Job opening – Sales Enablement Manager (NetSuite Inc. in Canada)

Old! Outdated! From 2010!

Employer: NetSuite Inc.
Job title: Sales – Sales Enablement Manager (Mississauga/Toronto, Canada)

“At NetSuite Inc., our vision is to help mid-size businesses and divisions of large companies run their businesses better by providing the market’s leading integrated, online business management software suite for accounting/ERP, customer relationship management (CRM) and ecommerce. With products such as NetSuite, NetSuite OneWorld and NetSuite CRM+, we already meet the business software needs of over 6,500 customers worldwide. And as an industry leader, we value the uniqueness, creativity and innovation each employee brings, whether in the areas of engineering, sales, marketing, operations, customer advocacy, IT, or corporate resources. Our employees drive our vision and make our success possible.

Picture yourself building a successful career at NetSuite—working alongside other talented, driven individuals, and helping the burgeoning mid-size business market achieve its goals. NetSuite is where business is going. If you would like to be part of an organization that’s going places, click on the Apply Now button below.

Job Description:
Work with NetSuite’s Sales Management, Sales Reps, and Sales Engineering teams to determine where the sales team needs to be from knowledge, skills, and tools to successfully position the NetSuite product line and conduct the appropriate activities in the sales cycle in today’s competitive market.

Qualifications/Skills:
Outstanding intellect, drive and interpersonal skills are paramount; exceptional strategic thinker and analytical skills; ability to address cross-functional and cross-organizational issues independently; proven track record of high-impact success; high sense of urgency and entrepreneurial work ethic required to drive business outcomes. Ability to find needs, design enablement solutions and deliver solutions to sales team with credibility and impact.

Prerequisites include:

  • 5-8 years in high tech company
  • 3-5 years working for an enterprise software company
  • Understanding of how software technology is used to solve business problems, with domain expertise in at least 1 or 2 industries (e.g., software, services, wholesale/distribution, etc.)
  • Excellent presentation and communications skills; ability to assimilate complex concepts and clearly articulate business value
  • Ability to have high level discussions with sales management to determine business drivers, needs to accomplish needs and how enablement programs can assist in achieving these needs
  • General knowledge of training companies in the industry
  • General knowledge of sales effectiveness tools in the industry
  • Build curriculum (Captivate, QuestionMark Perception, a leading LMS experience is a plus)
  • Make formal presentations of ideas to key decision-makers or negotiate with others. Convince or negotiate with individuals or groups in order to gain a desired agreement or position. Brings together the views of individuals or groups with potentially conflicting goals and achieves closure or complex issues, using diplomacy and tact
  • Previous experience and the ability to supervise a group or lead a program/project
  • Write memos, letters or documents that present own ideas related to technical or business events/issues. May need to convert specialized terms into general business language. Write to address individuals or groups who may have different interests or goals, where examples of format may exist, but not content. Requires written presentation of potentially complex information and views and gets the message across, achieving the desired effect
  • Review details and major phases of recommendations. Consults with other people, evaluates their opinions, views and judgments and examines costs/benefits. Accepts, declines or directs the re-shaping of recommendations. Presents final recommendations/business cases to senior management
  • Decisions and actions have an impact on the work of a department and/or relations with others, are detected or recognized after assessment of outcomes and generally affect operations and/or internal or external customers
  • Work requirements, policies and strategic directions are developed by the incumbent in consultation and collaboration with Executives. Work is carried out within general policy direction to achieve business plans, objectives and strategies. Feedback is received at the end of a major initiative, project or business cycle and judged for quality of outcomes and achievement of strategy
  • Manages a broadly defined project, involving people or other resources from multiple sites and multiple, unrelated disciplines. Project outcomes affect one or more major functions as well as internal and external customers
  • Bachelors Degree”

No Respect for Collateral

Thanks to Kathleen Schaub (@kathleenschaub) for allowing me to re-post her blog post ‘No Respect for Collateral’ from April 21, 2010. On April 28, 2010.

