Any useful tools such as ROI calculators, Service Level Agreements, etc will go here.

Growth Marketing Software Stack for B2B Companies

Growth marketing software has commonly been referred to as a strategy that focuses on the entire funnel, as opposed to the top, middle, or bottom. Small to mid-sized businesses and startups need to think out of the box and not expend precious cycles trying to mimic traditional sales and marketing methods.

At Lead Liaison, we didn’t know about many of these solutions when we first started. Over time we either purchased these solutions or built them ourselves. Most of our growth marketing needs have manifested themselves as software that we’ve created to address a specific need in the overall growth marketing strategy. In addition to our own software, we’ve been using solutions from other providers to build what we feel is the ideal growth marketing software stack. One key aspect of this ultimate growth marketing software stack is that every single solution in the stack is web-based. All your team needs is a web browser and you’re up and running!

We adopted a growth marketing strategy in the early stages of our business; however, the stack wasn’t built overnight. It’s taken many years to put together this growth marketing stack. We hope you’ve coveted an article like this as it’s not easy to identify an ideal growth marketing stack. It’s our pleasure to present this stack to you in the hope that it helps your company either get up and running quickly or accelerate faster.

Here it is:

  1. Top of the Funnel: Rhythms™, Lead411, ZoomInfo
  2. Middle of the Funnel: Lead Management Automation (LMA)™
  3. CRM: OneFocus™
  4. Business Operations: Google
  5. Sales Research: LinkedIn, Owler, Datanyze, BuiltWith
  6. Task Management: OneFocus™, Trello, Google
  7. Support & Help: Screencast-O-Matic
  8. Communication: Slack, Dropbox
  9. Product Management: Atlassian Jira
  10. Customer Documentation: Atlassian Confluence
  11. Finance: Quickbooks Online

Each of these solutions and their benefits are explained below. We break up the growth marketing software stack into two parts, sales and marketing and operations.

Growth Marketing Software Stack:

These solutions benefit the sales and marketing teams. For most companies focused on growth marketing, their sales and marketing team will be less than 10 people. These solutions are highly effective and affordable, whether you’re a funded or bootstrapped growth marketing company this is the way to go.

  • Top of the Funnel: Rhythms™, Lead411, ZoomInfo, Hunter, MailTester.com, FullContact, Clearbit. Perfecting sales isn’t that difficult. It’s about establishing a process to see what works, then rinse and repeat. Sales can be systematic too. We use Rhythms™, which help our sales people get into a groove (dare I say rhythm) with their sales. It helps them establish an outreach plan, that’s ideal for business development reps or seasoned account managers. Reps add manual emails, auto-emails, phone calls, postcards, handwritten letters, and various tasks into a plan – giving them a blueprint for sales. When new reps come aboard they can easily adopt your company blueprints. It helps to feed Rhythms™ with fresh contacts. We like Lead411 for email-only contacts and ZoomInfo for higher quality data. ZoomInfo has the highest concentration of contacts with phone numbers and emails out of all providers we’ve found. This makes ZoomInfo the best solution for high-touch sales plans or account-based marketing. Your growth marketing strategy should be focused on quality over quantity though. Gone are the days of batching and blasting emails. That’s a quick way to sink your growth marketing ship. Spend more time researching and reaching out to each contact you pull from your source. Rhythms™ will help you achieve high quality sales campaigns. Hunter and MailTester.com help round out the prospecting solution to verify email addresses. Teams might also find FullContact and Clearbit useful for finding contact information.  
  • Middle of the Funnel: Lead Management Automation (LMA)™. Once you develop your top of the funnel leads into engaged contacts they need to be nurtured and followed up with. Although some providers call these solutions “marketing automation”, we’re not a fan of that phrase. Marketing automation is a strategy really, and not software. There is software to better manage leads though. Qualifying, nurturing, prioritizing, and engaging leads are some of the benefits of lead management software. In addition, software like LMA comes with a suite of marketing tools such as an email, form, landing page builder, social posting and more.
  • CRM: OneFocus™™. Don’t waste your time on expensive and bloated CRMs such as Salesforce.com and Microsoft Dynamics. These platforms are great for large enterprises, but if you’re reading this article and care about growth marketing software – then you won’t be interested in those CRMs anyhow. We might be a bit biased here, but we created OneFocus™, for companies like us that are focused on growth marketing. We didn’t need all the fat around the bone, we just needed the essentials of a CRM. Deal, task, contact, company management was all our sales team needed with an easy to use interface. They go it with OneFocus™. Other companies can also enjoy this light-weight CRM as it’s 100% free.
  • Sales Research: LinkedIn, Owler, Datanyze, BuiltWith. As your sales team scours the market for opportunities or finds new leads with ZoomInfo or Lead411, they’ve got to be researched further. Datanyze and BuiltWith have some nice plugins (our favorite is Datanyze) that help you visit a prospective company’s website, click the browser plugin icon, and all the company firmographics, social info, and technographics (what technology they use) is right there at your disposal. Owler is mainly useful for finding a company’s competitors, while LinkedIn helps you learn more about the Prospect.
  • Task Management: OneFocus™, Trello. There are 100s of task managers out there. Our two favorites are Trello and OneFocus™. Trello is a nice looking web application that’s very easy to use. Users can create different boards with tasks in the boards and share boards with each other. To complete tasks, users drag and drop tasks from one stage to another. Trello is great for general tasks and to-do items (even for personal tasks); however, OneFocus™ is ideal for sales and marketing tasks as it’s fully integrated into Rhythms™ and OneFocus™, solutions for the top of the funnel and general lead management. OneFocus™ has a slick task manager and task wizard making it easy for reps to make the most out of their day while staying organized and focused.

