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So, can you say analytics. Well, this week, analytics are wreaking havoc on my team and my world. Why? Well, we may have uncovered leads that were untouched over the course of the the past 12 months. Not just a few, like thousands. Why? Well, in working with sales, some of these were actually called but absolutely no documentation in Salesforce so they look untouched. Some were just rejected upon first glance. Some were just routed wrong. So what to do?

 

First, the exec team and I created a task force to deal with the issue. This led to me delivering a 6 hour lead management workshop to get the exec team, sales and marketing all on the same page. Out of that six hour workshop, we discovered several things:

  • We all have different views on what is a lead
  • We have different views on quality of leads
  • We have different views on how sales should/could follow up with leads
  • We have different views on timelines for follow up
  • We have different views on how lead scoring should be done

 

Ultimately, we all agreed something must be done. The CEO stepped in and worked tirelessly to help manage the project. Both Marketing and Sales Ops teams were rallied together to solve the situation. To solve the above, here are the steps we took:

Came up with common definitions

  • Developed a mutually agreed on quality and lead score process
  • Created SLA's for both sales and marketing
  • Created a Salesforce dashboard to monitor lead decay
  • Communicated with Sales teams that all activity must now be in Salesforce or it doesn't count
  • Created a user adoption challenge with rewards for the sales team
  • Hired and trained a lead scrub team to increase the quality of leads
  • Created worldwide dashboards that both sales and marketing use together

 

What came of all this? Well, it was definitely uncomfortable for all involved to say the least. Change is never easy. We had communications. We had stumbled over each other at times. There were requirements and timelines that made it almost impossible. But, today, we are converting about 30% more leads, driving more revenue and having a better customer experience than ever before. Why? Because, whether we like it or not, we are more efficient, less noise for the sales reps and better quality leads moving through the system.

 

Remember, it takes a village. You must involve all key stakeholders and stay on top of it. It's not easy, but it is possible.

Good luck.

Whew, the weeks are flying by. This week I was wholly focused on getting my two new recruits hired and offers signed. How did I do this in 7 short days? Well, this is not for the faint of heart. First, I made fast friends with HR to find out their policy around recruiting, their process and to ensure I was following protocols as much as possible...Did you get that last part -- as much as possible.

 

Well, we use a platform to track all candidates like many companies. The resumes coming in that applied for the jobs were well, less than desirable. Thus, I went to my network on Linked In. I knew I had to have the best of the best if we are going to take this ship into journeys far and wide. Thus, I started looking for Marketo champions on the marketo site and then cross-referenced their Linked in Profile. I was truly looking for someone who understand the MarTech stack and how it all fit together. I wasn't merely seeking someone who can send out a campaign...I was seeking a person who understood how the technology translates to business decisions. I also needed a Lead Development team member and a marketing analyst. So here are the steps:

 

1. Ensure compliance with HR policies is a must.

2. I sourced candidates I felt were good on Linked In and through the Marketo community.

3. I did pre-screen calls.

4. I entered the top three candidates into our HR system.

5. I invited the top two in for peer interviews and to evaluate myself on how they responded to situational questions.

6. I had a conversation with the candidate about what they were expecting to make a job change.

7. I made an offer with HR.

8. I watched the offer until it was released to the candidate. One of the offers got stuck and I was able to make some calls to get it unstuck quickly.

9. I reached out to the candidate personally to invite questions.

10. I received a signed agreement.

 

Remember, there are several keys to this process. Speed is of utmost importance when you are finding talent that is searching on the down low. It is important to move candidates through the process quickly so you don't lose the excitement. Next, it is really important to ensure you and the candidate are in the same financial ballpark. If not, you end up getting false hopes and expectations mis-matched. Lastly, follow through with the process. Own it. Remember, HR is there to support you, but ultimately, having the ideal team is up to the leader. Take it from a leader who knows how important a team is, find your candidates and build the team that you have dreamed. Oh, as of this blog, my last candidate has already signed the agreement. My team in place -- check.

 

Keep an eye out for future weeks and I will share our journey as we become the Center of Excellence as a Marketing Operations team that others dream of creating. Let's do this.

Okay folks, this is crude, rude and down and dirty. The real stories from behind the curtain of a Director of Marketing Operations of a global organization. It will feature the fumbles, the trials, the tribulations and the successes. It is a real look at what a day in the life looks like. For the next 12 weeks I will post my journey in hopes that I might help someone else out with lessons learned.

 

Week One.

I started this week reviewing an audit that our consulting company did. I asked a lot of questions. Note to self, asking questions is and excellent way to peel the onion and see what's truly inside. As I asked more and more questions, I realized we had a big road ahead. Between dirty data, lead routing and lead management opportunities, the room for possibility seemed to grow by the second. So now what?

 

I knew I had to prioritize. So here is how I chose to look at my first week:

1. Dive into the Data. Get to know the data intimately. How did I do this? I ran tests and more tests. I followed the breadcrumbs as I discovered yet more areas of opportunity. Code that some thought should be working was not. Leads flowed to places they shouldn't. Good leads, the golden nuggets, were getting buried alive. I had to know this data inside and out.

 

2. Create a Lead Management Playbook. At the very least, get everyone on the same page as everyone else about lead definitions and the lead lifecycle. I began to ask questions. Remember, questions are your key to getting the gold. I realized that many people had many different opinions about what is a good lead. I interviewed sales, SDR teams, marketing and exec's. I received as many different variations as I asked. This told me we had a communication opportunity for improvement. The playbook isn't done by any means, but hey, it's a great start.

 

3. Fourth quarter blues...Figure out anyway possible to clear the runway for a strong fourth quarter. Get rid of as much dirty data that was clogging the pipes as possible. Remove any dirt that was covering the gold. How did I do this? I worked with a few SDR sales reps to call out on potential golden nuggets. The first few times were a disaster as we ended up calling 10 year old kids. Next, we got a little warmer. Finally, we hit some gold. Now, how to duplicate that.

 

Here's to the next week. Message me your scary stories and perhaps they can be in another episode of Diaries of a Marketing Ops Director!