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Buying 2.0:  Accelerating Sales By Making It Easier To Buy Buying 2.0: Accelerating Sales By Making It Easier To Buy Document Transcript

  • BUYING 2.0: Accelerate Your Sales by Making it Easier to Buy
  • Buying 2.0: Accelerate Your Sales by Making it Easier to Buy >Executive Summary – Ron Snyder Web 2.0 provides enabling technology that improves website visitor experience and enables collaboration. Sales 2.0 uses that technology to improve sales and marketing effectiveness. Buying 2.0 focuses the power of these new technologies and practices to improve your buyer’s experience (anyone involved in the purchase decision; not just purchasing agents); making it easier for them to buy, thus accelerating your sales and marketing results. In keeping with one of the key tenants of Web 2.0, collaboration, the authors chose to create a suite of articles that addresses the major benefits of Buying 2.0. Here is a brief overview of the six articles contained herein. Buying 2.0: Accelerate Your Sales by Making it Easier to Buy – Ron Snyder This article defines Buying 2.0 and explains how to respond to the empowered buyer by optimizing human and online buying/sales interaction to accelerate the buying process. It provides a fresh view of the process from awareness generation to generating a happy customer. It gives insight into how to generate credible, satisfying interactions with buyers that encourage purchasing, positive reputation and feedback into product plans and business practices. To be truly successful, you must not only leverage the new tools, you must adapt your sales and marketing processes as well. Marketing To Your Customer’s Brain: What You Need To Know About How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions To Profit in a 2.0 World – Denise Corcoran The article shows how to drive sales and marketing results using new insights into how your customers think. Gain greater understanding into the psychology of the buyer’s decision making process and language that resonates most effectively with the buyer. The article cites specific examples, such as, using neuromarketing to interact most effectively with your buyers, tuning your value proposition and positioning your pricing effectively for your target audience. Sales 2.0: Why it is Imperative to Change the Way We Sell – Anneke Seley An overview of Sales 2.0 and its driving forces is provided. Studies show that best-performing companies are using Sales 2.0 practices to improve sales and marketing effectiveness and bring down the costs associated. The article explains how you can benefit from these technology-enabled practices. Marketing in a “Buying 2.0” World: Transforming from an Art into a Science – Kathy Gogan To respond to today’s more empowered buyer, companies need to take a more quantitative approach to all aspects of marketing. In order to make the most of the tools, you must adapt your marketing process. This includes leveraging the Internet to gain previously unavailable insight into your target buyer and hone your value proposition. The good news is that these tools make it easier to do the job of marketing and make it possible to do much more for less. This article helps you insight into the areas to investigate to align with the way your target customer wants to buy and the way you manage your marketing resources. Managing Lead Gen Campaigns in a 2.0 World – Mike DeCastro Old school meets the 2.0 world; it’s the fundamentals; not the technology that guarantee marketing success. You still must know your audience and what they will respond to. The 40-40-20 Rule is discussed; all marketing success is 40% offer, 40% media and only 20% creative. The article shows how to use the Triple Play to drive business with direct mail, email and telesales; versus waiting for a response. Real life examples and results are presented. Winning in a Web 2.0 World: Metrics-Driven Success – Jerry Hart This article demystifies social media. It shows how to use it to stay in touch with your market, drive sales and get feedback. Here are a few of the key questions it answers. How are customers moving to social media? What are the business applications of social media technologies? Where to invest? How to measure its success? It provides real life examples. For more information; we have provided author contact information at the bottom of each article. You can also contact Ron Snyder at 650-508-0622 or rsnyder@breakthrough-inc.com. Visit www.breakthrough-inc.com. Buying 2.0 I
  • >ARTICLE 1< BUYING 2.0: Accelerate Your Sales by Making it Easier to Buy
  • >Buying 2.0: Accelerate Your Sales by Making it Easy to Buy By Ron Snyder Key Points Use Buying 2.0™ practices to make it easy for your buyers to buy and accelerate your sales results. 1. Ruthlessly pursue your “sweet spot.” 2. Assess your current sales and marketing approach. 3. Identify (Sales 2.0) technology and best practices to accelerate buying. 4. Integrate the tools/ approach into your process. 5. Develop collateral/ selling tools needed to accelerate the process. 6. Work with your team to ensure adoption. Buying 2.0 shifts the focus from trying to push a rope (to make a sale) to helping the buyer pull the rope across the goal line. Eighty percent of the decision makers in business to business technology-related purchases identify who they will buy from- vs. being found by the seller - according to Marketing Sherpa Business Products Buyers Survey March, 2007. This is a huge change from even a few years ago. Yet, many sellers have not changed the way they interact with their buyers sufficiently for today’s empowered buyer. And they will pay the price- in lost sales, profits and market share! Today’s empowered buyer (anyone making a purchase decision- not just purchasing agents) expects to find a wealth of information when they visit a website. Though many provide lots of information, too many companies miss the opportunity to guide the buyer through the buying process. The objective is to create “friction-free” buying/selling interactions. Buying 2.0 Web 2.0 technology enables website visitors to interact with the website more easily and quickly. In addition, it makes it easier for people to interact with each other and share information (such as pictures, videos, text), thus enabling collaboration and social media. Sales 2.0 describes the way many companies have harnessed Web 2.0 technology to make sales and marketing more effective. I attended the 2009 Sales 2.0 Conference in San Francisco. There was a lot of talk about how to use these tools to improve sales and marketing effectiveness, which is important. However, the only mention of improving the customer experience was when I commented to the group (in a roundtable discussion) that this had not been discussed at all throughout the conference. The focus of Buying 2.0 is to use these tools to make it easier for today’s buyer to get the information they need when they want it to streamline the buying process. For example, one can use the ability to track buying behavior (i.e. whether an e-mail was opened, landing page visited, white paper downloaded, etc.) to gather valuable cues to help the prospect through their decision making process. ONLINE HUMAN Buying 2.0™ uses the latest (Sales 2.0) technology and best practices to accelerate sales results by making it easier to buy. In the complex, business-to-business sale, you need to optimize both online and human interactions to speed the sales process and capture buyers that might otherwise be lost. In Sales 1.0, the traditional way of selling, there is a significant emphasis on human interaction. While this is important in complex sales, leveraging phone sales and web-based methods, is an excellent way to increase productivity, decrease the cost of sales and engage the buyer. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Breakthrough, Inc. All Rights Reserved 1
  • The web provides greater reach and lower cost per interaction. It, also allows the buyer to get information on their own terms, timeframe and location. Most buyers prefer to remain anonymous until they have identified a compelling event/need; causing them to act now to solve a problem. Then their need to engage with a sales person can arise quickly and you must be prepared to respond (i.e. via click-to- call, chat, online meeting, etc.). Making the right tools easily accessible is critical. These include self-driven ROI or configuration tools, competitive comparisons, industry expert comparisons, user ratings and feedback. However, beware of relying on “self-service” so much that the buyer does not get the help they need. At that moment, an opportunity can be lost! Witness all the shopping carts that are left without a completed purchase and visitors who exhibit interest, yet are never heard from again. It is important to have a clear target market and make your content very relevant for them. Your website is your front door. Is it inviting to and credible with your audience? You need to address the top challenges and psychographics of your target market (i.e. appetite for risk, new technology, change, etc.). Marketing Sherpa’s and CMP TechWeb’s March 2008 survey indicates that online user communities are the source of information that had the most influence on technology purchasing decisions. In the new world, it is critical that you join the conversation (i.e. via social media) and are willing to invest in free education (with no strings attached) up front. Finally, leverage the full range of online