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Higher sales goals are a fact of life in business, as growth is expected—if not demanded—by investors. But, as companies raise the revenue bar, sales and marketing leaders need to ask themselves, “What is going to be different to allow our teams to hit these higher targets?”

The 2013 Lead Management Optimization study, highlights what marketing’s role could/should be in helping sales achieve their revenue goals. Read the full report here.

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2013 Lead Management Optimization Study 2013 Lead Management Optimization Study Document Transcript

  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization Study Key Trends Analysis Compliments of:
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Acknowledgments We would like to thank all of the sales executives who annually share the data related to their lead generation and marketing efforts and the best practices they employ to optimize how they create demand for their products and services. Without their support and insights, the development of the research knowledge base used in the creation of the 2013 Lead Management Optimization study would not be possible. Next, we would like to thank the following marketing effectiveness companies for their partnership and thought leadership support for this project: ConnectAndSell, LeadLife, and The SAVO Group. We owe a debt of gratitude to many colleagues, mentors, and advisors whose help made this project possible. To list them all would be impossible, but a couple deserve special mention: 3FORWARD and The Pedowitz Group. Finally, we would like to thank our editing team whose hard work, diligence, and endless hours made this project possible. Thanks to Dr. Diane Hodges, Andy Jesmok, and Kim Cameron.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Table of Contents 2013 Lead Management Optimization Study Introduction ......................................... 1 Lead Generation 2013: Doing “More” versus “Better” ............................................... 2 Right Alignment Assessment ....................................................................................... 5 Right Prospects Assessment ....................................................................................... 7 Right Messaging Assessment ...................................................................................... 9 Right Campaigns Assessment ................................................................................... 11 Right Technology Assessment .................................................................................. 13 Right Scoring Assessment ......................................................................................... 15 Right Conversion Assessment................................................................................... 17 Right Nurturing Assessment ...................................................................................... 19 Right Engagement Assessment ................................................................................. 21 Right Evolution Assessment ...................................................................................... 23 Going Forward Recommendations ............................................................................ 25
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization Study Introduction In February 2013, we published the results of CSO Insights’ 19th annual Sales Performance Optimization study, in which we noted that 92% of the 1,100+ firms surveyed had increased revenue targets when compared to 2012. Higher sales goals are a fact of life in business, as growth is expected—if not demanded—by investors. But, as companies raise the revenue bar, sales and marketing leaders need to ask themselves, “What is going to be different to allow our teams to hit these higher targets?” The 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study focused on what sales teams can do to increase their efficiency and effectiveness. We followed this report with the 2013 Sales Management Optimization study, which highlighted what the people leading our sales teams can do differently to increase sales performance. Now, it is time to turn our attention to what marketing’s role could/should be in helping sales achieve their revenue goals. In the following 2013 Lead Management Optimization Key Trends Analysis we share the input received from our 9th annual study. We focus on what marketing is seeking to accomplish in relationship to creating demand for their companies’ products and services, and how effectively they are supporting the efforts of sales to turn interest into revenue. The Lead Management Optimization research initiative gathered input on over 100 metrics from 600+ firms. Data for the study were collected using a web-based survey tool designed to be completed in 15–20 minutes. Participants had the option to sign-off from the site and continue where they left off if they needed to gather more information or had a time constraint. “Not Applicable” and “Do Not Know” were offered as acceptable choices for many of the questions related to their company’s lead generation efforts. We sought participation from multiple industries. Technology firms (software, hardware, and telecom) represented the largest group of participants, followed by services-related firms (financial services, high tech, general business, advertising/PR, etc.). Traditional manufacturing