The Marketing VP Guide

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					                                        business paper
The Marketing Vp’s Guide to achieving
results with Marketing automation
How to Know Your Value and Make the
Customer Connection
             The Ability to Listen                                              Without this level of visibility, marketing demonstrates
                                                                                "soft" value to the company. You know you are successful
             Everyone is a customer of something. We’ve all been hit            with a portion of your marketing initiatives—you just don’t
             with promotions for irrelevant products, pitches that are          know which portion.
             poorly timed, and empty promises.
                                                                                In this reality, ROI is almost impossible to prove, making
             The challenge for today’s marketers is to get through              it a challenge to make the case to increase or even justify
             to customers again with fewer resources and smaller                existing budgets.
             budgets than ever before.
                                                                                With effective marketing automation tools, marketing
             It’s a question of rebuilding relevance.                           can demonstrate hard value. Campaign results can be
                                                                                illustrated with charts and graphs that connect directly to



	
                                                                                the sales pipeline.
    Marketing is under the microscope: Show us                                  Think about the messages your customers are trying to
    the revenue. Justify your budget. Do you have                               send to you. And consider how you would adapt and
                                                                                sharpen your approach if you heard those messages loud
    the right tools to do it?                                                   and clear.

             As a marketer, you need to make sure that a promotion              Does this individual customer prefer to access service
             that leaves your company doesn’t appear as a promotion             over the Internet, after dinner? Do our executive-level
             to the customer. Instead, it should appear as a helpful,           customers tend to lean towards a particular product line?
             smart, and timely offer that provides direct value to              Does this customer have expansion plans or business
             them. Every piece of marketing you release into your               issues that would be solved by a new product they may
             customer and prospect base demonstrates how well you               not be aware of?
             understand the needs and preferences of each individual
                                                                                By integrating highly functional marketing automation
             recipient. When the communication is inapplicable, too
                                                                                tools as part of your CRM strategy, customer needs
             generic, or wastes the recipient’s time, your company
                                                                                and preferences are assessed with depth, context, and
             doesn’t just lose an opportunity. It loses credibility.
                                                                                richness. Greater patterns and trends within the customer
             The customer exhaustion we all recognize is driven by              and prospect base are uncovered, providing invaluable
             marketing that just isn’t targeted. As a customer, imagine         insight into the strategies necessary in the future to stay
             how different you’d feel if every promotion you saw was            on track and improve customer share.
             exactly what you needed at that moment.

             When customers begin to dis-engage, many marketers                 Lead Management:
             tend to try to solve the problem by doing more of what’s
             causing the problem. They increase communications in
                                                                                Making the Connection
             an attempt to rebuild relevance.                                   We know that CRM’s contribution to marketing is
                                                                                visibility—visibility into how to approach customers and
             But customer re-engagement does not start by looking               how to measure marketing ROI. But perhaps the most
             outward—it starts by looking inward. Rather than re-               critical kind of visibility is that which shows how the leads
             assessing the delivery and positioning of your corporate           your team creates transform into opportunities, and then
             messages, assess the distinct messages your customers              into closed deals.
             are trying to deliver to you.
                                                                                Marketing value is not calculated in the number of leads
             What they’re telling you is priceless. If you act on it, it will   you send to Sales. True value is reflected in how many of
             make the difference between blindly promoting to your              those leads turn into revenue. Only a good lead with the
             customers in a way that exhausts them—or reaching out              right prospect at the right time and with the right follow-up
             to them in a way they appreciate.                                  and support can turn into a profitable, closed deal.

                                                                                Companies have long been satisfied with bringing in a
             The Ability to See                                                 high number of leads, reasoning that sufficient volume
             Today, nearly everybody inside a company collects                  would drive adequate sales growth. But in today’s
             customer data to some degree. But few have a complete              competitive business environment, most realize that
             picture of the customer as a human being. And even                 simply obtaining lists of prospects is not enough.
             fewer are able to recognize patterns and trends and
                                                                                It’s time to streamline lead management—the process of
             segment behaviors among the customer base effectively.
                                                                                qualifying, managing, nurturing, and tracking leads from
                                                                                initial contact to closure, and beyond. The result will be