media. Video is very hot because it engages the viewer’s emotions and imagination. Podcasts, Blogs, articles, etc. provide a great way to demonstrate your thought-leadership, which is an increasingly important element of the marketing mix. This will build your credibility and keep you on top of the rapid changes in your marketplace. Buying 2.0 Assessment Are you generating enough leads to make your sales goals? How well do you execute integrated campaigns; for example, direct mail, e-mail and telemarketing that your sales team is ready to follow up on? How well is your web presence optimized for your target market? How well do your human and online sales interactions/tools assist buyers in moving through each stage of the buying/sales process? How many “touches” does it take to close a sale? How many touches could you eliminate or automate with an optimized human/ online approach? The next step is to identify the critical gaps to fill — to accelerate your sales results! What can you do? It is critical that you respond quickly and effectively. Here is what you can do. 1. Ruthlessly pursue your “sweet spot.” It is critical to have a clear target market that Product Development, Marketing, Sales and Support actively pursue. Each function must have the tools and training to succeed in this market segment. All key processes must be tuned for the target market. Though it is tempting to pursue deals opportunistically, this usually requires significant effort to do special things to win the business. It is important that these decisions be made consciously — carefully selecting new market segments to pursue — to avoid starting and stopping key efforts for the “deal of the week” wasting time and resources. 2. Assess your current sales and marketing approach. This will enable you to identify the best place to invest your time and money. One way to do this is to create three graphs: Buying 2.0 ©2009 Breakthrough, Inc. All Rights Reserved 2
  • Number of opportunities at each stage Dollar value of opportunities by stage Average time in each stage Looking at these graphs will reveal where the process is weakest. These will show that you need more leads, need to convert more leads to opportunities or need to convert opportunities to sales more effectively. Investigate what is causing the weakness indicated in the graphs. What is not resonating with your target audience; your product offering, marketing efforts or sales process? Doing a good job of identifying the underlying problem is the key to identifying the best solution. 3. Identify (Sales 2.0) technology and best practices to accelerate buying. Investigate the tools available to identify the high-leverage tool or method that will make the biggest difference. It will need to apply to the specific area of the marketing/sales/buying process identified above -- and improve your buyer’s experience and your staff’s efficiency and effectiveness. Research how other companies are using these tools and are interacting with their customers that you can leverage. 4. Integrate the tools / approach into your process. You can have the best tools in the world, but if they are not set up to support your process and make it easier for the buyer, it will not produce the best results. It is so important that you assess and fine-tune your sales and marketing processes before you automate them. Then, you want to make sure the tools are set up to streamline those processes. Doing the wrong thing faster does not improve results. 5. Develop collateral / selling tools needed to accelerate the process. Through your review of the sales process, you will find that there are a few selling tools at each stage in the process that your top people use. Take these (you may need to fine-tune them) and make them available to everyone on the team. In addition, there are likely to be a few new tools that are needed to accelerate the buying process. Develop these tools and train your team on how to use them most effectively. 6. Work with your team to ensure adoption. If you want this effort to reap on-going results, you must make sure people adopt the new tools and approaches into their daily/weekly habits. To do this: Be sure it is clear that management supports and uses the new tools/methods, Have a clear plan to spread adoption with roles and responsibilities and Recognize and reward successes delivered via the new tools/methods. Optimizing your Online and Human Sales Interactions via Buying 2.0: Increases sales, revenue Improves return on sales and marketing efforts These results are achieved by: Generating more qualified leads Accelerating the buying/sales process (shortening sales cycle length) Increasing average deal size Creating more happy customers Buying 2.0 ©2009 Breakthrough, Inc. All Rights Reserved 3
  • About the Author Ron Snyder/ President, Breakthrough, Inc. For the past 18 years, Ron has helped companies dramatically improve their sales and marketing results in complex selling environments. Results include: Achieving challenging sales goals Generating qualified leads Improving conversion rates Accelerating sales process velocity Controlling costs of sales and marketing He has worked with thousands of sales and marketing people, managers and executives in industry leaders, such as HP, Cisco, Synopsys, Siemens, Philips, Alliance Imaging and rapidly-growing companies such as NetSuite, Zeus Technology, Exodus Communications and Macromedia to achieve dramatic improvements in sales results. For example: “Sales this quarter were awesome! For example, bookings doubled from the previous quarter and we are around 400% from the same quarter last year.“ – Senior Vice President of Sales of a rapidly-growing internet company “Bookings are up 43%, Margins are up 10%, Market Share is up 53%, Productivity per salesperson is up 50%, Our Win/Loss Ratio is up 131%” – Vice President of Sales of a top medical systems provider “We finished last year at 132% of quota and most of my people exceeded their targets. Your selling skills workshop made a significant contribution to our ability to achieve these results.” – Sales Manager of a top documentation management software co. “We just had our best quarter ever. It was 33% higher than the previous quarter. In my recent tour of the field, the feedback was unanimous that the work you did with them was a major contributor to these results.” – Director, North American Sales of a software development tools co. Prior to that, in his 11 years at Hewlett-Packard, Ron was consistently recognized as a top performer in sales, marketing and management roles related to computer, software and medical solutions. He was successful in winning large, complex sales, bringing products to market and managing cross-functional teams. He has written articles including What is the Net Present Value of Your Lead Stream?, Accelerating through the Turn and Successfully Managing Strategic Change. To learn more, contact Ron Snyder at 650-508-0622, e-mail rsnyder@breakthrough-inc.com, visit www.breakthrough-inc.com or view LinkedIn Profile http://www.linkedin.com/in/ronlsnyder. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Breakthrough, Inc. All Rights Reserved 4
  • >ARTICLE 2< MARKETING TO YOUR CUSTOMER’S BRAIN: What You Need To Know About How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions To Profit in a 2.0 World
  • Marketing To Your Customer’s Brain: What You Need To Know About How Your Customers Make Buying Decisions To Profit in a 2.0 World By Denise Corcoran You will learn: How neuro-marketing can accelerate your company’s revenues, create life-long customer loyalty and give you the competitiveedge in today’s buyers-driven market. What part of your customer’s brain drives buying decisions and what you must know about it to drive high velocity marketing/sales results. How price can trigger the “pain button” in your customer’s brain and what you must do to avoid triggering the price-pain connection. Why your value proposition, logic and words are often tuned out and what you must do instead to ignite your customer’s interest and compel them to take action. Have you ever wondered… Why even the highest priced or lowest quality products sometimes outsell their competitors’? Why and how your prospects buy the products or services they do, even if their choices seem irrational or impractical? Why some brands have a devoted cult-like following while others have zero loyalty? A new field called NeuroMarketing – combining neuroscience, marketing and technology – has generated a buzz across every industry and every business sector. Let’s look at how the latest findings can help you convert more prospects to customers and create life-long loyalty and raving fans. NeuroMarketing: Is It the Key to Unlocking Your Customer’s Brain? In traditional marketing, we are told… “follow the proven formula of compelling headlines, benefits, satisfaction guarantee and a call to action, and your sales will skyrocket.” Yet, even top marketers can attest that successful campaigns are a “hit or miss” proposition to find those that generate big sales. Until now… Neuroscience and behavioral sciences – such as NLP (NeuroLinguistic Programming) – are all saying the same thing: “Our unconscious mind – not our conscious mind — drives how we respond to ads, brands and products and, ultimately, drives all our buying decisions. Customers don’t really know why they buy what they buy, which is why traditional market research falls short.” Let’s take a look at the underlying reason why…the architecture of our brain. Will The Real Decision Maker (In Your Brain) Please Stand Up? According to neuroscientists, there are 3 main parts to the brain, each functioning as a brain unto itself. These “three brains” — nestled inside one another – are as follows: The “Human” (“New,” or outer-most) Brain: Most evolved part of the brain known as the cortex. It is responsible for logic, learning, language, conscious thoughts and our personalities. The “Mammalian” (Middle) Brain: Also known as the limbic system. It deals with our emotions, moods, memory and hormones. Buying 2.0 ©2009 The Empowered Business™. All Rights Reserved 6