firms and “other” (non-profits, education, distribution, automotive, pharmaceutical, healthcare, travel, retail, etc.) also contributed to the study results. Regarding geographic coverage, 65.8% of the participating firms were based in the United States, while the remaining 34.2% were international companies. An analysis of the data by industry or company size is available to Advisory Services clients by contacting their CSO Insights analyst. Anyone wishing to obtain these analyses or is interested in benchmark information for their firm should email Laura Andrus. Also, you can email Kim Cameron for a complete list of the survey questions. © CSO Insights 1 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Lead Generation 2013: Doing “More” versus “Better” Through our sales and marketing excellence benchmarking efforts this past year, we saw numerous cases where marketing was clearly committed to improving the level of support delivered to sales. In interviewing CMOs on how they intend to turn that desire into reality, we heard a mix of strategies which either focused on doing more, better, or both. Based on this, assessing the potential for marketing to increase the volume of their lead generation efforts was an area of focus in the 2013 Lead Management Optimization research. To begin this analysis, we asked study participants to compare their 2012 and 2013 marketing budgets. Figure 1 summarizes their responses. Figure 1: Few Marketing Budgets Increased in 2013 The percentages of firms that froze or reduced their marketing spend for the year increased from 31.7% in 2012 to 42.5% this year. On the other end of the spectrum, the percentage of firms that received a budget increase of >10% dropped during the past year from 33.1% to 19.1%. Based on these findings, relying on “more” is not an option for many marketing organizations. With this in mind, what can marketing do “better” to deliver a higher level of services and support to sales teams? We conducted an analysis of best-in-class lead generation programs. Ten key factors surfaced that increase the performance of lead generation efforts and hinder them when absent. In discussing these findings with our Advisory Board, the image of a process cycle emerged which provided a useful framework for presenting the key findings from the 2013 Lead Management Optimization study. Figure 2 introduces these lead management optimization attributes. © CSO Insights 2 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Lead Management Optimization Life Cycle™ Right Alignment Right Evolution Right Prospects Right Engagement Right Messaging Right Nurturing Right Campaigns Right Conversion Right Technology Right Scoring Figure 2: Process Steps in an Optimal Lead Management Life Cycle  Right Alignment: The cycle starts with marketing and sales aligned with the objectives that need to be accomplished, what needs to be done to achieve them, and who has ownership for each task.  Right Prospects: Marketing prioritizes which types of existing and potential customers to engage that support their objectives and ensures they have access to accurate information that will allow them to actually “connect” with these individuals.  Right Messaging: Realizing that multiple stakeholders often need to be engaged to motivate the start of a buy cycle, marketing develops targeted messaging to generate interest with each of the different types of prospects. © CSO Insights 3 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis  Right Campaigns: To deliver these messages, marketing executes campaigns using the most effective combination of traditional, web-based, and social media lead generation programs to reach their target audiences.  Right Technology: Marketing leverages technology to effectively execute the lead generation campaigns and actively manages the leads generated.  Right Scoring: As prospects respond to these campaigns, marketing assesses which leads are marketing qualified and sales qualified. Each lead type is handled appropriately.  Right Conversion: Marketing and sales are responsible for converting leads into initial discussions and providing prospects access to the right collateral and tools to motivate them to begin a buy cycle.  Right Nurturing: When a qualified prospect is unable to commit to starting a buy cycle, marketing initiates a formalized lead nurturing program to keep the solution provider (your company) top-of-mind with the prospect and regularly assesses their interest level.  Right Engagement: Sales accesses the right collateral, tools, and support needed to navigate qualified prospects efficiently and effectively through all of the steps in the sales process and provides marketing feedback on the effectiveness of the marketing generated services.  