Join Matt Heinz on May 15 at 10AM PDT or watch his presentation on demand anytime in the window below! hashtag is #Demand2013
Join Matt Heinz on May 15 at 10AM PDT or watch his presentation on demand anytime in the window below! hashtag is #Demand2013
In this short video segment, Matt Heinz answers the question: “What are the biggest trends in demand generation?” He is always fun and always thought-provoking.
This post stars Jason Miller and his company Marketo. (no relation to Jon). The story is about their social campaign for the Definitive Guide to Social Marketing. There are some great ideas and take-aways as we continue to try to answer the question: “Does social marketing work”?
Facebook worked, here is why:
Facebook is controversial in b2b since it is such a personal, consumer-driven social network, but Marketo was and has been successful there. The key to Facebook: Get people engaged in order to stay in the feed. I found some interesting takeaways:
1. Visual, Visual, Visual — to be successful in Facebook you have to have great visuals. Think about it, Facebook is a massive image sharing feed (pls see Instagram purchase), so you have to consider how your visual will compete.
2. Be fun — Facebook is a place for fun. People go to Facebook to break away from their day-to-day and have fun. Your promotions need to compete with the funny anecdotes and personal stories in everyone’s feed.
3. Juice the amplification with promoted post — Remember the key is to be in the feed. Promoted posts are a small amount of money to help you achieve that goal.
3. Your buyers are on Facebook, you just have to approach them correctly — Here is the prevailing irony in b2b Facebook marketing: “My buyers aren’t on Facebook” is a common b2b refrain yet there are a billion active users on Facebook. In other words, the odds tell you that you are wrong…they are on Facebook.
See some of their ads below.
Twitter worked, here is why:
Twitter is not controversial but results have been elusive for many. There some important things to learn from this campaign:
1. Leverage promoted tweets — Marketo is averaging about $37/prospect* via their paid Twitter activities. Many marketers are unaware of the power of the promoted tweet — Jason recommends buying both for search (you will show up when people search a keyword or hashtag) and timeline (you can designate the target “interest” and the promoted tweet will show up in their timeline)
*Prospect for Marketo is defined as “right person/company”, engaged with Marketo, and fits target profile.
2. Advocates and employees — I think a lot of marketers are getting good at using their army of employees but many marketers are still getting around to building their army of advocates (influencers, customers, etc).
3. Take a value based, serious tone on Twitter — You can see the copy below. The copy here is more classic copy.
Brand Influencers were key to the campaign, here is why:
And the winner is….
Does social marketing work? Here are some results that should tell you “yes”:
1. Facebo0k — 1000+ downloads
2. Twitter — 300+ downloads
3. Average share resulted in 25 clicks
Today’s post will feature a targeted, account based marketing strategy aimed at driving pipeline from a very specific set of accounts. First, understand “who” your buyer is and if target market is narrow (example: Fortune 500, specific industries,etc), then you have consider account based marketing aka outbound marketing. I can give you another example: I have a friend in the business (I am not naming names to protect the innocent but lets just say he is a thought leader and one of the best in the business at demand generation) who had created a 24-7 always-on demand generation machine. He was filling pipeline via a combination of inbound marketing, lead nurturing, content, etc. However, when it came time to get to the Fortune 500, then he had to put together a plan that required outbound tactics in order to succeed. He was smart because if he sat around and waited, he would have failed. Outbound marketing is not a popular topic with the marketing glitterati because it conjures up images of cold calls and direct mail campaigns.
The reality is we are so much smarter today than we have been in the past and have the ability to create highly effective multi-channel campaigns directed at tight targets. For me the key is relevance. The ITSMA seems to be one of the champions of ABM (Account Based Marketing). They did a study of executive decision makers with some interesting results:
Understand and define your buyer then deliver relevant content to that buyer over time. That’s the rule. Follow that and you can win in outbound.