  • The “Reptilian” (Old) Brain: Also known as the R Complex controls our basic survival functions, such as hunger, breathing, flight-or-fight reactions and staying out of harm’s way. While neuromarketing is still a young field with many unanswered questions, one finding is clear. The reptilian, or “old,” brain drives your customers’ buying decisions. According to Erik du Plessis in The Advertising Mind, the “old” brain rules all rapid decision-making. Market researcher and Chairman, Archetype Discoveries Worldwide, Clotaire Rapaille said in a PBS interview — “The Persuaders” — that… “The reptilian always wins. I don’t care what you tell me intellectually. Why? Because the reptilian always wins.” To strengthen your brand, loyalty and sales, you must understand your customers’ “reptilian hot buttons.” A “cortex” message – such as “Buy my product because it is 20% cheaper” – doesn’t buy customer loyalty. It all comes down to who triggers the first reptilian reaction. That’s why Coke, after all these years, continues to dominate the market. The “Reptilian Brain” and Profits: 7 Critical Insights You Must Know About How and Why Your Customer Buys Our “old” brain often overrides our voice of logic and drives all buying decisions for reasons beyond our conscious awareness. To influence your customer’s buying decisions; you must learn how the “old” brain operates and speak its “language.” Below are 7 key insights about the old brain that can add to your bottom-line. 1. The old brain is driven by emotions. Our old brain operates on autopilot – i.e., a stimulus response mechanism. Emotions are automatic responses to sensory stimuli. The smell of coffee, the sound of the ocean, the view of a setting sun … all trigger an unconscious emotional response. Emotions play a similar critical role in our buying decisions. Business Pundit (www.businesspundit.com) reminds us that “in an oversupplied economy, customer feelings drive purchase decisions and profitability. Your new imperative is to assess and appeal to your customer’s feelings. Welcome to the Feelings Economy.” Key lesson: The more senses you trigger and associate with your products/services, the more you will appeal to your customers’ emotions and influence their buying behavior. 2. The old brain “decides” on the basis of the gain vs. pain tradeoff. The two basic drivers of all behavior and decisions are: to seek pleasure and avoid pain. According to Kevin Hogan, author, The Science of Influence, “most people react to the fear of loss and the threat of pain in a much more profound way than they do for gain.” Consumers focus more on not getting hurt over the need to feel great when making decisions. “They overemphasize the importance of pain by about 2.5:1 in decision making.” How to overcome your customer’s “distorted” gain vs. pain trade-off? Key lesson: Marketing guru, Seth Godin illustrates through his Joy/Cash Curve that high value purchases often trigger increasing amounts of buying pain. His solution: add more joy and pleasure to the buying process, such as he did in his work with Lexus. According to Godin, when you make buying pleasurable, you actually reset the customer’s “value meter.” How are you adding more joy to your buying process? 3. The old brain is highly influenced by beginnings and endings. Research confirms that the beginning and ending of an event or experience alters our perception of the entire experience. Our initial impression becomes the “filter” for how we perceive what is to follow. The most recent experience leaves a final impression with greater weight. Key lesson: In marketing, for your message to be accepted, it is critical to leave a strong first impression – like a compelling story, a big smile, etc. Also, if a customer has a pleasant or unpleasant experience with your product or company, that most recent Buying 2.0 ©2009 The Empowered Business™. All Rights Reserved 7
  • experience will influence future purchases more than all other experiences combined. What impressions are you leaving with your prospects in the first few seconds or words? How has your last customer contact enhanced or jeopardized repeat sales? 4. The old brain is visually oriented and responds rapidly to images. From the moment we are born, we are able to see shadows and associate meaning to them. In communications, we are told that 65% of our how our message is received is through our physiology (or visual cues). Study after study has shown that someone’s first impression of you is based on your physical appearance! In each instance, it is our old brain rapidly responding to visual cues, not words. Words are the realm of the “new” brain and are secondary in the buying process. Key learning: Enhance and deliver your core marketing message visually – e.g., the design of your product, images in an ad, external packaging, etc. Where can you visually strengthen your brand and emotional connection with customers? 5. The old brain perceives the “pain of buying” in relative, not absolute, terms. Neuroscience tells us that the “pain” in the old brain is most activated with price. Not in absolute terms but rather in relative terms – such as fairness vs. unfairness, or alternative uses of dollars. Therefore, how you present or frame your prices could be driving customers away. How can you minimize activating the pain trigger with your price? Key lesson: From various posts by Roger Dooley (Neurosciencemarketing.com), key strategies include: Emphasize “sales” prices (which does not activate pain in the old brain). Utilize “package” pricing over pricing of individual components (the latter shows greater “pain activity in the old brain). Series of small “bite-size’ investments in place of one large investment (Netflix). 6. The old brain understands only what is tangible, physical and concrete. According to Patrick Renvoise, author, Neuromarketing: Is There A “Buy Button” In The Brain?, the old brain is constantly scanning for what is familiar and tangible. It does not understand numbers or abstract terms, like “integrated approach” or “comprehensive solution.” Key lesson: To speak to the old brain, you must use tangible “benefits” — i.e., what a customer will see, feel, hear, taste or smell as a result. E.g., a promise of “greater happiness” is gibberish to the old brain. Instead, tell your prospect how he/she will wake up every morning with a smile. Or use metaphors (such as referring to your service as the “Cadillac” offering) to make your benefits more tangible. 7. The old brain’s control over buying decisions varies from culture to culture. According to market researcher, Clotaire Rapaille, some cultures are very reptilian, such as the American culture. Americans want instant gratification. They have a bias for action. Other cultures – such as the French and German — are more cortex, control-oriented. Their bias is thinking over doing. Key lesson: Adapt your marketing communications to each culture and what part of their brain drives buying decisions. Use emotional appeal with Americans; use logic with European cultures. While neuromarketing is still in its infancy, it has the potential to revolutionize the way we market our products/services. The most important point is to use it for the right reasons. That is, as a way to better understand your customers and ultimately to better serve them. When used in this way, it can have a dramatic impact on your bottom-line. Buying 2.0 ©2009 The Empowered Business™. All Rights Reserved 8
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Denise Corcoran / CEO, The Empowered Business™ Leading expert in accelerated change, peak performance, organizational excellence and communication/ infuence mastery. A leadership and organizational consultant, growth strategist and NeuroLinguistic Programming (NLP) Master for over two decades, Denise has helped companies – from rising stars to multi- billion corporations – transform people and potential into profits and performance. Her groundbreaking solutions and transformational technologies work because they focus on: Deep Root Causes ... rather than surface symptoms. Sustainable Change and Results ... rather than short-term band aid fixes. Becoming Fundamentally Different ... rather than just incrementally better. What Denise’s Clients Are Saying “My leadership abilities, as President, have improved greatly, resulting in faster company growth and increased performance on our Executive team.” — Dale Ball, President, Ace Metal Crafts “My sales conversions have improved dramatically from 27% to 34% in less than 6 weeks, and now always exceeding company standards.” — Casey Martinez, Sales and Customer Service Professional “For the last 5 years, Denise’s coaching has increased individual and team performance at all levels, as well as improved the outlook and attitude of our organization. I highly recommend Denise for accelerated performance changes, even when it appears unchangeable.” — Mike Faith, CEO, Headsets.com “I am more confident, equipped and strategic--minded, as VP, Marketing/Sales, to help our company grow 200% in the next 2 years.” — Deb Benning, VP, Marketing and Sales Her unique “inside out” approach opens her clients’ eyes to a powerful new frontier of performance possibilities and competitive advantages. To contact Denise about how she can help you and your organization do the same, email denise@empoweredbusiness. com or visit http://www.empoweredbusiness.com. To contact Denise about how she can help you and your organization do the same or for a complimentary strategy session, email denise@empoweredbusiness.com, visit http://www.empoweredbusiness.com or view LinkedIn profile http://www.linkedin.com/in/ denisecorcoran Buying 2.0 ©2009 The Empowered Business™. All Rights Reserved 9
