Customized Process to Optimize

Your Sales & Marketing.

 

Many industrial companies operate through tribal knowledge that is undocumented and too reliant on the knowledge of the people performing the work. This ultimately results in missed sales opportunities. Acadia is founded by engineers, for engineers, and passionately provides sales enablement and marketing services to B2B industrial companies so that you never lose another sale. We do this through our proven, three-step system called Omnibound® that helps your sales and marketing teams coordinate their work, use high-tech tools to find and track prospects, and drive revenue.

 

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Assess 

Omnibound® begins with an in-depth assessment of how your current sales and marketing teams interact, the procedures they follow, and how they use CRM and marketing automation tools.

 

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Align

Once we understand where gaps reside, we align your operations with customized solutions and documented procedures.

 

 

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Refine

 We go a step further, piloting and validating the solutions and continuing to work with you to refine your program as your business evolves.

 

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Step 1. Assess:

A Deep Dive to Analyze Your Current Situation

Forward-thinking sales and marketing professionals, business leaders, and owners know that business development must be treated the same way they run their production environment: boosting efficiency, minimizing errors, and keeping operations moving. But not everyone has the time or staff to do it effectively. That’s where Acadia comes in. 

Our first step is to look closely at the structure, processes, and technology that you have in place now. Documenting exactly what’s going on (or not going on) shows us areas for improvement and enables us to find and close gaps in your sales processes.

 

 

Assessing Your Sales & Marketing Teams Roles and Accountability

The problem for many organizations is the push and pull between sales and marketing. The challenge for leadership is figuring out how to align these two very critical departments into one coordinated and cohesive unit. Just as important is the ability to measure what is working and what is not. The reality is many sales and marketing teams are uncoordinated or even at odds.

According to a study cited by Martechadvisors , when “asked whether their marketing team understood customers, only 50% of sales teams thought that they did; only 52% [of marketers] thought that their sales team were effective at qualifying sales opportunities.” By meeting with you and your staff and observing how they work together, we are able to visualize the current situation. Our assessment lets you see and understand the full picture, including team and staff challenges such as:

 

  • Teams that speak different languages (e.g. a lack of shared vocabulary and common definitions for what constitutes a lead, nurturing, or a missed opportunity; inconsistent or unclear messages in your content)
  • Fuzzy roles and responsibilities (e.g. rough handoffs and transitions between departments; unclear division of responsibilities between teams and individuals)
  • Poor communication (e.g. over-reliance on “tribal knowledge”; limited organizational history and memory)
  • Lack of accountability (e.g. not following up or nurturing leads; inconsistent CRM use; ignoring procedures; not communicating expectations) 
  • Silos (e.g. teams, departments, and staff who don’t communicate frequently; poorly defined roles and responsibilities; not sharing critical information)

 

Of course, assessment also includes highlighting successes and all of the ways sales and marketing are on the right track.

An accounting of strengths and efficiencies that are working well provides a foundation for improvement.

 

 

Assessing Processes and Procedures Throughout Your Sales Cycle

It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking as long as you have engaged and skilled marketing and sales reps they’ll be able to stay productive, drive revenue, and close deals in any situation. The truth is it takes more than just a great team to be effective. Even when employees work well together with clearly defined roles and excellent communication, if they don’t have a solid game plan they’ll eventually get lost or fall out of step. We’ll review your existing documentation and workflows, walk through your procedures step by step, and look for inconsistencies. We’ll also talk with your staff, management, and leadership to find out if they have the information needed to do their work and make decisions. Our assessment can answer questions like:

 

  • Why is it taking so long to close deals?
  • Why are some of our prospects never followed up with?
  • Why are certain segments slipping through the cracks?
  • How can we save time chasing down accurate contact information?
  • Why do we seem to be reinventing or spinning our wheels repeatedly?
  • Why can’t we remember the rationale behind decisions and changes?

We’re often able to work backward from your desired outcomes to figure out where information is missing, tasks are incomplete, or what obstacles hinder efficient work. Then, with your specific needs in mind, we can develop strategies and processes to smooth the transition from lead to prospect to customer.

Because no two companies are the same, all of our solutions and suggestions are customized, such as setting up your CRM with automatic reminders to nurture leads on your preferred schedule, a one-stop place for all notes about interactions/touches with an account, thoughtful and targeted web and email content, and even flowcharts to guide prospect nurturing in each of your segments.

 

 

Assessing Your Sales and Marketing Tools

Technology can really help automate and streamline your processes and procedures. It can also reduce manual errors, promote team accountability, and track data more efficiently. But your sales technology is only as good as the training you provide, data you input, and how accountable the team is to the processes. 