Right Evolution: With the right systems in place, marketing tracks the disposition of leads through the sales process and generates metrics to make knowledge-based decisions on how to optimize future lead generation efforts. On the following pages, we explore each of the attributes of the Lead Management Optimization Life Cycle™ in more detail. As we do, we encourage you to assess your organization’s performance in each of these areas. Since doing things “better” is the path to success for many companies, this self-exploration can help you see where attention and resources need to be focused within your company to optimize lead generation efforts this year and into the future. Once you have completed that assessment, Advisory Services members should contact their CSO Insights analyst to schedule a briefing call on the best practices other marketing teams have implemented to address similar issues you are facing today. Questions or comments on the findings from this study can be directed to: Jim Dickie Managing Partner CSO Insights (303) 521-4410 jim.dickie@csoinsights.com Barry Trailer Managing Partner CSO Insights (916) 712-9621 barry.trailer@csoinsights.com © CSO Insights 4 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Alignment Assessment Key Findings Commentary  New customer acquisition is a shared top objective. For all the talk about improving sales and marketing alignment, we were interested to see how the findings from the 2013 Lead Management Optimization study would compare to the 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study. At the highest level, we found the two organizations are on the same page.  Both marketing and sales are focused on expanding the existing base.  Macro-level objectives are not always aligned with micro-level programs. The chart above shows the summary of responses from 2013 Lead Management Optimization study participants on their top three objectives for this year. The figures associated with the red bars are the top objectives for sales organizations, as found in the 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study. Topping the list for both marketing and sales is increasing new customer acquisitions. In analyzing the 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study data, 92% of the firms stated they were increasing their revenue goals for this year. Of that number, over 40% of sales organizations were looking at revenue increases of more than 15%. The Sales Performance Optimization findings clearly show that sales is looking to expand market share as a critical success factor for hitting their goals. The 2013 Lead Management Optimization study data show that marketing shares this objective. Marketing wants to support sales in maintaining/expanding walletshare as well. They plan to focus on multiple lead generation © CSO Insights 5 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis efforts designed to renew and sell more products and services to existing customers. But, as with all good intentions, the devil is in the details. We added a new question to the 2013 Lead Management Optimization. We asked marketing to rate their ability to align their lead generation campaigns to specific sales objectives. The chart below shows that few companies consider this to be marketing’s core competency. On the following pages we review a number of factors impacting marketing’s efforts at this aspect of lead generation. These include data quality (page 7); the ability to develop effective/targeted messages (page 9); the ability to provide sales with the tools they need throughout the sales process (page 20); and the ability to get feedback on which marketing programs are working/not working (page 23). Notes: © CSO Insights 6 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Prospects Assessment Key Findings Commentary  New and existing customer revenue goals are at risk due to continuing data quality challenges. If companies cannot get their messages to stakeholders, then lead generation efforts are doomed before they start. In the chart above, we see the seemingly never-ending challenge to ensure that marketing continues to have accurate data on customers and prospects.  Data accuracy is aligned to the success that marketing has in generating leads for sales.  Use of Sales Intelligence services is higher, user reviews are mixed. In fact, when comparing the 2013 findings to the 2012 Lead Management Optimization survey, performance in this area is actually getting worse. For example, there is a 5% decrease in the number of firms reporting customer data accuracy of >90%. On the prospect data side, the number of firms with accuracy of ≤50% increased by 8% on a year-over-year basis. We did a deeper analysis of marketing’s ability to generate leads for sales and saw a clear trend line. The higher the level of customer and prospect data accuracy, the higher the volume of leads marketing is able to generate for sales. The question then becomes, “How do you get there?” The 2013 Lead Management Optimization study found that 69.8% of the firms are utilizing Sales Intelligence services to help increase the quantity and quality of customer and prospect data. Of these companies, 78.3% subscribe to two or more services. But a word of caution: not all services are viewed as equal. © CSO Insights 7 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis The following chart shows the responses from the 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study when survey participants were asked if they would recommend their primary Sales Intelligence provider to their peers. As we have noted in the past, “Somewhat Likely” ratings are often a polite way of saying “Unlikely.” Advisory Services clients who want a full ratings review on various Sales Intelligence service providers should contact their CSO Insights analyst to schedule a briefing. Notes: © CSO Insights 8 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Messaging Assessment Key Findings Commentary  Messaging to the marketplace is an issue for many firms. Everyone is bombarded by marketing campaigns from a variety of sources. As you will see in the next analysis, messaging matters if you want people to pay attention to what you have to say. In the chart above, we see that developing an effective message is a challenge for many companies.  