[00:00:00] Jeff: Welcome to the revenue architects. I'm your host, Jeff Ignacio in this podcast, we're going to bring incredible business athletes together. We'll explore how to build a go to market capability for businesses. No matter the size or shape we'll remix content from a bunch of different. Bring in guests, deep dive into incredible topics.
So with that in mind, I want to thank you for joining us. And now onto this episode of the revenue architects,
welcome to the revenue architect webinar. We're going to have a ton of folks, hopefully enter the webinar in the next few minutes. If you can please drop in where you're located. And whether you're in sales, marketing, rev ops or something else far more interesting. Just please drop it into the chat.
We're joined by Sarah Harkness and Jordan I'll give them an intro in a minute, but let's just hopefully get everyone. I love it. We're getting a little bit of APAC and the folks in the U S really good. We try to schedule these that are hopefully friendly for APAC, and we love to talk about sales, operations, revenue, operations.
So why don't we just go ahead and get started while folks start piling in folks in Western recording later, hopefully catch up. We're joined by Jordan Henderson, the director of revenue operations at ring DNA and Sarah Harkness co-founder and revenue director of cattle, dog digital. Now, before we begin, I want to give a word, a kind word to our sponsor.
It's a candid conversation, not necessarily webinars. I like to think about it. I'm Jeff Ignacio, the host of the revenue architect to podcast for go-to-market practitioners. I myself, am in revenue operations or sales operations. As for the ranks that I've come from at least Jordan and Sarah have their own stories to share today.
This revenue is is webinars really brought to you by ringDNA. If you're not familiar with ringDNA, it's a rev ops platform that uses all sorts of really great ML and AI algorithms to transform sales teams into high-performing revenue engines. Ring DNA offers a really complete solution for those who are in sales engagement looking to, you know, really execute their playbooks performance, insight conversation, intelligence, and so much more there's a ton of accolades, but, you know, Favorite that I've read is the 20, 21 cool vendor by Gardner.
I know that's not an easy get sent Jordan kudos to you and the team,
[00:02:32] Jordan: the really, really good summary of Indian edge off. I like that. It's nice to be on here and have somebody else do the ring DNA.
[00:02:40] Jeff: It should be fair. I didn't freestyle that I had it written down, so
[00:02:45] Jordan: it was great though. It was good.
[00:02:47] Jeff: I appreciate that.
Cool. So today we're really focusing on the flywheel or the partnership between sales and marketing. We've seen the rise of a title that's been out there. I'm not sure how popular it is and the Australia and New Zealand area, but the chief revenue officer and over the last few years you know, the CRO role has been leading and shaping, you know, how sales and marketing can and should work together.
I'm curious to hear from you both, you know, what, what you believe makes for a great relationship between marketing and sales. So I'll turn it to Sarah would love to hear from you what you think,
[00:03:22] Sarah: The aide age, old problem. So the marketing alignment, right? Look, I, I think tackling that one is never an easy feat, but I've really found that bringing everyone along the journey.
So having them actually part of the conversation. So having sales part of the conversation with marketing and having marketing, talk to sales about how to actually Quantify and qualify what each of the different components of the funnel looks like. So, you know, how can marketing help sales? And it's kind of like switching it up a bit and having them serve each other.
And what we found is that extends even into other areas of the flywheel, right into support and also in finance and like the revenue operations side of the business, you know? Right. The customer journey. Having everyone aligned is, you know, the Nirvana that we all hope to get to, but for those kinds of starting out in the journey, I think it's just bringing them into the conversation and, and having them start to see a little bit more eye to eye and tackling that.
And that's the people, people saying, I think automation's a big part of that too, right? Jordan.
[00:04:41] Jordan: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it's a terrifying part of it, but it's a very important part. No, I mean, I think, I think all of that is right. Like just having the conversation is a huge piece of it. I think there's three things that I, that I usually tell companies when they want to align sales and marketing are so have a sales and marketing engine that works well together.
Right? The simplest thing is, is if you're selling a lot of this. Sales and marketing are super happy. They're going to work well together, right? Like at the end of the day for closing, a lot of deals, both teams are happy, everybody's in a good place, but the reality is, is that's not always the case. And so the three things that I would think are most important if I was trying to, you know, foundationally aligned my sales and marketing teams and have them work well together the first one was an executive man.
I need to align a CMO. I need to find a chief sales officer. I need to find a chief revenue officer. I need the executive team's buy-in and mandate that that's something we need to do, right? Like I need everybody to sign off on that. Once I have that, then, then the next thing is I need agreed upon definitions across all my teams.
So if I say MQL to sales, or I say MQL to marketing, They know what I mean back to Sarah's point, if we're in the same conversations, but we're speaking different languages, nobody's getting anything done. Right? We're all, we're all making different decisions. And then the last, the last thing is aligned KPIs and goals, which we'll talk a lot about KPIs and goals, I think as well, but making sure that those actually map to each other as though.
If one team has positive results, that usually means the other team does as well, which means you're, you're one team you're succeeding together or you're failing together. That's the important piece.
[00:06:04] Jeff: So having sales and marketing work together, what a foreign concept, it seems strange to have a, not just a linear relationship, but maybe potentially a circular or a virtuous cycle of a relationship.
One thing that I've always seen in Jordan to your point is creating a couple of notes. Not just one, but really having a common goal that we can all strive towards. Right. There are things that marketing as well. There are things. Sales does well. But together it's opposing combination to hit those north stars.
And a couple of what I think is raising awareness and that's really gonna focus on brand reputation. Then you're starting to generate intent or interest. And that's when you, hopefully you can sift through the leads and identify when and where a lead is ready for sales to engage. And then not just that, I like to think about a couple of devices or processes or mechanisms, whatever words you want to use to feed back information to marketing so that they can have more intelligent campaign formulations.
So for example, why did we reject certain leads? What types of leads are coming in? What are they saying to to us, uh, the sales team when they hit our shores. The second thing is really looking at work in marketing, really shape and form. How and where they focus or at least their digital marketing or their physical marketing or some of that field that biggest now starting to open up, at least for the U S Australia is obviously starting to lock down with the COVID restrictions.