                                                                                                                  CDC MarketFirst | Business Paper   
a true reflection of marketing ROI, or a straight line drawn     both teams at this initial stage will prove invaluable,
between the activities of your team and revenue.                 sparing considerable time and effort later, especially in
                                                                 the qualification process.
Businesses typically allocate large budgets to customer
acquisition activities, only to forfeit the value of this        These initial discussions should focus on defining typical
investment when 80 percent of the leads fall through             lead process points, including:
the cracks. With improved lead management, an
                                                                 • Qualification questions and process
organization that captures even 5 percent of these lost
leads and converts them to customers will increase               • Distribution rules
revenues substantially.                                          • Lead scoring: specific definitions of A, B, and
                                                                   C-level leads
By managing the customer as a prospect throughout that
customer’s lifecycle, businesses can continue to deliver         • Components and duration of the sales cycle
ROI on the sales and marketing investment well after an          • Managing atypical leads or out-of-profile leads
initial sale.
                                                                 • Ownership of each stage of the process
The challenges of effective lead management—and its
                                                                 Most companies receive leads from multiple sources
rewards—apply across broad sectors of business. Any
                                                                 resulting from both online and offline marketing activities,
situation in which a customer inquiry is followed up with
                                                                 including trade shows, direct mail, e-marketing campaigns,
contact from a sales representative, telemarketing person,
                                                                 newsletter subscriptions, website, referrals, print and online
or channel partner can be improved with more effective
                                                                 advertising, call centers, partners, and telemarketing.
lead management.
                                                                 Source tracking standards are established during the
Lead Management Process                                          initial design process to identify the lead source by
                                                                 channel, media, or campaign.

Step #1: Identify the Lead Source                                Identifying the lead source and tracking outcomes allows
Sales and marketing must work together much more                 businesses to qualify leads more effectively and provide
closely than they have traditionally in order to implement       sales with better ammunition to target prospects with
an effective lead management system.                             more relevant information.

Lead management entails qualifying A-level leads,                It also enables marketing to assess the value of its
distributing them to sales promptly, nurturing the               activities and re-direct efforts and expenditures based
remaining leads through closure, and tracking the results.       on response and conversion rates.

For best results across an enterprise, this deceptively
simple process must coordinate multiple business
                                                                 Step #: Identify Your Best Leads
processes at various stages:                                     In a typical scenario, the most promising A-level leads
                                                                 are not qualified adequately, and as a result, they
• Identify hot leads and automatically route to direct sales     are not acted on by sales teams promptly. Hot leads,
  or channel partners                                            representing about 10 or 0 percent of the total leads,
• Actively engage the remaining leads and nurture them           often aren’t distinguished from others and may languish
  through the pipeline to eventual sale                          unattended or be passed to sales too late, once the lead
                                                                 has cooled.
• Track leads to closure and evaluate the ROI of
  marketing campaigns                                            Sales teams are often frustrated at receiving too many
• Integrate the external channel, including value added          leads, or too few good leads. The first challenge of an
  resellers (VARs), other resellers, and strategic partners      effective lead management system then is to accurately
                                                                 identify the most promising leads, get them to the
• Integrate offline qualification resources such as
                                                                 appropriate sales representative quickly and with sufficient
  call centers
                                                                 context to give sales the confidence to act.
The success of a lead management program will require
open communication and active participation from both            Lead qualification is the process by which an existing
the marketing and sales teams.                                   or new lead is scored by engaging the prospect in a
                                                                 series of transactions designed to better understand
Therefore it is imperative that marketing and sales meet         their readiness for cross-sell or up-sell opportunities,
in the initial stages to jointly review the existing corporate   or the readiness of a new lead to purchase for the first
lead management processes, and develop new business
processes to meet the needs of both teams. Involving