Increase in the number of stakeholders makes messaging more challenging.  Analytics are useful in optimizing messaging effectiveness. One factor that the 2013 Sales Performance Optimization study surfaced is that messaging cannot come in just one flavor. The chart on the following page shows a summary of the responses to the question of how many decision makers are involved in a typical deal. The average is 4.5 individuals involved in the final buying decision. This puts a burden on marketing to craft individualized messages for each of the stakeholders who might be able to start a sales opportunity for a rep. © CSO Insights 9 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis One factor that can positively impact messaging effectiveness when leveraged correctly is analytics—also known as Big Data. There is a growing number of marketing teams analyzing both structured and unstructured potential prospect data and leveraging insights uncovered to more effectively develop targeted messages. The table below shows that as proficiency at leveraging analytics increases, messaging effectiveness also improves. Ability to Leverage Analytics as Related to Messaging Effectiveness Analytics Usage: Excellent Analytics Usage: Above Average Analytics Usage: Average Analytics Usage: Poor Messaging: Meets Expectations Messaging: Exceeds Expectations 46.2% 54.7% 46.5% 28.7% 35.9% 15.1% 4.5% 4.3% Notes: © CSO Insights 10 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Morgan Creek's Quarterly Update Conference Calls Right Campaigns Assessment Key Findings Commentary  It is not an issue of the right method, but rather the right mix of methods. CSO Insights has been tracking the paradigm shift in the types of campaigns that marketing turns to in order to generate leads. The chart above is a summary of the 2013 Lead Management Optimization study data on the top three most effective marketing campaign programs this past year. The first thing that is clear is that marketers have a lot of things they could do, and they are placing different bets on what they then should do.  Several program types are declining in ratings, one is on the rise.  Shifts in lead generation investments show marketing embracing newer alternatives. To give a historical perspective when viewing the chart above, let’s revisit some numbers from the 2010 Lead Management Optimization study. We found noticeable downward shifts in the frequency ratings of many marketing campaigns:     Email Marketing rating: 61.5% Website Registration rating: 32.6% Webinar rating: 31.1% SEO, Paid Search, Google AdWords rating: 27.2% Of the remaining campaign types cited in the chart above, the data showed minor differences in ratings from 2010 to today, with one exception: Social Media. The frequency rating rose from 12.3% to 21.8% in the past three years. However, 70.6% of the © CSO Insights 11 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis firms stated they need to improve their social media lead generation efforts. We asked the study participants a follow-on question to the one above: Based on the results you have achieved, how will your investments change going forward? The following chart summarizes their responses. Web Design and Content and Social Media will be the biggest beneficiaries of budget reallocations, whereas Paid Search, SEO, Google AdWords, Telemarketing, Online Advertising, and Direct Mail will see the biggest budget hits. Notes: © CSO Insights 12 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Generation Optimization Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – – Key Trends Analysis Right Technology Assessment 0 Key Findings Commentary  By the end of 2013, firms using Lead Generation Management systems will be in the majority. Marketing’s adoption of technology continues to increase as companies realize they need new tools and processes to not just develop and execute campaigns, but to track and measure the ROI as well. By year end, we expect to see adoption rates topping at least 50%, if not 60%. This being said, the following chart shows the stages in the adoption cycle where many companies reside, and we see that 56.8% have been in operation for less than two years.  Many lead generation teams are still in the early adoption period.  Having the tools doesn’t mean they are optimally used. © CSO Insights 13 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis In addition to helping companies design, execute, and more effectively manage lead generation campaigns, survey results reveal three added trends driving commercial Lead Generation Management systems adoption.    