Marketing

Will The Marketing Automation Space Consolidate In 2011?

Earlier this year in August, IBM bought Unica for $480M. Unica is not necessary a pure marketing automation play, but it take a significant market share in the marketing management space. In a market review by Forrester in September 2009, Unica was repoprted to have $120M in revenue for 2008.

Now in the last 24 hours, we have seen Salesforce.com buying eTacts and Teradata to acquire Aprimo for $525M.

eTacts is a small email contact manger that could help Salesforce building a better marketing product. Everybody on the street agrees that Salesforce is weak on teh marketing side. They always wanted to stay out of that market, relying on 3rd party vendors. But now that the industry is growing quickly, it would not be surprising that they think about entering this market with a better product.

Aprimo was among the leader in larger marketing automation software. In the same Forrester market review Aprimo had $55M in revenue coming form 180 clients, of which 70% were above $1B in revenue. Aprimo was clearly for the large enterprise. SO either they grew significantly over the last 2 years to justify a higher price than Unica, or the whole market is boiling…

Now if IBM and Teradata are moving in that direction, and I suspect them to do so because marketing automation is a huge data driven initiative, I wouldn’t be surprised to see other players make a move as well. Among potential targets, there is Eloqua, Marketo or Silverpop that are possibly ahead of the curve.

Marketo is the fastest growing marketing automation platform. They are racking up client very rapidly, for a total of more than 800 now. They announced multiple funding rounds (up to E series) over the past 2 years for over $50M, which means that investors will look a an exit at a high price, and possibly not to hurry to go out. And Marketo need time to growth is Enterprise customer base.

Eloqua is the “oldest” player. They have been around since the late 90s. They tried to to go public but were never able to due to market condition. They announced about $40M in 3 rounds.  Investors are probably looking for an exit due to the time it has been since first investments. But they are loosing ground to newer player like Marketo and that could hurt their valuation.

Silverpop is reported to have over $50M in revenue in 2008, which was among the biggest at the time. That could give them a high tag price if compare to Unica and Aprimo acquisition.

I believe that this will set the tone for 2011 in the marketing automation space.

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Why You Should Think About Lead Management Optimization for 2011

BuyerSphere Search is the first stepI just finished reading a great post titled “Tailwinds for Marketing Automation Software” from Lauren Carlson, CRM Market Analyst at Software Advice. She outlines the macro trends that pushes adoption of marketing automation platforms as followed:

  • Buyers want content of real value
  • Buyers are increasingly wary of the phone
  • Desire for marketing accountability
  • Sales cycles are longer in a down economy
  • B2B sales processes are becoming “consumerized“
  • Marketing channels have changed and grown
  • SaaS systems are greasing the skids

I would also add that the buyers behavior have dramatically changed in the past few years. For example, when is the last time you heard someone considering buying a product over 1000$ say that he got on a plane to attend a trade show or that he responded to a direct mail advertisement? In today’s world, it is all about search. Everyone of us starts by searching on-line to narrow his need and than move on to talk to users and finally reaches out to vendors (see above chart, from The BuyerSphere Project book).

That new sequence puts additional pressure to Marketers as they now, more than ever, need to match their content with the buyers intent. The content needs to be relevant and the timing need be right. And the only way to lean toward that goal is by running a fully optimized lead management process relying on good marketing automation implementation.

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Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010 Lead Management, Marketing, Technology 4,738 Comments

Comment convertir vos prospects en clients grâce au marketing

Aujourd’hui je présente le cas d’Acquisio à la journée Big Bang du Forum Commercialisation pour les TIC à Montréal. Il s’agit de montrer comment Acquisio réussi à générer suffisament de leads grâce à ses activités de marketing et aussi grâce à son processus de gestion des leads.

Voici donc ma présentation:

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010 En Français, Marketing, Start-up 7,288 Comments

Challenge: Fixing Salesforce Campaigns Reporting!

I’m currently trying to crack down Reporting on my campaigns using Salesforce and Marketo.

The goal is (seems to be!) quite simple: I need to know, on a monthly basis:
A) How many Sales-Ready Leads each of my campaigns are generating.
B) How much revenue each of my campaigns are generating.

(See below for the description of a typical scenario.)

Challenge 1: Multiple “level” of leads
We have different “level” of leads, so no I cannot simply use the number of lead member a campaign have.  We have “Prospect” & “Sales-Ready Leads”. Sales-Ready Leads are the one that have been qualified by our Triage team and assigned to sales rep. We differentiate the 2 level using the Lead Status in Salesforce. So my need is to report only the Sales-Ready Leads

Challenge 2: Campaign attribution

Most of our leads are touched by multiple campaigns and I don’t believe that I should only attribute the last or the first campaign.

