Gone are the days of radio, tv ads, flyers, or other rinky-dink “branding” campaigns that don’t allow you to measure data.
Unless you’re an enterprise company with a massive multi-millionaire dollar budget, you won’t be able to achieve your revenue goals by focusing on brand awareness alone.
You need a revenue-focused business approach.
You must align your marketing efforts with sales initiatives and keep the marketing team accountable for revenue. This means that marketing is now involved in the entire buyer’s journey, creating a constant feedback loop between the marketing and sales departments. Sales help to refine the messaging and targeting for top-of-funnel actions, and marketing provides collateral to help close deals.
In this post, we’ll cover what revenue marketing strategy is and, more importantly, how to implement a revenue marketing strategy in your business.
What is revenue marketing?
Revenue marketing is the process of aligning sales and marketing efforts with a common goal — more revenue.
This method aims to develop strategies to generate repeatable sales by creating a continuous feedback loop between sales and marketing.
Why is revenue marketing important
With the high-speed delivery and increase of options in the marketplace, customers want a quick personalized buying experience. 84% of customers say they want to be treated like a person rather than an arbitrary revenue target. Additionally, 80% of people believe their buying experience is just as important as the product or service itself.
Another study by Gartner found that most B2B buyers spend their time researching companies and products independently on third-party platforms before buying, and only 17% of them talk with vendors first. This means that marketing has a significant impact and influences the overall buying decision as much if not more than high-touch sales.
The holistic revenue marketing journey enables the sales and marketing teams to pursue leads by sharing data and personalizing their experience to get what they’re looking for.
Transitioning from traditional marketing to revenue marketing will accelerate your revenue and optimize the sales and marketing teams’ effectiveness. This will result in immediate benefits for you and your customers.
Here are some of the benefits of the revenue marketing model:
- Your company will become customer-centric as you’ll be focused on delivering a seamless customer journey from start to finish.
- Sales and marketing teams will be aligned and work together towards achieving higher revenue.
- Your marketing will have a higher ROI as your marketing team will only spend resources on campaigns that generate a net positive ROI.
- Your organization will have more room to scale its revenue operations.
- Marketing teams will be focused on capturing high-quality leads and sending sales-ready leads to the sales team.
- You will be able to measure how each marketing campaign directly impacts revenue.
How does revenue marketing differ from other marketing models?
Let’s take a closer look at the different models of marketing employed today:
Traditional B2B marketing
Traditional marketing generally comprises tactics used before the internet was around. While they are still prevalent in today’s world, they aren’t nearly as effective as revenue marketing.
Examples of traditional marketing mediums include print, broadcast, direct mail, and telephone.
Let’s take a radio sponsored ad, for example. There’s little to no data about how effective the ad was. You wouldn’t know how many people heard the ad at any given time, and it would be difficult to track which customers or leads have come from the radio ad specifically.
Why revenue marketing is more effective:
Revenue marketing tracks every campaign and channel, so you can optimize your marketing efforts to ensure it ties into revenue.
Demand generation is all primarily focused on top-of-the-funnel brand awareness. The marketing is designed to educate prospects on why they need your product or solution.
For example, this blog post is a form of demand generation. We explain how revenue marketing strategy works and how Encharge can be implemented to execute this strategy.
There is a time and place for demand generation. It’s needed to educate customers, especially in the top-of-funnel stage, where some prospects aren’t looking for a solution yet. Instead, they want information about their problem and ways they could try to solve the problem themselves.
Why revenue marketing is more effective:
Revenue marketing tracks each customer from every stage of the pipeline. It helps you map the entire customer journey and predict the challenge of hitting specific business sales goals.
Often marketers focus on trying to fill up their funnel without caring too much about the quality of the leads.
One common example is targeting lower-tier countries with your ads. This approach would generate cheap leads with a smaller acquisition cost. These leads may not fit your buyer persona, making them a bad fit for your sales team. This approach is focused on cost per lead and the number of leads generated.
Why revenue marketing is more effective:
Marketing and sales teams work together to identify the ideal buyer persona and craft the messaging to target the right people. Rather than directly handing all leads to sales teams, marketers in the revenue marketing model aim to nurture leads until they’re sales-qualified.
Here’s a graphic that explains the differences between these marketing models:
How to build a revenue marketing strategy — a 5-step process
Developing and implementing a revenue marketing strategy doesn’t mean you have to scratch everything you’ve done over the years.
Instead, it involves focusing your attention on the customer and how you can align your efforts to fit what they’re looking for.
