Previously, I discussed David Meerman Scott’s 2014 book, The New Rules of Sales and Service. As part of the review, I touched upon what these rules meant for marketing automation tools because Marketing is increasingly responsible for delivering the technology to enable real time sales and service.
As a Marketing Operations professional, I see quite a few tools and workflows that can, or cannot, facilitate real time sales and service. If you are in charge of sales operations, marketing operations, or service centers you should also be aware of how real-time companies work and how to build the infrastructure that make working in real-time a reality for your firm and, most importantly, its audience.
What can you, as a marketing technologist or marketing ops leader, do to build the real-time business infrastructure your firm needs? You can start with your martech stack, but I want you to think about the entire “funnel” and what each funnel function needs to engage in real time. In some organizations this will mean Marketing, Sales Operations, and Communications come together, perhaps creating a “real-time working group” to coordinate the project as a “Front Office Tech Department,” which is charmingly old-school.
The Marketing Operations Perspective on Real Time Marketing
Marketing is probably at the forefront of a business’s real-time efforts. Perhaps you have a social media manager or strategy and maybe you have worked on personalization for the website. Real time personalization on the web is only a start and every decent Marketing Automation Platform does this already. Money is already being made on tools like Marketo’s RTP and retargeting ads.
When you built out your MAP, you also setup the delivery of real time behavioral data to both Sales and Marketing. Perhaps those behaviors appear in your CRM, like Marketo’s Sales Insight.
Perhaps you have struggled to train Sales to use this data properly and effectively in their conversations with prospects, avoiding the cringing “So I see you downloaded our whitepaper on financial compliance, would you like buy something?”
Real time information is about helping Sales frame the conversation and the questions at the time the lead is most likely to be receptive to a human conversation. Finding that sweet spot can be hard and eventually you will add predictive scoring to help, but until then, Sales has to understand how to use the information and when to pounce.
The other part of the challenge is ensuring your team and your MAP are prepared to roll out real-time content and programs to engage and react to important trends or events. There is always risk here so, the team must have a process for a reality check to avoid embarrassment. The marketing ops component here is relatively easy, and you likely have it already: cloning campaigns. Your system should have workflow templates ready to go with Emails, Landing Pages, Forms, Lists, and Tracking. Once the content is ready, it should take 20 minutes or less to deploy a page or email.
In many firms, marketing ops is responsible now for anything that could touch real time marketing, sales, and service. How do you build out the rest of the system?
Stay tuned for the next post on The Real Time Martech Stack.
Disclosures: I received an advance copy of the New Rules of Sales & Service before it was released in 2014.