I just did a webinar this week with Inxpo entitled the 7 things b2b marketers need to do differently in demand generation. I wanted to talk about account-based marketing because it is getting lost in the marketing blogo-talk. I stumbled upon work by Lauren Goldstein from Babcock and Jenkins on a campaign they did with Nuance. I loved it so I called her called her to talk about it. It’s awesome and we can all learn from it.
Background: You want targeted, I’ll give you targeted
209 companies, 685 contacts, 12 key verticals, 2 core segments
The plan was to start with 7+ customized touchpoints and then nurture. Below are some of the key campaign elements.
Element #1: A Foam Finger (that’s right a foam finger)
Oh boy, I can hear the “haters” now…Yes, it is a chotchke but before you go blasting away…understand that a chotchke becomes a memorable marketing tactic when done in combination with other touches. In the old days, we would send the “gift” and then sit there and hope they would call us back. In other words, the foam finger WAS the campaign. In this case, think of the finger as the kick-off to your relationship with the prospect. A memorable, personalized element to the outbound program, it helps you with recognition as you go through your sequence of follow-up touches. Conversion comes later.
Step 2: Uber-personalization — custom microsite for each prospect
All communications via email and phone led the prospect to their own personalized microsite. The microsite was designed to contain only content that was important to them and their particular industry. Furthermore, sales had the ability to modify content in the microsite for even more relevance. I love the reminder of the foam finger as well…nice touch. I like the touch of having the prospect’s name at the top.
Element 3: Nurture till the cows come home.
One of the things that is important to very targeted outbound campaigns like this is a tight integration with sales. An example of this is all the emails were sent from the sales reps themselves. Communications with the prospect were mixed between calls, emails, and direct mail. Everything was focused on offering the prospect something. Pictured above was a key element to the nurturing campaign — a book on customer service that was sent to the prospect.
Analysis: The ROI on this program is currently 19-to-1. The engagement rate was 46% which is fantastic. In other words, this program is a smashing success.
I’d love to hear your thoughts, but here are mine:
1. Relevance is everything – All of the writing and talking on content marketing, social media, and the “changing buyer” boils down to one thing: be relevant to that individual. This program has incredible examples of relevance and personalization we can all learn from.
2. Old campaign tactics can work but as one of the touches, not as the only campaign element — The foam finger or the book would not have nearly the effect as a stand-alone campaign, but they were extremely effective as part of a long-term marketing program. In the old days, marketers would rent a list (for people under the age of 35, we used to rent lists in the old days) and a direct mail house would mail our stupid gimmick. We would sit back and wait OR we would have a tele-marketer follow-up in order to get a meeting. “We gave you this really funny pillow…can we do an hour-long call?”
3. Give to the buyer and one day it will pay off — We used to just find a way to “take” from the buyer. If you look at this campaign, all Nuance did was give and the results were fantastic.
4. Understand your buyer – This program began with a thoughtful, well-researched understanding of the targets. After that, carefully crafted, precise messaging was created for each buyer persona. Really cool.
5. Sales and marketing alignment is key to account-based marketing — Targeted, account-based marketing is a joint operation between sales and marketing. Sales outreach is interspersed with marketing outreach and vice-versa.
6. It worked — see ROI numbers above. Even for those of you that think I am an idiot, the numbers speak for themselves. Copy success.
I had fun researching this campaign. Thanks to Lauren Goldstein for spending time with me on this, she is the bomb.
I never do book reviews, but it is interesting how many times I get asked: “What should I be reading about b2b marketing?” That is why I am writing today about Adam Needles’ book: Balancing the Demand Equation – it is worth passing along to everyone.
1. Adam Needles is a friend but we have no commercial relationships with each other.
2. Would I write a frivolous blog post supporting friend’s work? No, not really. I really enjoyed it and decided to write about it, but am definetly a little uncomfortable because I don’t really shill. (some people may disagree, but I don’t)
Truthfully, there aren’t very many books out there for b2b marketing or b2b demand generation. I always and will continue to recommend Ardath Albee (I am an unabashed reader of all-things Albee), Jill Konrath (easy to read and fun) and Digital Body Language (not easy to read but a pre-cursor to the Adam’s book in many ways). Basically, I have been taking BART into work which means I get to read, and I really dug into Adam’s book. I am writing because I like it AND I think it’s important. Why? It’s a study in the creating a demand generation platform. No, not just technology, but a organizational process that delivers an always-on, highly efficient, highly effective b2b demand generation platform.