Additionally, it requires having the sales and marketing team on the same page so that all actions are directly contributing to revenue.
Here are the 5 steps to building a revenue marketing strategy:
5 Steps to build your revenue marketing strategy
- Understand your customers.
- Align your sales and marketing teams.
- Implement marketing automation.
- Create relevant content across the buying cycle.
- Analyze big picture data.
1. Understand your customers
The key to generating more revenue is having a deep understanding of what your customers really want.
Most businesses use the age-old method of crafting a “buyer persona” and filling in data points like age, income, job title, industry, etc.
Unfortunately, this only gives you surface-level information that doesn’t explain what your customer truly wants.
A popularized framework to help you better understand your customers is the “Jobs to Be Done (JTBD) Framework.”
This mental model describes how superficial data isn’t enough to drive meaningful innovation or revenue growth. Instead, you’ll need to understand customer behavior, especially regarding their emotional, societal, and organizational drivers that make them take action.
In the words of Clayton Christensen (a creator of this framework), “people don’t simply buy products or services. They hire them to make progress in specific circumstances.”
For example, customers who purchase a drill don’t want the drill; they simply want a hole in the wall.
Similarly, your marketing and sales team shouldn’t be so fixated on the features of your product. Instead, your teams need to help your customers understand how your product will benefit them.
Putting the JTBD framework into practice
- Ask new users to understand their motivations and emotional triggers better.
- Draw conclusions about what excites them in your product and what makes them anxious about your product.
Don’t be afraid to speak with your users once they’ve made a purchase. By doing so, you can manage expectations, develop stronger relationships, and open the door for valuable feedback throughout their customer lifecycle.
You can determine the right questions to ask by gathering data in the following areas.
- What was on the user’s mind to kick-start a product search in the first place?
- What was pushing the user away from their current solution of “doing their job”?
Point of purchase
- What was the user thinking when they purchased your product?
- What doubts came to their mind during the search, and what was the final catalyst to push them to buy?
- What other products did the user look at?
- What are they hoping to accomplish?
- What was pulling the user toward your product or solution?
By asking the right questions, you’ll get a clear understanding of the emotional triggers behind your customer’s motivations and better fulfill the four forces of the Jobs to be Done framework:
2. Align your sales and marketing teams
Sales and marketing teams typically report and track different key performance indicators. Marketing is responsible for metrics such as organic traffic and lead generation, while sales are usually responsible for new business and revenue.
Both teams should understand where the other stands on its monthly or quarterly goals, and the data should be accessible to all team members.
- Suppose the marketing team isn’t driving enough traffic or generating enough leads. In that case, sales reps can use their first-hand customer insights to provide feedback on the content and overall approach of the marketing campaigns.
- If the sales team isn’t hitting their revenue targets, the marketing team can help by providing buyer’s guides and other sales enablement collateral to help shorten the sales cycle and close more deals.
Each team needs to see its success connected to the work of the other team.
Additionally, both teams must agree on the types of leads so that sales reps aren’t complaining about the quality of leads.
Also, marketers will better craft their campaigns to generate and hand off only sales-qualified leads.
Marketers are responsible for generating high quality nurtured leads. Both teams must agree on the definition of a Marketing Qualified Lead, Sales Accepted Lead, and a Sales Qualified Lead.
Typically, the marketing team defines the lead to be marketing qualified, while the sales team specifies when the lead is sales-ready.
If both teams do not agree on what makes a great lead, then there will be disagreements about how the marketing team isn’t sending the correct type of leads that sales can close. Marketing teams may accuse sales of squandering their leads by not properly following up with them or using the right sales strategies.
By defining and agreeing on the characteristics of a sales-qualified lead and how the leads will be handed to the sales team, the chances of closing deals will be much higher.
Once the leads and process have been defined, create a Service Level Agreement (SLA) document that lays out the various goals and initiatives that each team is focused on.
The SLA allows each team to hold the other accountable.
Here’s a template from HubSpot to give you an idea:
3. Implement marketing automation
Marketing automation is essentially any software that can automate marketing tasks for you, such as sending drip campaigns, an AI chatbot to direct or solve customer issues, or a social media scheduler that publishes your content and interacts with followers.
Implementing a revenue marketing strategy requires that your CRM and marketing automation tools are properly synced up.
That’s because data needs to be shared and integrated between platforms so that both teams have a complete picture of each prospect.
Sales teams can benefit from:
- Receiving a complete profile of their prospects and seeing how they interacted with your brand or what interests them the most
- Immediately notified when leads become sales-qualified.