With the current way Members to Campaigns relationship works in Salesforce, when I report on multiple campaigns, I get a higher total number of leads & revenue than the reality. For example,
- Lead is member of Campaign A & Campaign B.
- Lead is converted with an opportunity
- The opportunity close at 100$

The Campaign reports will show me:
- Campaign A generate 1 lead and 100$
- Campaign B generated 1 lead and 100$

So if I report to the board that each campaign generated 100$ and the total revenue of the company is actually 100$, my CEO will fire me on the spot! ;-)

Maybe the solution is outside Salesforce?
We also have a deep integration with Marketo, our Marketing automation platform. So if I can find a way to get that kind of reporting in Marketo instead of Salesforce, I would be as satisfied!

I don’t mind having to do some manual work to get the numbers, but I certainly do not want to start building complex Spreadsheets and CSV files manipulation to report on my campaigns.

Description of a typical scenario:
We sponsor a Webinar: 1,000 people registered, 50 request a demo and qualify right after the event. In the following 2 weeks another 50 leads become qualified Sales-Ready Leads by visiting our website and completing a demo request form. 2 Leads purchase a widget for $10,000. The following month, thanks to nurturing program, an additional 50 prospects become Sales-Ready Leads and 5 more leads purchased a widget for $10,000.

What I would like to know at the end of the month is:
After Month 1: Campaign Webinar generated 100 leads & $20,000.
After Month 2: Campaign Webinar generated 150 leads & $70,000.

Update: I posted it on Salesforce Community Website as well.

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Friday, February 12th, 2010 Marketing, Marketo, Salesforce.com 6,809 Comments

Comment aligner ventes et marketing grâce à un processus de gestion des leads

Lors du dernier Usergroup de Slaesforce.com à Montréal, j’ai fait une présentation exposant comment il est possible d’aligne rles ventes et le marketing en implantant un processus simple de gestion des leads. Bien sur, le processus en question est configurer à l’aide du CRM Salesforce.com.

Voici donc la présentation:

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How to create your marketing plans for 2010

Last week Marketo held a great webinar with SiriusDecisions and the American Marketing Association (AMA) called “2010 Blueprint: Planning for B-to-B Marketing Success“. They exposed what marketers should be looking at for the next year. Here is some of the key points:

For Demand Creation:

  • Move your dollars from initial demand generation program toward lead nurturing program
  • Review processes between sales and marketing to better align them (make sure you don’t overload sales with too much data when handing off a lead)
  • Put in place a Data quality program by 1st fixing point-of-entry and 2nd prioritize data quality projects based on relative targeting

For Reputation:

  • Focus reputation program dollars on measurable activities
  • Reallocate non-performing traditional media dollars to social media

Really worth watching if you are thinking about improving your marketing initiative in 2010…

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Tuesday, October 20th, 2009 Lead Management, Marketing, Marketo 4,219 Comments

Let’s standardize marketing 2.0 terminology

Last week I read a great post by Jep Castelein from LeadSloth called “Why Are Marketing Automation Managers So Hard to Find?“. That article made me think about the different terms in the industry we are using to describe what we are doing. Some call it Demand generation, other will say marketing automation and other lead management or lead nurturing. All these terms can means different things depending on who you are talking to. In addition, if you add terminology that is related, like inbound marketing, it become even harder for new people to get familiarized with the space.

Why is there so many terms describing pretty much the same thing you may ask? Well I would say that it is most likely related to the fact that in new born industry, every vendor is an evangelist. They all want to spread the good news, but they all want to have an edge on other evangelist and they all create and brand their “own” terms to explain their specialization. For example, Brian Carroll, literally invented the terme Lead Nurturing, Eloqua strongly branded Demand Generation for the past 10 years and Marketo is talking about sales & marketing alignment in the revenue cycle.

New incomers  are now asking themselves questions like:

  • What is it that I need to do? Demand Generation? Lead Nurturing? Inbound Marketing? Sales and Marketing alignment?
  • Is inbound marketing part of Demand generation or vice-versa?
  • Is lead nurturing part of lead management or demand generation?
  • Is lead scoring part of my demand generation or lead nurturing programs, or both?

I think that now the space is becoming bigger, there are more people that is looking at us and we even see consulting groups focusing on that space, we should take the time to precisely define terminology. The more precise and uniform we get, the better the adoption will be by companies. They will find more easily information on the topic if we use the same terminology.

Here are my takes:

  • Lead Management is the global term we should use to describe what a marketer need to do to align sales & marketing, to nurture is leads and to generate demand about is product.
  • Marketing Automation is the set of tools you use in order to make your lead management process to work.
  • Lead Nurturing or Demand Generation are specific program that you run in your lead management process with the help of marketing automation tools.
  • Lead Scoring is the set of rule you use in your marketing automation tool to rank the lead you generate from your programs.
  • Inbound Marketing is a marketing strategy that helps your business get found on the Internet by your best customers through blogging, social media, SEO. (As found on Hubspot…)

To recap in one sentence:

In order to have a successful Lead Management process, you need a good Marketing Automation tool that allow you to Nurture and Score the Leads Generated from your Inbound Marketing strategy.  ;-)

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Lead Nurturing – Step 1: Review your current lead to opportunity to customer process

Here is the detail first step of your lead nurturing initiative as describe in my previous post: How to get started with lead nurturing.