He uses a lot of data points, something that a lot of us in the blogosphere DON’T do (me included). That helps keep me interested. If what I am reading is just another one of us shouting about the buyer changing than I am not interested, but providing unique data points I like and this book does a good job of providing that. There are some real-world examples – another piece lacking in a lot of the b2b marketing blogosphere’s writing (me included) is examples. There are examples in here written from the view point of the practitioner. I enjoyed that, and frankly, wish Adam provided more.
The quote at the top of the post is from the book and I loved it. So there you have it, add another one to your list.
From Monday, July 11, through Friday, July 15, Focus.com is presenting Focus B2B Marketing Week, rolling out a bunch of webinars and roundtable panels that will bring together the top experts in their fields to discuss the state of B2B marketing today.
Couple things to note:
For speaker details and to attend, click the event links below.
Monday July 11
1 pm PT/4 pm ET: How to Set Up an Effective Marketing Organization
Tuesday July 12
11 am PT/2 pm ET: B2B Marketing Tactics That Work (And the Ones That Don’t)
1 pm PT/4 pm ET: Modern B2B Marketing Strategies
Wednesday July 13
Thursday July 14
9 am PT/12 pm ET: The Key to Sales and Marketing Alignment
1 pm PT/4 pm ET: Expert Best Practices in Content Marketing
Friday July 15
11 am PT/2 pm ET: B2B Marketing 3.0: What’s Next for B2B Marketers?
1 pm PT/4 pm ET: Tips on Generating Leads for Yourself
Sign up to attend now — it should be awesome.
Today, The Funnelholic wraps up its series of interviews with the industry thought-leaders who contributed to the Focus Experts’ Guide: Sales and Marketing Pipeline and Funnel Models.
Meet Sue Hay, author of the blog 21st Century Lead Generation and founder of BeWhys Marketing, a full-service lead generation consultancy with managed services. The BeWhys team has helped midsize to enterprise organizations increase revenue by creating and implementing targeted lead nurturing campaigns using marketing automation. BeWhys incorporates lead process management best practices, lead scoring, persona building, content creation and mapping to achieve results.
The Funnelholic: Explain your approach to the funnel.
Sue: The relationship between marketing and sales has significantly evolved over the past several years, as is evidenced by the Sirius Decisions research.
What has also changed significantly is the buying process. Potential buyers can educate themselves expeditiously from a myriad of channels: websites, blogs, webinars, tradeshows, eGuides, analyst reports, customer reviews – you name it, it’s out there. All to help them make an informed and intelligent buying decision. So I tried to visualize where it all starts and where it ends. And there are different factors to consider – such as people who are not ready to buy but still interested in engaging with you; prospecting specific target accounts; the opportunity to cross-sell and up-sell to existing customers – that need to be taken into account. It’s a continuous flow, yet being static picture, it doesn’t really show the movement that is predicated on the buyer’s cycle. So the funnel you see is the lead management process that sits over the top of buyers’ cycle.
The Funnelholic: Besides your own, were there any other funnels that resonated with you?
Sue: I enjoyed looking at all of them, because they come from very unique perspectives. It was fascinating. I thought Barbra Gago’s and Matt Heinz’s both touching on the community perspective highlighted the human element. In particular the evolution and creation of evangelism; that’s a very powerful concept. Funnels are just diagrams of a process, but at the core are humans, and they are our customers. We need to understand what they like; what they are looking for; how do they feel comfortable communicating; how they react, interact and engage with us, and vice versa. Ardath Albee’s buyer-experience funnel captured that thinking. Michael Damphousse’s Demand Gen Cloud was fun and rings true that buyers really do put themselves in the funnel where and when they want, and there is a lot more movement than ever before. And I also enjoyed Carlos Hidalgo’s methodical stage-by-stage process – that thoughtfully overlaid the nurturing of the relationship with the buyer, and the reality of metrics, conversions and making money.