“In the 1986 classic film, Back to School, Rodney Dangerfield plays a self-made millionaire who attempts to earn a college degree by leveraging the skills that made him a business success. For instance, he outsources term papers to subject-matter experts, then evaluates their work by weight. “I dunno,” Dangerfield mutters as he hefts a stack of paper, “It feels like a ‘C’.” We laugh, because we know that you don’t judge content by volume, unless you are trying to be funny.

Yet, according to the American Marketing Association, as much as 80-90% of collateral plays no useful role in the selling process. No one laughs at that.

Companies produce a huge volume of digital and print marketing collateral. We can get seduced into believing that because we have so many communications pieces, we’ve really communicated. Consider a new product go-to-market plan. It’s often largely a checklist of collateral items. Business presentation? Check. Technology presentation? Check. White paper? Check. Website update? Check. Sales training material? Check. YouTube demo? Check. Twitter hashtag? Check. The list may go on for pages.

Measurement is good. But measuring launch preparedness by the volume of collateral is like using a scale to measure the temperature. Instead, we should measure the completeness of our ability to answer our future buyer’s critical questions.

Each buyer’s journey is a cognitive path leading from unawareness to enlightenment and agreement. The steps on a buyer’s journey are questions. For a B2B technology purchase, I estimate that there are about 25 critical questions that a buyer needs answered before he will buy. Early in this cognitive journey, he asks questions like, “how can I be better?” and “am I headed for a problem?”. In the middle of the journey, questions such as “what vendors offer possible solutions?” and “have companies like us been successful at actually realizing promised benefits?” Near the journey’s end are questions such as “why should I buy now?” and “what are this vendor’s terms?”

A company’s marketing communications materials are supposed to answer these questions. Our answers must help remove cognitive roadblocks so that the buyer can keep moving towards a purchase.

Technology companies typically answer, maybe, eight out the 25 questions. These same eight questions get answered over and over again in different media. The volume and range of communications materials tricks us into thinking our job is done. Meanwhile, the rest of the buyer’s path, containing his other 17 questions, remains dark and murky. All it takes is one key question inadequately answered to derail a sale.

I’m definitely a fan of interesting, creative, marketing communications. Brain-friendly content that is made to stick improves message transmission and comprehension. If we first measure how completely we are answering our buyer’s key questions, and then apply our communications ingenuity, we will truly have a winning collateral strategy.

Otherwise, if 17 out of a buyer’s 25 critical questions remain unanswered, we will find our sales people discarding our kilos of award-winning brochures, clever podcasts, and stunning community websites for a home-made Powerpoint deck that does the job they really need.”

When people talk about knowledge management, they actually mean information management

Ian Richardson wrote ‘When is Knowledge Management Not Knowledge Management?’ on April 23, 2010. As I write a lot about providing context on this blog, I really liked his second last sentence:

“When people talk about knowledge management, they actually mean information management. You may think I’m playing with semantics, but there is an important distinction and one which applies to people such as I, who are in the business of managing information.

To imply that computer systems manage knowledge, demonstrates a fundamental omission in understanding of how people interact with computers. It implies that if you take information a and apply it to person b, then person b will become “knowledgable” about a. This is far from accurate. People (as the dictionary definitions state) have a mental state of “knowledge” which is affected by whatever new information is added. […]

One cannot impart knowledge simply by making information available. Knowledge is a state of mind, gained from a gradual layering of learning experiences over time.

Companies implementing e-learning systems often make the mistake of assuming that the same information will have the same effect on all users. This is not the case. How people interpret the information they provide is actually the sum of the knowledge they extract and keep.

Let’s take you for example. You may be reading this because you have an interest in knowledge management and you arrived here from Google. You will have a whole host of prior knowledge about “knowledge management” with which to compare my assertions and either agree, disagree or be ambivalent regarding each point. the sum of this assessment is the knowledge which you will take from it. On the other hand, someone who arrives here from my Twitter feed is unlikely to have this context of being a “knowledge management expert” and they will have a different assessment of the content.