  • >ARTICLE 3< SALES 2.0: Why it is Imperative to Change the Way We Sell
  • Sales 2.0: Why it is Imperative to Change the Way We Sell By Anneke Seley Key Bullet Points: Many factors including rising cost of sales and changing customer preferences are requiring us to re-think traditional selling. Sales 2.0 is an innovative approach to sales, enabled by technology that increases sales productivity and effectiveness. Studies show that best-performing companies have implemented Sales 2.0 practices. Sales 2.0 companies of all sizes and across industries see increased revenue, decreased employee expense, and measurable ROI. Many companies are realizing that the traditional way they used to sell to their customers just isn’t working any more. In addition to the economy, which is forcing us to re-think our sales strategies to reduce cost and increase productivity, there are other factors that are making it urgent for organizations to shift gears. Customers’ communications preferences are changing – our buyers are reaching for the phone and their computers when they want information rather than requesting face-to-face meetings. Sales reps don’t have the power they used to have in a pre-Internet age, when they were the sole sources of product information. And customers are just plain sick of sales reps they can’t trust or rely upon to understand their personal situations. We can’t ignore the data: numerous studies now show that sales effectiveness and efficiency across industries and companies is decreasing by many measures. There is hope, though. An improved approach to sales called “Sales 2.0” can help companies avoid disastrous business results in the coming quarters. Sales 2.0, defined as “the use of innovative sales practices, focused on creating value for both buyer and seller, and enabled by Web 2.0 and next-generation technology,” reduces cost, increases productivity and improves sales effectiveness. Data from CSO Insights’ Sales Performance Optimization Report (source: csoinsights.com) show that surveyed Chief Sales Officers in companies that practice Sales 2.0 are the best-performing companies in terms of percentage of company revenue achieved, percentage of reps making their sales quotas, and percentage of deals won. Sales 2.0 practices include implementing consistent, dynamic sales processes, establishing long-term, trusted relationships with customers, and using the Internet in the sales process. Venture-backed companies with Sales 2.0 business plans are also having an easier time securing investments from venture capitalists. Gordon Ritter, founder and general partner at Emergence Capital, says, “Those companies employing Sales 2.0 practices give me the confidence I need to provide initial funding as well as continued investment.” As I’ve learned from my company’s almost twenty years of experience providing sales strategy and implementation consulting to 300 clients looking to improve sales, Sales 2.0 produces measurable business results. Our business, Phone Works LLC, helps clients build measurable, predictable, scalable sales teams. One Phone Works client, a software division that is part of a $1 billion company, increased its sales 12% while decreasing headcount 17% and increasing its sales team’s performance against quarterly quota15% after reinventing its sales organization using Sales 2.0 practices. After embracing a Sales 2.0 philosophy, another client - a medical device company -increased its qualified lead volume by 20% and generated over $7 million in incremental revenue, while increasing its average sales price by 25%. Our clients’ first year ROI for these projects was in the millions of dollars; their investments were under $100,000. How did we help these companies achieve these results? We started by redefining their sales strategy, closely aligning their sales and marketing efforts and restructuring their sales organizations to include telephone and Web (“inside”) sales organizations to reach new customers. In many business-to-business companies, the cost of selling traditionally, using expensive field sales forces that travel, is no longer justified when many customers prefer to research and even buy products using the Web and phone. One highly-effective Sales 2.0 strategy is partnering face-to-face salespeople with inside sales professionals that serve customers in the early parts of a sales cycle and build a pipeline of qualified leads. This frees up the field sales professionals to work with only the largest, most profitable customers that are most likely to buy. In this way, Sales 2.0 decreases costs and accelerates sales cycles, which improves revenue and profit. We also built measurable sales processes for our clients, which were customized to their customers’ buying processes. This gave us metrics with which to manage and predict results and make decisions. We evaluated their people and helped them think differently about how to engage authentically, personally, and in a trusted way with customers as well as how to communicate with them more efficiently. And we applied technology to the sales process to accelerate steps in the sales cycle that were stalling. These technologies included advanced web collaboration and marketing automation software. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Phone Works. All Rights Reserved 11
  • Sales 2.0, while highly effective, can be a challenge to implement. Because Sales 2.0 is transformative, it requires a change in mindset and a shift in culture that is best established at the executive level. A Sales 2.0 mindset includes recognizing that sales is not just an art – it can be a measurable, predictable “scientific” business function when the right processes are implemented that focus on what our customers need to achieve by buying our products. This change in thinking doesn’t happen overnight. Piloting, or rolling out initiatives in a limited and controlled way before launching them company-wide, typically yields the best acceptance and adoption. Patience is required when asking people to abandon the way they’ve sold all of their lives. While companies embracing Sales 2.0 typically realize improvements within three to six months, most report that it can take up to a year to see the true value of Sales 2.0 initiatives, including increased and more predictable revenue, lower cost of sales, competitive advantage, and increased market share. Sales 2.0 – a rethinking of sales strategy, people and process, and enabled by technology - is a proven approach to improving business results that can give companies an unfair competitive advantage. This is true in slow economic times as well as in boom times. IDC’s 2009 Sales Barometer and Top 10 Predictions report (source: idc.com) states, “savvy organizations will use the economic downturn as justification to replace direct sales “laggards” with well enabled inside sales. Customer (and employee) satisfaction and sales productivity will rise accordingly.” Why not get started with Sales 2.0 now? Buying 2.0 ©2009 Phone Works. All Rights Reserved 12
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Anneke Seley/ CEO, Phone Works Anneke Seley is the CEO and founder of Phone Works (www.phoneworks.com), a sales strategy and implementation consultancy that helps large and small businesses build and restructure sales teams to achieve predictable, measurable, and sustainable sales growth. As the 12th employee at Oracle, she designed the company’s revolutionary inside sales operation. Her book, Sales 2.0: Improve Business Results Using Innovative Sales Practices and Technology, is available at online retailers and www.sales20book.com. Testimonials “As founder of Oracle’s telephone sales group, Anneke Seley pioneered today’s modern selling techniques.” —Marc Benioff, Founder and CEO, salesforce.com “Sales 2.0 is a major trend that is approaching the tipping point. Seley and Holloway have written the rare business strategy book that is immediately actionable. It’s mandatory reading for sales professionals and business leaders alike.” —Geoffrey Moore, Best-Selling Author of Crossing the Chasm, Dealing with Darwin, and other books “Anneke has been an innovator in maximizing the efficiency and effectiveness of sales organizations, from the introduction of telesales channels to Web 2.0 communities, and has dramatically improved the way business is done.” —Craig Conway, Former CEO, PeopleSoft “The authors have been at the forefront of creating and defining the Sales 2.0 phenomenon and show you how to make money and achieve exceptional ROI with this approach.” —John Luongo, Former CEO, the Vantive Corporation “As a former Sales 1.0 professional, I can vouch for the fact that Sales 2.0 works. Since adopting a Sales 2.0 approach to selling, I have achieved increases in quota attainment as well as predictability in sales forecasts.” —Stu Schmidt, Vice President of Solutions Sales, Cisco WebEx Buying 2.0 ©2009 Phone Works. All Rights Reserved 13