The Funnelholic: What did you learn from the exercise?
Sue: No one funnel is right or wrong. It’s an iterative process – the buying environment can change, so your funnel/process should be flexible enough to adapt. Be open to incorporate new or alternate ideas, while simultaneously focusing on “keeping it simple.” Try not to over complicate – keep the vision clear and focused.
The Funnelholic: If everyone needs to create a funnel to model their business, what are best practices for creating it?
Sue: Mapping the process out and brainstorming on a whiteboard is particularly helpful. Having representatives of both marketing and sales in that session is essential – at the end of the session both have to agree on what that funnel looks like, the definitions of each element and what the lead management process is – otherwise it won’t work. It can be a painful process but well worth the undertaking. A few things to consider going through the process:
Join the conversation: ‘Is the funnel still a relevant metaphor for the b2b sales and marketing process?’
Last week, I went to Silverpop’s B2B Marketing University. As I have blogged before, I don’t write about conferences unless I can write about something interesting. This event was awesome — the content was great (not your typical BS), 180 people were in the audience, and the questions were engaging. I was having writer’s block going into the event, and I left with three posts (coming soon). Props to Silverpop.
OK, so during Malcolm Friedberg’s presentation, someone in the audience asked for advice on how to handles sales. (The actual question is not important, but it had something to do with convincing sales to let marketing nurture instead of passing the leads to them directly.) Anyway, I was sitting there thinking that, here we have Malcolm on stage talking about marketing automation processes, etc., and one of the questions that comes up is the age-old issue of the sales-marketing divide. Boom. Funnelholic blog post.
One thing I have noticed as Marketing 2.0 continues to gather steam is that all of us in the marketing blogosphere can act like dealing with sales is easy because we are all in marketing-dominated companies. But in the real world, sales is the powerful and dangerous entity. That’s not an insult. That’s reality. Sales is on the front line — they are type-A, aggressive, unforgiving folks. It’s rare to find a place where marketing is in the catbird’s seat.
If you don’t have sales on board, however, you will have NO ROI. So act, don’t complain.
So, here is how you know you have a problem with sales:
Here is how you tell you have a good relationship:
Here are 5 things you should do to foster a healthy sales-marketing relationship:
1. Have a meeting: I know this sounds obvious, but here is my point. If things are bad, then have a meeting. If you are starting the relationship, have a meeting. In the meeting, tell sales the following:
2. Create a unified lead definition: I give Brian Carroll the credit for this term, but gurus like Stu Silverman have been making the lead definition the key to sales and marketing success for years. Here is the essence: sit down with sales and AGREE on the definition of a lead — what marketing passes to the sales team. Look, sales will forget — particularly when one an account executives complains — but you can always refer back to it. When sales comes back and says, “none of your leads are closing,” offer to revisit the lead definition. Keep in mind that the lead definition dictates volume, and when you discuss definitions, you have to make sure sales understands the volume implications.
3. The sales SLA: When you agree to a unified lead definition, you also need to agree on sales’ activities after you pass them a qualified lead. Do this. It’s only fair.
4. Have weekly sync-up meetings: You can do this biweekly, if necessary. Just don’t let it slip. Don’t just talk about the numbers, talk anecdotally. Remind everyone that the meeting must be honest but not accusatory, because the wheels can fall off these meetings very easily if you are not careful. On the other hand, they can’t be a meaningless rubber stamp either. Optimization is a two-way street.
5. Just try to get along: I hate to say it, but if you are the marketer, you have to lead this charge. Sales is always moving, so have a plan and instigate peace. Both sides will win as a result.
