As this whole model flows all the way through the deal, I’m doing things to lubricate the process. If the process doesn’t get easier, we don’t get faster; if I’m not seeing an increase in velocity, I’m wondering why my awareness isn’t working because that should be the outcome.
How do you analyze the data?
We’re looking at all this data on an annualized basis—so a rolling four-quarters model. It’s not just a quarter at a time; we’re looking at a full 12 months’ worth of data on a repetitive basis to uncover the trends that we want to impact.
We’ve set some service level agreements around how long deals should sit in different stages. We’re doing exception reporting on a monthly basis, and I meet with the sales organization to go through their pipeline and look at deals that aren’t progressing. That progression helps to drive that sales cycle length. Each piece of this can be chipped away to increase that velocity over time.
What about things you can’t measure?
Go do whatever you want and make it as unmeasurable as you want, but it needs to come back to: Did we get the number of leads that we would have expected at the price that we would have expected? That’s allowed us to do some really interesting things.
For instance, if I was going to spend money on billboard advertising, how do you directly tie that back to value from a B2B standpoint, enterprise purchase? How do I get an ROI out of that? I’m sure that somebody could tell me a story about it, but really, it’s lubricating that sales process. And if velocity is not increasing, it’s probably not working
How are sales and marketing aligned?
Digging into pipeline, you would think that the sales organization would push back on this conversation coming from me, but it hasn’t been that way. It’s really been very well accepted, and the idea of bringing them forensically through their pipeline on a monthly basis to help them to see where they have soft spots has been incredibly valuable to the business.
Marketing and sales are aligned through both the end goal of the business and compensation to make this seamless. Now we’re in a position where we’re essentially calling our shots. We’re hitting our numbers. We’re walking into next quarter ready to do business in a healthy position from a pipeline standpoint. We just need to execute. We know how to do that moving forward and we know how to scale that, and it’s a great place to be.