👋 Hi everyone. I've loved being part of this community. I came up through marketing operations and so I've have always been a bit of a data/systems/process junkie I suppose
once an ops nerd, always an ops nerd 🤓
Haha, gladly so
RFPIO has been a ride. I joined officially 45 days before the world turned upside down. We're a full team of 34, on two continents and three time zones
I’d love to know what you walked into when you started, and how things have evolved since you've gotten there.
But it really has. We have a central ops team... and they aren't a part of marketing which is new for me.
When I arrived on scene, the company had tripled in bookings the last two years and was aiming to double in 2020. The team was split geographically but less than 20 people in total.
The goals were adjusted for sales when the pandemic hit, but marketing kept our existing ones. And just pushed as hard as we could.
Centralized teams usually have the benefit of all getting in a room. Collaboration is easier. Communication is easier (desk drop ins etc.) but with remote work, those benefits went away. In some ways the pandemic was good for our team connection... No one felt "left out" or isolated because we were all in the same boat,
That said, communication had to change. I had to learn to keep everyone informed in new ways. And the team had to really learn to manage all the communication coming at them through slack, email, linkedin etc
Our hand off is at the point that a demo is scheduled. And that didn't change. But
The prospects needs and expectations changed
And so that has taken some navigating
The last thing anyone (almost) wants is another zoom meeting
haha so true
So we've had to look at ways to lessen the number of steps required to engage our team.
We also had to really decide what we ultimately wanted to happen... and only capture at certain points. "Track everything" was going to ruin the customer experience and ultimately kill our conversion rates.
And since we sign up for 90%+ of the pipeline (and generated 97% last year on average) that's a lot on our shoulders.
Read: Don't screw this up lol
We are heavily an inbound shop, so we still captured where the conversions were coming from by channel. We had to continually test new ways to keep volume up and this was key in choosing where to spend
We set aside the need for MQL to discovery call, calls, emails at least for 2020 (we're talking about bringing some back now)
And we just focused on # of MQL by channel, # of demos scheduled, and # of deals created and of course revenue/bookings that's why we're all here at the end of the day
We ungated everything which I vaguely remember giving my head of demand a mild heart attack 😆 not really, but he was certainly nervous about it
We hit 75% of the original target, and drove 97% of pipeline for the entire global team. 🤷♀️
Niiiiicccccccceeeeeeeee, that's pretty darn good
Sweat equity. haha
The digital team had to manage flow and volume daily. We doubled down on our webinar program.
There was of course a gap but we had to get comfortable with it and by doing so we didn't get lost in the detail.
Are we driving more leads and are those leads converting to pipe that became our total focus *in demand gen
I really like the focus there
we also launched a rebrand, and created and launched an industry event last year
I feel like we all have a tendency to overcomplicate things, a lot of time unnecessarily, but focusing on lead gen and what's converting to pipe sure provides a lot of clarity
actually question for you on the inbound generation or i guess marketing generation and how marketing can enable and support the sales team with content i've heard you mention that a lot of times, marketing generated content never gets used by the sales team as a marketer, how do you fix that problem?
Agree. Even if its not just two or three, but a short list of KPIs that matter most, that level of focus allowed very quick decision making 75% of marketing content according to Forrester 😦
Content has never been easier to create, that's the problem. And the oppty
Everyone's cranking it out... more, more, more (for those of us over 40, hear Billy Idol)
I think too often as marketers we build "what they want" but we never ask what they want and/or determine who THEY are sales... ask sales. Solve a problem.
Are deals getting stuck mid cycle? If so why. Do a closed/lost analysis then create collateral to solve it.
Instead of assuming your really awesome ebook (what is an ebook anyway) is going to be AMAZING and everyone is going to 💖 it.
Content with purpose... that you take time and input to create would be hard to ignore And testing... not to get on a soapbox but get a few sales people to try out the asset and make sure it really does what you think it will then use them as champions.
Solving problems is everyone's responsibility. But marketing, and especially operations is in a unique position. We sit at an intersection where we get to see the fully lifecycle of things.
I think anyone should be able to noitce the dip and point it out but that takes trust and vulnerability that not all teams have so you work on it what we say < how we say it 🙂 Mom new best haha.
We have a centralized project management tool we track everything in. And a slack channel to share updates and keep everyone informed. We're lucky at RFPIO there is a ton of trust. we can all openly discuss things so we keep most things in public channels and so the teams can even see how the change is made
Love that I’m a big believer in transparency as well and what you mentioned before - how you say things and being respectful - I think that coupled with transparency is a recipe for success
One of our values is S4 (see something say something) which could easily be corporate BS (er jargon) but we live it out. Everyone can point anything out. We have an email s4@rfpio... and it gets SO. MANY. MESSAGES.
Tone. Empathy. Respect. All increased as a result of the pandemic and I really hope don't go away.
I love that we all get to (finally) be human helps actually get things done.
"Hey, I want to help but capturing that every time is taking a ton of time" <-- imagine if an SDR could actually say that and be heard
Only up from here 🙂
We have really big growth goals this year. And we're continuing the category work we started last year.... and our space is changing crazy fast.... so lots to do. I'd say we're...
Doubling down where we saw success
Focusing on fewer relationships and channels but going deeper and really concentrating on high impact campaigns vs. volume
Do only those things we can do excellent was my advice to the team at SKO
so focus focus focus
Well I can't say who but we just make our first marketing ops hire on the marketing team (she accepted yesterday) and we are very excited.
We're also hiring for a channel marketing role and will be building out a full channel program. And a customer marketing role in order to be the best partner we can be there.
Niiiiiiiiiiiccccccceeeeeeeee. now that's a full lifecycle marketing program right there ☝
And I need 3 new SDRs so..
so if i had to guess you'll probably end the year a much larger company then when you started 🤷♂️
We grew by over 40% in 2020, and I don't see things slowing down. Every team is hiring, in fact we have the fewest open reqs I think
Foster good relationships and trust so that you can keep communication lines open. Hesitated because it sounds trite but its truth. You can have the answers. And if you don't have influence, no one will listen, you won't be able to implement, and it won't matter how "right" you were
☝ 💯 that probably applies to every role / function in any company, but especially true here
Agree. Ops has to manage change in ways other teams can gloss over.
awesome...well thanks so much for spending a little bit of time with us this morning, this was a lot of fun! But as we heard today, sounds like you have some pipeline to generate 😉
Thanks for having me here. Shout out to the guy that made me google "AMA" lol 😆
We'll be pulling the transcript though and posting to our website in a few days, haha that's what i'm hear for ☝
Thanks so much Angela Earl
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