So I want to turn to question to a little bit about process, You know, if we think about as an industry we've developed what appears to be ubiquitous standards. And of course I might be in my, you know, high-tech in the north American SAS bubble here. But these standards around marketing and sales funnel you know, there's a prevailing construct may look something like a raw lead to an MQL, a term that you just use Jordan to an Sal, to an SQL.
But there's an emerging trend of bringing in, in. Earlier than that, you know, this challenge, that's challenging that traditional model. I'm curious to hear from you both, you know, what do you think are some of these emerging trends around intent and is that really challenging that MQL to SQL model?
[00:08:19] Jordan: Do you want to go first?
[00:08:21] Sarah: Shaw Shaw phenom coining the term PQL recently, which is like the pre-qualified leash and, you know, really it's the pre MQL person. So there, you know, we know who they are. They've, they've, you know, we've been able to identify them, but they're not ready to have a conversation and they're not even ready to be marketing qualified.
We're not even ready to kind of establish that. So what we've been doing is starting to bring in this PQL, which, you know, mind your P's and Q's, I don't know. It makes me think of that, but ultimately to try and implement that like additional. Way for us to start identifying those intent indicators.
And I think over a three to six month period is really the, the kind of warmup and particularly here in in APAC, I think, you know, it's still, it's still a fairly emerging concept of implementing these funnels. Particularly in, in B2B often you'll find that it's like marketing. Hands over every single lead.
And, and what we're trying to do is help people or help organizations to actually establish those and, and quantify those, and actually means that we get to bring all those people into the conversation. So we secretly align sales and marketing and coach in a room by helping them to actually quantify it and really tell us what does that mean to you?
Like what is a pre-qualified lead before it's handed over in that marketing sense?
[00:09:56] Jordan: Totally. Yeah. I mean, it's, it's, it's interesting, right? Like I liked the idea of a PQL by the way, that's a really, I'm going to probably steal that. If you ever see
Australia, they're not going to know don't worry. But, but no, I, I love the idea because, because I actually had 6 cents Bombora and 10 data platforms. Right. Like, they're really cool. They're really new. Even north America even been Jeff, we've been working with just a couple of years now, right? Like, like they're, they're a relatively novel idea.
Really awesome. I think the best use of them is actually much earlier in the funnel. I don't think using success, Bombora intent data in general, to have your sales team go spearfishing is the best version of using intent data. Right? I actually think it is identifying what your EQL is, are if I'm correctly using that term and then using that, intended it to warm them to the point where they're coming to you because they know who you are.
You've got them to the right purchase stage. They have intent to purchase and you, you are top of mind for them. So that way, when they come in, it's a fish jumping into the boat instead of you spear fishing. Right. And that's sort of what revenue operations is. And the second sort of piece of that is continue to redefine your PQL by getting feedback from your sales team about what's coming in because your intent data model, which will change constantly, right?
Like it has to all the time change. Your ICP is going to change all the time, which has to, and that's feedback that sales can flow upstream to marketing to help them improve those models.
[00:11:23] Sarah: I think the other part to that too, Jordan, and this is the shift that I'm definitely seeing, or, or a trend towards empathic marketing, and maybe that's not the right term, but it is when we're actually going out and nurturing.
It's helping those customers to put their hand up when they have. As opposed to when he think they're ready and really getting our sales and marketing really close to understanding the customer. So well, that, that that there again, it's about how do we serve you better rather than how do we tell you more about us or how do you have enough information about us to, to be at a right.
School or a high enough school for us to coal. You're like, it's not about that at all anymore. And I think the expectation is that when you've got a customer or a client wanting to engage with you, it's because they have quantified and qualified themselves. So I think messaging ICP, like you said, those things are even more important, but I think that goes back to the thinking about the customer so deeply and getting feedback from customers to you.
I think that's really been interesting is to actually. Extend that funnel discussion out to the customer. It, it's not always done. And it's certainly an interesting concept to do, but I've found that in doing that, it actually enables us to get even closer and get that messaging even tighter. Like, does that resonate with you or
[00:12:49] Jeff: not?
Yeah. I seen the bar raised over the last you know, eight to 10 years. And when, I mean, raise the, you know, traditionally before in the past you would actually be able to digitally market and, and create pockets of segmentation and, and start targeting, you know, appropriate populations that you wanted to get ahold of those leads would come in and they'd hit in your contact us for.
They'd send in the information that you requested, that you try to balance you know, not asking for the world because you want those forms, submissions to come in, and then you have a modicum of information that your, your first sales team is gonna pick up and start asking these questions. But now I'm finding.
We're doing a lot more than just sending in the contact us form. We're actually, we're still doing that targeting, but you're actually getting this shadow pipeline of information the intent data to come in and well beforehand you're having these aggregate services, identifying, you know, whole pockets of IP addresses from the same location.
Searching certain terms and you start to have a almost like, a premonition of what to say, even before you pick up that phone or that email. Now it's starting to meet the buyer where they are. There's a bit of creepiness potentially as a buyer. I've experienced it myself as a software purchase.
Someone actually calling me and hitting me right on the spot of exactly what I'm searching for and saying, wow, you really know what I'm going through at a high level of, and now in this first sales call, it's just so much smoother because now we're able to double click into the more relevant, more relevant details that it normally would get to in that second or third sales interaction, given that I would even entertain having a second or third meeting with the sales team in general.
I'm curious how. You know, changed you know, our, I think of early adopters really thinking through, bringing on the intent platforms what, what does that kind of change management piece look like from, uh, those marketers and sellers who are still thinking the old, old way, and what's preventing them from moving to these kind of these new tools or these new philosophies around busting that shadow pipeline open.
[00:14:57] Jordan: Yeah. I mean, it's, it's a hard thing to do, right? Like at the end of the day, rolling out an intent platform and moving your entire marketing strategy or a portion of it over to it. It's a bit terrifying. Cause, cause you've probably been doing something that's been very successful for a period of time.