Growth Marketing Software (Extended):

We put this part of the growth marketing software stack together as these solutions complement the sales and marketing stack. Some of these solutions such as Screencast-O-Matic are lesser known, but super handy and affordable for sales, marketing, and support.

  • Business Platform: Google. Most companies go one of two routes here, Microsoft or Google. Many companies “think” they need Microsoft and still think of Google as a solution for personal use. When in fact, they couldn’t be more wrong. Google has a killer stack, which they call G-Suite. It is jam packed with value and around $5 per user per month. It includes Gmail (email), Docs (like MS Word), Sheets (like Excel), and Slides (like PowerPoint), and Drive (like Dropbox). For those that think they can’t live without Outlook, with a few tricks in Gmail, you can make it look like Outlook. Docs and Sheets are amazing. They allow companies to create Templates, making it easy to create sales and marketing material on the fly, that all looks has a common look and feel – for example, Order Forms, Master Subscription Agreements, Mutual NDAs, Addendums, and more. Try G-Suite, once you get used to this platform you won’t look back. Oh – and it’s backed by Google!
  • Support & Help: Screencast-O-Matic. This has been our little gem. For less than a meal at Denny’s, you get an easy to use screen recording software that instantly uploads videos to their cloud service (no extra charge) or YouTube (unlimited). We use Screencast-O-Matic to record help videos during the sales and support process. In seconds after a recording your video can be send to a cloud service of your choice and a link can be emailed. Sending links is so much easier than sending large files across the internet.
  • Zoom: Conferencing and screen recording. We used to use GoToMeeting until we got fed up with the quality and price. Zoom is much more affordable, gives us instant recording options with the ability to easily screen share from our mobile device (great for mobile apps) at half the price of GoToMeeting with better quality.
  • Communication: Slack, Dropbox. Slack is by far our favorite tool for communication. Prior to Slack we were using Google Hangouts on the sales side and Skype with vendors and contractors and some employees. It was a pain context switching between apps, all with different interfaces. Slack is the most amazing and modern communication tool we’ve seen. It’s ability to integrate with other sales and marketing apps to strengthen your growth marketing stack is unprecedented. Some of our favorite integrations include Jira Cloud, Google Drive, Giphy, and Dropbox. Dropbox is like a hard drive in the cloud for your company. It’s a nice interface and easy way to manage sharing documents across your organization.
  • Product Management: Atlassian Jira Cloud. Jira is used for managing product roadmaps, bugs, new features, and more. Product Managers and engineering teams can use Jira to run engineering sprints (short periods of work prior to a software release) and track overall progress.
  • Customer Documentation: Atlassian Confluence. Confluence is a cloud-based documentation platform. Use it to create different “spaces” for your organization. For example, customer documentation, employee handbooks, and corporate wikis to document process. Open your customer documentation up so you don’t require a password. That way you can easily send out links to your docs and user manuals.
  • Finance: Quickbooks Online. QuickBooks is an easy to use system to manage your books, create reports, track income and expenses. Most growth marketing software companies care hire someone part time for bookkeeping, outsource it, or give this to one member of the team as it’s a part time task and not a full time job.