I got the band back together: Tom Scearce (aka @TLOTL) and Chris Jablonski (aka @cjablonski). These are my partners in crime when creating long(er) list posts, and they certainly helped me here. We have put together a list of 26 reasons your leads are converting, and, as usual, we had some fun with it.
Before you read on, I want to make one point. There is typically one major issue to overall lead conversion: lack of lead management, also known as passing raw leads/MQLs directly to sales reps. I have yet to find an organization with legit lead management processes that can’t convert leads. They can convert co-reg, content syndication, you name it — because they have built an always-on lead management process to convert leads or inquiries into qualified leads.
One other point, this assumes you are producing at least reasonable leads/inquiries/MQLs.
With that in mind, here are the 25 reasons your leads aren’t converting:
Are there more? We’d love to hear yours.
Here we are again. If you missed Part I, make sure to read it first. Once again, before we begin, I need to introduce the members of the band:
I can say this, we had a lot of fun. Check out numbers 37-49. @TLOTL has some great ones.
25. Cold calling: I really have no idea why I put this on here. It’s pretty simple: You pick up the phone and call someone who has no idea you are calling. In today’s day and age, this is best left to professionals — a.k.a., outsourced.
26. Contacts: Just names. The contact movement has been brought upon us by breakthrough companies such as Jigsaw, demandbase and NetProspex. These are not leads, even if these companies market them as such. Contact purchasing is a critical component to push marketing (see below).
27. Leads: A lead is a person who has opted in for an offer (see below). As mentioned above, a contact is not a lead.
28. Offer: An offer can be defined as “something” someone has opted-in for. These can be discrete offers such as white papers, webinars and podcasts. They can also be an appointment with a sales person.
29. Lead generation: Activities designed to create leads.
30. Demand generation: All the activities designed to create demand. Not just lead generation, which is part of it. Everything — including things like PR, speaking engagements, advertising, discounts or special offers and so on and so on. BTW, this is an interesting point of conversation — check out some of the answers to this on Focus.com.
31. Lead nurturing: A process that uses content (offers, tools, white papers, etc.) and distribution tactics (email, phone, Web, etc.) to market to leads over time until they are measurably ready to engage. This one was hard. I got some terrific definitions from experts on Focus.com.
32. Remarkable content: You need to develop this every day, and you know it’s remarkable if people can apply it right away. You need to deliver on three characteristics: 1) value: create substantive, meaningful and high-quality content and 2) efficiency: package for simplicity and ease of consumption; 3) relevance: target buyers and address their specific challenges. (@cjablonski)
33. Push marketing: “Knocking on someone’s door.” In other words, using outbound marketing tactics such as email, phone and direct mail to market to contacts in order to create leads. Examples are outsourced appointment setting and email campaigns to a list.
34. Pull marketing: As opposed to push marketing, “getting people to walk into your store.” Pull means you are using SEO, paid search, etc. to attract people who are searching for something you offer. It also includes getting people to look at your products in other stores through online media and white paper syndication, for example. Because not all buyers are walking into your store, you need to make sure you are represented in other stores that attract your type of buyer.
35. Landing page: A Web page with a call-to-action to download an offer, such as a webinar, a white paper, and so on. In order to download the offer, the user has to fill out a form. (@cjablonski)
36. Direct mail: The act of sending a marketing offer via the U.S. Postal Service, FedEx, and so on. This is a dying lead-generation tool. NOTE: there are marketers who believe direct mail still works despite the cost and low conversion rates. My suggestion is that, if you don’t do it now, don’t start.