And, and this is a new thing that's kind of based on a data model that maybe you don't, you know, fully. How understand the AI into it and all those sort of things, because it's a very complex, crazy thing. I don't want to help with data model that don't understand them. Right. Like I'm not on the backend coding 6 cents.
I don't totally get that. And so, so it's, it's just a bit of like hesitation around automation and, and what could go wrong if I set up my data model in properly, or if the automation breaks, right? Like I'm now dependent on systems and softwares that, that right now, maybe I'm not dependent on it. Some success with, but, but the, the reality is is if you set up like a change management policy, at least in my opinion, in a way that tip toes into the water, I'm not, I'm not saying, Hey, like let's take all of your marketing and we're going to only do it with intent data.
So. I'm saying let's do 20%. See how it goes. Let's run tests. Let's figure out what the measure measured metrics we want to put our toes in. The water are on. And then six months from now, let's look at that. How did that 20% do versus the other 80% of our budget, and then decide where to go from there.
Maybe, maybe in 10 days is for us. That's fine too, but, but the change management should be tiptoe, at least in my opinion.
[00:16:20] Sarah: Yeah. And we, we often encounter that when we're implementing these tools. Right. So we're kind of on that side of the fence where it's like, okay, you've gone ahead and bought this thing.
And we'll w you know, w where do you even start? And I think, as he said, Really, really pertinent to just look at what are you doing really, really well today. So health check your existing processes, all your existing methodologies, and just look at them and, and look at what we can improve. So if we see patterns, if we see emerging ideas coming out, let's just use those and amplify that as part of the.
The process. So when we're looking at say implementing something like ring DNA, it's going to be about how we actually get the right pieces in place. And so we don't have to create this 20 mile long flow. We can create these smaller I guess, processes that we can document, we can verify it. We can watch, and then we can.
Build on. So I think you're right, starting small and dipping your toe is the best way to start. And that's really going back to that kind of agile methodology, right? Continuous improvement. I think given it is intent data and it's intent information that we're talking about that's constantly changing anyway.
So I think people have to move away from the set and forget. Place. Cause it's not that doesn't exist anymore. Set and forget is gone. If you're setting and forgetting, then you're forgetting about the.
[00:18:00] Jeff: So I wanted to turn the table a little bit. There's the entire population of professionals in what's called sales development at different companies may call it something else, business development, lead development. But essentially these are the folks who are working at that top of funnel. Essentially augmenting pipeline generation for.
The account executives today who are, we're asked to do a whole lot more than they were before and in managing and juggling multiple tools. And so part of, part of the, the support that go-to-market organizations have built in is really adding on this layer of a sales development. So I'm curious to hear from you both you know, who should, these SDRs are SDRs, who should they report to marketing or sales doesn't even matter?
[00:18:48] Jordan: So, so this is a really fun question, cause I I've, I've talked about this ad nauseum because people have really strong opinions about this. It's quite fascinating. And, and we actually, we actually even did a LinkedIn poll to try to settle a fight internally that I was having with a colleague about where SDR should report and just more of a fun thing.
The LinkedIn poll was wildly unhelpful because people were wildly split and passionate about where I am. A pretty firm advocate that they should report to the sales team. And, and, and I think th the reason I like them reporting to the sales team is I actually like having a STR team that's split split between inbound SDR is an outbound SDRs and having an inbound SDR team that reports to the sales team gives me a tree rash and all of branch.
If you will, to the marketing. Right because they're working really focused on marketing leads. They can give a lot of feedback to marketing, but ultimately they roll under the sales umbrella and I can still train them to be salespeople and I can promote them into AEs and I can grow them into higher roles, which is another huge value of the SDR role.
So, so for me having that team, that's sort of on that gray area line actually goes back to helping align rev ops as a whole, right? Like marketing and sales in general, that being said. I think the results were like a third, a third, a third. Like some people love them in marketing. Some people will love them in sales.
Some people had like, oh, they should go to the chief operating officer, I guess. Like, I don't know. I I'm, I'm still hoping that somebody will tell me I'm right or wrong at some point, I think
[00:20:15] Sarah: you're right, Jordan. But I also think that marketing should report into. Okay. Hear me out. Hear me.
what I mean by that is that I think that that imaging role or the CRO some marketers have become pseudo CRS and some say. Latest have become pseudo CRS. And often we find that that depending on who's kind of got more of a seat at the table, which fundamentally I have to say often it's more sales because sales is revenue generating, right?
Like the end of the day. Marketing is also revenue generating, but in a lot of cases, sales is the one that holds a little bit more weight at the table. So I think in having marketing, not your CMO, but I think having the full revenue. Field and anyone that touches the customer reporting into your CRO, that's actually the fundamental shift that needs to happen.
And that's not an easy thing to implement, and it's not an easy thing for organizations to understand. But once they do, you start to see the natural alignment. Everyone starts to get on the same page. Everyone starts to move in the same direction. So you don't see this delineation between sales and marketing anymore.
You see sales and marketing, talking about revenue, generating. And you have SDRs, pseudo marketers and content marketers, and you have account executives doing content marketing and amplification on LinkedIn and by behaving like the brand. But, but you have marketers who are understanding that I need to give you a lead.
That's so white to call that. So I think that, that, that alignment really, like you said, John, that exists drive. And if you don't have a CRO it's, how can you look at the people in your commercial executive tent, around you and owning the who owns the revenue? That's the question. I think you've got to ask.
[00:22:34] Jeff: So I, I think about pipeline generation as the ultimate north star for a sales development organization. And I think there's a little bit of a trap question here because you know, certain organizational designs are gonna need different designs for sales development. So for example, in a territory model outbound and inbound or.
It's not separated. Now you could argue that you might want to have inbound and outbound reps at the territory level, but I think that can be a little bit more cost prohibitive just on the account of personnel. And so a couple of north stars that I like. Point to is you know, how close is the pipeline generation to the true activities of marketing.
So for example, if there's less selling and either, you know, the north star there is how low is the intent meaning you're going to have to generate interest as opposed to an inbound lead that. You know, coming from G2 or some sort of review site, they're already solution aware. They're already thinking about there.