We hope you enjoyed our take on the ultimate growth marketing software stack. If you have any questions on the above software solutions don’t hesitate to ask, we’d love to help.

Lead Liaison Makes Huge Leap in Sales Enablement with Rhythms™

Dallas, Texas – Sales and marketing software provider, Lead Liaison, expands their Sales Enablement solution this week with the addition of Rhythms™. This announcement comes at the heels of their Sales Enablement release late last year, which provides businesses with a platform to streamline top-of-the-funnel outreach.

“Sales Enablement has been huge for our clients,” says Jen Worsham, Director of Client Relations. “It was the missing piece of the puzzle. Our clients loved our other solutions, but craved the same sort of support for sales. So, we introduced Sales Enablement and now Rhythms™. With those two powerhouse solutions combined, sales teams have full control and visibility over their engagement with Prospects.”

Sales Enablement works by linking a business email account with Lead Liaison’s platform. At that point, all 1:1 communication with a Prospect is tracked alongside marketing communication and engagement activity. Businesses now have more insight into how Prospects are interacting with their business. With the addition of Rhythms™, sales teams can organize and execute their prospecting plans much more efficiently.

Rhythms™ allow for automated prioritization of tasks using Lead Liaison’s Task Manager. Users can place Rhythms™ into folders to keep organized, and build a plan for each Rhythm™ which acts as a playbook for all outreach.

Other features include multi-variant testing, out-of-office detection, automated bounce handling, remove on reply, manual or automatic email options, and comprehensive personalization with templates to further humanize communication. Direct mail and handwritten letters are also part of Rhythms, making this the first sales automation solution to include offline marketing – ideal for sales representatives doing Account Based Marketing (ABM). Users can easily see activity and engagement across all steps of a Rhythm™, and can set goals to measure performance and hit personal milestones. When using Rhythms™, sales representatives will find they book more meetings, close more deals, and increase efficiency with prioritized activities.

Rhythms™ are fully-integrated with other Lead Liaison services, such as marketing automation, event lead management, a CRM, and more.

About Lead Liaison
Lead Liaison provides cloud-based sales and marketing automation solutions that helps businesses accelerate revenue by attracting, converting, closing and retaining more prospects. Filling a void in the small pool of marketing automation providers that focus on marketing-centric functionality, Lead Liaison gives equal focus to sales providing sophisticated visitor tracking and additional website engagement tools to boost sales effectiveness. Lead Liaison blends ease-of-use, a flexible business model, deep external integration, marketing across social, web, mobile, email and offline channels and powerful functionality, all specifically tailored for mid-sized businesses, into a single platform, called Revenue Generation Software®. Lead Liaison is headquartered in Allen, Texas, near Dallas. For more information, visit http://www.leadliaison.com or call 1-800-89-LEADS (895-3237).

What’s the difference between marketing automation and sales enablement?

What’s the difference between marketing automation and sales enablement? On the surface, the two solutions seem very similar; however, they serve different purposes. In this article we’ll compare and contrast marketing automation with sales enablement.

Primary User

The first difference is with the primary user. Sales enablement is used by sales people whereas marketing automation is used by marketers. Now, don’t get me wrong – sales enablement can be used by people in roles outside of sales, but we’re talking about the primary user here. Marketing automation is more advanced than sales enablement and is designed to meet the demands of different types of sophisticated marketing campaigns. For example, marketing automation actions can have different business logic (rules) wrapped around the actions while sales enablement actions have no additional criteria. Marketing automation also has a number of different action types, such as the ability to change field values, delete records, sync records to a CRM, distribute leads, and more. On the other hand, sales enablement has only a handful of actions commonly used by sales people when doing outreach, such as emails, handwritten letters, text messages, and postcards.

Where Do the Emails Come From?

The second difference between marketing automation and sales enablement is the way that email messages are sent. With marketing automation, emails are sent through the marketing automation provider’s network. Emails sent through sales enablement are sent through the company’s email server. This is typically an Exchange server, Google, Office 365, etc. With sales enablement businesses have more control over their messages, typically better deliverability, and optional unsubscribe text in the emails.