Some companies find working with a CRM or other marketing automation tools daunting, especially integrating them into daily operations and making the transition from manual to computerized processes. It’s true that the more features and functions a tool has, the more time you must spend on initial training and reinforcing its use. If you want to find ways to use technology to your advantage but don’t have the resources or computer expertise to devote it, we can help with:

 

  • CRM optimization, such as deploying the features that matter most for your business, or setting up forms, data entry fields, and tags that make your data meaningful to you
  • Organizing and cleaning data to be more accurate
  • Creating guidelines and training on using tech tools consistently and correctly, including developing rules and definitions for tags, data entry standards, and how to navigate and search for information
  • Setting up dashboards, metrics, and reports that show what you need to see in real time, without clutter, and customized to each person’s role
  • Optimizing cloud-based tools to track how prospects interact with your content, such as email opens, clicks, replies, and more
  • Digital marketing including web and email content, SEO, and social media management

Marketing and sales technology is great for keeping track of prospects and keeping up with outreach. Built-in data analytics shows you in real-time the state of your pipeline, win/loss rates, team activity metrics, and much more. But none of that matters if your set up and your data are poor quality. We can assess and troubleshoot your digital tools so you get the most value from them.

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Step 2. Align:

Building a Coordinated Sales and Marketing Program

You might assume sales and marketing are aligned simply because both departments are working toward the same goal: bringing in more customers. After all, you’re focused on the same industry and the same products or services, so you must be aligned.

But all-too-common signs of misalignment include sales and marketing teams disagreeing about what makes a strong lead, lack of awareness of what each other does on a daily basis, and not informing each other of their needs. Instead of a coordinated message and guidance through the sales cycle, focus and efforts are dispersed and diluted. Step two of the Omnibound process is all about fixing the problems uncovered in the assessment step to create alignment.

 

 

Aligning People and Teams

The assessment might have revealed that your teams are not as productive as they could be and might not be working together either. Aligned sales and marketing teams have 38 percent higher sales win rates, according to MarketingProfs, so when we see evidence that sales and marketing are not working in tandem, it’s our cue to open lines of communication and clarify roles and responsibilities. We can help with: 

 

  • Gathering feedback from leadership, management, and sales & marketing teams about expectations, responsibilities, and needs
  • Planning regular cross-department meetings and integrating regular communication
  • Defining key terms (e.g. leads, segments, follow up, inside vs. outside sales)
  • Outlining roles and responsibilities at the individual and team levels, and distributing this information to everyone involved

This may represent a departure from the usual way of operating in your organization, especially if groups tend to work in silos. Our philosophy is that both marketing and sales staff have valuable insight on buyers’ needs and how to engage them, so communication and coordinated efforts just make sense.

 

 

Aligning Processes and Procedures

Assessing your processes and procedures and answering tough questions about your operations reveals where your organization typically makes errors, leaves out information, and creates redundancies. Once roles and responsibilities are aligned and teams are communicating, it’s time to tackle processes and procedures. Time spent on this step pays off when everyone has a chance to review the bigger picture and contribute ideas to drive sales.  

 

We’ll work with you to customize your systems and guide workflow, including:

  • Documenting steps for prospect outreach, flow of opportunities through your pipeline, CRM data entry, and more
  • Developing forms and worksheets for gathering information from prospects, sales forecasting, developing buyer personas, etc.
  • Clarifying handoffs and transfers of responsibility between teams
  • Identifying critical benchmarks, figures, and KPIs and frequency of data reporting for each level of leadership and management
  • Establishing regular notification and feedback between sales and marketing
  • Building a library of targeted, engaging content and templates 

 

Aligning Technology and Automation Tools

People in your organization probably use your CRM and marketing automation tools in different ways: some always update client notes and check their numbers daily, others only look up phone numbers, and still others prefer paper and pencil to digital systems. If use is inconsistent or intermittent, you’re not getting your time or money’s worth from the tools, and the statistics and reports you’re running (if you run them at all) aren’t giving you the whole story.

Aligning your technology means setting up software and entering data so they’re meaningful and useful for your daily operations, and creating automatic workflows that save you time and effort. Do you CRM and marketing automation systems do that for you? If not, we can help by:

 

  • Auditing your technology needs and making recommendations (e.g. Hubspot, Salesforce, and more)
  • Optimizing your CRM or assisting setting one up (e.g. setting up records in a way that makes sense for you, organizing and segmenting contacts, cleaning your data)
  • Training teams to use CRM software effectively (e.g. smart data entry, mobile access for field use, how to search for and create reports)
  • Integrating marketing automation tools to streamline day to day sales tasks (e.g. scheduled callback notifications for nurturing, email templates)
  • Customizing metrics and reporting for maximum impact and utility (e.g. tracking email opens and clicks, dashboards tailored to user needs, online tools for visualizing real-time data)
  • Centralizing critical documentation (e.g. shared access to schedules, procedures, lists, forms, and worksheets to encourage collaboration)

 

Of course, another benefit of getting your whole team aligned with using a CRM and marketing automation is spending less time on mundane daily tasks like looking for customer notes and phone numbers or typing yet another version of a follow up email. We can help you develop your reps into technology power users who have more time to follow up on leads, check in with customers, and plan sales strategies.