Reviewing your lead to opportunity to customer is the primary activity you should plan, even before to start lead nurturing. After all, why would you put efforts nurturing leads if they are not properly managed when they become sales-ready? To make an analogy, simply think about the water pipe system in your house. Before opening the main valve, you need to make sure that no pipes are leaking.

To check the health of your process, simply ask every member of your team how do they rank or classified or work their leads. If you get a couple of different options, you know you need to review your processes.

First, make sure that you create a simple funnel where each stage of your revenue cycle are precisely define and understood by both your sales and marketing team. The following image represents a typical revenue cycle with the main stages. It is strongly inspire by Marketo Revenue Cycle.

Once marketing and sales have agreed on the complete Revenue Cycle, make sure to map your current lead and sales process to it. In order to do that, you will need to clearly define each Lead Status and Opportunity Stages required to follow up on leads and opportunities. You will want to have specific Lead Status for leads that are not sales-ready yet and are continuously nurtured by marketing as opposed to some specific Leads Status for leads that are sales-ready and only worked by sales.

Once the leads are becoming more ready to buy, your conversion of leads to opportunity needs to be as clear as previous processes. You will need to have a good definition of each stages required in order to win an opportunity. This will vary a lot from a company to another, but as long as it is clear internally and everyone sticks to it, you will be amazed by the results.

And if some leads handle by sales are finally not ready to buy, you need to have a clear process to return those leads to marketing so they can be recycled with further nurturing program.

The last piece of your process review is to make sure you know and understand from where all your leads are coming into your CRM. It is fairly easy to multiply the different sources where leads are captured, but if this is not managed properly, you will end up having leads that are not assign to the right person or are not even being touch by some others because they simply don’t see them in your CRM. Each source should have a precise process that everyone understands. Moreover, you will want to track each of them to determine what is working best for you in terms of marketing ROI.

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Wednesday, September 9th, 2009 Lead Management, Marketing 3,777 Comments

How to get started with lead nurturing

Ok, the topic is getting hot in your company and everybody is saying “We need to nurture our leads!”, but as the marketing manager, you ask yourself: “Where should I start?”.

Before getting started, you will want to read on the topic. I recommend Marketo B2B Tools & Resources & Brian Caroll B2B Lead Generation Blog.

Get started with lead nurturing in 6 steps:

Step 1: Review your current lead to opportunity to customer process. Make sure that you have a clear understanding of how your leads are moving from one stage to the next one and what is their source.

Step 2: Make sure you have a lead scoring model in place in order to help you determine if leads are ready to engage with sales or remain in nurturing.

Step 3: Determine how many touch point you will have in your nurturing program. You may want to have different programs for new leads or recycled leads.

Step 4: Create useful content for your leads adapted to each stage of their buy cycle.

Step 5: Implement your content in your sales & marketing automation tool.

Step 6: Track results and optimize.

Of course each of these steps will require different level of implication depending on the complexity of your organization, but a good lead nurturing implementation should go through each of these steps.

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Tuesday, August 25th, 2009 Lead Management, Marketing 4,168 Comments

The value of a phone call to generate sales: 280$

Online Marketing the weapon to generate leads. But when it come down to generate actual sales, nothing can beat a phone call in the lead nurturing process.  Here a B2C example that worked:

I was having a beer with friends on a Friday happy hour when I suddenly receive a call from a Mexx clothing store. The person told me that a super 50% sale on everything was starting today. The person made me feel unique by telling me that this offer was for selected clients. I asked her what “Selected” mean and she says that because I had already purchased at their store, my name was in their database and they were contacting all of their customers.

Never the less, the day after, I went to the store, which is a 30 minutes drive from my home and I bought for 280$ of shirts and pants. On my way back, I drove by another Mexx store, literally 5 minute walk away from my home in Montreal and I realized that the super 50% sales was actually in every Mexx stores.

That made me wonder why I went so far when I could have go there at the first place. Furthermore, why did I actually buy some cloths? I was absolutely not planning any clothing purchase…

And because I’m a marketer and like this kind of situation, I dug a little deeper. I looked in my emails (I’m a subscriber to Mexx newsletter) and realized that I also received an email announcing about the 50% sales few days prior.

But neither the email nor the closest store made me think about purchasing cloths. The only driver is the phone call. Sure the 50% offer is very compelling, but I was exposed to it on other channel and it did not trigger the desire to buy.

I drove 30 minutes to spent 280$ simply because I got nurtured by phone. Period.

Lead Nurturing + Right Channel + Right Messaging or Compelling Offer = Sales

And Yes the phone is a strong channel when properly used…

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Tuesday, June 30th, 2009 Lead Management, Marketing 3,618 Comments