The New Marketing Machine: Creating Predictable Revenue

According to a 2010 CSO Insight’s Sales Performance Optimization study, only 52% of sales reps met quota in 2009, and companies achieved only 78% of their revenue plans. Companies faced tough questions from their boards about their ability to deliver consistent predictable revenue. Today’s best companies are using a new revenue engine that leverages repeatable marketing and sales 2.0 techniques to grow revenue more reliably.

  • Lead generation. Other methods of lead generation that create a steady stream of quality leads include word of mouth, organic search optimization and content-based marketing.
  • Lead nurturing. Nurturing is about staying in touch with prospects as they educate themselves. Since some prospects will be ready quickly, and others will take longer, it has the effect of “smoothing” out lead generation to deliver a steady stream of leads.
  • Lead scoring. Scoring goes hand-in-hand with lead nurturing. It tells you when a lead is ready to engage with sales through observing important buying behaviors (visiting the website, viewing the pricing page, etc.).
  • Lead qualification. After determining what is marketing-qualified, there should be a “human touch” to determine whether the prospect can be passed to sales or recycled for more nurturing. With this process in place, the lead should be worth the “expensive” sales rep’s time.
  • Sales development / prospecting. Companies that have teams that specialize in this function alone increase productivity because the mindset and skills needed to qualify an inbound lead are very different from the ones needed to prospect into a cold account.
  • Traditional sales. The new revenue engine doesn’t change the skills and best practices required in traditional sales, it does, however, help reps focus their time and energy on the activities that are most likely to drive business.

Customer success. Companies with the most satisfied customers grow faster than their peers. Businesses with a recurring revenue model should know that keeping a customer is as valuable as signing a new one.

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