They moved me on pain, aware. They're starting to think about, I know I have to find a solution and there are qualifying between your yourself and you know, other companies. At that point you're really qualifying. You're not spending a lot of time doing cold interest generation selling skill, what I would consider.
And so if that's the tool belt that you can't. That your, your, your, you have the exercise. Then I think if for those inbound leads, you're likely to look at SDRs to be far more to have more likelihood of success under the marketing umbrella. Also, if, if, but if it is primarily outbound your, you have your account plans, you're starting to build contacts into your accounts and starting to do some cold outreach for the quarter.
Then I think you're probably best served to actually go into a sales organization and that's because sales organization is going to have a couple of things. Most of the are not career SDRs. It's a stepping stone for them. They want to get into a different role a whole, and most of the time, what I've seen, they want to go into a selling role themselves.
And so what better way to be than under the same umbrella as a selling organization? Secondly, the sales organization is going to have far more support for an SDR for the path that they want to get to. That's enabled. That's also, the messaging that might differ that might differ from the marketing message.
Like I'm guilty of taking the brand guide, the pitch deck, and then changing it for that first call. Not to say that the marketing deck. Art on the spot, but you always want to adopt and adapt to a certain sales rep style. So I do think that's a loaded question on who SDR should report to it.
I think both of you
[00:25:12] Jordan: answered that really well, immediately back it out to that was just a loaded question. Of course. I mean,
Your point though, that the, the reason that I, the only, I agree with everything you just said, the only thing I would push back on is the I love having an inbound and outbound team regardless of territory, regardless of anything. And there's a reason for that. And it's actually, it's a reason that's evolved over the past few years specifically, which, which is inbound has actually become a very specific talent and skill that is actually very sales oriented.
Now it used to be, Hey, this person wants to schedule a meeting. Great. Give them a call, schedule a meeting, right. That it was a glorified meeting Booker now. When somebody goes to your website and does a pricing request, they've done that to four of your competitors, too. Right? So that person is getting five STRs called calling them.
We're calling them to set up that meeting, which yes, setting up the meeting I think is still, you know, low-hanging fruit, but it's what you do to tee up that meeting and set it up for the AAE. That's the difference at the inset of you winning that deal versus the other four competitors. Right. And I want my inbound SDR to have the sales skills.
You do that well, so that it sets that deal up for success down the road. And I think that's changed in the past two years, but I think that inbound skill is it becoming a very sales oriented skill versus just the meeting Booker.
[00:26:30] Sarah: Oh, sorry. What? I was just going to ask John on that date also, what about inbound support issues?
Do you do. Their sales SDR function with that
[00:26:44] Jordan: or no, no, no, no support team takes inbound support. Yeah. Yeah. Smart call routing. Give them to the support team.
[00:26:52] Sarah: Is it not important for support?
[00:26:55] Jordan: Oh, I would, I think support needs to be able to identify and sell. Yeah, absolutely. I think it's a totally different skill set though, right?
Like sure. Support reps need to be all identified when, Hey, there's a potential upsell here. Like this person could use these additional features. Maybe they need more licenses maybe, but that's probably, you know, smaller component of their job. And they're more in that CSI umbrella that then I think like an SDR who is who's.
I don't ever want to, what I don't want is an STR to ever spend a minute of selling time, helping somebody navigate, you know, restarting their computer or clearing their browser cache. Right. So, so I would much rather err on sending that to support then SDRs
[00:27:33] Jeff: there's an underlying premise to, you know what you just said, Jordan, like, why are.
And why is inbound becoming more sales like, and I think that's because the information at the buyer's fingertips is much greater than it used to be before. Right? Pricing is transparent for certain industries, particularly software sales. You know, if it's not enterprise pricing, you're gonna see, you're gonna see the price.
It's going to say $49 per user per month. It's right there, right there. If you need to have a discount, talk to a sales rep, negotiate it yourself. The second thing is the T2 Capterra you have these. And marketing actually has many times targets to go, go generate a hundred reviews on Capterra software advice, and then allows folks to have you know, a Yelp like experience where they're going through and they can start to get a sense for how.
Users are experiencing from those platforms. And so they're, they're already showing up to the call preloaded, right? And so you're not just necessarily qualifying. You're actually trying to differentiate yourself and the differentiating yourself is in some ways if it's not feature function Uh, on the web and it's, you're on the call now.
Now it's up to the sales team to actually differentiate themselves. So I do agree with you that there is a need to differentiate and selling is now a toolkit for the SDRs. But I'd actually argue in some ways, Marketing has developed a lot of these sales sales, empathy, and skillset. It's actually an imbued in a lot of the differentiated campaigns that I'm now seeing launched.
So I want to turn the page a little bit. We talked about SDRs and there's a lot of research around what's known as speed to lead. Can one of you go through, you know, what exactly is speed to lead?
[00:29:22] Jordan: Yeah, it's super, super simple. Speed. Speed. Delete is when a lead is converted or generated by marketing, whatever that moment is when you decide, Hey, I want to give this to the salesperson from that action that they took, whether it's downloading content, signing up on a pricing form, whatever, whatever that is from that immediate action to the time you call them.
Right. How long is that speed to lead? That's how fast are you getting to that lead from the moment they've asked you to get to them?
Is that a succinct enough definition?
[00:29:52] Jeff: I felt very Websters by the way that you go on dictionary at that time.
[00:29:58] Jordan: I've given a definition of speed doing it a lot.
[00:30:01] Jeff: Oh, good. Okay. So, okay. So from the moment someone hits the form and gets into the CRM, someone's alerted, they started calling you know, w w I'm curious if that is a universal, a universal truth, that the faster you call someone the better.
And if so, you know, what can sales and marketing do to enhance the likelihood that these leads will convert into by.
[00:30:27] Jordan: Yeah. I mean, I'd love to learn the industry where it's not true that calling them faster results in more leads, right? Like as far as I know, it's a universal truth and we've done a bunch of studies around this at ring DNA because it's something we were super passionate about it.
