The customer experience depends on many variables and it is also becoming the driving force for B2B businesses. Marketers are beginning to leverage customer experience as a key differentiator to keep ahead of the competition. As Jerry Gregoire, former CIO of Dell stated, “The customer experience is the next competitive battleground. It’s where business is going to be won or lost” Customer experience has become one of the major challenges all marketers are facing and can’t ignore any longer.
At the Pedowitz Group, we’ve identified six major controls to help marketers operationalize customer centricity which include strategy, content, people, process, technology and results. You will use every one of these six controls to set your own unique path and pace for transforming marketing from product-centric to customer-centric. We call these controls the Revenue Marketing 6 or RM6 and use them as the key drivers to help marketers become customer centric and be able to meet their business goals.
Many folks we talk to agree with a customer-centric strategy, but have difficulties operationalizing this strategy, so we started a three-part digital workshop, “How to Adopt Customer Centricity in a Product-Centric World” led by Dr. Debbie Qaqish, our Chief Strategy Officer to help marketers make customer centricity a reality. In step one of the workshop held on January 29th we built our initial plan (link to workshop 1). On February 19th, Debbie will host step two of the workshop: operationalize strategy, process and people, the first three controls needed for revenue marketing transformation. Let’s take a closer look at the Strategy, People and Process controls.
The Strategy Control relates to the larger strategy of your company, the state of readiness for change and the degree of sales and marketing alignment. Key elements within this control include business alignment, organizational readiness, operational readiness, leadership effectiveness and finally, sales and marketing alignment. According to Dr. Debbie Qaqish, “89% of CMO’s believe that aligning to the business strategies is very important and 11% believe it is important when trying to become a Revenue Marketer.”
- Business Alignment is a capability that looks at how well marketing aligns with the needs of the business.
- Sales & Marketing Alignment is a capability that facilitates alignment around shared financial objectives, joint planning, organizational structure, education and customer orientation.
In nearly every transformation effort, Process is the first Control to be evaluated and addressed. There are five key capabilities including demand management, program management, campaign management, best practice management and data management. According to Debbie Qaqish, “90% of CMOs believe it is VERY IMPORTANT to make data-driven decisions.”
- Campaign Management is an operational capability that includes planning, executing, tracking, analyzing and measuring of digital conversations.
- Data Management is the capability that includes the development, execution and supervision of plans, policies, programs and practices that control, protect, deliver and enhance the value of data for improved revenue marketing performance.
The People Control addresses people in marketing, people aligned to marketing and the organizational structure around people. Key capabilities include resource planning, talent acquisition and talent management (people in marketing). Key capabilities also include stakeholder alignment (people aligned to marketing) and organizational structure (around people). According to Debbie Qaqish, “Close to 80% of CMOs in her study claim that having the right skills in the marketing department is critical to Revenue Marketing success.”
- Stakeholder Alignment is the capability of aligning and building collaboration with all key stakeholders who are affected by Revenue Marketing.
- Business Alignment is the capability of defining, evaluating, and securing Revenue Marketing talent to enable a high-performing team.
Strategy, process and people are only half of the 6 controls, but some would say that they are the glue to the RM6. Revenue marketing causes marketing and sales synergy. Marketing and sales synergy is an ageless topic for marketers and helps create success in the revenue marketing world. The organizations that have the most success, do more than align, they are able to find synergy with each group in the organization so that everyone’s best interest is kept in mind. Having common goals, metrics and a clear direction are the best ways to create this synergy.
For the everyday Revenue Marketer, creating, testing, coding and authenticating a process can be challenging. It’s not only always changing, but it is also very time consuming. To be an effective Revenue Marketer, Debbie Qaqish came up with 8 key processes that must be mapped and validated. They include development and management of the campaign process, the content management process, the contact and data management process, the testing and QA process, the funnel management process, the lead management process, the customer buy cycle process and the reporting process.
The more planning and time you can give to the shift to customer-centricity, the more successful it will be in the long run, which means this must become an important part of your marketing organization. The shift is one of the hardest and most rewarding things your marketing organization can do. The shift needs to be an initiative.
Our team of professionals at TPG understand how hard the shift can be and would love to assist you and your team in the shift to customer-centricity! This quarter we are running a three-part digital workshop free of charge entitled, “How to Adopt Customer Centricity in a Product-Centric World” led by Dr. Debbie Qaqish, our Chief Strategy Officer. Every attendee will receive a workbook to help craft their plan during the sessions. We will also host office hours in between sessions where anyone can join to ask specific questions on how to build your plan. We hope to see you on the 19th.