37. Return on contribution: Anyone who takes the time and energy to create remarkable content needs to also invest time in managing return on contribution. This can mean several things: 1) crowd-sourcing the content to leverage the friends and followers of the contributors for added distribution; 2) syndicating your content through targeted media properties; 3) engaging in online conversations where your content can be delivered in a relevant context ; and 4) leveraging your content across multiple campaigns, including lead-nurturing programs. (@TLOTL)
38. Micro-marketed content: The opposite of mass-marketed content. An unmediated, free-flowing discussion among genuine experts in a niche category (e.g., this discussion on Focus.com) is often more relevant and helpful to buyers than a banner ad or an industry trade publication. (@TLOTL)
39. “Multi-channel, multi-touch”: The mantra of any successful pipeline/revenue generation program. Email, Web and phone are all integrated and response-measured (scored) using marketing automation services. (@TLOTL)
40. The “three legged stool”: In direct marketing, results are usually, ultimately, a function of the:
Underperform in any one of these areas and the stool falls over. (@TLOTL)
41. The revenue/sausage factory: A useful metaphor for helping the uninitiated understand how the marketing and sales team work together to drive the top line. The factory can include “upstream” suppliers like Google, direct mail programs or demand-gen agencies. And it can also encompass post-sales “revenue recognition” functions like professional services and account management. (@TLOTL)
42. Pipeline erosion rate: Your sales team converts your leads into pipeline deals. They win some, they lose some. Some deals roll into next month/quarter. Some don’t. The erosion rate measures the lost pipeline value that must be replaced through incremental demand-gen efforts and budget. (@TLOTL)
43. Rotting lead rate: The percentage of leads that go untouched by sales (no email, call or voicemail) before they start to “rot.” Keep in mind that the goal is not necessarily a 0% “rot-rate.” In some cases, it’s totally ok for sales to let leads “rot.” If sales has warmer leads to work, marketing can take back the leads that would otherwise rot and nurture them until they are ready. (@TLOTL)
44. Funnel jockey: The demand-generation expert in every successful marketing department who understands his or her funnel well enough to hard-wire the entire revenue manufacturing process, from marketing spend, to lead gen, to pipeline creation and booked revenue. This person is one of the Excel users in the marketing department who is most likely to have a working command of functions like VLOOKUP, GETPIVOTDATA, SUMPRODUCT, and RAND. (@TLOTL)
45. Campaign Sorcerer: Describes a marketer who can quickly articulate and illustrate campaign concepts with a unique and integrated skill set that includes design aesthetics, copywriting/storyboarding, program logistics, and schedule visualization. A Powerpoint/Keynote Magic User proficient in spell-casting with SnagIt and Photoshop. (@TLOTL)
46. Market whisperer: The agency-side marketer who can, in 30 minutes or less, figure out the essence of a client’s marketing and sales challenges, with minimal to no briefing from said client, consulting only Twitter, Google, WordPress and Michael Porter’s Five Forces model. This marketer is more likely than his or her peers to get away with wearing ironic tee shirts or quirky, comment-worthy eyewear/accessories. (@TLOTL)
47. Tweeps: Twitter + Peeps = Tweeps. (@TLOTL)
48. Product myopia: Outdated marketing thinking still practiced by many who engage with prospects and clients through the lens of their own solutions. (@cjablonski)
49. Trapping the chicken in the courtyard: A semi-obscure “Rocky II” reference/metaphor describing the relentless and often frustrating pursuit of repeatable marketing and sales success. “I feel like a Kentucky Fried idiot.” — Rocky Balboa (@TLOTL)
50. Buyer engagement: Your goal anytime a buyer comes into contact with you. To get their full attention and immerse them into a brand experience, make sure everything you do is valuable and differentiated. (@cjablonski)
Below are SiriusDecisions definitions I have included because they have done an amazing job of getting marketers to use their methodology and lingo. This is for the other marketers who aren’t Sirius trained and want to talk the talk (I chose the three most used terms)
51. MQL (Marketing qualified lead): Prospects defined by your marketing and sales organization as someone ready to pass to sales. They’re instrumental in calculating lead gen metrics, such as marketing qualified lead rate (# of MQLs/# of total marketing contacts).
52. SAL (Sales accepted lead): A lead that has met the basic tenets of qualification and that sales has agreed to engage. (@cjablonski)
53. SQL (Sales qualified lead): A prospect confirmed by sales as a true revenue opportunity and entered into the pipeline. (@cjablonski)