                                                                                                   CDC MarketFirst | Business Paper   
time. Defining a standard set of lead scoring/qualification    Fred Krazeise, Director of Strategic Marketing at
questions with the collaboration of sales and marketing,       Sharp Electronics LCD Products Group, uses a lead
and ensuring that prospects answer questions accurately        management system to integrate his group’s online and
will provide sales with enough confidence in the system        offline marketing efforts and drive and manage more
to act promptly on leads identified as hot. This can all be    leads into the sales channel.
accomplished through a robust marketing automation
system that can pass the leads either direct to the sales      According to Krazeise, “We have improved our success
force or, though CRM integration, into the CRM database.       with dealers and resellers significantly. In less than
                                                               three weeks of using our lead management solution,
Typical questions that vendors pose during the lead            we generated, qualified, and distributed 96 percent of
qualification process include:                                 the entire previous year’s leads to our top dealers and
                                                               resellers. We have also achieved a 100 percent follow-up
• Are you currently evaluating a solution such as ours?
                                                               on those leads. Thanks to this solution, we are now
• What are your reasons for evaluating a solution such         experiencing an unprecedented lead conversion rate,
  as ours?                                                     which means more business for everyone involved.”
• What is your time frame for the purchase of
  this solution?                                               Step #: The Right Lead to the Right
• What is your role in the purchase of this solution?          Person, Right Now
• Is there an approved budget for this project?                Once a lead has been qualified and scored, the next
                                                               step is to quickly distribute the lead to the resource most
Based on the prospect’s answers, leads may be scored
                                                               likely to close it, such as internal sales representatives or
as A, B, C, or D-level leads, depending on their readiness
                                                               external channel partners. Automated lead distribution
to purchase.
                                                               ensures that leads are rapidly routed, driven by business
Qualifying customers is an ongoing and complicated             rules defined by the sales and marketing teams and
process. Sales and marketing teams will want the flexibility   implemented through the marketing automation system.
to define and change business rules in real time as they
                                                               Leads can be routed by region, product, account, or any
learn more about their customers, prospects, and the
                                                               other criteria or combination of criteria. For example, A-
marketplace for product offerings.
                                                               level leads may be sent to the direct sales teams, B-level
Most companies sell through multiple channels,                 leads may be passed to channel partners, and C-level
comprising direct and indirect channels and partners           leads may remain with the marketing team for further
and various customer touchpoints, including call centers,      nurturing and development. D-level leads might not be
events, direct marketing, print, and online ads. An online,    sales leads, but influential parties in the industry such as
automated lead management system can coordinate                press, analysts, or consultants.
information from disparate sources, by integrating offline
                                                               A critical aspect of real-time distribution within an
lead generation and qualification processes.
                                                               automated lead management system is the ability to
Once you have identified a prospect with a marketing           easily modify routing rules to reflect territory or assignment
automation solution, a process called progressive profiling    changes. When the system and possibly an offline
can be utilized to increase the information known about        resource have identified a hot prospect, you don’t want
a lead.                                                        leads being routed to an account executive who is on
                                                               vacation or sick.
Progressive profiling is the process of asking one or two
target questions per transaction. This further qualification   sharing Leads with Channel partners
occurs over time—offers, invitations, surveys—and
information which is desired, and still not known, is asked    Now that the hot leads are making it to the internal sales
at each subsequent transaction.                                team, how about channel partners?

Deeper qualification can be achieved with offline              Companies that want to foster better customer
qualification resources such as inside sales or a call         relationships and increase sales over the customer
center. By distributing the initially qualified lead to a      lifecycle are discovering the benefits of integrating and
telemarketing team, a great deal of information can be         supporting the activities of indirect channel partners with
gathered in a ten-minute phone call to further qualify         a centralized lead management system.
the lead. From there the lead can be distributed to an         Whatever the source, qualified leads can be automatically
account executive or VAR or sent back into the marketing       distributed to VARs or other channel partners and tracked
automation solution for additional nurturing.                  through a lead management system that automatically
                                                               alerts the call center to ensure that the lead was acted