Email Tracking Differences

The third major difference between sales enablement and marketing automation is the level of email tracking. Marketing automation solutions typically track opens and clicks; however, they do not typically detect when someone replies to an email. On the contrary, sales enablement solutions can detect replies, out of office notifications, forwards, and more – making it easy to automatically take action based on this outcome. With sales enablement, people can be automatically removed from the flow when they reply to a message or the conversation can be paused for a defined period when an out of office occurs. With marketing automation, prospects need to be manually removed, or removed with an automated action, if they need to be pulled out of a workflow. Ideally, your marketing automation platform is used for building an already established relationship; whereas sales enablement is ideal for creating brand new relationships. As a result, the need to manually remove people from a marketing automation workflow is much lower if the focus is on building an existing relationship.

Who You’re Targeting

This is a great segue into the last difference between the two systems, which is who the solution targets and where the solution is used in the overall buyer’s journey. Because of its simplicity and sales-friendly setup, sales enablement is ideally suited to fill the top of the funnel. Relationships are usually not forged yet at this stage, and sales enablement can help build those connections. Companies with an inside sales team, business development reps, or reps focusing on major accounts will benefit from using sales enablement. Marketing automation is ideal for people in the middle or bottom of the funnel, when a relationship already exists. Since communication is sent out through the providers network its important to follow the providers rules and sending policies, and send to only prospects with whom you have a relationship with who want to get your email. With sales enablement, emails go through your company’s servers. How you send messages and to whom is up to you.

In Summary

Feel free to use the below summary to forward to your friends and colleagues to help them better understand the differences between marketing automation and sales enablement.

For a demonstration of Lead Liaison’s solution to sales enablement and/or marketing automation click here. Also, learn more about marketing automation strategies here and learn more about sales enablement strategies here. If you care about account based marketing, this strategy will be helpful to beef up on too!

Hope this helps!

Marketing automation:

  • is used by marketers
  • is intended for middle to bottom of the funnel people
  • is perfect for nurturing warm prospects, building stronger relationships, onboarding/upselling customers
  • delivers emails through Lead Liaison’s network
  • requires a process to be setup to remove people from an automation
  • emails require an unsubscribe link

Sales enablement :

  • is used by sales
  • is intended for top of the funnel sales activities
  • is perfect for Account Based Marketing (ABM) and prospecting
  • sends emails through your company’s email server
  • automatically removes people that reply from any automated communication stream (Lead Liaison Rhythms™)
  • emails do not require an unsubscribe link
  • is a platform to set sales goals

Why Do People No-Show for Sales Appointments?

We have all been there. You schedule a call with a hot prospect, only to realize that they are a no-show for your initial sales call or demonstration. No-shows are notorious in the online meeting world (i.e. GoToMeetings, etc.). While everyone will be no-showed occasionally, the frequency of no-shows is directly related to your process.

What are the dangers of no-shows?

You have a limited amount of time to sell during the week. Every time you set aside a block of time and there is a no-show, you lose 5% of your income for that week. If and when you do reschedule, you have lesser value and a lower perception of importance to the prospect as you appear to be the needy one in the relationship. You have also lost out on time spent chasing other opportunities.

Top reasons for no-shows:

  • Rare and tragic personal issue/illness. It happens – people get sick and are unable to come to the office. With this, I would suggest a different strategy.
  • You didn’t create importance and interest in the meeting. Thus, other things became a higher priority.
  • The prospect lacks the ability to buy. Though they were curious about your offering, you failed to qualify if the buyer had the ability to buy your product if you were able to show them a path to success.
  • The prospect does not respect your time as a professional because your introduction was weak.

How do you combat no-shows?

Pre-qualification. By asking a lot of probing questions before the meeting, you are letting your prospect know that your time is important. You are also letting them know that you see a potential fit between their need and your capabilities. Lastly, you are letting them know that your meeting isn’t just a “getting to know you” session; but instead a bonafide opportunity to fix their pain points. It’s an opportunity that they can afford to invest in and execute.

Every introductory sales meeting should have a defined, but simple agenda. This agenda can be provided as a friendly reminder of the sales call the day before the meeting. This way, the prospect can fill in any blanks or important points that they may want you to address in detail. It’s also a great way to find out if other people will be attending the meeting from their side.

When someone does no-show, send a simple note letting them know that you arrived but they were not available. Instead of chasing a no-show prospect, put them into an automated workflow to educate and build their interest. If they are serious about doing business with you, they will suggest another time for a meeting. If they no-showed because they lack attention/interest/desire/action (AIDA), they are probably going to be in the same situation a week from now. Recognize that you scheduled your discussion too early in the process and start over. It’s your job to rebuild AIDA through education that does not require a lot of your time. The exception to this rule is personal tragedy/illness. In those cases, be human and let them know that you are available to talk again if/when their situation clears up.