  • >ARTICLE 4< MARKETING IN A “BUYING 2.0” WORLD: Transforming from an Art into a Science
  • Marketing in a “Buying 2.0” World: Transforming from an Art into a Science By Kathy Gogan, Topline Strategy Group Highlights: To respond to today’s more empowered buyer, companies need to take a more quantitative approach to all aspects of marketing. Executing marketing programs using today’s Web 2.0 technologies is not enough; you must also adapt your marketing process. Leverage the Internet to gain previously unavailable insight into your target buyer and hone your value proposition. With so many technology choices available today, select tools that align with the way your target customer wants to buy and the way you manage your marketing resources. Continuously monitor marketing performance at each stage of the sales process to understand exactly what’s working and what’s not — in enough detail to be able to take the right actions. With Web 2.0 changing the way companies use the Internet, the role of marketing has been turned inside out. Often considered an “art”, marketing is rapidly evolving to a “science.” Traditional marketing practices are no longer adequate to convert prospects into buyers. Gone are the days when you had 12 months to release a new version of your products or be the primary source of information to prospective buyers. Buyers are now in the driver’s seat – they research what products are in the market, learn who’s selling what, vote for their favorite product features, read comparative reviews, join a community with similar interests, and more – all without speaking to anyone at your company. Most of us have already embraced the Web – we have created web sites, sent email, and conducted online seminars but have you changed the process by which you engage with prospects and customers? Despite the introduction of technologies that make marketing execution faster and easier, it is harder and harder to generate great sales and marketing results. According to Sirius Decisions, “sales cycles have lengthened by 22% and involve 3.6 more decision makers compared to 3 years ago.” And with today’s economic slowdown, there are even fewer buyers so the stakes are even higher. 3 Key Components to “Marketing 2.0” To compete in today’s market; you need to adapt the process of marketing as well as the tools. While the importance of core marketing functions like getting the value proposition right has not changed, it is critical to leverage today’s Web 2.0 technologies to respond to a more empowered buyer from both a content and execution perspective. You can break your marketing strategy and process into three areas: Value Proposition - Your value proposition along with supporting content is your foundation and drives everything else. But you need to continuously monitor how it is resonating in the marketplace. Marketing Execution - Leverage Web 2.0 technologies to help you execute more effectively and at a lower cost. Analysis and Tracking - Measure marketing performance at each stage of the sales cycle in order to identify areas that need attention. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Topline Strategy Group. All Rights Reserved 15
  • Value Proposition One thing that has not changed in today’s environment is developing a compelling value proposition for your target market. Four key questions still need to be answered: Who am I selling to? (customer) Why are they buying anything? (level of pain) What do I have to sell them? (product) Why would they buy from me? (differentiator) However, what’s changed is that you can leverage the internet to get faster and better insight into these questions. A benefit of Web 2.0 is access to rich quantitative information about your buyer that was previously unavailable. Rather than solely relying on industry experts and limited market testing, leverage the internet to provide the data to help you validate your go-to-market with much higher confidence. Get real-time access to market data to help size a potential market. Start a blog or monitor the number of times your key words are searched to estimate how many people are looking for a solution like yours at this moment. Survey industry-affiliated groups to quantify the “pain versus gain” around your solution area. Analyze email response rates of different market segments to test where your message is resonating and where it is not. Poll users in an online community to help assess the value of new product features. After analyzing the results of these activities, you can more confidently assess your opportunity, hone your message, and develop your solution roadmap. However, getting your value proposition right is not a one-time effort. The market is constantly changing – with new technologies, new products from competitors, and new customer priorities. You should continuously monitor how the market is responding to your value proposition and evolve it as needed. Marketing Execution With the advent of the internet, the marketing function has undergone dramatic change. Previously, companies had to rely on teams of experts to execute on marketing campaigns – you needed a public relations firm, market research experts, creative designers, product marketing specialists, a direct marketing agency, events companies, and more. It was difficult for a small company to compete with the resources of a large firm. Today, all that has changed. With the help of marketing automation tools, a start-up with minimal in-house marketing resources can reach the same audience as a large company. You can post news on PRNewswire or Twitter, host an online conference with Webex, generate a demonstration of your product with Camtasia, publish a customer success story on YouTube, drive leads to your site with Google AdWords, update your website, or deploy an email marketing campaign – all at reasonable costs. Many of these new technologies are available on a subscription basis so it is even easier to get started without a big upfront investment. While experts in each area still add important value, it is much easier than ever before to engage buyers and customers. With all of these technology choices, how do you ensure you are making the right decisions? It comes back to understanding how your target customer wants to buy in a Web 2.0 world and aligning your marketing programs and tools to match. Every market is different; what works for a security software company, for example, may not work for a pharmaceutical drug manufacturer. No matter what programs you choose to execute, the critical factor is to measure the effectiveness of each program. Analysis of what is working and what is not will give you the information you need to keep improving your results. Analysis and Tracking The adage, “you can’t fix what you can’t measure,” is especially relevant in today’s rapidly changing environment. To effectively optimize marketing for Sales 2.0, it is critical to measure marketing performance at each stage of the sales funnel. No longer can sales and marketing operate as separate silos. Both functions need to be working together to maximize sales results. For example, when looking at the lead management process, it is not enough to maximize the number of leads provided to sales but to track those leads throughout the sales process to understand which ones turned into sales and why. With this insight, you can optimize future programs to get even better results. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Topline Strategy Group. All Rights Reserved 16
  • Below is a sample of a few key metrics that can be used to optimize marketing performance. By drilling into the data, you not only identify where the marketing process may be breaking down but also uncover what’s causing it to happen. Sales Stage Key Areas to Investigate Acquire - % Leads converted Messaging/value proposition, target buyer, alternatives - % Qualified leads Segmentation, qualification criteria Convert - % Opportunities Competitive alternatives, value - % No Decision Objections, compelling events, - % Wins/Losses Competitive differences, sales execution/enablement Retain and Grow - % Churn ROI, company execution, customer expectations - % Up-sell/cross-sell Additional customer needs Armed with this insight, you have a much greater ability to address the underperforming areas –regardless of whether it is related to content or execution. In conclusion, Web 2.0 has driven innovation in both the development of marketing content and execution. It has also shifted more power in the sales process from the seller to the buyer. While the “art’ of marketing is still important, marketing in a Buying 2,0 world is becoming more and more of a “science.” To compete in today’s environment, companies need to take a more quantitative approach to all aspects of marketing. Companies that continuously measure marketing performance throughout the marketing and sales process; use that information to improve their value proposition and execution; and leverage Web 2.0 technologies to reach buyers faster and more effectively will outperform their competitors. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Topline Strategy Group. All Rights Reserved 17