And I, and I enforced very heavily on our team here, to be honest. Honestly, one of the simplest metrics, if you call somebody in the first five minutes from them taking that action, you are 21 times more likely. To get them to answer the phone. Then if you call them 30 minutes after they take that action 21 times, and that's a 25 minute difference.
Right. That's huge. That's exponential. I mean, we're talking about millions of dollars. If you're generating a bunch of marketing leads over the course of a year. And I think that's, I mean, I'm sure there's variance industry over industry. Right. And I'm sure there's changed, but that one's pretty tech specific, but in general, yeah, there's going to be a huge increase.
If you call faster, you will get more answers. You will get more meetings book, especially because. If you don't call for 30 minutes, what the person wants your website and downloaded a pricing request form in those 30 minutes, how many competitors websites did they go to and download a pricing request form, right?
That you want to get them on the phone before they do that? Isn't that the ideal scenario here maybe prevent them from going to two of those competitors, get them going first. They already know that they've got booked with you. They just got to book two more and then they feel like they've covered their.
So it's a hugely important to do that. I, I think maybe Sarah, maybe Jeff, maybe you guys know an industry that I don't where, where it's not as important.
[00:31:53] Sarah: No, a hundred percent. I think that the quicker you can get on and actually have that human to human interaction, when they, when they've actually done the work, the hard work of telling you, Hey, Then you better be ready.
Or I find that, like you said, the longer you give them the more they're going to use that time to not bias.
[00:32:15] Jordan: Right. It seems like like as, as a guy who purchases software at our company, I typically say, Hey, go, go purchase CPQ. I know to that. And then I think I'm probably interested in, right. But what, I also know that I have to kick the tires on three or four.
And so, so I go to those first two and then I, I sign up for a bunch of pricing requests for them to see who else is actually going to give me the time of day to kick the tires on. So if they, if the first one that calls me, calls me, they can prevent me from going to those other four websites. Right.
[00:32:45] Jeff: Absolutely. So we talked about speed to lead. You call them within five minutes. You're 21 X, more likely to get someone on the phone. Now you have this person on the phone. Are you using a one size fits, all talk track? Are you saying the same things over and over? Like how do you prepare the sales team to, you know, position the company?
Well, like, well, you know, I'm curious about best practices that Marine DNA or cattle dogs are using it, or the drive success.
[00:33:11] Jordan: Yeah. So I think, I think I would take a step back first because getting somebody on the phone, making a phone call five minutes after lead downloads, a web form is a very complex process.
It seems like it would be very simple. It's not right. You, you need to get that lead into your CRM. You need to get that lead assigned out to the right person to make the phone call, which usually requires you to enrich it with some amount of data like territories, that sort of thing, to get to the right person, by the way.
That's why I like inbound SDRs because they are round. Robin makes that a whole lot easier. But then you need an actual real-time notification that the rep will see that says, Hey, call this person right away. And I'm not talking about an email that sends to them and says, Hey, you have a new lead because that's going to get buried and they're not going to call them for 30 minutes.
Right? Do you need a system? That's going to set that up and then you actually need an SLA. You need to set an expectation with your SDR, that you will call these people in five minutes, or you will be in trouble, right? There's need to be a reason why you didn't call this person. If you didn't call this person.
And if a hot lead comes in. And you don't call them in 30 minutes or 15 minutes. They're getting reassigned to somebody else to give them a phone call because we can't waste that lead. We've spent money on this person. We've spent money at marketing budget, getting this person to come in the door. We need to get them called right away.
It's too valuable not to it. And it's too costly not to call them properly. All of that has to be true, I think. And then you can worry about what sort of messaging can we use. Right. And of course, yeah, the messaging should cater back. It goes back to the sort of upstream feedback loops that we were talking about at the top marketing is converting them on some sort of specific material.
If you were like ringing, Hey, we have seven products, right? Like somebody might be purely interested in the dialer. Somebody might be purely interested in real-time analytics. We need to know that when I make that phone call, so there needs to be information popping up in my dialer telling me, Hey, this person converted on these three pieces of content.
Here's the talk tracks. Here's the questions that we think you should ask them because that's going to actually be interesting to them. It goes back to like, Jeff will. You said it is a little bit creepy that, you know, these things, right? Like, Hey, I saw you were clicking on this thing here and you were on this page of our website.
Sure. Maybe don't say that exactly. But ask questions that let them know or make them feel like you have. Already or in the conversation with them already focused on the content that they liked. Oh, that's very complex to say very fast and you, but, but really possible. I promise.
[00:35:24] Sarah: And I think T to your point, Jordan, and to answer your question as well, Jeff having templated design say that the SCRs have a baseline, but then it's about bringing themselves to the conversation.
If you just get on the phone. Read off the page. It would be like watching a news reader rate, like directly rate with no intonation or, you know, they've actually got to play the role of the trusted advisor. So understanding how to play that role, it means you have to sound trustworthy. It means the things that you say need to be validated with data and statistics and people that look like you.
Throw out a case study from some random company that doesn't even look like my company, then I'm available. Why are you telling me that that's what is this, what you say to everybody? So I think the expectation on the other end of the line is you're a person talking to a person. So. Absolutely. It's fundamental that we give them the tools in order to have that informed conversation and enough data that they feel comfortable, that they're going in informed that they can be so empowered that they know exactly what that person's done and eaten for lunch.
But, but that they can quickly and earn the right to maybe go off book a bit and just look at the book as dot points. So, you know, I often, I don't necessarily like a full script to be totally laid out, right? Like dot pointed form, or again, depending on the maturity of the STL organization, if they're early on in the Korea and that takes time to develop those skills.
[00:37:08] Jordan: I trusted to your point. And I think the only thing. Not just sound like a trusted advisor, be a trusted advisor and actually be a trusted advisor. It's not that hard. You should be passionate about helping the people that are coming to you, right? Like be passionate about as a salesperson, you are solving a problem that at the end of the day, that that is the core function of a salesperson's job.
It is to solve a problem for somebody. And if you really understand that and feel like you're helping people by taking away a pain that they're experiencing right now, then you shouldn't be passionate about it. You shouldn't be a trusted advisor because that's an awesome, really powerful thing.
