Russell Kern discusses the Eight Pillars of Demand Generation for Revenue Acceleration
March 27, 2014 --Los Angeles, CA-- The Sales Lead Management Association (SLMA) announced the results of the “20 Women to Watch in Sales Lead Management” leadership program for 2014. CEO James W. Obermayer said, “The 20 women to watch in sales lead management create wealth for their employers and the companies they lead, and we are pleased to spotlight their accomplishments.”
Why it Matters!
These 20 Women to Watch are proven generators
of wealth and they deserve recognition.
It is time to take the gloves off and focus on the national tragedy that has plagued B2B sales for 50 years. The tragedy and failure lies squarely at the doorstep of sales managers that are given inquiries and leads and do not make it a policy that their sales people follow them up.
It is a tragedy for the sales manager that is too stubborn or unwitting to know when he or she has been given a gift for making quota; tragedy for the salespeople who are not led and taught and convinced that their future lies in the leads given to them by marketing; tragedy for the stock holders that suffer as 2-20% of every revenue dollar is spent on marketing and 90% of that is wasted.
For years I have politely told companies how to increase sales in 90 days: follow-up leads. But I have never squarely blamed sales management, which is where the blame lies.
Why It Matters
If CEO’s hold sales management accountable for sales lead follow-up sales will increase in 90-120 days.
Of course, it also lies at the feet of the CEO that ignores their marketing departments attempt to create qualified leads and fails to hold sales management accountable for talking to people who have contacted the company. It is such a stupid circumstance it is hard to believe.
Yes, sales managers and salespeople can complain that marketing gives them unqualified inquiries and leads (often down-right junk) and that is why follow-up is not done, but that’s an excuse. If the follow-up is done and the inquiries and leads are junk, it’s up to the sales manager to hold the marketing team accountable. But, the later can’t happen unless the former happens first.
Marketing is Stepping Up
True, marketing departments are stepping up because of frustration and the new tools that are available to help follow-up without a salesperson (think marketing automation). Marketing is taking the responsibility to create more qualified, sales ready leads and passing them to the salespeople.
But, sales management in 90% of the companies still does not have a 100% sales lead follow-up policy. It is almost criminal as sales managers contribute to the huge waste of the marketing budget by not speaking to the prospects who want to speak to them.
In most instances, sales managers are quick to make excuses about why they aren’t making quota, the unqualified leads they get, etc. But if they aren’t following-up 100% of the inquiries their excuses are just that, hollow excuses.
This an issue because of The Rule of 45
The Rule of 45 is just as valid today as it was when it was first published.[i] Simply stated, it says that 45% of all the inquiries turn into a sale for someone within one year. If salespeople only follow-up 25% they will only be speaking to 25% of the buyers and they can’t guarantee that it is the right 25%. Research has continually shown the Rule of 45 to be valid. The only way to prove is it is for a company to do its own research on inquiries.
The solution is…
CEO’s, stop blaming salespeople for not making quota. Blame the sales managers who should know better than to let prospects contact your company, expect a response and be ignored. When you make this change, sales will increase in 90-120 days.
Update: another post on this subject is on PointClear's Blog: And People In Hell Also Want Icewater
[i] James Obermayer, Managing Sales Leads: How To Turn Cold Prospects into Hot Customers, (Mason, Ohio, Textere an imprint of Thomson/South-Western, 2007), Page 10
Yogi Berra said it best when he commented “I wish I had an answer to that, because I'm tired of answering that question.” His statement reminds me that marketing managers seldom give a good answer to the ROI question. I guess they wish people would stop asking and maybe things will just get better by themselves. Not gonna happen.
Sooner or later Marketing will have to stand up and tell management what the ROI is for the demand generation budget. Are you sure you want to hear something similar to what Casey Stengel said when counseling a young ball player? "Son, we'd like to keep you around this season, but we're going to try and win a pennant."
Why It Matters
If you don’t solve the revenue ROI question for demand generation, management will find someone who can!
How can management keep a marketing team on board if they can’t create demand in a predictable way? A way that creates revenue in a predictable fashion so that they can be number one in their marketplace?
