Ignoring offline marketing ROI isn’t just hampering your marketing team, it’s impacting your sales team and your company’s growth. Catch up on this free VB Live roundtable for insight into what cross channel really means, and what data you really need.
Every organization has the same core challenge: digital data, says Michael Healey, CEO of Yeoman Technologies. You can uncover almost any action and attribute everything, and it makes you feel like you’ve got a full-360 degree view into all your marketing activities, a clear and infallible sales strategy, and an all-around steady hand on the rudder.
But digital is not even close to the whole story.
“The gap in cross channel is that we find that in almost every case, connecting the dots and looking at offline activity and how it’s influenced by online and vice versa is almost never done,” Healey says. “It’s almost never talked about.”
That reflects the major underlying challenge, says Healey. “For most organizations, even next gen companies, the offline data often reflects the core value and core competencies of the organization,” he explains. “They’ve built up a retail or store operation; if they’re a college, they’ve built up a great college experience. Digital is a whole different set of data, and in many ways it’s challenging what they’re doing.”
And that’s when investment in marketing and sales strategies becomes a matter of what Healey calls “Faith Or Fear.” In other words, “Faith that we’ve got to have sales reps, because it’s always worked, or fear if I don’t start spending on digital, I’m going to lose out,” he explains.
True cross channel means a truly integrated approach throughout the company, from alignment with basic company competencies to clear communication between sales and marketing people, who almost never sit down together in the same room.
“Sales teams require support from marketing,” agrees Raj Koneru, CEO of Kore. “Not just for the tools that marketing gives them, but also in terms of the online engagement that your customer tends to do with your content on your website, or any of the software you make available on your website.”
“My marketing people come to my sales meetings, because marketing learns about what the customers’ needs are, and then are able to create the right content and target them with the right campaigns based on what sales people tell them,” Koneru adds.
There’s an onus upon marketing to educate the sales staff, Koneru says, because today’s enterprise buyers are savvy. “They do a lot of research on the web, they talk to analysts like Gartner and Forrester, they go to conferences where they meet other customers,” he says. “They obviously come to your website to learn more about what you provide, but a lot of those touches that marketing is able to do with enterprise buyers is not really exposed to the sales teams for the sales teams to be cognizant about, and that is part of the problem, especially in enterprise sales.”
Healey notes that a recent Harvard Business Review study agrees. “About 60 to 70 percent of organizations already do their research before they contact a rep or before they ask for a quote,” he says. “And when we start grilling people, when you ask them how much does your rep know? Does the rep know how many website visits from the organization have been to that site? Do they know how many downloads? Is that part of the prep kit?”
And that means your high-value sales rep is missing data which can actively harm the sales funnel — and yet the disconnect remains. “When they don’t have that information, and they don’t have that analysis, when it’s not given to them and they don’t have an understanding of how far is this customer in the research? You end up finding people saying, well a rep wouldn’t use it,” says Healey.
It’s practically tradition. “Enterprise reps have not been used to looking at such data, and therefore don’t ask for it,” Koneru says. “Marketing takes that data and uses it for their own purposes, and don’t expose it to the enterprise reps. Part of the problem here is a training problem, not whether the data is available or not.”
So when do we get to that point where we get highly-educated reps? All is not lost.
“Doesn’t matter if you’re in enterprise sales, in retail, or in services — one of the three core things you have to do to get better at this is you have to start with how you approach your digital now,” says Healey.
“How you report it, how you talk about it, and how marketing relays this information to management. And from an organizational standpoint, understand what are those metrics that are important. Start to use cross channel analytics and the work that goes into them to open up the budget discussion, to educate the enterprise, to bring it forward.”
For insight into exactly what it takes to break down the silos, contextualize performance, and back your biggest business decisions with clear and clearly cross-channel communication, catch up now on this VB Live event.
Don’t miss out!
In this VB Live event, you’ll:
- Learn how to factor in different contexts across channels
- Measure ROI while honoring the platform differences and measures for success
- Craft a rock-solid story to help the C-suite understand the complexity of cross-channel acquisition
- Leverage your cross-channel data to determine your paid media strategy
- Michael Healey, CEO, Yeoman Technologies
- Raj Koneru, CEO, Kore
- Wendy Schuchart, Analyst, VentureBeat
This VB Live event is sponsored by Emarsys.