Social Media Campaign Management: Lead Generation Management systems have the functionality to help manage a company’s marketing efforts on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and more. Lead-to-Revenue Metrics: The analytics in Lead Generation Management systems can provide marketing with greater visibility into which campaigns are moving the revenue dial. The number of metrics identified by companies to determine lead generation ROI is on page 23. Big Data Support: Lead Generation Management systems are increasingly utilizing Big Data to track the digital body language of prospects, which helps to better assess which leads are sales-ready, which opportunities are worth adding to the forecast, which should be dropped, and more. While CSO Insights is becoming increasingly bullish about the power of Lead Generation Management systems, let us share a dose of reality. Years ago, Jessica Keyes shared the following observation in her book, InfoTrends: Technology does not beget a competitive advantage any more than paint and canvas begat a Van Gogh. A Lead Generation Management system alone does not improve lead generation performance—it is how the system is used. With this in mind, when evaluating Lead Generation Management solutions, look beyond the product. Look for the expertise that the solution provider brings to the table, find out about their partners, and determine if they offer services to help you learn about concepts such as lead scoring, lead nurturing, sales-ready leads, leveraging Big Data, etc. Our view is that the value-add services that solution providers offer marketing teams is equal to, if not more important than, the technology platform they provide. Notes: © CSO Insights 14 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Scoring Assessment Key Findings Commentary  Only one in four firms uses a formal lead scoring process. Lead scoring is one area of Lead Generation Management where increases in the number of firms are attempting to bring more science than art to their demand generation efforts. Lead scoring is the method by which marketing measures prospect buying interest and intent.  Effective scoring reduces the number of leads sent to sales and dramatically increases close rates.  Use of Lead Generation Management systems is tied to adoption of lead scoring. As the chart above illustrates, 35.8% of companies have not yet jumped on this bandwagon, as opposed to 64.2% that have. When looking at firms that have adopted a lead scoring process, there is a split between the formalities of that process. A deeper analysis of the data was conducted to see what, if any, impact lead scoring had on marketing and sales’ performance. The results showed that when companies went from no scoring to informal scoring, or from informal to formal scoring, marketing and sales’ performance improved as shown in this list.    The number of leads marketing sends to sales decreases. While this may sound bad, sales’ subsequent follow-up rate went up. The conversion rate of leads to first meetings is also higher for the formal scoring group, but the data shown below are the real litmus tests. © CSO Insights 15 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis The table below shows the close rates for marketing-generated leads accepted and followed up by sales. Informal lead scoring companies ultimately closed more deals than companies with no formal lead scoring in place, whereas firms with a formal scoring method ultimately closed more deals than both of their counterparts. Lead Scoring as Related to Percentage of MarketingGenerated Leads Ultimately Closing Ultimate Close Rate >40% Ultimate Close Rate 26% – 40% Lead Scoring: Formal Lead Scoring: Informal Lead Scoring: None 15.5% 14.8% 9.1% 33.6% 24.3% 8.4% So, how do you make lead scoring work for your firm? The right tools can help. The table below shows that companies that implement a Lead Generation Management system are far more likely to utilize lead scoring in their demand generation cycles than those that do not have/use these applications. Lead Scoring Process as Related to Lead Generation Management Usage Leveraging Lead Generation Management Not Using Lead Generation Management Lead Scoring: Formal Lead Scoring: Informal Lead Scoring: None 44.7% 36.6% 20.7% 11.4% 44.5% 44.1% Full details of this analysis are available. Contact your CSO Insights analyst to receive your copy. Notes: © CSO Insights 16 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead ManagementOptimization KeyKeyTrends Analysis 2010 Lead Generation Optimization––Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Trends Analysis Which of the following best describes how Assessment handles lead scoring? Right Conversion your company Key Findings Commentary  Not all leads given to sales are followed-up. The 2013 Lead Management Optimization study data show that, on average, 47.1% of leads generated by marketing are turned over to sales. The chart above shows the percentage of marketing-generated leads actively pursued by sales. It also reveals that many leads fall through the cracks.  Noticeable increase seen in the percentage of leads that sales converts to a first call. So, what happens to the leads sales does go after? The following chart shows the conversion rate of leads pursued by sales that turn into a first call.  Some marketing teams are responding well to changes in dynamics of seller/buyer conversations. © CSO Insights 17 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis The figures above show a significant improvement over the 2012 Lead Management Optimization study results. Last year, a conversion rate of more than 75% was reported by only 13.9% of the firms surveyed. This year, the percentage is 18.5%. Conversely, at the low-end of performance, the 2012 study found that 33.1% of companies had a first discussion conversion rate of less than 25%, compared to 22.5% this year. The study surfaced one factor that can improve conversion rates: the effectiveness of the content and tools that sales receives from marketing to help convince prospects that they should agree to talk further with a sales rep. Over the past couple of years, we have written on how the Internet is changing buying; prospects can get a wealth of product information before talking