 

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Step 3. Refine: Test, Review, and Adjust

for Continuous Improvement

The world of sales and marketing is always changing. That’s why refinement is the last step of the Omnibound® process. Chances are you won’t achieve perfection on the first try, but knowing what doesn’t work is nearly as important as figuring out what does. 

In step three, we help you refine and redeploy by taking stock of changes, looking for persistent gaps, and making adjustments as necessary. With regular check ins and annual audits through our Center for Excellence, Acadia becomes a partner committed to your success.

 

 

Refining How People and Teams Work Together

Taking your business to the next level means adopting the right tools and using them effectively. If your entire organization doesn’t take ownership of the processes and technology, you won’t see the growth you expect.

In the refinement stage, we’re concerned with accountability. From entering account notes into your new CRM to following up with every lead to holding joint sales/marketing meetings, team members must take responsibility for making the changes happen. We’ll review how the changes are going with you, focusing on these key questions: 

 

  • Does everyone understand the new expectations? If not, we’ll revisit documentation of roles and procedures, address buy in from leadership and management, and make sure everyone is following the rules for data entry and setting task reminders.
  • Do your people have the skills and support needed to use new tools and follow procedures? We can pinpoint what’s missing including ongoing training, creating opportunities to ask questions, and making tech tools easy to use (from seamless mobile access to searches to canned and custom reports).
  • Are team members communicating regularly and effectively? We especially want to support and encourage collaboration among teams that have historically worked in silos. We’ll work with you to set up joint meetings, encourage teams to share information and keep each other apprised of their activity.

 

 This internal accountability check will probably need to be repeated. After all, it takes time to change routines and attitudes, and our experts can help make it happen.

 

 

Refining Processes and Procedures

Engineers and manufacturers know from experience that parts and projects usually aren’t perfect on the first try. In fact, sometimes they miss the mark entirely. That’s not a reason to give up, but it does indicate the need to revisit the design or process to determine what’s still not working.

Because you’ve already done the hard work of assessing and aligning your sales and marketing teams, in this step you’re primarily making adjustments and refinements instead of a complete overhaul. We can help you zoom in on the bigger picture to spot lingering issues by asking:

 

  • Do we know our target audience(s)? We provide assistance in segmenting prospects, developing detailed buyer personas, identifying emerging markets for your product or service, and list building.
  • Are we trying to change too much too soon? Acadia can pilot your processes, targeted by segment, including outreach, content, and data validation, then help you make revisions and scale up.
  • Do our processes address the changes in the ways our buyers are buying? Our team can help make you more “findable” online, and deliver digital content tailored to the range of audiences/roles involved in today’s B2B buying decisions.
  • Are opportunities still falling through the cracks? We’ll help you start with the end in mind, working backward to figure out how to get there. Metrics provide clues too. We’ll study data like your average opportunity age, how many tries it takes to reach contacts, and the number of contacts reached per account.

In refining processes and procedures, you must be able to see how all the parts fit together from developing talking points, to adding prospects to your database, to nurturing and filling in engagement notes, to closing a deal. It’s no small task but we can show you how the right refinements add up to a winning strategy.

 

 

Refining How You Use Technology and Marketing Automation

There’s definitely a learning curve associated with using a CRM and with setting up automated notifications, emails, and callback reminders. Not everyone adopts new technology at the same rate and not everyone is naturally adept at navigating menus. Likewise the codes, tags, and searches that sounded helpful might not track what you really need.

 

Refining technology and automation means looking at the following: 
  • Is our CRM meeting your needs? We’ll look at how it’s set up for data entry, reporting, and searching. This is also the time to address access issues that require further training such as navigation or mobile access.
  • Do the metrics validate our activities and revenue drivers? Can we trust them? If the numbers don’t point to why you’re missing goals or show you activity and production stats, we’ll get to the root cause. It might be time to reevaluate how reps are entering data, or decide if other numbers tell the story better. We can help you understand how data directly impacts reporting and dashboards.
  • Can we save more time with automation? The goal of marketing automation is to reduce errors and free reps from mundane, repetitive tasks. Acadia can help you find places where automation makes you more efficient.
  • Are we keeping documentation up to date and distributed? We’ll check for signs of confusion and make sure you have people assigned to updating rules, forms, and procedures. Then, ensure file sharing and project management tools are in place to easily notify and share them.

 

At Acadia, our goal is to help you reach the intersection of people, process, and technology working in unison and ultimately, sales and marketing working as one entity with a common goal. Step by step with Omnibound® get in touch to learn more. 

 

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