Note: This is a very simple workflow that you can enact with Lead Liaison’s Marketing Automation or Sales Enablement solutions. With the push of a button, I cancel my meeting and put the prospect into a very simple/well-thought-out flow which benefits both the prospect and the salesperson.

One last note. I know that a lot of business development people are going to turn to ask what should you do when a prospect fills out a “contact us” form, or asks you for a meeting? These opportunities can be huge home runs, or fool’s gold. The first thing that I do in this situation is use a solution like Lead Liaison’s ProspectVision™ to better understand how much the client knows about my company. I want to know how they were referred to my site (was it a partner, an article, a search engine, etc?). I also want to know what the prospect knows about me. For example, if they have spent hours and researched dozens of pages on my website (including the pricing page) before calling me, then they have essentially pre-qualified themselves. On the other hand, I am always wary of prospects that know little about my company but want a demo/discussion. Such prospects are likely to set up dozens of meeting with dozens of competitors simply to learn, with no goals or buying decisions on the horizon. In such situations, cancellations are very likely. Again, through a simple ProspectVision™ analysis, I’m often able to identify and overcome potential no-shows before the happen.

To see a personalized demonstration of the solutions we offer to combat no-shows, let us know about your interest here!

Tools of the Trade: Trello

In the busy world we live in, we all have our secrets to being more productive and more organized. Technology lends itself to creating more solutions. Lead Liaison is one of those solutions, and we have clients all over the globe that agree! But we didn’t get here by using outdated resources. Here at Lead Liaison, we’ve got several “tools of the trade” that help us be the best that we can be. In this series, we will talk about some of the tools that we use to be more effective in our day. In today’s post, we’ll talk about Trello.

Trello

What is Trello?

Trello is a web-based project management application that is accessible from your desktop, tablet, or smartphone. The way Trello organizes tasks and projects is based off of the Kanban System, which was developed by an industrial engineer at Toyota as a system to keep production levels high and maintain flexibility.

It’s incredibly easy to use, and best of all – it’s FREE. It’s fantastic for managing everything from large projects to small tasks, work projects to family chores. Trello cards are similar to sticky notes, in that you can arrange them (and rearrange them) however you wish. It’s a great way to see the big picture, while still being able to dive into the details with a single click.

Features

Projects are represented by boards, which contain lists, which contain cards. Users and boards can be grouped into organizations, and cards can be assigned to individual users. Cards also can contain comments, attachments, votes, due dates, and checklists (which I find the most helpful). It updates in real time, so that everyone stays on the same page. It’s available on your mobile device (even offline), so you can keep track of tasks on-the-go.

It’s also super easy to customize your experience with backgrounds and color codes.

How Do We Use It?

Here at Lead Liaison, we use Trello all the time. Most of us have it pinned in our browser and check it many times a day. Our marketing team, for example, uses Trello to manage marketing campaigns. We host a shared Marketing Board, which is shared with everyone on the team. It contains several lists: Urgent, In Progress, Back Burner, Future Campaigns, and Wish List. Our lists contain each marketing campaign on separate cards. Within those cards, we keep track of the checklist needed to complete each campaign, comments from the team, reminders, and more.

Trello can also be used for personal use, helping you organize things like Vacations or Chores. I’ve even heard of people using it to plan their wedding! The options are endless.

Cost

What’s extra-special about Trello is the fact that almost everything you would need is in their free version; unlimited boards, lists, cards, members, checklists, and attachments. Their Business Class gives you access to powerful integrations with Evernote, Salesforce, Google Drive, and more. Their Enterprise level pricing offers added security and support. Learn more about Trello’s pricing here.

Marketing Automation Company Introduces World’s Easiest to Use Web Form Builder

ALLEN, TX — July 14, 2016 — Lead Liaison, a leader in marketing automation software, announces exciting new features to enhance user experience within their top rated platform.

World’s Easiest to Use Web Form Builder

Great marketing automation companies are superb listeners. One attribute that Lead Liaison is known for is the attention they give to what users have to say about their application. This upgrade is no different. Feedback indicated that there was a need for an easier interface when creating forms within Lead Liaison’s Revenue Generation Software® platform. Their new form builder, which mirrors user experience for their email builder, was released last week. It features drag and drop functionality and the ability to customize color, fonts, field sizes and more with just one click. This feature is expected to cut down on time markers spend creating campaign content.