Marketing teams can benefit from:
- Seeing how sales teams are following up with their leads.
- Proactively recommend or create content specifically for the bottom of the funnel to help improve the chances of the sales team closing leads.
Encharge integrates with CRM platforms like HubSpot and Salesforce, allowing certain events to trigger actions.
For example, every time a lead score hits a certain threshold, the prospect becomes sales-qualified and will automatically create a new HubSpot contact. Or, if a prospect shows intent to purchase or wants to speak with a sales rep, a HubSpot deal is automatically created.
4. Create relevant content across the buying cycle
No one wakes up and decides, “I’m going to make a purchase today.” Instead, they follow a path to purchase that usually involves research and evaluation before they commit to speaking with a sales rep.
Because consumers are more informed than ever before, it’s crucial to deeply understand your buyer persona and the buyer’s journey they take so you can create content that positions your brand as the authority in your space and help them along that path.
Crafting a content strategy begins with understanding the right channels to reach your audience based on where they are in the journey.
Once you understand your buyer persona and what channels work the best, you can tailor and personalize your content based on where they are in the funnel.
As a result, you can map your content strategy to the stages of the buyer’s journey to improve the effectiveness of your content.
- Top of the Funnel: People search for answers, education, research data, resources, opinions, and insight.
- Middle of the Funnel: People are performing heavy research on whether or not your specific product or service is the right fit for them.
- Bottom of the Funnel: People are figuring out what it would take to become a customer and whether or not you’re trustworthy to purchase from.
Your funnel will look different depending on your business model, industry, product, audience, and pricing. Most B2C customers spend very little time in the middle of the funnel compared to B2B customers that require more nurturing and relationship development before a purchase is made. A pair of sneakers requires less research when it comes to making purchase decisions than an expensive enterprise software solution.
5. Analyze the big picture data
By analyzing data to improve the targeting of your efforts, you can effectively “clone” your most profitable customers and avoid wasting money going after prospects that aren’t likely to be a good fit for your brand.
Based on the existing data points you have on your most profitable customers, you can target and acquire more customers that have similar characteristics and behaviors. That way maximizing the return on your marketing spend.
Over time, you’ll gather data on which types of marketing collateral are most effective at converting different types of prospects. You may find that some customers prefer short, concise sales demos, and other customers prefer more in-depth detailed product demonstrations.
All of this data can be used to tailor your sales and marketing efforts, reduce costs, shorten the sales cycle, and significantly improve revenue and profits.
Aside from tracking the right data, you’ll want to analyze trends and forecast future sales. Here are some things to look for in your sales and marketing data:
- Sales trend analysis: Examine your historical revenue data and identify patterns. Try to look for sales trends by product, channel, region, and other factors to help you draw conclusions.
- Sales performance analysis: Analyze sales performance to understand the current financial health of your company. While sales are growing, the ROI must be strong as well.
- Sales pipeline analysis: Managers and executives need to see what’s happening throughout the sales process to see whether there are any bottlenecks that could be slowing down sales.
- Conversion goals: Marketing and sales teams should track the leads throughout the pipeline and view pipeline conversions. This allows them to see the percentage of leads that turn into sales.
- Attribution percentages: Every marketing channel and campaign needs to be assigned an attribution percentage. For example, which channels and campaigns are contributing to the most amount of high-value customers? While some campaigns might have higher engagements or more leads, perhaps there’s another campaign that is driving more revenue.
It’s not enough to simply track the number of visitors, leads, or cost of leads. In fact, many marketers struggle with attributing their content to revenue or their leads to revenue.
By tracking conversion goals and integrating sales and marketing software, you can track the leads acquired from beginning to end.
For example, you can require sales reps to rate the “quality” of each lead and then provide a reason as to why they believe their score. They can also provide a reason as to why certain leads didn’t close, such as “no immediate need,” “doesn’t fit customer criteria,” or “lack of budget.”
This helps the marketing team attribute whether their leads contribute to revenue or not.
Power your revenue marketing strategy with Encharge
Revenue marketing integrates sales and marketing activities to build campaigns beyond traditional marketing and lead and demand generation.
It starts with a clear understanding of your customers and what they’re trying to accomplish and then building touchpoints to guide them along the sales funnel.
As a result, you’ll have a reliable and repeatable way to generate a consistent ROI for your business.
Encharge is a marketing automation platform that helps you implement revenue marketing by connecting with your CRM and other marketing tools while nurturing and scoring your leads.
Don’t hesitate to get the ball rolling. Start your free 14-day trial today!