[00:37:44] Sarah: Well,
[00:37:45] Jeff: but they're there.
I would say there are four places where sales and marketing meet together where you're sort of peas in a pod that sales kickoff, that's the first call script or the pitch deck, whatever you want to call it. It's the SDR and account based experience where AVX, which is kind of the new label for ABM. When I think about.
We're sales and marketing can truly work together. It's in those four areas, right? So the STR particularly around these inbound leads state now have to differentiate themselves is Jordan alluded to, they're doing a lot more selling, but they're still taking the messaging, the positioning Sales rep themselves are going through probably a pitch deck.
That's probably sanitized approved and sanitized by marketing. And hopefully not tailored too much and deviated from there unless it's what I call a grab and go deck. And then the two pieces, a sales kickoff, it's where you get an opportunity to kind of refresh here from product here from marketing.
You know, here's a new feature functions. Here's the new segments we're going after. Here's new products. Here's the way we're going to talk about it. Here's where I'm at. Here's how we're going to distill that into a playbook or a script that you can then use at all levels, whether it's an SDR or an account executive.
So I do want to take some questions from the crowd, by the way, I want to thank both Jordan and Sarah. You guys. Really awesome. Challenging each other, be very candid in your responses. We have one comment you know, where does prospecting fit in around, um, you know, where does, how positioning industries and how are you finding what you're presenting fits and you know, the needs, I know you're on the line, so want to make sure that I'm representing your questions fairly if a lead comes in from a different industry, How do you know the pool, the right set of talk tracks and positioning and playbooks to those particular prospects curious.
I hear from you both.
[00:39:51] Jordan: I'll I'll let Sarah go first. I feel like I've been talking a lot. I'm gonna lose my voice. So,
[00:39:56] Sarah: ah, okay. Well I think again, it's about collecting as much information as you can, and constantly looking at those different personas and different industries, right? So, you know, trying to get a one size fits all all the time.
Persona base is really hot. But I think that constant quarterly review as part of your QBR to go, okay, these are our baseline personas, and this is what banks them up. What are the stories we can tell in those different personas and a persona is not just demographic or industry based. It's also those other intent pieces of intent information, right?
It's the behavioral, the firmographics and the technographics. What, what are they clicking around on where. Where are they getting their information from what kind of blogs are they looking at? So expanding out and constantly adding to those one page personas. I think Anne, and as he said, Jeff, creating the playbooks out of that.
So, okay. Well we've had a really great traction when with this particular industry and even looking and within that industry at the stories that can be universal. So is there a way we can translate. Some of that because often they're the same business problems, no matter what, right. If we actually distill it down.
One other thing that I typically do is kind of cut to a co a customer, even if they're not in the same industry. Do you want to have a conversation with them? Don't let me tell you, talk to them and let them tell you how they came up. Came about this ad, offering that if you have a customer that's willing to do that.
Even if they don't translate industries, often the business problem itself can be distilled down to be cross industry.
[00:41:37] Jordan: Totally. That's the most important thing, the business problem, right? Because they, they came to you to solve a business problem. So, so the, the thing I would say that's super important there is if it's a new industry, if it's been, you haven't been exposed to.
That's why I discovered training is so important. Ask questions, understand how the business problem that you solve is impacting their business specifically. And you might not know the answer to that question. That's totally fine. Ask them that question, don't ask me that question on here. I don't know the answer to it.
Right. But like they will, and they want to talk about that because it's their problem that they're experiencing. So that's where discovery training becomes so important. I think for inbound SDRs or up on is anybody like that. And then to circle back to the, like the prospecting, where does prospecting fit in?
Exactly the same place. It does prospecting. Doesn't go away with any of this, right? Like this, this is a piece of the puzzle is, is sales. Outbound is still going to have to be a huge component of your pipeline generation. It's just maybe slightly different. Maybe you targeting accounts that are showing some intent indicators, some things like that are still happening, but you're still going to be doing prospecting.
You'll be adding contexts in which, by the way your, your marketing team should be using those contacts. As a part of their marketing process as well. Right? So if you're adding contacts in as a sales team, into the accounts that marketing is already targeting, they should be using those to inform the SEP.
They should be marketing at those specific people. They should be doing that your outbound prospect and you can actually, in some ways, drive your marketing engine a little bit.
[00:43:03] Jeff: So there's a couple of traditional ways, right? If I put myself in the shoes of a sales rep, There's a list that might've been uploaded to Salesforce.
There might be a list in Excel, and I'm literally going down the line row one through row 100. I'm asked to make, you know, a feminist STR a hundred activities day and activity can be whatever you represent in terms of points or whatnot. And what I've seen is you know, an ICP and I would challenge the industry to think more about, you know, creating two different types of there's an ICP, and then there's the persona.
And then when you get down to the ICP it's typically an industry firmographic. You're trying to see industries of companies in this industry of this size. Who are either forward-leaning to new solutions meaning that they're, they've, they're done with brute forcing. They want to find a more elegant solution to fixing the problem.
Then you get down to the actual individual. If your buyer and most sellers are taught, are taught, sell, sell to authority, right. Go to the, go to the person at the very top. But typically the inbound lead is somebody. Levels below that person. And so the persona becomes really important because if you're talking to an individual contributor or manager, and then you're trying to get to a VP who actually writes the checks you have an uphill climb that is about to take that you need to go through.
And so what you hear on the phone or an email with the person at the, at the, your first engaging with an inbound lead. They're probably worried about, Hey, my boss told me kick tires, I'm trying to save time. Cause I'm the one who's brute forcing the solution and the person who's writing the checks, the authority is typically connecting to maybe something wholesale different as, as in a percentage of increased revenue, growth or percentage to value.
They're not tying it to productivity hours. It's something completely different. And so prospecting in my view there's a little bit of nuance and that discovery training. That you're you're alluding to Jordan is super key and then tying it to all the things around ICP that you've brought up.
Sarah. It's, it's critical to making sure that you have a successful prospecting. So I'm Jeff added a question here. You know, how do you manage customer acquisition costs, CAC as some folks refer to it to lifetime value between your inbound and your outbound teams.