Good learning systems (aha – new term) not only allow for these different user contexts, but react to them by using the information provided by the user to infer one of many possible “contexts” – and then deliver more appropriate information.

At no point do we deliver or manage “knowledge”. […]”

How to Achieve Sales Enablement with Buyer Personas

Know Your Customers - Buyer Persona InsightI’m honored to have Tony Zambito (@TonyZambito) from GoalCentric.com as a guest blogger with a post he wrote as a response to my tweeted call for guest bloggers for this blog. He is an expert on creating buyer personas. Check out his blog BuyerPersonaInsights.com where he currently runs a series called ‘The 10 Rules for Creating a Buyer Persona’.

How to Achieve Sales Enablement with Buyer Personas
“Enabling a sales force is no easy feat. Especially when there may be hundreds or even thousands of sales personnel spread out through various locations around the globe and working remotely. Aligning selling efforts with marketing efforts can become the albatross around any organization’s efforts to connect with its’ buyers.

Fortunately, technology in sales enablement is making it easier for companies to enable a sales force in their ability to win business. Sales enablement technology is an enabler of assisting sales to communicate and progress the sales cycle along. One thing technology cannot do though is have the conversation with customers and buyers for the sales representative. When companies can align technology, marketing initiatives and sales conversations it can attain a distinct competitive edge. Assuring that sales can connect with buyers conversationally is the most challenging aspect of sales enablement. This is where buyer personas can make the difference.
A buyer persona is a qualitative research derived archetype of a buyer that models their goals and provides deep insight into how they move along the buying process. They are not to be confused with customer profiles that have been common to sales and now in some instances you find the buyer persona label being attached to customer profiling.

An example of a Goal Centric client may help:

A Fortune 100 client faced a dilemma of reaching a new segment of buyers. They knew that if they could not enable the sales force to deeply understand buyers as well as to be able to engage conversationally, they would stand little chance of succeeding. They embarked on a buyer persona development initiative in two stages. The first stage was to conduct qualitative interviewing into this new segment of buyers. Over a three months period, significant and previously unknown insight was gained about this new buyer segment. These insights helped senior sales and marketing executives to strategically plan the best go-to-market efforts that would give them a winning edge over competitors. The insights were then translated into crafted buyer personas that reflected conversationally how to talk about the issues and goals of the buyer throughout the buying process. The second stage was aligning marketing communications with the anticipated selling conversations that enabled the ability of sales to help buyers reach their goals. Sales representatives were trained and received guided resources that helped them to have engaging conversations with buyers. They were enabled to demonstrate their ability to understand buyer goals in their language and terminology. Senior executives were able to achieve an increase in revenues in this new buyer segment by nearly 15% in the first year of rolling out buyer personas as a guided resource.
What can we learn through this example about how to achieve sales enablement with buyer personas?

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Gain executive sponsorship to engage in the process of acquiring deep insights into your buyers
  • Embed buyer personas and the qualitative insights into strategic planning for sales and marketing
  • Buyer personas are derived and crafted from qualitative interviews and a specific methodology focused on goals and are not to be confused with profiles
  • Important to align marketing with the new found insights into buyers so they can provide the necessary sales enablement resources that sales representatives will actually use
  • Invest in adequate training to acquaint sales with the conversational aspect of using buyer personas to engage with their buyers

 

In the end, sales enablement is a process that ends either face-to-face or through the phone when that critical moment of truth happens – the conversation with the buyer. Buyer personas can go a long way towards ensuring that sales are enabled and ready right at that moment.”

Job opening – Sales Consulting Enablement Director

Old! Out dated!

