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SiriusDecisions Summit Highlights ROI of Sales and Marketing Alignment; Introduces New Frameworks for Lead Nurturing, Sales Enablement


SUMMIT_2011_US_Logo500pxThe annual SiriusDecisions Summit has become the bellwether event to track the progress and maturation of demand generation practices in the BtoB sector. And based on the presentations from this year’s event, held last week in Scottsdale, AZ, major BtoB companies are now realizing significant payoffs from their investments in sales and marketing alignment and lead management tools and processes. 

The event provided three days of best practices, benchmarks, case studies and proof points, all demonstrating how Bb-to-B b companies that have made investments in integrated lead development, demand management and measurement are outperforming their competitors.

Richard Eldh, Managing Director and Co-Founder of SiriusDecisions, shared research conducted on public companies that showed companies with closed -loop systems and processes across marketing and sales had achieved significantly higher revenue (factor of 2x) and profit growth (factor of 3x) in 2010 than their peers who were still working with poor measurement capabilities.

In addition to benchmark data from SiriusDecisions, the event featured case studies from several large enterprise organizations—including Iron Mountain, Kronos Incorporated, Hexaware, F5 Networks and American Express. Each of the case study presenters provided a detailed blueprint of how their company strengthened their alignment and lead management practices by establishing Service Level Agreements (SLAs), as well as shared definitions and metrics.

A common theme among all the case studies was that alignment is a journey and all speakers emphasized that they still had significant work to do. Emphasizing that there is still significant opportunities to improve processes and measurement in the BtoB space, SiriusDecisions introduced several new frameworks and models to help companies to benchmark and advance their current processes. A few of the key introductions included:

  • A New Lead Nurturing Framework: With most companies currently limiting their lead nurturing efforts to the Pre-MQL stage, Tony Jaros, Senior VP of Research at SiriusDecisions, shared a new framework designed to help companies address multiple types of nurturing (Pre-MQL, Active Recycled, Passive Recycled and Reconstituted). The framework Jaros introduced was also built around the premise that all nurturing programs need to be “built on the four pillars” factoring in the pathway for movement of a prospect into a nurture flow, content offers and messages, transition signals on when to move a prospect to a different stage, and the disposition for where a nurtured prospect will be delivered.

  • Sales Enablement Maturity Model: Joe Galvin, VP and Service Director of Sales Optimization Strategies at SiriusDecisions, introduced a new model to help BtoB companies respond to changing buyer behavior. Galvin emphasized that organizations should start out building a sales readiness structure that integrates sales and marketing functions to provide process, skills and knowledge for reps.

Pointing out that content problems and platform issues have been common hurdles for sales enablement initiatives, Galvin outlined key elements of enablement that need to be addressed at the start: resources, assets, measurement and platform. Once those are in place, he suggested companies focus on governance, communications, feedback and training.

These were only a few of the new models and benchmarks introduced at the SiriusDecisions Summit. Given the breadth of content presented, DemandGen Report will be presenting several follow up pieces covering the event. Look for upcoming articles, including coverage of the case studies presented at the event in upcoming issues.