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Kathy Gogan/ General Partner, Topline Strategy Group Kathy Gogan, a general partner with Topline Strategy Group, helps companies accelerate sales at each stage of their lifecycle – with a particular focus on target marketing, demand generation, and leveraging technology to accelerate market success. Clients have included BEA, Cisco, Genesys Labs, Hewlett-Packard and Sun Microsystems as well as multiple start-up organizations, Kathy brings over 20 years experience in all aspects of enterprise marketing including solutions marketing, business development, partner marketing, communications, and demand creation for large, established companies as well as emerging businesses. Through executive management roles in companies such as Hewlett-Packard, Informix, Docent, and Responsys, she has developed extensive expertise defining new market opportunities, launching high technology products and services, and increasing marketing effectiveness. Please visit www. toplinestrategy.com for more information. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Topline Strategy Group. All Rights Reserved 18
  • >ARTICLE 5< MANAGING LEAD GEN CAMPAIGNS IN A 2.0 WORLD
  • Managing Lead Gen Campaigns in a 2.0 World By Mike DeCastro Synopsis Bullets Always the Contrarian: It’s the fundamentals; not the tech toys that guarantee marketing success. Old School Meets the 2.0 World: “If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” The 40-40-20 Rule: All marketing success is 40% offer, 40% media and only 20% creative. Field the Triple Play: Chase the business with direct mail, email and telesales. Do not wait for response. Always the Contrarian I’m, taking the contrarian view with this article. Truth is, I’ve always taken the contrarian view because experience has proven it is the only way to achieve breakthrough results. So, let’s get one thing straight right from the start: It’s the fundamentals that matter, not 2,0 technology. You need to understand that I am not a Luddite*. I have been involved with Internet marketing ever since Vice President Al Gore “invented the Internet.” Every day with every campaign, I employ advanced 2.0 technology and am usually 5 steps ahead of my clients. What’s vital for you to understand is that the new technology is just so many useless electrons unless marketers understand and can employ the tried-tested-and-proven direct marketing fundamentals. Email, persistent URL (PURL), data-driver personalization, computer adaptive testing (CAT), tweets and social media are merely window dressing, they are not the main attraction. Email technology, websites and digital printing are tools that enable us to do things faster and more efficiently than ever before while collecting copious amounts of data. But, these tools can also accelerate failure as efficiently as they rocket you to success. Too many marketers who are desperate, inexperienced, or poorly educated think that technology is the answer when it is merely another tool. A scalpel in the hands of a trained surgeon, is a magic wand to work miracles. In the hands of an ignorant lout, it’s nothing more than a very sharp knife. If you’re seeking ways to use blogs, social media, mail lists, email lists, email send and tracking, landing pages, PURL, personalized printing using digital variables, on-demand docs and video, and so on ad nauseum – stop reading now. In fact, if that’s your idea of how to succeed in today’s 2.0 marketing and sales world, you should probably give serious consideration to changing careers because you are definitely on the wrong path. You could know every trick in the book and still fail. In fact, this is precisely what happens 90% of the time in today’s 2.0 world. On the other hand, if you are serious about success, then read on. You will discover two fundamental rules that will guarantee spectacular results every time. The magic happens when you know how to apply the rules. Old School Meets the 2.0 World The funny thing about lead generation in our 2.0 world is that all the success secrets are strictly “Old School” direct marketing. The same principles still work today just like they did when John Caples penned the most famous headline in advertising history in 1926, They Laughed When I Sat Down At The Piano But When I Started To Play!— The secret of your success is to understand these principles and know how to put them to work for you. It’s a must-have skill set. Only then will you achieve spectacular results when you apply 2.0 lead generation marketing technology to accelerate success. Abraham Maslow said, “If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail.” 2.0 technology gives us a fabulous chest full of dynamic power tools. But the tools are only as good as the skilled hands that use them to amplify and enhance the results you can achieve when you employ the basic “Old School” principles. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Imagination Creative Services. All Rights Reserved 20
  • 2.0 technology gives us the ability to track buyer behavior. But, you must understand principles from other fundamental marketing disciplines to make sense of the data. Take a lesson from retail anthropology, for example. If you understand the significance of retail anthropology’s Butt Brush Phenomenon (explained below) you can apply the same principles to the home page, category pages and individual product pages of any e-commerce website as well as email, direct mail and sales literature. Take a good look at www.Amazon.com, or any email, website or collateral example at my website (http://imaginationhq.com/successtudies.htm) and you will see this in action. Simply put, simple pictures are best. Don’t crowd the physical or visual entry. This lesson was learned without the Internet anywhere in sight. It was discovered by analyzing security video in department stores and realizing that when female shoppers were faced with a jam-packed store entry foyer, they turned on their heels and left. Even more startling, when female shoppers were “butt brushed” while perusing crowed aisles, they dropped their purchases and bailed from the store. I’m not talking about sexual harassment here but simply having their posteriors nudged by shopping bags, other shoppers or merchandise tables, etc. The same applies to crowded web pages, poorly designed email, overstuffed sales brochures, and so on. 2.0 technology gives us tools to track email openings, multiple engagements with the email and know precisely when to call someone even if they have not clicked on an email link or gone to a landing page. We can directly connect email engagements with live telesales outreach at the call center. But, if you do not know what to say when you call, or do not tightly coordinate direct mail, email and telesales in perfect syncopation – what good is all that data? Right, it’s useless at best, counterproductive at worst. It is vital to understand that 2.0 technology alone does not produce anything at all. In fact, I have seen scores of campaigns that were tanked because the marketing team spent all its energy being enamored with its tech toys, dashboards, email tracks, flashy web banners and clever landing pages – while they completely missed out on the fact they were failing miserably because they ignored the fundamentals. In all fairness to these blunderers, they never knew the fundamentals in the first place. Read on, and you’ll discover the power of The 40-40-20 Rule and The Triple Play. Put them into action and you’ll avoid the shame of failed campaigns. The 40-40-20 Rule Lead generation marketing success is a numbers game. Regardless of the media channel and whether the campaign is offline, online, or in-the-mail – marketing success always depends on whether the 40-40-20 Rule is both respected and implemented correctly. Certainly not voodoo or urban myth, this is definitely rocket science as in launching your results into high orbit. The 40-40-20 means the success of your campaign always depends: 40% on the right media. You must plan and buy SMART (Specific, Manageable, Affordable, Repeatable, and Targeted). This applies to all media including mail and email lists, magazines, newspapers, TV and radio. But, before you can select media, you must have a clear profile of your audience and create accurate segmentation models. One size definitely does not fit all. 2.0 technology for digital printing, email and persistent URL (PURL) landing pages give us fabulous tools to personalize every message both online and offline. Before you can put all that technology to work, you must identify the audience segment profiles and then select the best media to reach them. I often find that commercially available mail, phone and email lists are very poor quality and only 50% deliverable on a very good day. This means building your own database through pre-qualification telesales. Results Snapshot: EmployerWare I created a new profile and audience segmentation for EmployerWare’s campaign to sell labor compliance posters to businesses. We eliminated unproductive segments and identified the market “Sweet Spot”. Lists were compiled from in-house data and third party sources. A Best-of-Breed file was created using records that had been pre-qualified by phone. The new campaign generated $2.5 million in new revenue within its first 60 days. 40% on a hot offer. A strong offer is not just a gimmick gift. The offer is everything about your company, product or service, branding and positioning; overlaid upon the prospects primary interest and dominant buying motive. It includes purchase incentives, free trials and executive gifts, but a sexy gift Buying 2.0 ©2009 Imagination Creative Services. All Rights Reserved 21