Marketing managers used to say they couldn’t prove the ROI on marketing because:
If your company wants to ‘win the pennant,’ make sure you have the right people and processes in place. Sales managers - do your part and enforce the follow-up rules. Marketing managers - do your part and perform follow-up of your own using one of the cheap and ready marketing automation tools.
Again, as in my entry about CMO salaries last month, I think you will find this information about sales managers’ salaries to be of interest. It isn’t that you can’t find this for yourself with a few clicks, but presenting it here makes it a bit easier and brings attention to the salary ranges.
There is slightly conflicting information about salary ranges and median dollars. Some information further down shows the differences by geographical location. I apologize to our membership outside of the U.S., as information by country is much more difficult to compile and present, and being lazy I took the easy way out.
I did not research bonus payments, overrides, or other forms of compensation, nor benefits packages, which can often impact the total compensation by as much as 100% (although payscale.com did quote some stats). Different sources are quoted below:
by Stu Heinecke
There's a reason why I illustrated this article with a cartoon of a couple on a date, because finding the ideal prospect for your products or services is all about finding the right match. Just like dating, without that proper fit, the relationship is likely to fizzle, which drains your marketing resources.
I've been supplying the monthly cartoon to the SLMA site for a long time, so many of you know me merely as a cartoonist. But you probably didn't know that I have been using cartoons create record-breaking marketing campaigns for more than 30 years. Cartoons are powerful devices that often lend an unfair advantage to various types of campaigns. That is particularly true in the e-mail channel, where we see cartoons routinely doubling open rates for new users. It seems like a no-brainer, then, to offer marketers the opportunity to test our "cartoon device" for free, as a way to build the member base in our e-mail marketer program.
But not if we aren't connecting to our ideal prospects.
And clearly we're not, at least not in all cases. My ideal prospect is anyone who is already committed to e-mail marketing and now wants higher opens and greater engagement with their list members. Simple, but not so simple to find. So I think it is instructional to share with you some of the pitfalls and lessons we're finding, to see if it can offer some insight for your own lead programs.
Identifying your ideal prospect is easy once you've taken the time to write out the parameters that make a prospect ideal. I thought I had my own ideal prospect description firmly in mind until I attended a group exercise last week, when we were all asked to tell it to the group. If you're not able to explain who your ideal prospect is in a single sentence without fumbling for words, you need to get to work on a simple, but very specific definition. Identifying the right prospects then becomes much simpler, and your follow-up much more efficient.
Even when you're being specific as you define your ideal prospect, it's tempting to worry that you're leaving business on the table if you exclude certain prospect types or sources. Just as dating is far more shall we say, productive, if you're being selective, leads need to be parsed in the same way. A person who loves you, loves your product or service and is your biggest fan, but still lacks the ability or authority to buy should never be allowed to waste your marketing resources as a viable prospect. There may be other ways such a person can benefit your operation, but don't waste time on them trying to generate a direct sale.
Being specific and making tough choices demands that you yourself be tough. I know. There are always sentimental favorites and they're usually a waste of time. One of my sources is a fairly large
Revenue Marketers: Are you in?
RevTalks, The Revenue Marketing™ Summit, finished up Monday, January 27, at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in San Francisco. There were 36 speakers, about 15 exhibitors, and the same number of sponsors. Created and hosted by the Pedowitz Group’s Debbie Qaqish and Jeff Pedowitz, this program was startlingly different in its content and approach. The program easily fit two days’ worth of content into 8 jam-packed hours. The SLMA Radio program on January 30th will have selected interviews with Qaqish and Pedowitz, as well as exhibitors and attendees.
‘Different’ is an understatement in describing RevTalks. Usually, marketing ROI subjects are relegated to one or two spots on a conference program filled with web and email subjects ad nauseam. This program had a solid 36 speakers with honed-down messages (15-minute TED Talks style) about how marketing is creating revenue, taking credit for it, and becoming a peer with sales. If there were 400 people this year, next year there will be 800.
While I have preached for years the equality of marketing with sales in creating revenue, the Pedowitz Group, with the publishing of Debbie’s Book, Rise of the Revenue Marketer (review)and now this conference, have set themselves apart as surely as Reis and Trout did with their book, Positioning, and Geoffrey Moore did with Crossing The Chasm. I talked about it; they did it. Revenue marketing titles will begin to explode, and new conferences will wisely make this subject a huge part of their program.