Sales Consulting Enablement Director

Company Name: Informatica Corporation
Location: Redwood City, CA US
Career Focus: Information Technology

External Job Title: Sales Consulting Enablement Director
City: Redwood City
State/Province/Region: California
Country: U.S.

Job Description:
Informatica is the leading provider of data integration and data quality software and solutions. We are a fast paced, rapidly growing enterprise software company in a strong market that is resistant to economic downturn. Our talented Sales Enablement team has played a significant role in the remarkable growth the company has experienced through creative strategy and strong lead generation execution
In our organization, you will work for the industry leader, in a growing market place with the smartest minds in the business. If you consider yourself a thought leader and want to be a part of the company who is delivering the strategy for successful businesses today, we invite you to take the next step in your career and join us in leading the future.
In this role, you will work with in alignment with the Sales Enablement team to support the defined SC Certification program.

Core Responsibilities
. Assesses learning/enablement needs of the direct and channel SC organization
. Formulates the enablement plan for the SC Certification Program
. Determines most effective/cost-effective solutions and media for delivery
. Defines and implements the architecture of tools that extract, store, generate, and deliver the content. Ideally, leverages existing infrastructure and support staffing (wikis, audio/video equipment, websites, and so on).
. Ensures that the messages are delivered in a timely, accessible, modular, maintainable way.
. Because the SCs are the respected tech leaders, the SCEL works with them as subject-matter experts and as consultants. They generate audio/video/written content. Presentations are created from materials designed and prepared by the SCEL based on SC and Sales input.
. Identify and engage SMEs, extract needed information and translate into consumable enablement content.
. Working with Sales, ensures that SCs receive an appropriate type and level of sales training to improve performance
. Manages tracking and reporting functions of the certification program
. Embodies a practical and flexible spirit of continuous improvement so that suggestions from SCs and Sales are implemented seamlessly over the course of implementation.
. Systematically reviews effectiveness of enablement materials/methods with Sales and SC leaders
Informatica provides outstanding benefits including Flexible time off, Medical, dental, and vision coverage, Disability Insurance, Basic Life and Accidental Death & Dismemberment Insurance, Employee Assistance Program (EAP), Business Travel Accident coverage, Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA), 401(k) savings plan with company match, Education tuition reimbursement assistance, Employee Stock Purchase Plan (ESPP), Gym membership (corporate employees) and On site cafeteria (corporate employees)
Qualified Candidates are encouraged to submit their resume in Word or PDF format to vdavis@informatica.com with the Job id in the Email subject line.
Required Skills:
. Technically astute, general technologist
. Background and experience in information generation and management, including delivery and managing localization.
. Has historical and current experience working with/providing content to SC/pre-sales
. Understands the relationship/dynamics of an effective Sales/SC team
. Understands the separate and integrated role that Sales and SC play in the customer decision process.
. Strong communication and collaboration skills
. Demonstrates superior communications skills in ability to:
o Listen, observe, and inquire as necessary to identify the needs of the SCs and accurately articulate those needs to others
o Identify with and engage SMEse
o Extract needed information and translate into consumable enablement content

Sales Enablement Platforms – needs and benefits

On April 6, 2010, Stefan Broda from posted: “Alan Willis of Solutions for Sales @salesready) wrote a detailed and insightful post entitled ‘Sales Enablement Platforms – needs and benefits’. Solution for Sales is one of our trusted partners in the UK and one of the pioneers of the term ‘Sales Enablement‘. While BizSphere provides technology and methodology to clients so that their sales force is able to access the most relevant information to their current sales situation, Solution for Sales creates this information for its clients. Their interactive sales kits have become an industry standard. Especially through this synergy, we are looking forward to a mutually productive partnership with Solution for Sales.

Thanks to Solution for Sales for allowing us to re-post their article on our blog. It describes the sales enablement theme from a business perspective and greatly compliments the articles on our page:

Sales Enablement Platforms – needs and benefits

Salespeople volunteer for a tough job. The complexity of what they sell and the sophistication of the people they sell to increase year by year. In this environment every sales interaction and conversation is important, which is why the best salespeople spend so much time preparing for their conversations with customers and creating the materials they will use.