[00:45:32] Jordan: Yeah, I, so, so I would still do it essentially the same way when I break down CAC to LTV before I had to separate and Mount up on teams, right.
I had an STR team that was still handling all inbound and all outbound. The same people were, and I would still break down CAC to LTV based on lethal. And in that that's super important to me and I, back then, I would allocate a certain percentage of usually, you know, my guests or the amount of time spent from the STR team allocate that resourcing over to the marketing side version of that, the lead sources that come from marketing.
Right. But actually makes it a little bit cleaner as I can allocate the budget that's used for SDR marketing or the inbound SDRs to. Inbound CAC model. Right. It's totally different things. And so, so in some ways, for me, at least it makes it a little bit cleaner to have that split than it did before, which was oftentimes a bit of a guest, which I think everybody has a bit of a guess on that.
Like how much of this team's budget, like tech budget, all of that. Do I allocate over to this spend or versus this one? Right. Because every works cross-functionally a little bit, it's a little less cross-functional so maybe it's a little bit cleaner. I'm I'm curious if my boss has done that though.
[00:46:34] Jeff: So I think of customer acquisition costs as a. A metric of efficiency around how you invest in the resources, the process, the people, the technology in order to drive. And we talked about lifetime value here. So lifetime value is another loaded term. It's it's the the lifelong relationship expressed an economic value to a company.
And so that efficiency ratio of driving the highest possible lifetime. Value it's should be balanced with in my view, the maturity and age of the company early stage companies you're probably going to spend a lot more because you're, you're, you're, you're trying to acquire, share and expand your footprint and at least understanding what types of buyers I will adopt your product.
And also provide feedback to you to iterate into expand to new segments. But if you're a mature company, obviously, you know, is your core product customer average cost is extremely important. Because now you're talking about your, your gross profit and gross margin. And so I would caveat a little bit, the question CAC is going to have different goals to it based on the maturity of the company.
Let's just talk about Starbucks for a little bit. Um, I think a lot, you know, I've seen companies either started off with just inbound or just outbound and they kind of fine tuned and optimized for either one. Then they need to cross a proverbial chasm internally and say, we need to add a new pipeline source.
So we're all outbound. We need to start doing inbound. So let's start, you know, targeting keywords are doing some guerrilla marketing. So we're trying to figure out where we can generate some additional pipeline. Alternatively you're on inbound. You have this muscle memory around taking leads and qualifying, and now you're telling you things, this Salesforce to go hi, outbound.
There's a little bit of change management, a lot of change management or personal opinion and a little bit of pain to doing that. And then there's those orange you successfully navigate the ability to generate both inbound and outbound pipeline. That's your direct pipeline. And now you're starting to think.
Adding in indirect. So you're thinking about opening up channels beyond just referrals, you're starting to thinking about resellers maybe even if you're a software product and embedding it into a different solution. So there's a lot of different modalities to generate that pipeline. So when I think about CAC really think about phases of the maturity of the company, and then look at where you came from because there's a whole host of activities that need to come in.
And whenever you switch from inbound to outbound or outbound, the inbound, I can tell you that your CAC is going to take. And that's why I said like mad saying like Jordan is doing so is super critical because then you can now measure those two different modes in their correct spheres as supposed to just average them and wash them out.
[00:49:20] Jordan: It also gives you more actionable insights, right? Like that's the other piece of it, because first I love Jeff that you just took us through the life cycle of a startup from like entry two to like 20 million in like a minute. That was awesome. But, but, I, I dunno, I dunno if you've ever met anybody who could do that like that, but that was really cool.
But the, the other reason it's really important to separate those things out, right. I actually want to have CAC to LTV essentially modeled out to lead sourcing at agree because then I can understand what's costing me money. What's being. At the end of the day. I, if I just look at it as a very broad metric, I can say like the company is making money at the company is losing money, right.
Or these deals are making money. Are these to be able to lose money? I want to know, just in general to a granular point, like where can I put budget to actually where's my cacti LTD healthy's that I should put budget there and have greater impact on my overall business success. Right. And whereas CAC to LTV terrible.
And I should just stop spending money there all together, or invest in a whole bunch of change management in that regard. Because that one is actually hurting my business. I want to have that granularity so I can come up with some actionable insights, which is very important.
[00:50:24] Sarah: I think that's the key, right?
That the act it's the action that you take from the information that you get, that you have and all of that information should be readily available and able to be drilled right down to that level of,
it's not just a box Pandora's box.
[00:50:46] Jeff: Yeah. Yeah.
[00:50:47] Jordan: Agreed upon transparent. It's awesome. Because if you're seeing a problem, you want the CMOs opinion, you want to see us. So his opinion, you want everybody's opinion on how to fix this thing, right? Like that's, what's going to make you better as a business.
[00:50:59] Jeff: Yeah.
So we talked about the pandemic before we even started. And we have a question around inbound and outbound close one percentages. What are the splits between your inbound and out. I am not necessarily disclosing proprietary information to your companies, but you know, maybe just provide generalities around what you've seen.
W w what does that look like? In the last eight? And the question is the last 18 months of the pandemic, which is in itself an insane thing to say that we've been in a pandemic for 18 months.
[00:51:32] Jordan: So do you want to take first step on this one
[00:51:34] Sarah: show? And, and, you know, certainly I think it definitely is different, right?
Like since the pandemic started, I think everyone's had to do that digital transformation and it's a necessity it's no longer a nice to have and it's no longer a buzzword it's actually, if you don't do it, It's duo die now. So, you know, I feel like there's a lot of people playing a lot of catch-up and it's like, how do we even prior prioritize what, what we need to do?
I think what we're now seeing is those companies that don't have. That the technology, all these tool sets that have that to support those motions are the ones that are struggling the moist. So I think in, in terms of like approaching, approaching inbound versus outbound for us cattle, dog, we've actually.
To predominantly outbound because our inbound is all automated. So for us, we don't have to do much inbound, you know, once somebody is fully qualified, we, we basically have a hundred percent conversion on the inbound. So we're good on the inbound. Outbound is where we're spending our time and money because you know that yeah.