Jen Worsham, Director of Marketing & Client Relations at Lead Liaison says “Being able to style a form from the user interface is huge! Prior to this new generation form builder, customers would have to create separate style sheets. Now, they simply select colors, fonts, and more with a few mouse clicks. This visual web form builder lessens the dependency that marketers need for IT and web developers to assist them in the form creation process.”

Email Enhancements that Save Time

Lead Liaison already makes database segmentation easy, allowing users to segment their leads into various categories, based off of things like lead score or location. In previous versions, users would need to build a separate list within the email function of the app in order to target specific groups. Now, they’ve made communicating to those groups even easier with their “Send to portion of database” email option.

“Our visual email builder is the best in the industry, hands down. It’s super easy to construct emails with our drag and drop designer. Now the user gets an inline experience, where they can create and send an email to a new list all without having to diverge from the core email sending experience. I expect a lot of marketers to recoup more of their valuable time with this new time-saving feature.” – Worsham

About Lead Liaison

Lead Liaison provides cloud-based sales and marketing automation solutions that helps businesses accelerate revenue by attracting, converting, closing and retaining more prospects. Filling a void in the small pool of marketing automation providers that focus on marketing-centric functionality, Lead Liaison gives equal focus to sales providing sophisticated visitor tracking and additional website engagement tools to boost sales effectiveness. Lead Liaison blends ease-of-use, a flexible business model, deep external integration, marketing across social, web, mobile, email and offline channels and powerful functionality, all specifically tailored for mid-sized businesses, into a single platform, called Revenue Generation Software®. Lead Liaison is headquartered in Allen, Texas, near Dallas. For more information, visithttp://www.leadliaison.com or call 1-800-89-LEADS (895-3237).

What Is A Marketing and Sales Service Level Agreement? How Can It Help My Company Boost Sales?

What Is A Marketing and Sales Service Level Agreement? How Can It Help My Company Boost Sales?A fair number of companies we’ve spoken with have wanted to know “what is a marketing and sales service level agreement (SLA) and how does having an SLA in place help to increase our sales conversions, reduce customer buy cycles, and drive higher revenues?” The short answer is: it’s a document that inspires symmetry. The longer answer is:

What an M&S Service Level Agreement Is

A marketing and sales service level agreement is a binding agreement between the sales and marketing teams that specifies a lead generation and management process. The purpose of a service level agreement is to broker collaboration between both departments by defining a qualification process, lead scoring criteria, and accountability standards. Typically, the goal for executing an SLA is to generate an acceptable level of marketing-qualified leads (MQL) for the sales team to convert into sales-qualified leads (SQL) or sales opportunities.

Within a marketing and sales service level agreement there are requirements for how leads will be managed by marketing and delivered to sales. On the sales side, there are requirements for follow up responsibilities on marketing-qualified leads and converting MQLs to SQLs. In some cases, there may be parameters for how demand will be generated as well.

5 Ways an SLA Aligns Marketing With Sales

  1. Provides a defined pipeline that clarifies when a lead has reached marketing-qualified status.
  2. Provides clear stages for advancing leads towards sales-readiness
  3. Provides lead scoring metrics that reflect lead engagement levels with marketing assets (sales can see how effectively marketing assets are educating leads)
  4. Provides goals for sales to generate sales-qualified leads and opportunities
  5. Establishes that marketing is responsible for de-duping, filtering competition, and removing bot-filled forms

4 Ways an SLA Aligns Sales With Marketing  

  1. Provides defined follow up time for leads received by marketing
  2. Defines an automated lead nurturing process aimed at providing the highest quality leads at the earliest possible point
  3. Provides a criteria-based lead distribution process for sales optimization
  4. Provides goals for marketing to generate marketing-qualified leads and a percentage of leads that eclipse a lead scoring threshold

Operating without a service level agreement can reduce the efficacy of your lead generation/marketing automation system. Be sure to set the standards for both departments early to get the most from your MA platform.

Strategic Marketing Tools

Strategic Marketing Tools

Millions of marketing teams struggle finding the right strategy to market their solutions. Marketing tools help marketers do their job more effectively and efficiently; however, finding the right set of strategic marketing tools can be a bear. Fortunately, we’ve compiled a list of strategic marketing tools for you and encourage you to help us build upon this list. We categorized each tool into its respective marketing bucket. If your marketing team doesn’t have these tools to support their campaign, go get them! Note, we’ll keep this list dynamic and continue adding tools to it over time. What are your favorite strategic marketing tools?