with a rep, gain competitive insights, and more. Because of this, companies need to arm reps with new knowledge and insights that the potential buyer has not seen. The table below shows that when marketing accomplishes this, salespeople can convince more prospects to move to the next step in the sales cycle—the first needs analysis/discussion. Conversion Rate to First Discussion as Related to Marketing’s Ability to Provide Tools and Content Marketing Tools and Content – Exceeds Expectations Marketing Tools and Content – Meets Expectations Marketing Tools and Content – Needs Improvement Conversion Rate: Lead to First Discussion >75% 42.8% 32.7% 11.1% Notes: © CSO Insights 18 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Nurturing Assessment Key Findings Commentary  A variety of options is available for lead nurturing. So, what about the sales-ready leads that do not turn into opportunities? The chart above shows that the vast majority of companies are conducting some form of lead nurturing. However, who owns the task differs widely. Does ownership matter? The following table sheds some light on this question.  Additional lead to opportunity conversions occur most often when sales and marketing are both involved. Impact of Nurturing on Lead Conversion as Related to Ownership of the Task Significant Increase Increase Minimal Impact Do Not Know Nurturing: Sales Owns Nurturing: Blended Ownership Nurturing: Marketing Owns 15.0% 55.1% 18.7% 11.2% 39.6% 49.5% 8.8% 2.2% 23.5% 46.4% 12.6% 17.5%  Reengagement response time is The table above reveals that lead nurturing generally can have a key to success. positive impact on the number of leads that turn into sales opportunities. As noted in the introduction, the majority of companies do not have significantly more money to spend on lead generation campaigns; therefore, anything that can increase the ROI of the campaigns companies are running is of value. In this regard, lead nurturing should be given a fair amount of attention. © CSO Insights 19 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis The table above shows that the best approach to generating the greatest results is where nurturing is co-managed by sales and marketing. Often in this blended process sales and marketing utilize their various CRM and Lead Generation Management tools to track prospect behavior. When the Lead Generation Management system detects that a prospect in the nurturing program has returned to the website to view information or to the microsite to view a demo, the appropriate salesperson is automatically notified that it is time to reengage. Our benchmarking has shown this timely response is key to maximizing the impact of lead nurturing. A best practice is not continually calling or emailing a prospect to ask if anything has changed, but rather using technology in an effective way to monitor buyer behavior. When prospects start their reeducation process online, you know it is time to reconnect. Notes: © CSO Insights 20 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Right Engagement Assessment Key Findings Commentary  New Metric: Improvement frequently is needed in the materials and tools used during the sales process. As mentioned in the introduction, our Advisory Board requested that we expand our thinking on the lead management process to include assessing how effective marketing is at providing the support services that sales need to execute all of the steps in the sales process.  One barrier is lack of visibility into what tools are/are not working.  CRM 2.0 Sales Knowledge Management offers ways to get feedback from sales. To accomplish this, we added several new questions to the 2013 Lead Management Optimization survey. These questions focused on marketing’s creation of sales tools and collateral, the use of these tools by sales, and the type of feedback loop (if any) to help marketing understand what is and is not being used and what is and is not effective. The chart above shows that few marketing teams give themselves an “A” grade, while Needs Improvement ratings are fairly common. This reinforces what our Advisory Board said: The generation of qualified leads and the ability to convert them into first discussions is part of the equation, but not all of it. If sales doesn’t have the tools to navigate the client through the entire sales cycle, then deals may go to competitors or end up as no decisions. © CSO Insights 21 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis In looking more deeply into the issue of getting feedback to marketing on the sales knowledge assets provided to sales, many companies are struggling with ways to measure the effectiveness of the content and tools that sales utilize. The chart below shows the effectiveness ratings. As Peter Drucker observed: You cannot manage what you cannot measure. CRM 2.0 sales enablement platforms are showing that they can help answer the challenge of tracking content and sales’ tool utilization and effectiveness. These solutions connect sellers to the tools they need, help them identify and interact with subjectmatter-experts, and allow them to collaborate with other team members. They can track these activities to give marketing insights into usage, as well as solicit feedback from sales on which tools are helping them close deals. For an overview of the various options available to better support marketing and sales alignment in this area, Advisory Services clients can set up a briefing on sales engagement solutions with their CSO Insights analyst. Notes: . © CSO Insights 22 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Trends Analysis Analysis Key Trends 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Right Evolution Assessment Key Findings Commentary  Impressions are nice, but real revenue is better. Over the past five years, it has been interesting to watch the rise in importance of linking leads to closed deals when marketing is assessing the ROI of their lead generation efforts. In our 2008 Lead Management Optimization study, 66% of firms reported the amount of revenue that ultimately closed as a key metric. The chart above shows this percentage has significantly increased.  