customer service.
What are the key metrics in revenue marketing? These are common metrics, established by cooperating departments, focused around revenue growth and partial goals, such as increasing conversion and retention, as well as reducing customer acquisition costs.
What are the benefits of revenue-oriented marketing?
According to a study by SiriusDecisions, companies that align their revenue teams experience 15% higher profitability and 19% faster revenue growth. Companies that use revenue operations to accelerate revenue are able to do so because they are on the same page, act on the same insights, and are motivated by the same goals. In other words, they have full-funnel accountability.
Focus on revenue marketing means more stable business development: more quality leads, more chances for closing deals and higher retention – and thus more predictable revenues.
This is due to the synergy of many factors, such as:
- greater transparency in teams and more effective, everyday cooperation
- better knowledge of what joint actions bring results
- greater marketing awareness of sales
- respect for work and focus on effective actions
- focus on solving challenges
- constant exchange of knowledge in the organization
- salespeople’s awareness of what prospects are ready to nurture
- providing the recipient with messages and support adequate to the stage of the purchase path.
What changes does revenue marketing in the organization require?
First of all: you need to introduce a cultural shift and change the way your organization thinks about business: from focus on leads to focus on revenue. This change is colossal and requires education at the top and in executive teams. This is a key issue, and at the same time the tip of the iceberg.
Then, it is important to focus on aligning goals, sharing insights and customer feedback.
It is about cooperation between marketing and individual departments – primarily sales, but also the financial department, product marketing and customer support.
To do so, modern organizations create revenue teams, supervised by the CRO – chief revenue officer, responsible for integrating the teams’ work and focusing on generating sales opportunities.
Their tasks revolve around:
- Demand gen
- Lead capture
- Lead nurturing
- Closing the deal
- Customer success
The following examples show that each team’s cooperation with marketing and the exchange of information play an important role in these tasks.
Examples of areas that should be addressed together are:
Marketing with sales
- Developing integrated lead capture and nurture strategies.
Marketing with finance
- Joint analysis of marketing spendings and ROI and real time insights on its effectiveness.
Marketing with product marketing
- Collecting and discussing customer feedback for product improvement
- Product-based announcements of product changes, launches – product – based campaigns and aligned messaging (no empty promises).
Marketing with customer support
- Sharing customer insights and continuous feedback loop for personalised marketing and seamless customer experience.
How to approach it? How to build the foundations of revenue marketing in an organization?
What are the key areas that need to be addressed when building revenue teams?
At the beginning, it is worth answering the key questions in several categories.
The most important questions concern cultural shift – the change in thinking must be adapted by decision makers.
Is there awareness of:
- the overarching goal of generating revenue?
- the role of each department as a puzzle piece and awareness at the level of decision makers?
- the role of delivering value, brand positioning and coherent messages in teams?
Pedowtiz Group points to several phases in the approach to revenue marketing – there is no denying that disruption is followed by a phase of resistance. Changing the mindset in an organization is extremely difficult. https://www.pedowitzgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/01/five-stages-revenue-marketing-change.pdf/. It is crucial that stakeholders also recognize their individual benefits of cooperation.
It is the readiness to change that affects the next phases.
They can be divided into:
- Has the effectiveness of previous activities been analyzed (sincerely and thoroughly!)?
- Has a revenue analysis been performed?
- Is there an annual operating plan with revenue targets outlined by the management board and the financial department and is this document available and understandable for the departments involved?
- Have common KPIs been established – general, panoramic and long-term, as well as tactical and daily?
- Did the teams agree to test marketing revenue attribution models?
- Are the target groups aware of the ICP and the purchasing committee, as well as their needs, motivations, problems and decision-making stages?
- Do they understand the needs and problems of current customers?
- Has the customer journey been mapped and touch points identified on it?
- Have the teams needed in the process been defined, and the person(s) responsible for the whole process and for individual stages of the alignment identified?
- Have missing human resources been identified – experts in specific fields?
- Have the missing resources in the form of GTM platforms been identified?
- Have framework cooperation plans been prepared, summarizing the assumptions and detailed plans of individual campaigns?
- Have the procedures and tools for cooperation been established – rules and regularity, specificity of meetings, information exchange, tools and processes?
What phases of operation does the work of revenue teams include?
After the planning phase, there is a transition to actions, divided into the main Engage, Execute and Expand phases.
While discussing them, we will also briefly cover forecasting metrics.
In this phase, we focus on the top of the funnel, engaging well-targeted accounts and personas through marketing and SDR activities.
At this stage, it is crucial to identify the ICP and value proposition as well as understand the current situation and outline plans for further action. It is also important to cooperate with SDR and marketing on expanding insights, understanding campaign feedback, and building knowledge of the target group.
Key metrics at this stage include: quater-to-date pipeline quality, pipline acceleration and target account engagement.
In this phase, we accelerate deal cycles and convert the involved accounts and constantly analyze the effectiveness of our activities.
The key is proper targeting, contact with real-time target groups, accelerating deal cycles and implementing sales enablement programs based on educational content, appropriate tools and coaching.
Key metrics include: monthly reccuring revenue, win rate, conversion rate, sales cycle length, average deal size, deal slippage.
In this phase, we grow customer value by building retention and through upselling (due to customer service and marketing efforts).
The key is to take care of customer relations, keep an eye on customer satisfaction indicators, and train and educate them.
The key metrics at this stage are customer retention metrics, customer satisfaction and success metrics such as customer churn %, revenue churn %, expansion revenue %, NPS and CSAT.
In the context of the above phases, it is worth looking at martech platforms that allow you to focus on ROI marketing.
Tools helping build revenue driven marketing
When conducting activities in the area of revenue marketing, it is impossible not to consider martech that supports the coordination of activities. These are integrated platforms that combine data from various sources and easily share it. It is very important in the case of revenue marketing to build a single source of truth for all the teams involved.
If you want to learn more about platforms that help build revenue marketing, including AI marketing tools, read the article.
However, before we deal with the selection of tools, we need to introduce a cultural shift in the organization. If we do not focus on building a new mentality, even the most extensive tools will not solve our problems.
Be an advocate for change
It is worth being an advocate of change in your organization, because there’s no going back. Businesses that keep sales and marketing in separate silos and support their fierce competition are doomed to… get stuck in a silo and potentially die out. The sooner we put teams on a new track and integrate people, data and processes, the more likely we are to stay in the race.