Finding Professional Business Contacts

Data.com
Hoovers (primarily executives)
LinkedIn
Lead Liaison
ZoomInfo
NetProspex

Finding Companies

Hoovers
Lead Liaison
Data.com (limited company search)

Social Media

TweetDeck
AddThis
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter
Radian6 (owned by Salesforce.com)

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEOMoz
SeoQuake (+ plugins for Firefox)

Analytics

Google Analytics
Adobe Online Marketing Suite (Omniture)

Revenue Generation Software

Lead Liaison
• All the other wanna-bes

Email Marketing

iContact
Constant Contact
Vertical Response
Lead Liaison (closed loop)
ExactTarget

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Salesforce.com
SugarCRM
Microsoft Dynamics
NetSuite
Maximizer

Press Releases

PRWeb
PR Newswire

Disclaimer: Lead Liaison has no affiliation with any of these tools, except our own 😉

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Marketing Trade Shows

Marketo put together a nice wall-hanging-graphic on marketing trade shows in the United States. Attending all marketing trade shows would be exhausting; but, surely there are a few shows to highlight for attendance. The graphic groups marketing trade shows by region and orders them by month. Dreamforce and MarketingSherpa are two of the biggest shows around. SXSW is a great show that adds lots of social events to the agenda, mixing entertainment and business together. But before you invest $10K+ per show, let’s discuss how to make marketing trade shows successful.

Making Marketing Trade Shows a Success

Keep three rules in mind when you attend marketing trade shows. Plan, qualify and follow-up. A great teacher once told me, “Output equals input”. Make sure you make a list of targeted prospects or customers, schedule meetings before hand, get promotional material in place and assign roles and responsibility to your team. Next, qualify your leads at the show. It’s amazing to me how many marketing trade shows I’ve been to where the marketing person comes up to me – while I’m chatting with someone else – and asks, “Can I scan your badge”. I think they’re just doing that because they’re paid on how many contacts they can collect. Make sure you engage with attendees at your booth. Try not to sell, but to listen. Finally, make sure to follow-up. It’s amazing to me that some of these companies do not follow up after I’ve expressed some interest at marketing trade shows. So, how can lead qualification and lead follow up be improved?

Simplifying Trade Show Qualification and Follow Up

By using Lead Liaison’s revenue generation software sales and marketers cut through the clutter of qualifying and following up with leads from marketing trade shows. Using our software allows marketers to:

1. Upload collected contacts into our database
2. Send relevant email communications to their contact list (email marketing)
3. Listen to how recipients respond and engage with your communications (lead tracking)
4. Automatically qualify respondents based on how they engage with your brand and marketing content online (lead scoring)
5. Keep a complete record of the respondent’s current and future engagement with your company (lead management)
6. Nurture the contact by sending them relevant communications over time to further build the relationship and educate them on your solution (lead nurturing)
7. Surface only the hottest marketing trade show leads ready to be handed to sales (lead distribution)

We’re compiling our own list of top marketing trade shows for 2012. Are there any shows that are missing in the graphic? Which marketing trade shows are your favorites?

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Lead Tracking Evaluation Checklist

Lead Tracking Evaluation ChecklistDemonstrations often times go off on tangents causing an evaluator to lose track of what matters. We’ve all sat through those demos that go round and round and occasionally go off topic. Regardless of which way a demonstration goes, it’s important to stay focused on the critical areas. Here’s a checklist for you to follow when evaluating lead tracking solutions:

Lead Tracking Evaluation Checklist:

  • I see how we can quickly gather business intelligence information
  • This system allows sales to easily find people to contact
  • This system allows sales to easily find people to contact
  • We know exactly when someone is “checking us out”
  • This system integrates with our CRM
  • Marketing can measure ROI of their marketing campaigns
  • We know exactly who the person is

We’ll be updating this post shortly with a download link for a more detailed one page document which adds more color to the abbreviated lead tracking evaluation checklist mentioned above. We welcome your feedback, comments and suggestions. What are evaluation criteria have you used? What is important to you in a lead tracking solution?

Interested in a demo of Lead Liaison’s lead tracking capabilities? Feel free to contact us and we’ll give you one.

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