Tracking the disposition of leads requires integration between Lead Generation and CRM systems.  Improved analytics are required for marketing to better target future efforts based on past successes and failures. © CSO Insights 23 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Looking at this and the other metrics, it becomes clear that marketing needs visibility into what happens to leads accepted by sales. The above chart shows that this is a challenge for many firms. Without real metrics, marketing may have to rely on hunches to come up with ROI guestimates. The integration between Lead Generation Management and CRM systems will make this task easier. As these systems combine, the ability to collect data on the progression of individual leads step-by-step through the sales process should become the norm versus the exception. Collecting these data over time will provide an even larger benefit. Pointing Big Data engines at historical successes and failures will allow marketing to more effectively segment the target markets they should pursue. A successful example of this is the approach used by the multi-billion dollar regional bank described below. An analysis of their opportunity conversion data revealed their perfect prospect profile—they were exceptionally effective at meeting the commercial banking needs of health care professionals (e.g., doctors, dentists, pharmacists, and veterinarians). They restructured their marketing campaigns to target these types of businesses and published a “healthcare” button on their website’s home page to engage these professionals. The ability to focus on not being all things to all people, but rather on being all things to all important people, can allow marketing to improve ROI when budget increases are not an option. Notes: © CSO Insights 24 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Going Forward Recommendations Having read/reviewed this year’s Lead Management Optimization study, we hope you have a better appreciation of your company’s performance in each of the ten areas of the Lead Management Optimization Life Cycle™ as shown in Figure 3. The next challenge is to determine how your firm can better optimize your sales and marketing teams’ performance in each component of the lead generation process. Now is the time to use this simple, yet powerful model to gain clear visibility into areas where your organization is performing well and areas where underperformance is impeding your company’s profitability targets. Lead Management Optimization Life Cycle™ Right Alignment Right Evolution Right Prospects Right Engagement Right Messaging Right Nurturing Right Campaigns Right Conversion Right Technology Right Scoring Figure 3: Process Steps in an Optimal Lead Management Life Cycle © CSO Insights 25 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.
  • 2013 Lead Management Optimization – Key Trends Analysis Advisory Services clients can get help with this by asking their CSO Insights analyst to generate a custom benchmark that will highlight your company’s performance strengths and weaknesses. He/she will work with you to develop the right set of criteria (e.g., industry, company size, lead generation programs utilized) to conduct an analysis of your firm against your peer group—companies similar to your company. Other firms interested in receiving help should contact Kim Cameron. After you have reviewed the findings from your analysis, a briefing call will be scheduled to discuss the challenges that were surfaced and review how companies that are bestin-class with lead generation management are leveraging people, process, technology, and knowledge differently than your company. By developing an understanding of what “better” looks like, you will be in a position to turbocharge your team’s performance using strategies and tactics that have already been field-tested by other sales and marketing teams. Feel free to contact us with any questions or comments on the findings from this study. Good Selling. Jim Dickie Managing Partner (303) 521-4410 jim.dickie@csoinsights.com Barry Trailer Managing Partner (916) 712-9621 barry.trailer@csoinsights.com About CSO Insights CSO Insights is a sales and marketing effectiveness research firm that specializes in measuring how companies are leveraging people, process, technology, and knowledge to improve the way they market and sell to customers. For nineteen years, CSO Insights’ surveys of over 12,000 sales effectiveness initiatives have been the standard for tracking the evolution of the role of sales, revealing the challenges that are impacting sales performance, and showing how companies are addressing these issues. © CSO Insights 26 No portion of this report may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means without the prior written permission of the authors.