What velocity do you need? And what does your current velocity tell you about what you should change?

Brett Bonser to share insights on aligning Marketing and Sales at the FUNNEL conference in November

align.me’s Executive Director, Brett Bonser, will chair the panel discussion on Alignment and present his insights into bridging the alignment gap between Marketing and Sales at the FUNNEL conference this November in Sydney. After engaging over 500 B2B practitioners in London last year, the FUNNEL conference comes to Australia for the first time. FUNNEL is the first conference in Australia centred on B2B sales and marketing and complex selling processes. This year’s event brings together local and international B2B heavyweights to discuss new strategies, tactics and technologies, as well as share insights for businesses to improve lead READ MORE

What colleges should be teaching Marketing majors

Marketing, like most things in life, is completely different from what it was 10 years ago. We are moving to a more social and more personalized web, which means that customers desire a more customized, relevant experience. Unfortunately, most universities and colleges are still preaching ye olde marketing curriculum. Recently, Lauren Carlson, producer at CRMSoftware.TV, sat down with some current marketing gurus to discuss what skills are really needed for success today. Kipp Bodnar, HubSpot Eric Holmen, Silverpop Adam Steinberg, Silverpop The discussion was very interesting. One point that was brought up was in regards to success READ MORE

Is your CRM System a Sales Prevention System?

Most sales organisations have some sort of CRM system in place. Many have made significant investments in the system. Yet simply implementing CRM – just like just running a sales training course – offers no “magic wand” for improving sales performance. In fact the energies expended on them are often wasted. Time after time, we come across Customer Relationship Management solutions that bear little or no relation to how a vendors’ most promising prospects actually buy, or what the vendors’ top performing sales people actually do. There are 5 danger signs that indicate that a CRM system READ MORE

Reset the Sales Funnel for Revenue Forecast Accuracy

In case you didn’t notice your customers are buying differently today than they did last year. The differences could be subtle or obvious, but if you observe closely you’ll see that the process they follow to make a buying decision –the buyer's journey– has changed. If your selling process and sales funnel structure haven’t adapted to the buyer's journey the efficiency of your sales and marketing efforts will be down and so will the accuracy of your revenue forecast. This is what I call the new “Funnel Economics”. Here are the major variables in a sales funnel READ MORE

Unforgiving funnel

Many contacts have already forwarded Seth Goddin's recent blog entitled 'the unforgiving arithmetic of the funnel'. It's worth a read. Some supported his point, some argued it was simplistic, others were 'outraged' Seth is positioning on my turf. Settle down! Seth is a legend, contributes heaps, and is far from muscling in on my turf. In fact he is much-published on the subject of funnel. No-one owns an idea, and I certainly don't claim to 'own' funnel. For sure I claim to have some deep insights, but I'm not alone there either. My view: Firstly, I wish READ MORE

How measuring lag can boost sales

Most businesses have an accurate handle on the length of their sales cycle - the time that elapses between a lead being qualified and the closing of the deal. If your total sales cycle is six months, or three months, or twelve months, what does that mean and what can you change to improve results? Should you measure anything else, and if you did, what would you change? The answers lie in the detail - but only a little way in. Simply reverse the usual logic and think about time from the buyers' perspective and not the READ MORE

3 Reasons Why Australian B2B Marketers Are Going Inbound

Inbound marketing isn't a well-known phrase to Australian marketers (yet!), but 2012 sees B2B marketers quickly catching on to the inbound marketing revolution. Inbound marketing refers to the art & increasingly the science of attracting buyers to your site, (getting found) converting them to leads (nurturing) and figuring out what is and isn't working (analytics). Better known phrases are website marketing, digital marketing or online marketing, but inbound marketing is a more comprehensive, inclusive discipline than these phrases suggest. Here are the top three reasons why we are beginning to make the switch: #1 It's Budget-Friendly (And READ MORE

Misleading Data! 33% B2B Marketers Don’t Measure ROI

New data reveals that many B2B marketers are committing a major marketing no-no by failing to measure and report return on marketing investments to senior executives. According to a recent B2B marketing survey conducted by Sagefrog Marketing Group: Only 1 in 3 B2B marketers worldwide report financial-contribution metrics to senior management. Though one third track revenue metrics (associated with marketing-generated opportunities, closed deals, and percentage of total sales), they fail to communicate their findings to upper management. 58% are reporting on marketing performance metrics like leads, and 48% are reporting opportunities generated. However, they don't report metrics READ MORE

Closing sales opportunities faster

How often have we heard sales managers complain that they are generating lots of selling opportunities, but the Sales team just doesn’t seem to be able to close them fast enough? Certainly not fast enough to achieve sales budgets. Out with the pipeline, in with the funnel One approach to this problem can be to do away with the sales pipeline. Clients often talk to us about what’s in the pipeline and what’s coming down the pipeline. But, in a sales pipeline, all opportunities within the pipeline are more or less the same. Let me explain why READ MORE

Think your market is too small? Try recycling

I was speaking with an executive the other day who repeated the concerns of her management team that their existing market was too small to sustain their growth. Expanding into new markets may look enticing, but there are large risks and costs associated with this strategy. As it turned out in this case I was able to show the company that their market was large enough to provide growth opportunities for the next 3 years. A little back of the envelope math indicated a bleak picture at first. Considering the size of their available market and their READ MORE

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