[00:52:52] Jordan: Yeah. I mean, outbound got really hard. Let's be honest. Like it got, it became very difficult to do outbound and it's probably changed now again, I mean, everybody knows collectively, I think in the world that USA has sort of decided we're living with COVID now and, and opened our markets back up and, and things have changed from a business standpoint back to a little bit more akin to where they were pre pandemic.
No, then they, you know, for the past year and a half but that being said basically, How about became more difficult because businesses were laying off sellers and businesses were closing down and that was, you didn't know how to prospect and people maybe had to change their tire ICP. If you were selling into hospitality and retail, you suddenly didn't have an ICP anymore.
Right. And so, so those things had to really adjust on the outbound side and on the, in the, in Mt side as well. But what I think it did for the inbound side, Is it renewed a focus on speed to lead, converting those being very successful in how we're managing those and actually maybe increasing your marketing spend to help you identify what your new ICP would look like and help you find your, you know, your new target audience with everything.
Outbound became hard and conversion rates to close on outbound stuff also took a hit, right? Like, I mean, we're talking, I think a lot of companies were sub 10% on, Hey, Outbound generated squad to closed one. And I think a lot of companies maintained 20 to 30% on the marketing one. The other piece of it is, is the faster you.
The past you improve your ability to get better speed to lead better messaging on those, the better you did during this, because a lot of companies didn't adapt. They didn't adapt to going remote entirely. And how do we handle inbound and how do we do this and handle it. So you could make up some market share, frankly, pretty fast, right?
Like if your costs, if your competitors are calling people, they didn't adapt to calling people in five minutes and they were still calling three days later. And you did. You had a pretty good pandemic. Like you, you probably generated a lot of business that way and have good conversion rates.
[00:54:49] Jeff: I think it depends on which industries how COVID has impacted different folks.
You just alluded to wholesales industry dying for, for weeks at a time airlines, anyone in the travel space. I don't think any amount of being creative was going to help you there. He's going to have to write it out. But there were some industries you know, if you're a digital native.
Go to market organization. You already born in the, you know, digital advertising. You're already calling on the inside. You were used to doing virtual calls. You were well-positioned to plant your flag first particularly in spaces with field marketing, field sales maybe even canvas sales. If those, if there's some industries still doing door-to-door particularly like home improvement solar, uh, those kinds of spaces.
So those who were able to see. Holy, holy moly buyers, aren't showing up to where we are. We need to adapt. I found that on outbound of email, my inbox started to blow up last year and folks started finding ways to get to my mobile phone. I actually responded to a lot of cold calls and SMS is surprisingly, even though at first you know, my, the back of my hair raising, like, how dare you call me, call me on my mobile or SMS.
But at the same time, you, I support sellers and in, in my day to day is professional and totally understand you ha you had to be creative, even if some personal space completely shifted. Because now folks can hide behind their emails and they're not at the office or you know, fundamentally how it was in the pandemic.
I think it softened up a little bit and now companies have adapted to it and now realize there's a new norm that they can adapt. Outside sellers can operate inside and quite frankly, a lot of. May not want you to come visit them for those introductory meetings. Maybe they don't want you to sign it.
So show up for the signature meetings, they just like, look, we don't need you here. We've already taken, you've already taken us to the threshold. As far as we can go. We can handle everything offline. Now you've already met everyone, shake, hands, kiss the babies. We can work virtually. So that's an, that's a loaded question.
[00:56:53] Jordan: But yeah,
the other trend by the way that I've seen, especially the past six months is outbound straight up buying. Like, I will send you $150 Amazon gift card. If you take a 30 minute meeting with me, I've gotten that four times in the past six weeks. And I would take that meeting a hundred percent, 100%, absolutely.
$150 Amazon gift card. Like, yeah, it's scheduled at five o'clock. It's not in my work.
[00:57:17] Sarah: We opened up free, a free breakfast the other day. And the amount of engagement was just extraordinary. Hey, I don't knock it. Marketing has had to adapt just as much as sales. I think that's really the key. And I've, I've noticed that a friend of ours has a, an an event.
Yes. And obviously events in person events. Wait, if you go to one of those, you're kind of like the Scarlet letter. Like it's not, it's not like you know, we used to pose on Dreamforce and so on. It's just, it doesn't happen anymore. So. That new norm we've had to adapt really quickly. And, you know, you see the words like resilience and transformation and digital adaptation, all of those things kind of been thrown out there.
But I think that those marketers and salespeople that did the work to do that, to go, okay, well, this is an opportunity. How can we reach people in a different way? And those that are doing virtual events. Gamification, like I noticed, like there's a lot of that going on as well. And I think it just, it's cutting through the fact that we're all stuck at home for the most part, even, you know, no matter where we are in the world, like we're all home today and there's gotta be new ways that we can reach people.
Jordan, you were talking about your, your. Actually being able to access like on demand fitness equipment, right?
[00:58:40] Jordan: Yeah. Yeah. It's insane. Yeah. I mean, the adaptations have been nuts, right? Like in, in, in both from a sales and marketing standpoint, like virtual events, I did a, I did a virtual wine tasting a couple of weeks ago and it was awesome in Australia.
We be like the Margaret river virtual wine tasting, right. Like. Some things and like, that's the thing that people will show up for. It's not salesy, it's a great marketing event. We have a ton of success with that sort of stuff. And those are the companies that evolve and do those things, implement the tools that empower them, right?
Like Sindo so, or on the sales side or ring DNA or lean data, like the tools that are actually going to help you adapt to this environment are going to set you apart from your competitors right now.
[00:59:20] Jeff: So we're at the hour and I want to thank our panelists, Jordan and Sarah for joining us. Thank you to our sponsor ring DNA sales IQ for always being so gracious in hosting the revenue architect podcast.
And more importantly, all the attendees who joined today for those who didn't join today, we'll have this recorded posted on the sales IQ website. So again, I want to thank everyone for the amazing conversation and with that, I hope you all take care of yourselves.