                                                                                                 CDC MarketFirst | Business Paper   
upon. Leads aren’t permitted to fall through the cracks         Tracking leads and evaluating ROI are most effective
or to cool before a customer contact is made.                   when the marketing automation and lead management
                                                                system is integrated with the company's SFA or CRM
Coordinating internal and external efforts in a shared          suite. This way, marketing can track the lead all the way
system makes it far easier for businesses to measure            to the sale to understand how long a prospect takes
results and make adjustments quickly. Using a portal            to go through each phase of their purchase process.
or web interface, channel partners can check for new            Additionally, deal disposition information can be sent
prospects and enter status updates in real time. With           directly back to marketing from the SFA system. From
more visibility into resellers' activities, companies can       there, marketing will know exactly which activities drove
identify their best VARs and reward them with more              the prospect in the most effective and efficient way
leads ; in addition, they can better forecast sales and         through their buying process.
anticipate inventory needs.
                                                                The bottom line is that a marketing automation and lead
Lead nurturing                                                  management system should result in improved lead
                                                                conversion rates and increased sales.
Leads that don’t initially qualify as A- or B-level leads—the
vast majority—can be actively engaged with various              Carefully tracking all customer contacts in a centralized
marketing initiatives to keep them engaged and informed,        system accelerates the sales cycle, increases conversion
and to keep the brand in front of them as they move             rates, identifies cross-sell/up-sell opportunities, and
through their purchase process. This keeps the sales            fosters better relationships with customers across the
team focused on closing the hot prospects. The sales            entire customer lifecycle—solidifying a leadership brand.
and marketing team can define nurturing campaigns to
shepherd C-level leads forward in their buying process.
                                                                Marketing and Sales Automation:
These campaigns can include webinars, white paper
offers, conference invitations, new product news, and           A Necessary Partnership
focused e-newsletters.
                                                                Marketing automation systems with integrated lead
These campaigns can be designed to continue to monitor          management are the ideal complement to a sales force
the prospect’s interest level until such time as they are       automation (SFA) or customer relationship management
ready to purchase.                                              (CRM) system.

At a certain point, these campaigns will capture a lead's       Hoping to improve lead and customer management
increased readiness to buy, and the lead management             processes, many companies made significant investments
system will take over again from there.                         in CRM and SFA systems. However, these systems were
                                                                not designed for sophisticated lead management and
More sophisticated lead management systems closely              do not address the current challenges involved in lead
track these nurturing activities, identify the most effective   qualification and certainly not in prospect nurturing. Few
possible combination of marketing campaigns, and build          provide best-of-breed marketing automation and lead
automated systems to warm cold leads into the sales             management capabilities.
pipeline.
                                                                Typically, the information fed into SFA systems hasn’t
Combining lead management with nurturing makes                  been properly qualified and leads are passed to sales
it possible to convert over 5 percent of cold leads.            teams without scoring or context. Sales teams learn
Considering that cold leads represent over 80 percent of        quickly that they cannot rely on the information provided in
all leads acquired, this number can be very substantial.        the system, resulting in lack of regular use.

                                                                SFA systems were intended for opportunity management,
Step #: Track Leads to Closure                                 and serve well as productivity tools for the sales
& Evaluate ROI                                                  organization. An effective lead management system
                                                                will complement SFA systems by augmenting the lead-
An effective lead management system will make it                qualification process to deliver better-qualified leads
easy for sales to convey the results of their efforts to        to sales.
marketing. This enables marketing to make adjustments
to campaigns in real time and, in the longer term, evaluate     Once a prospect has been engaged and entered into
the effectiveness of campaigns and quantify the ROI of          the lead management system, the lead can progress into
campaigns in relation to increased sales and revenues.          an SFA system for ongoing opportunity management,




                                                                                                CDC MarketFirst | Business Paper   5
while leads that need further nurturing remain in the lead
management system.

When these systems are seamlessly integrated, sales
and marketing gain dramatically improved visibility into
the prospect pipeline, and the corporation optimizes its
investment in the CRM or SFA system.


Recap
Effective lead management can completely change the
way an enterprise approaches and manages prospect
and customer communication, as well as the way it
measures marketing success.

In this paper, you’ve learned that a marketing automation
and lead management system simply gets the best
prospects to the right resources quickly to close the sale.

It supports multi-channel sales efforts, especially when
paired with a sales automation system.

Improved lead management closes the loop, providing
lead analysis that helps to identify the most effective sales
and marketing activities.

In the long term, organizations will systemically improve
lead conversion rates and boost revenue throughout the
entire customer lifecycle.




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Description: A marketing automation and lead management system simply gets the best prospects to the right resources quickly to close the sale