• Ed Locher

How do you drive top line revenue growth? The 3 C’s of Demand Generation.

Driving revenue growth is the primary goal of any demand gen leader. There is a seemingly endless supply of new technology, processes, and skills that we can bring to bear in our quest for more revenue. However, all of these choices can result in inefficiency and confusion as to what’s the most important thing to do and when. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to organize the engine.

Demand Generation is a binary exercise. You’re either hitting your targets or you’re not. With today’s technology, it’s possible to measure and report in real time through every stage of the sales cycle. Consequently, Marketing should know exactly how successful they are at capturing prospect’s interest, precisely how many leads are converting to opportunities, and how much revenue was closed. It’s easy to get distracted by all of the shiny objects that flash across our field of vision on a daily basis, but high performing teams focus on these three metrics.

1. Capture

2. Convert

3. Close

It’s as simple as that.

The first C, Capture, is all about breaking through the clutter. Creative teams find ways to stand out from the noise and connect with their prospects. This can be done in lots of ways, from innovative design to spending a lot of money on advertising, or my personal favorite, testing multiple variables at scale and doubling down on the winning combination. There isn’t a ‘right’ answer, but there are plenty of wrong ones. How you connect with your prospects is up to you, the important thing is you’re doing it.

An example of a creative way to capture attention is an ABM program that leverages a third party developed ROI calculator to quantify the benefits of replacing an incumbent with a competitor. It took into account a number of variables beyond list price that provided a Total Cost of Ownership comparison that was very compelling. The program involved completing the calculator on behalf of the prospect, printing out the results, and delivering them through snail mail in a high-end package. To break through the clutter, additional research was conducted on the buyer and a custom ‘gift’ based on the target’s profile was included. It entailed a lot of ‘legwork’ and a decent amount of budget, but the combination of high-end presentation and personalization led to strong results. The early returns of the program self-funded the expansion.

The second C, Convert, means getting the prospect from interested to engaged. Building a compelling experience for every prospect can be challenging, but definitely worth the effort. Personalization is one of the most effective ways to accelerate this engagement, by 10-15% in some cases, through simple things like dynamically presenting customized imagery and copy on the website. More sophisticated tactics such as linking your CRM to your web analytics platform and creating real-time alerts for your Account Execs when prospects are on the site can deliver even greater improvements. You don’t need the most sophisticated platform in the world to see real results, just remember to focus on getting those folks from prospect to opportunity.

Close is the final C, and one where marketers may feel they have little to add. However, the power of today’s engines can deliver targeted messages to prospects that are actively engaged with your sales teams, delivering key assets at ‘just the right time’ to help accelerate stage progression.

For example, providing competitive comparisons during the early stage of the sales process can help winnow down the competition, while a ROI calculator could be a powerful tool during the negotiation phase to help limit the need for discounting. Actively working with your sales and sales ops team to understand the key moments of the buyer’s journey and developing an automated program can improve conversion rates from opportunity to closed won. Because that’s where all the leverage is in the pipeline, a 10-point increase can probably make most of your revenue challenges disappear.

In today’s economy, it’s more important than ever to make sure Marketing is contributing to organizational value in a measurable way. It’s also easier to get distracted by all of the shiny objects and marketing speak. But if you’re focusing on capturing your prospects attention, converting them to opportunities, and closing them as customers, you can be confident that you’re doing it right.