But salespeople are often not well served by the resources they are given to prepare for these conversations. The problem resides at two levels: the quality of sales materials is often poor and it is hard to find the right resources, even if they do exist. The concept of the sales enablement platform – a knowledge management tool for sales – has arisen as a solution to the second of these problems. This article outlines the requirements for an effective sales enablement platform and analyses the benefits.

What customers want

Customers have grown out of having products sold to them; they have even tired of solutions selling. Now they want to buy on the basis of business outcomes. The communications company doesn’t want an improved customer loyalty system; it wants customers that stay longer and spend more. The manufacturer no longer wants an improved supply chain solution; it wants lower supply costs and on time delivery. And they want to look at all the options for achieving their desired outcome.

One consequence is that customers expect salespeople to explain how they can deliver outcomes. They are looking for salespeople to share a point of view, not just ask questions. Customers want to work with salespeople who bring business knowledge from a wide range of different situations; salespeople who can contribute new business ideas.

What salespeople need

The sales cycle can be viewed as a series of interactions or conversations with the customer. Each sales interaction has a specific set of objectives: it must change a viewpoint, unearth information, resolve a concern, solve a problem or provide needed information. Knowing this, and understanding the customer’s expectations, it is apparent that the salesperson, when preparing for a sales conversation, needs to be able to marshal a wide range of information and structure it according to the context and objectives of each different situation. Salespeople need better information systems to help them do this, and the sales enablement platform has evolved to address this need.

What’s the problem?

Typically, current tools do not meet the information needs of salespeople – see below “What salespeople say they need”. These shortfalls are damaging because salespeople rely on sales resources to fuel the engine of sales conversations – no fuel, no progress.

What salespeople say they need

  • One source – I don’t want to have to search through multiple, unconnected information silos, arranged arbitrarily e.g. according to product set, department, country
  • The big picture – I need the high level view so I can spot related offerings and cross and up sell opportunities
  • Concise and complete – I want just the resources that are relevant now, not loads of extraneous stuff. But it must be all the resources, from all departments
  • Arranged for me – I don’t want to have to be an expert on the portfolio to get to the resources I need
  • In my language – it must respond to the words I use
  • Responding to the sales context – e.g. the stage of sale, technical vs business
  • Linking me to people who can help – I want to connect to salespeople who have been here before me, and to the expert behind the resource
  • Listening to me – I’d like the opportunity to comment and share information. I’d like to be updated on topics that I choose

The impact – sales efficiency

Much has been written about the impact of these problems on salesforce productivity. For example, IDC research says that on average each week a salesperson spends:

  • 6.4 hours creating presentations
  • 5.8 hours searching for client-related information
  • 2.3 hours searching for marketing collateral

Clearly, if these processes could be speeded up sales would be more efficient. For example, for a salesforce of 500, saving one hour each week is worth over €500k each year in simple efficiency savings. That means getting more sales out of the same size salesforce or accommodating salesperson wastage without loss of sales.

Significant as this is, Solutions for Sales believes that it is the potential improvement in sales effectiveness delivered by the sales enablement platform that offers the most significant gains.

The impact – sales effectiveness

We have argued that customers expect a higher quality of interaction with their sales contacts. They want business advice; they want a balanced view; they want to focus on their desired business outcome not the salesperson’s desired sales outcome. To meet these customer expectations salespeople need to tap into a wide range of resources and quickly find all that is available to make the next sales interaction successful.

This is something salespeople are not doing well according to statistics from IDC, which show that:

  • 33% of all unsuccessful deals could have been won if the seller had been better informed and had acted more client-oriented
  • 57% of customers feel that salespeople are poorly prepared or not prepared at all at initial meetings
  • More than 50% of customers expect salespeople to be better informed about client-specific requirements and goals

If accessing sales resources is difficult or laborious, it is our experience that the salesperson’s patience runs out long before all relevant resources have been discovered. The result is sales meetings that fall into the 57% that customers judge to be poorly prepared and sales opportunities that end up in the 33% that would have been won if the salesperson had been better informed.

