As a consultant and interim marketing executive I am exposed to a variety of business and organizational situations every year. Without fail when attempting to transform the performance of the marketing and sales team with best practices I run into a stiff headwind blowing through the hallways and between the cubicles.
Unfortunately I know of more than one case where investments were made in research, training and technology only to have the initiative stall out before the benefits could be realized.
The number one reason best practices fail in sales and marketing is because the environment is un-trusting, uncooperative, passive-aggressive, caustic, and in some cases even poisonous.
Recognize the place?
The work environment within sales and marketing in so many companies has taken on these negative characteristics slowly over time. Unfortunately it is cumulative. People in the organization have memories. Stories are passed from old hires to new hires. The negativity self-fulfills.
In short, our sales and marketing organization—the one we depend on for life-giving revenue today and in the future—is effectively working in the past. Instead of working together in every way with a shared vision of performance, the people in these departments stumble about with eyes locked onto the rear view mirror.
Best practices can’t be expected to generate breakthrough performance in sales and marketing if the people are carrying around negative baggage—both personal and organizational– from the past.
I’d enjoy hearing your thoughts and actual examples (please keep company names out of your posts)Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( 1 so far )
When the going gets tough, the tough fine-tune their sales funnel processes for greater efficiency and effectiveness.
So many companies today find themselves trying desperately to succeed with fewer marketing and sales people and with less budget. I like to think of this situation as having to step into the OK Corral with only four bullets in my gun instead of six. Every bullet has to hit its mark. No room for waste or ineffectiveness.
Marketers and sales people realize this, but it does raise two questions:
- What should we be doing more of?
- What should we be doing less of?
If a company’s sales funnel has been designed around the buyers’ journey, and if both Sales and Marketing have aligned their strategies and tactics to this journey then they will find the answers to both questions in the metrics that result from a well managed sales funnel.
If there isn’t alignment around the buyers’ journey then sales and marketing are likely working at cross purposes to one another and there is an unacceptable level of trial and error in the tactics.
Research* has proven that companies who have aligned their marketing and sales activities to the buyer’s journey win 38% more of their proposals, lose 36% fewer customers each each year and grow 5.4 points of growth more than companies who aren’t aligned.
Not all sales funnel processes are equal. Most are too simplistic or are centered on the seller’s journey not the buyers’ journey. A rock-solid funnel model factors in lag, leakage, and recycling–there’s nothing “simple” about the dynamics of a funnel.
There is a way to mine the sales funnel expertise of major corporations around the world. You simply need to plug into the minds that developed the processes for these global brands and built the tools to support the processes. That is easy. The world’s leading authorities on sales funnel management and performance are at MathMarketing. They now offer black belt workshops that teach companies and marketers how to do this. Known as the Funnel Academy(tm), these workshops are now available in the U.S. CEO’s should make these programs mandatory for every B2B marketer and sales manager. For that matter the CEO’s should participate, too. This is the best B2B marketing training on the planet.
*Source: MathMarketing alignment benchmark study 2004/2005 : 1400 professionals : 84 countriesRead Full Post | Make a Comment ( 1 so far )
Do you suspect that the marketing function at your company is not doing enough to help grow revenue and move the company forward? If these thoughts are in your mind don’t feel like the Lone Ranger. There exists in many B2B companies a “marketing malaise” that is a drag on company performance.
Much can be done in 3-4 months to transform the marketing function into a finely tuned and inspired machine.
I give an overview of my approach in a Flash presentation called, “Transforming the Marketing Function in B2B Companies: The Road to World-Class Performance”. View the presentation. No registration required.
Please share your comments and thoughts on the topics after you’ve seen the presentation.Read Full Post | Make a Comment ( None so far )