Today’s guest post is from Cosmo Mariano from GetLift. Cosmo is a demand-gen, content marketing strategist and almost as importantly, Cosmo and Jason Miller from LinkedIn will be speaking on an amazing Funnelholic webinar on content marketing: 3 Steps to Creating Content that Converts Like Crazy. — Join us on September 24, 2014 10AM Pacific Standard Time. [Read more...]
I’m trying to channel my inner Billy Beane. No, I don’t imagine that Brad Pitt will play my role in a made-for-Hollywood true story. You see, I’m a marketer at a mid-sized software company (DNN). In Marketing, we’re like the front office of a ball club. We make moves and stay on the look-out for interesting opportunities. But like Billy Beane’s Oakland A’s in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, we have limited resources, compared to the New York Yankees of the software world. Despite that, management expects us to contend for a championship. This means that we have expectations comparable to the Yankees, but far less resources available. You know what else? The “Moneyball” tactics employed by Billy Beane (i.e. using analytics to derive unfair gains against statistically-averse competitors) are now commonplace in Marketing. That means that “test, measure, adapt, interate” is part and parcel of being a marketer today. Beating the Yankees requires far more than that.
Marketing Got Complicated
But wait, there’s more. According to a research report commissioned by DNN, marketers at mid-sized companies are faced with an increasing degree of complexity in the tools and systems they use.
[Download a copy of the report, “Marketing Got Complicated: Challenges (and Opportunities) for Marketers at Mid-Sized Companies.] [Read more...]
Editor’s Note: I asked Jean Spencer of Kapost to put together a “how-to” for the content marketing automation software, Kapost. This is a very cool company based in Boulder, Colorado and is making the lives of content marketers around the world easier.
In the world of B2B marketing, content has taken center stage. Nine out of 10 B2B marketers are using content marketing and, as numerous studies explore, inbound tactics deliver promising leads into the sales funnel.
In a world where buyers screen their phone calls and research options independently of salespeople, marketers use content to attract those buyers and nurture them toward purchase, setting up sales with a pipeline of qualified leads and potential revenue. And we all agree more revenue is a good thing.
But what marketers (seemingly) can’t agree on, is what kind of tool will help them deliver results.
Less than half of B2B marketers report having a documented content strategy. But as the number of blogs, tweets, videos, and eBooks increases the deluge can be overwhelming.
You need a software that can manage your content assets, a single place that keeps track of your strategy, production, and analytics.
Say hello to, Kapost (yes, I’m biased…but, seriously, this product rocks. I use it every day. Ask me anything.). Today, I’ll show you how to use Kapost to manage your editorial calendar.
The editorial calendar is the hub for content management—and, as far as we’ve seen, it’s the most requested feature in content organizational tools.
Hopefully, by the end of all these steps, you’ll be a master of the editorial calendar (and drooling to see what else Kapost can do).
Step 1: Identify Your Contributors
Before you read further or prepare to leave a comment below that I have missed the core elements of sales-marketing alignment, please read my previous work here:
- Best Practices for Building A Revenue Machine
- Sales and Marketing Alignment Reality Check for Marketers
I am a proponent, consultant, advocate for the core elements that have to be in place for sales and marketing alignment and those posts should help you see my point of view. In other words, yes I understand that things like shared expectations and responsibility are critical, but this post is focused on what I consider recent developments in the sales-marketing cold war.
First of all, let me say that a lot of companies are really trying. The relentless blogo-sphere rantings on aligning sales-and-marketing have brought more organizations to the table. Many companies have a qualified lead definition, have shifted real revenue-generation responsibility to marketing, track their efforts, and have generally attempted to become modern revenue machines. I love it. Marketing is at the big boy table. A giant first step has been taken.
Let’s explore some of the new issues hampering alignment but before we do — please take note: I will talk further about these issues with Jason Miller from Linkedin and Justin Gray from LeadMD on an amazing webinar on February 25th at 11am. This going to be a really cool format: We are hosting a debate. I will represent sales and Justin will represent marketing. Jason will attempt to moderate us. Both sides will be represented. Be there for the fight of the century.
Editor’s note: Today’s post is from Bonnie Crater, President and CEO of Full Circle CRM. As you might imagine, posts on funnels are a favorite of mine…Enjoy!
Funnels are great tools for understanding exactly how sales and marketing functions are working – both on their own and together. At Full Circle CRM we believe that leveraging CRM systems (like Salesforce) is the best way to get the most accurate and complete funnel metrics across your entire demand generation organization. Salesforce tracks a ton of response information from both your sales and marketing efforts and provides some great insight into your overall demand generation health. With Full Circle CRM’s native Salesforce Marketing Performance Management application added on top of your Salesforce instance you are able to get a more complete picture of the key metrics your funnels are tracking to truly understand how your overall demand generation efforts are performing.
Let’s take dive a little deeper into how to leverage Full Circle CRM to get the most out of your demand generation funnels in Salesforce.
Step 1: Define Your KPIs
The first step of building out any report is determining what exactly you are trying to measure. The same is true with your demand generation funnels. KPIs can be anything from generating a particular number of MQLs (Marketing Qualified Leads) to having a specific amount of days it takes responses to move all the way through funnel (aka velocity) to having sales accept 50% of the leads that marketing sends over (conversion rates). These are going to be different for each company but with Full Circle CRM enhancing Salesforce’s ability to track critical performance metrics at a granular level you can easily set up reports in the standard salesforce.com reporting UI to track these across any category that is relevant to your business.
Step 2: Assess Baseline Metrics
The key metrics that we find are the most helpful to track are the volume, conversion rates, and velocity of your funnels. Volume tracks the sheer amount of responses that are being generated and is a critical metric helping you determine if you are generating enough raw leads to hit your revenue goals. Conversion rates show the quality of the responses and how effective your organization is at transitioning responses between different funnel stages or departments. Velocity shows how quickly responses move through the funnel and is an important metrics for finding and eliminating bottlenecks in your processes.