  • does not compensate for a half-baked offer. Create strategies that represent the whole offer including the audience’s perceptions, needs and wants plus the advertiser’s branding, reputation, integrity, and the campaign’s projected ROI. Your offer is the combination of whom and what you are plus whatever promotional incentive will capture audience attention, build their interest and ignite a desire to respond positively to your message. And, above all else, be generous, not cheap. The cost of B2B qualified lead acquisition today runs around $750-900 per lead. By comparison, a $100-250 incentive is chump change if it significantly increases qualified, closeable leads. The magic to making the ROI work for you happened during the first part of the 40-40-20 Rule when you profiled and segmented your audience. This way, you’ve narrowed the audience to the very best prospects and that magnifies the effectiveness and cost efficiency of your offer. Results Snapshot: Just Systems Consistent with the audience profile and list segmentation, I created a 3-way offer: free trial, purchase incentive, executive gifts for both taking the meeting and moving the buying process to the next phase. Prospects received a pair of authentic, US Military aviator sunglasses for taking the meeting. Take the next step, and we flew them for real on an aerobatic adventure in an authentic World War II warbird. The campaign produced a 200% increase in qualified sales meetings. And just 20% on creative. This is the tip of the spear. Hone it to a sharp point. Make it relevant. Using well- written copy and visually captivating design that communicates compellingly. Never start with the creative. Always end with it after you have done your homework which includes audience research, demographic segmentation, media planning that assures reaching the targeted segments, creating a solid offer that meets audience needs/wants and expectations. Only AFTER doing all that, should you even attempt tackling the creative. Why? Simple; it makes the creative process go down much easier since you know precisely what you must say and to whom you must say it. Edgy, trendy, snarky, corporate-speak creative seldom achieves effective results. Or, as David Ogilvy put it, “It isn’t creative if it doesn’t sell.” Results Snapshot: Astoria Software Blueprint For Success dimensional mailer to C and V-level prospects was enclosed in a large tube. Inside, the brochure was poster-sized and rolled as a blueprint. I created a talking card lift note. When opened, a 30-second recorded audio spot played. The campaign produced a 350% increase in qualified sales meetings. What this all adds up to is: If you have a great media plan, hot offer and good creative, you win! Good creative alone won’t make you rich, when 80% of your success depends on media and offer. A hot offer won’t make you rich, when 60% of your success depends on media. And, a great media buy alone won’t make you rich, when the other 60% of your campaign’s success depends on offer and creative. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Imagination Creative Services. All Rights Reserved 22
  • Field the Triple Play Triple Play strategy combines direct mail, email and telesales into a seamless, syncopated campaign that chases the business instead of waiting for response. It’s the perfect companion to a B2B lead generation campaign after you’ve covered the 40-40-20 Rule. Triple Play significantly amplifies lead generation and nurturing with a 5-step process: 1. Segment the marketplace, identify the market Sweet Spot, and create audience profiles. 2. Buy or build lists to reach the segments. Due to how bad commercially available lists are, you will most likely need to build them using a combination of house files and 3rd party lists. Apply telephone verification to a minimum of 10-20% of the total targeted universe. 3. Create compelling offers that work for direct mail, email and telesales. 4. Use direct mail and email outbound as icebreakers. Must be highly personalized including customized PURL landing pages. Use email technology that identifies multiple engagements with the email or landing page. Link this response behavior to telesales in real time. Anyone who visits the email three times but does not click through gets a call from the telesales team within 24 hours. 5. Chase the business with telesales. Timing is everything. First approach must synchronize with outbound icebreakers in the same week they were received. Drop 1st Class or Priority Mail on Saturday, drop email Monday night, and call Tue-Wed-Thurs. Scale so that no contacts that received mail & email are left untouched by at least one call during that week. Rinse and repeat the following week. Scale outbound up or down to suit calling capability and conversion. And most of all, track your results every step of the way. Ignore open rates. They are meaningless drivel. Track meaningful actions such as landing page registrations, free downloads, etc. Personalize everything and pre-populate landing page data because this alone will increase conversion around 65%. Do not sit back and wait for response. Chase it. Use technology from Exact Target and Email Labs that enables you to see multiple engagement with the email. People are distracted. If someone engages with an email three times, but does not click through – call that person immediately. Chase the business. Do not wait for prospects to respond to you. I have lost count of how many times our telesales reps have told tell us that their prospects said, “Perfect timing, I’m so glad you called. I’ve been meaning to follow up on this but something always got in the way …” Triple Play Results Snapshots AutoDesk, 400% increase Astoria Software, 350% increase Just Systems, 200% increase EmployerWare, $2.5 million revenue increase Sun Microsystems, beat the quota by 156% with a 1500% ROI These rules are not made to be broken. It does not matter what CRM system you employ, whether you blog or tweet, whether the campaign is in the postal mail, through email, online or offline – if you want to succeed beyond expectations, learn the rules. Note that they are “Rules” not suggestions, recommendations, ideas, experiences, best practices, vapid buzz words, or some cockeyed blue sky theories. Rules are established because the work every time, are measurable, repeatable and powerful. Follow them and you’ll win big. Break them at your peril. Use 2.0 technology to put rockets on results but do not be distracted by them. Tools are only as good as the craftsperson who wields them. * The Luddites were a 19th Century British social movement comprised of textile artisans smashed mechanized looms to protest ther technological advances of the Industrial Revolution. Luddites were convinced that technology would leave them without gainful employment. The term “Luddite fallacy” is a concept that claims labor-saving technologies that increase output-per-worker also increase unemployment by reducing demand for labor. As ample evidence proves, technology produces a more productive workforce and allows production to increase while maintaining, not decimating, the workforce. Today’s Luddites are people who are technologically unsophisticated. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Imagination Creative Services. All Rights Reserved 23
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Mike DeCastro/ President, Imagination Creative Services “Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat.” “Fortune favors the brave,” is the philosophy that drives Mike DeCastro’s life and the secret of his success. His direct marketing track record is measured in high ROI and sales conversion plus efficient management of marketing budgets. Since 1976, he has been providing marketing, business development, sales, advertising and creative consultation for business and consumer technology product and services, internet, telecom, aerospace, financial services and entertainment clients. He combines pinpoint strategy, razor- sharp creative and affordable tactics with irresistible offers that produce big results. Results are the best proof of capability. Mr. DeCastro’s work has worked for industry leaders including Cisco, Hewlett-Packard, Sun Microsystems, Loral, Autodesk, and many more firms large and small in a wide range of industries. His campaigns have recently produced results that included: 200% lift over expected goals for ArthroCare ENT 400% sell-through boost for Autodesk 350% conversion increase for Astoria Software Helping Haggin Marketing win the $54 million Dell account Generating 7-figure revenue increases with exciting and compelling content for online entertainment websites FlightSim.Com and ActionAce.com and much more. His clients call him: “A master of persuasive copy.” – Louis Briones, Executive Vice President,nWayfinder Response Marketing “Brilliant! A volcano of ideas.” – Carolyn Goodman, President, Goodman Marketing Partners “Dr. Email” – Rosalind Resnick, CEO, Double R Ventures “The Ferrari of copywriters.” – Nader Nejat, CEO, mOmega Mobile “A versatile writer who understands the issues surrounding writing for the Web. He produces quality content in a timely manner. I highly recommend him.” – John Claus, President, Marker Seven “Awesome!” –Jeff Haggin, CEO, Haggin Marketing For fun and relaxation. Mike surfs the frigid waters of the Pacific near his home in San Francisco and flies combat aerial maneuvers in vintage World War II warbirds such as the Navy SNJ AT-6 trainer shown here. “Pulling Gs in the crystal blue skies over the Nevada Desert and dropping down the face of a double-overhead wave for a tube ride are the best ways I know to clear my head for the next marketing challenge.” To learn more, contact Mike DeCastro at Mike@imaginationHQ.com or visit www.imaginationHQ.com . Buying 2.0 ©2009 Imagination Creative Services. All Rights Reserved 24