The most significant benefit of a good sales enablement platform is that it improves the quality of the sales conversation, which results in more wins. When it comes to quantifying this benefit there are so many other factors at play that it is hard to provide objective figures. Readers must judge for themselves, but if it is accepted that salespeople who are better prepared for sales meetings can achieve a 1% higher win rate, then for a company with sales of €250 million the result would be an extra €1.5 – €2.5 million of sales each year. And there’s another important benefit: the salesperson that demonstrates the ability to talk outcomes with their customer gains visibility of more sales opportunities.

Marketing has needs too

Sales enablement platforms are not just for sales. Marketing has a whole range of requirements in this area. See below:

What CMOs say they need

  • Drive Sales – I need to have better ways of steering Sales in the direction the company wants to go
  • Satisfy Sales – I want to provide the sales resources that salespeople need. I am sick of hearing them say that Marketing is no help
  • Economise on Marketing resource – I would like to know which resources are valued by sales so I can save money by stopping doing what’s not wanted
  • Improve visibility – I want to see who’s using what, which resources are getting old, and what the coverage is of sales resources across the portfolio
  • Develop a broader view – I’d like people to have a better understanding of the breadth of our capability and the positive synergies across our portfolio
  • Exploit all our resources – I want everyone to be able to contribute to selling, including organisations like professional services and delivery
  • Encourage interaction – I need to get salespeople sharing their experience and marketing people contributing their knowledge directly to sales
  • Structured, uniform and global – I’m worried that the ad-hoc social networking and web tools that are springing up will just create confusion. Worse, if they aren’t maintained they will mislead

Producing the best sales resources

People all round the company have information that can help sales. Of course the main producers are Products, Marketing and Sales themselves, but there are others. In some companies Professional Services and Consulting divisions have information on the services they offer, their expertise and their processes, methods and tools. They may produce opinion pieces and white papers. This is valuable material in a complex sales process. Delivery and Operations can provide performance statistics and quality measures that are useful sales ammunition, and customers want to know about the design, implementation and support services available to them.

Products, Marketing, Sales, Professional Services, Consulting, Delivery and Operations will all have their own ways of producing and storing information – this is what created the silos in the first place. The good news is that these don’t have to change. The sales enablement platform spans all these sources, presenting sales materials from all departments as an integrated whole. As well as giving 360° visibility, the sales enablement platform helps producers by providing:

  • Structure: defining the types of resource salespeople need; formats; desired content
  • User feedback: comments from salespeople on how resources can be improved and what new resources are needed
  • User rating: rating and usage statistics allow producers to judge how well they are doing and allow managers to identify the best producers and the most popular types of resource
  • Inventory control: to highlight when resources need updating or are approaching end-of-life, and show where more resources are needed

The result is a continuous improvement cycle that leads towards better quality sales resources which are more useful to salespeople.

Sales enablement in context

The selling process can be viewed as a series of conversations between salesperson and customer, so the job of sales enablement is to make those conversations more interesting and ultimately more rewarding for both parties.

When preparing for a sales call, the salesperson needs sales resources that are appropriate to the specific conversation being planned. Successful companies make sure that high quality sales resources exist, and they make it easy for salespeople to find the right resources for the job at hand. The sales enablement platform solves the second of these problems. It gives sellers access to the right sales resources and information – the fuel that powers the engine of sales. Moreover, it helps improve the quality of sales resources by creating channels for feedback and engagement so that content producers get a better understanding of what’s needed.