From our Humor relations department comes a question that has been asked and seldom answered, why aren't sales leads followed-up? In spite of the promise of CRM software, follow-up of sales leads has essentially not improved with just this tool.
Why it matters: only 10-25% of all sales leads are followed-up by sales. Increase sales lead follow-up and you will increase sales.
Marketing automation's promise has produced more results because it aggressively assumed follow-up “duties” that salespeople so cavalier ignored. But the simplest of functions, failure to follow-up of inquiries and leads, cost B2B companies billions a year in wasted marketing expenditures because a major team player doesn't do their job. Lack of sales lead follow-up is a real-life cartoon in more ways than one.
Of course, there are acceptations. When the leadership in sales and marketing demands 100% follow-up and uses all the tools at their disposal, ah that is a fine thing to see; profitable too.
Recently Dan McDade, CEO of PointClear, asked me to contribute to an article in his blog, Viewpoint, The Truth about Lead Generation. The article was entitled: Lead Generation Lies That are Wreaking Havoc with Your Sales. Being an over-achiever, I gave him more than he asked for. He printed 5 of my lies, plus some great ones fromArdath Albee | Marketing Interactions, Craig Rosenberg | The Funnelholic, Paul Gillin | Paul Gillen Blog, Ginger Conlon | DMNews, and Jamie Turner | 60 Second Communications. Here is my full list of lies:
As we deepen our relationships through online communities such as Google+, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube, we can get caught up in the quick scroll through the newsfeeds with limited time and attention as to what is being posted by whom. We quickly jam through the "liking" of posts, +1-ing shares, posts and images, retweeting something from someone without even visiting the link just to add something to our timeline. That's not connecting.
Next, our online profile is your HANDSHAKE. If you have a profile on Google+, LinkedIn and Twitter - don't forget to lose your newbie moniker by filling in ALL of the blanks. This includes a REAL headshot - HEAD - not your full body in some pose because in streams you are REALLY tiny next to your post. If it is YOU and not a company page or brand page - it needs to be YOU not your logo. How about the default or blank BANNERS on Google+, Twitter, Facebook? It reeks, "NOOB." - find something, a photo of a place you love, a quote, SOMETHING other than the default or blank or stock background images Twitter offers.
Onward - what is your criteria for connecting with people? Do they simply have to ask you and you say yes? Really? You realize this not only gives them access to shove stuff at you, links, promos, requests, invitations, but in the case of LinkedIn it allows them to be one step closer to your carefully cultivated connections. Did those connections know that you just open up to anyone that asks? Seems a bit loosy-goosey to me.
Yep, I know; do a search and you can find average salaries for almost any job, but I thought this might be of interest considering the growing significance of the CMO career positions. The point is, for this job and most others there are sources that can tell you, before your interview, typical compensation ranges. (We link to the sources credited and quoted.)
Do your research and you will find averages, highest and lowest salaries, and even some listings by city. I saw listings and estimates as high as $850,000 and as low as $38,000 for CMOs. The average (depending on what you read) is $145-$180K. There are other things to take into account, including bonus and profit- sharing, to find the total compensation package. Don’t take one source as gospel; try to find the average for your industry in your geographic area.
To wet your appetite, Payscale.com reports stats of:
Salary $76,679 - $243,384
Bonus $974 - $98,238
Profit Sharing $5,000 - $40,000
But before we get into more sources and estimated compensation, let’s be sure we are talking about
Ok, so maybe this is the formula for fiction. Women’s fiction. Romantic fiction. But when I think about it, this is not unlike most redemptive stories from successful people.
They sinned: did things wrong, caused issues and problems for those around them and in their businesses.
In this process they suffered. Of course, there may have been some success, but not total success. No matter how they managed their lives and their businesses, they had suffering which they didn’t take the time to tie back to the wrong doing, the failures.
Eventually they learned, matured and repented. They changed and found salvation. Through their repentance, they learned how to be successful.
This formula isn’t a far stretch to those of us in marketing. Take me for instance. I have a degree in English literature. After a short stint as a technical writer (interesting but not overly successful, although I did write the testing specs for the Wankle engine), I moved into marketing. As a marketing specialist without training I sinned again and again:
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