While I understand the basics and principles of all 3, and have worked in a past instance that had all 3 established. I haven't ever created or built these before. Now I am working at a new company that doesn't have any of these set up just yet, so I am working with the team to get these established. My question is do you NEED all 3? and is there a particular order they should be created in? or created at the same time? More specifically do you need the revenue model set up? That is were my knowledge is the weakest, and the company is using other tools and what not to analyze the data, so that is why I am not sure it is needed. Thanks to anyone for advice and suggestions!
The 3 are related but can be implemented independently.
The lead lifecycle will usually rely on scoring to determine some of the status changes (such as a lead becoming MQL). But some company will set to MQL all leads that have filled out some specific forms (such as contact forms) and will not use scoring in these case.
RCM will usually rely on the Lead Lifecycle statuses as the RCM stages, but you could in theory create and setup an RCM without the lead statuses.
IMHO, Using RCM brings little value without advanced reportign (A.K.A RCE), as the default analytics tools are quite limited.
Thanks for the reply. I know we have RCE, but from what I have learned it is not used really at all. We have a BI tool that is used for all analytics. So if we aren't really using RCE, then a revenue model isn't really relevant, did I understand that correctly?
I do plan on getting lead scoring and lead life cycle set up to start controlling the leads and nurturing those pre MQL and passing any MQLs over to sales. I have also had some experience with what we called "Fast Track" programs, that would skip a lead straight to MQL for certain activities, like a contact me form fill.
I implemented all three at my company and I'd do them in this order if I could go back again:
1. Lead Lifecycle
2. Lead Scoring
3. Revenue Cycle Modeler
I actually did them the opposite way when I implemented originally #lessonslearned
I'd focus on lead lifecycle first and get a strong set up that determines how leads move through your system. You don't need to know the exact value that makes a lead MQL (50 points?100 points? 500 points?), but you do need Sales & Marketing buy in to determine what stages a lead goes through before they get to MQL and as they move through the sales cycle. I've had a lead lifecycle with less than 15 stages and I've had one with more than 50 stages, so this is a critical way at looking at your business. I'd set this up and get everyone to agree and put "MQL = XYZ score" as a placeholder. There are other ways to reach MQL (filling out a handraising form, calling or emailing directly, etc.) that can be implemented before scoring is.
Once you have the shell of where people are in your buying cycle, then you can start to discuss lead scoring. What makes someone qualified. Now that you have agreed upon names of stages from Lead Lifecycle, you have a common nomenclature across your organization (presumably) and that makes it easier to sync about scoring. Especially if you have a Customer Lifecycle and a Lead Lifecycle which are different (like I do). What makes a new lead qualified is often very different than a customer cross sell, and being able to show at different stages how many points people need in order to qualify for sales or inside sales is helpful. Then you can show the attributes/actions you want to score against, and how much and how many actions/attributes leads and customers need to become qualified to get buy in. It's an easy update to your Lead Lifecycle to add in scoring - either how leads become qualified or unqualified based on score.
After all of that you'll already have something drawn up - some sort of workflow or context diagram that shows your lead lifecycle and indicates scoring to reach certain stages (or when scoring is nulled out because they weren't qualified). You can easily translate that to your RCM and then just add a few "Data Value Changes" to your Lead LIfecycle so it's tied to your RCM.
That's what I'd do, if I could do it all again
Thanks, thats some great feedback and food for thought on the order. I especially like what you said about setting up the lifecycle first and getting everyone on the same page for stages and then just assigning scores to each stage.
I am still struggling with the question of "if a RCM is even needed"?
I no longer have RCE but maintain my RCM. If you have RCE, even if it's not in use it can be helpful for those times when someone asks for some weird 1 time report that RCE can give you. Aside from that, I keep mine up to date so that I have a visualization within Marketo of my lead lifecycle. Formal documentation is tough at my current company, so for me it's a way of having something visual to show people. If you really don't want to track when people moved through different stages using Marketo's out of the box reporting, then it might not be necessary for you.
TL;DR - you can if you want, doesn't hurt to do it and I prefer a visualization within Marketo
There are some KPIs that the RCM/RCE can offer you and that are not so easy to compute in an external BI system, such as the conversion rates from 1 stage to another, the durations and velocity, etc... The reason why the later is not easy to get without RCM/RCE is because it means recomputing for each lead the date difference between 2 Marketo Data Value Change activities. For the former, its because conversion stats from one stage to another takes some snapshots of how many leads you have at each date in every stage.
RCE is considered an aging product because of it's slowness and it's user interface, but some of the stats it provides are very relevant.
One thing I would point out, is that if you build your lead stages before scoring, you should at least create a single activity with score value of 1.
Smartlist would be something like "Clicks link" or "clicks link in email" - basically anything that would score them for being human. That way you've got something for them to become when they are "known" (stage might be prospect, known or similar)
Thanks for the answers! It helped me gain some insight. I think to the points made, I will need to eventually create our RCM. But at least for now I can focus more on the lead life cycle and lead scoring, and then move into the RCM. That will give me time later to research more about RCM and make a better plan of implementation.