Conclusions

The sales enablement platform is a strategic tool that CMOs can use to define the portfolio structure, drive sales behaviour and optimise product marketing resource. It cuts through organisational silos and allows every department to play its part in supporting sales. It fosters business networking amongst salespeople and with other departments that have a major impact on sales, such as Marketing, Operations and Professional Services. It improves the quality of sales resources by facilitating feedback and engagement between users and producers. For all these activities it provides a structure that is uniform, maintainable and scalable.

For the Sales VP, the sales enablement platform facilitates better execution in the everyday work of the salesforce, leading to lower sales costs and a higher win rate. The result is a solid business case for investment, which explains why the sales enablement platform is taking its place alongside CRM and marketing automation as a must-have business tool.

This article was written by Alan Willis of Solutions for Sales.”

Without a guiding context you can never be sure how a word used as a tag was meant

semantic web 3.0 BizSphere Knowledge Management methods

 

On April 5, 2010, I posted the following:

On March 23, 2010, the German speaking site http://carta.info published an interview with Prof. Peter Kruse about complexity and the net.

The following quote (my own translation) supports BizSphere’s knowledge management methods and user interface ideas, which aim to reduce the firehose of information (that marketing departments in B2B companies provide for sales people and channel partners plus what web 2.0 / enterprise 2.0 add) to what is relevant for a specific sales situation:

“…on the web, people use language way too undisciplined. Without a guiding context you can never be sure how a word used as a tag was meant. What’s the tag ‘drama’ worth, when one person tags pages from divorce lawyers because he is currently experiencing drama in his marriage and another person tags certain theatre productions in his city?”

one common enterprise language across different mother tongues

In the BizSphere Sales Enablement solution we do allow ‘free tagging’ but in addition we force content, contacts, comments, etc. to be tagged in a defined enterprise language – the context. For example, the intersection points of the following taxonomies – or tagging dimensions – create a clearly defined space for all relevant sales information to “live in”:

  • products, services and solutions
  • information types
  • regions and countries

Thanks to the tagging dimensions being defined specifically for each enterprise, they can be used as a common enterprise language – even across different mother tongues. The benefits for the seller are simple yet effective: Searching for information supported by a commonly agreed semantic enterprise language delivers the results which are making sense in a certain sales context. This is something a classical search approach can’t deliver.

tagging dimensions

Only 53% of B2B marketers have sufficient content to support multiple messages. 47% store and categorize content in multiple locations

On March 30, 2010, Amy Bills, Director of Field Marketing, Bulldog Solutions published ‘Even High-Performing Marketers Struggle with Content, Alignment’:

“Continued struggles in sales and marketing alignment […]

These are the key findings from the Executive Benchmark Assessment (EBA), a survey created by Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, and demand generation agency Bulldog Solutions to measure the efficacy of BtoB marketers and provide benchmark data.

content

The EBA surveyed 250 BtoB marketers between June 2009 and January 2010 […]

Many organizations have heard the call and attempted to move toward better communication, including and SLAs between sales and marketing that spell out key agreements such as how a high-quality lead is defined. Nonetheless:

  • Less than one-quarter of BtoB marketers say they’re generating enough demand to satisfy their sales teams.
  • Less than half (46%) have developed buyer personas to guide communications and sales readiness for their prospects.
  • Slightly below two-thirds, 64%, have defined the stages of the pipeline in order to ensure marketing and sales agree on common definitions.

[…]

  • Only 36% leverage marketing automation or manual processes for message testing.

The custom communications enabled by marketing automation have put significant requirements on organizations to create compelling content. If technology is the engine, content is the fuel. Indeed, the pressing need for content across a range of buying stages and personas was the third greatest challenge identified by the survey group to leveraging marketing automation, behind only people/skillsets and appropriate process. Other findings:
where is content stored and categorized?

  • Slightly more than half, 53%, of marketers said they have sufficient content to support multiple messages.
  • Only 23% store public-facing content in a publically available library or content center. For the rest, content is in multiple locations or an internal set of folders.

[…]”