  • >ARTICLE 6< WINNING IN A WEB 2.0 WORLD: Metrics-Driven Success
  • Winning in a Web 2.0 World: Metrics-Driven Success By Jerry Hart Summary What is Social Media? Measuring Social Media. How are customers moving to Social Media? What are the business applications of Social Media technologies? New means of reaching customers. Where should I invest my marketing dollars? What is Social Media Social Media is simply a phase in the evolution of the World Wide Web. The overarching characteristic of this phase is that the Web is no longer simply about information, it is now about interaction. There are new and existing technologies associated with Social Media —from blogs to social networks to AJAX. These technologies enable consumers to interact with your company and other consumers, participate in and influence discussions, and control their experience. According to Wired magazine: Social Media is Participation Openness Conversation Community Connectedness What does this all mean to your business? Consumers are now better equipped, and accustomed to more interactive relationships, sustained over a longer period of time. As options for communicating with consumers expand, companies have an increasingly difficult task of determining where to invest their scarce resources. To make the best investment decisions, you need a measurement strategy and solution that enables you to track and monitor the business impact of Social Media, particularly as it relates to your traditional digital marketing investments. Internet Ad spending set to Web analytics is of course not new, but there are new Overtake All Other Media by 2010 requirements for measuring in the Social Media world. Companies that are able to effectively measure all their web interactions with visitors — whether Social Media or (Source: Ad Age) traditional web — will enjoy a competitive advantage. While the value of measuring unique visitors (as opposed simply to clicks and visits) has always been important, the Social Media paradigm accentuates this importance. Winning in a Social Media world means that you need to measure and value engagement with your consumers. It is no longer about conversion at a point in time. It is now about the nature of the relationship over time, and the many ways that an individual can add value to your business. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Hart Creative. All Rights Reserved 26
  • Measuring Social Media This white paper focuses specifically on the nuances of measuring Social Media technologies. It is not intended to be a comprehensive resource book on Social Media, but rather a guide to the new measurements required to evaluate those areas of Social Media that create opportunities for businesses to leapfrog their competition. Analysis is fundamentally about answering questions, and there are several unique questions businesses need to understand as they embark on utilizing Social Media technologies: How are my customers moving to the Social Media paradigm? What indicators tell me it makes sense to adopt these technologies? Does my target market participate in blogs? Do I service a demographic that actively consumes streaming media and podcasts? How do I know when my use of these new technologies is successful, and how do they compare to other opportunities? In other words, where should I invest my marketing dollars? How are my customers moving to Social Media? The first question you need to consider is how Social Media technologies are being adopted by your customer base. Are your customers likely to participate in user-generated content? Will your site visitors read and comment on blogs? Will they share their views in user reviews? If your target audience is loyal and passionate about your company, providing them an opportunity to share their views can be extremely valuable, enabling them to influence others. Do your users have a special skill or knowledge that relates to your product or service? If so, wikis and forums are a great way for them to contribute to the body of knowledge around your The only thing in life worse than being products and services, enriching their experience and that of others. talked about is not being talked about Are your customers likely to be comfortable (Oscar Wilde) with rich internet applications that function somewhat differently from those to which they are accustomed? Is your user base change averse? The more accepting of change your audience is, the more rapidly you can adopt Social Media technologies. Have your competitors deployed leading technologies? If so, you may want to escalate your adoption of Social Media. Do your customers frequent sites that have leading edge technologies? A positive response indicates that your customers are ready to accept Social Media technologies. Do you serve a technically savvy group of customers? If your target market readily adapts the latest technologies, Social Media technologies are likely an excellent way to invest your resources. If your customers are slow How will you use the power adopters, consider waiting until they are farther along in the adoption curve. of Web 2.0? The answers to these questions will guide you in selecting the Social Media technologies that are best for your audience. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Hart Creative. All Rights Reserved 27
  • What are the business applications of Social Media technologies? There are a number of technologies associated with Social Media that enable interaction, participation and consumer control over their experience. Social Media technologies serve three key functions: Enabling users to develop content Providing new means to reach a target audience Providing richer, more interactive applications that give visitors more control. Each of these capabilities and its associated technologies provide different value to companies, and each needs to be measured and tracked in its own way. However, they share common characteristics that drive the need for new measurement strategies. New means of reaching customers RSS For example, RSS feeds are gaining popularity with many companies. Travel companies, such as Orbitz, are using RSS as an alternative to email for pushing promotions to consumers. Likewise, companies like Circuit City are using RSS feeds to push promotions to loyal visitors. Perhaps more than any other site type, media sites like MSNBC make extensive use of RSS to push out content to their loyal readers. Podcasting Podcasts are another new way to reach consumers. KeyBank suspected that podcasting would be effective means of reaching customers, and launched a podcast program featuring a well-known financial analyst who speaks about industry forecasts and market trends. KeyBank’s program resulted in 70,000 podcast downloads in 2006. Other businesses are leveraging podcasts by identifying existing Where should I invest my marketing dollars? Social Media marks a shift in how you interact with consumers, with increased focus on longer term relationships. Of course, immediate conversions—such as sales—are still critical to measure. But understanding your visitors and customers over time is an increasingly important aspect of this new paradigm. The good news is that you can take an incremental approach or jump in with both feet. The sooner you begin, the sooner you reap the benefits. Buying 2.0 ©2009 Hart Creative. All Rights Reserved 28
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR Jerry Hart/ Founder, JerryHart.com, HartCreativeMarketing.com, HartofGreen.com Founder of Hart Creative Marketing.com, Jerry Hart.com, Hart of Green.com, offering social media solutions to businesses and organizations that want to use social media and social networks to build deep customer relationships, promote brands and deliver value. Author of Blueprint to eMarketing, (Blueprint Press, Sept. 2006) Printed in 7 languages Morning Show Radio Personality, including KISS FM in San Francisco. Consultant to Fortune 500 companies as well as mid-size companies, startups and nonprofits. Frequent speaker and panelist at technology and new media conferences. Brother is the drummer of the “Grateful Dead,” Mickey Hart. Father was the manager. Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jerryhart Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/jerryhart67 Testimonials: BRILLIANT, GENIUS, EXTRAORDINARY as I knew it would be with your Hart magic! THANK YOU — Chris Harvey, BARF World, http://www.barfworld.com “…with Jerry Hart, our Rewards Program eCampaigns continue to produce astonishing 98% conversion rates” From the ground up, McAfee campaigns are designed to maximize conversion. In an industry where average conversion rates are 40 to 60%, our Rewards Program campaign with the assistance of Jerry Hart’s powerful internet strategies, produced astonishing 98% response rates. — Ken Madsen (Marketing Preferred Vendor), Principal, Riley Design Associates LLC “Jerry brought home the mysteries of internet marketing in a clear, understandable manner. Our website is now a marketing machine.” —Susan Neuman, APR, President, Susan Neuman, Inc., City of Miami Public Relations & Marketing, http://www.festivalsmiami.com/ Buying 2.0 ©2009 Hart Creative. All Rights Reserved 29