Explore must-attend conferences in 2024, including the renowned SaaStr Annual. Follow SaaSMQL for insights into SaaS events 2024.
Demand generation entails generating sales opportunities for your company's products or services. A good demand generation engine can help a company engage new prospects, generate interest online and offline, and attract prospects, which are then converted to leads and turned into sales pipeline.
Demand generation, as the name suggests, is generating sales opportunities for your company's products or services. A good demand generation engine can help a company engage new prospects, generate interest online and offline, and attract potential customers, which are then converted to leads and turned into sales pipeline.
However, most importantly, demand generation engines are meant to be scalable and predictable revenue generation systems, where the ROI can be clearly estimated and measured.
Unlike lead generation, which focuses on only identifying prospective customers for a company, demand generation is the overarching system and processes that act as the bridge between marketing and sales teams. A demand-generation system gives a company a healthy pipeline, identifies new and existing opportunities, and most importantly, makes it possible to track ROI and identify bottlenecks at every step of the sales funnel.
By making every step, from lead to revenue, accountable, a demand generation system allows organizations continual optimization of every stage, which ultimately leads to better customer-lifetime values, and better growth.
The most crucial step in implementing a demand generation engine is to track your lead-to-revenue funnel. In B2B sales, there are many steps that need to happen for a prospect to convert into an opportunity and a closed-won deal. When you only have a few new leads per week, it’s easy to manually route contacts and assign them in Salesforce, without worrying to much about statuses, queues and automation rules. However, once you start to scale, a poorly mapped funnel is the main reason why your marketing dollar are not generating the ROI that you expect. I saw with my eyes companies that were generating over 4,000 new leads per month, but the majority of them were being routed to a marketing queue and never followed-up or nurtured.
A typical SaaS Lead-to-Revenue funnel looks like this:
The blue side of the funnel is typically owned by the Marketing department, while the orange side is owned by the SDR and AE teams. The funnel begins with the MCL (Marketing Captured Lead). These are all the contacts in your database, including cold prospects uploaded from third party systems. The following step is MEL (Marketing Engaged Lead), which means every contact that has performed an action with your assets or content. This include downloading a whitepaper, registering for a webinar, signing up for the blog or newsletter, visiting your booth at an event etc.
As you well know, not every prospect that engage with your company is qualified to buy. This is where your lead scoring model comes into place. You want to be able to score every lead and identify those that are more likely to become customers. The prospects that meet these criteria become MQL (Marketing Qualified Lead) and they are assigned to the sales team. The reps can accept the assigned leads and follow-up (SAL - Sales Accepted Lead) or reject and disqualify them. Once a prospect engages with the sales team and begins the sales cycle, he/she becomes a SQL (Sales Qualified Lead) and an Opportunity is created in Salesforce by the SDR. Once the Opportunity advances past the initial stage, it’s considered a SQO (Sales Qualified Opportunity) and it becomes pipeline and, eventually, revenue.
Since B2B sales can span over many months, it’s very important to have an effective lead nurturing system in place, where you can re-engage with your prospects at every stage of the funnel. If you have mapped them correctly, you should be able to quickly identify where they sit in the funnel and serve them the most relevant content.
A typical demand generation engine will focus on:
In order to optimize those three key metrics, it is important that sales and marketing teams work together from the initial stages. For instance, for optimizing opportunity creation and pipeline, the sales team should sit down with the marketing department to identify the Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) and create a list of target accounts. Once the list is defined, it’s possible to create customized tactics for each tier of prospects and to track how these accounts are engaging with your company’s assets over time.
The campaign strategy should also be shared between the two departments, and ensure that there is a clear “handoff process” once the prospects is engaged and he/she is ready to be assigned to sales. Having a SLA in place for the follow-up will help reducing the possibility of unassigned leads (very frequent issue in large organizations).
In order to optimize a company's sales process, it helps if sales representatives are only given leads that are most likely to convert. Thus, they don't have to waste their time on suspects. Here, sales development representatives (SDRs) can play a crucial role. SDRs act as the bridge between marketing and sales processes. They take marketing qualified leads (MQLs) through a lead-nurturing process, until they are ready for a sales qualified appointment (SQA).
A typical lead-nurturing process would include:
The modern marketing landscape allows SDRs to expand their touchpoints, though. These could include:
In order for sales and marketing teams to work together, it is important that they are working on the same goals and use the same definitions. Marketing cannot decide unilaterally what verticals and accounts should be targeted, that would be a recipe for disaster.
Another common issue is the definition of “Opportunity” and when it’s appropriate for the sales rep to create one in Salesforce. The marketing and the SDR team usually push for the opportunity to be created as early in the cycle as possible, so that they can use it as leading indicator of success. The Account Executives normally prefer to wait until they are sure that the opportunity will move along and it has at least 50% chance of closing, since they don’t want to be questioned about it at every sales forecast. My recommendation is to create an Opportunity in Salesforce as soon as a qualified meeting is booked with the prospect. However, the Opportunity should be categorized as Stage 0 (To Be Qualified) with no amount and should be kept outside pipeline and forecasts. By creating the Opportunity early in the process, you are able to track every stage of the funnel and identify potential issues (when for example your conversion from meetings to opportunities is really low or it’s low just for one rep). It also makes it possible to better track campaign attribution since every Lead will have to be associated to an Account. Finally, it will create a better history report for each account where you had some interactions.
As said before, the SLA between marketing and sales is another aspect that shouldn’t be ignored. Too often companies spend significant budget in generating leads that are ignored because the handoff process is weak and nobody is accountable for following up. Make sure that you automate this part of the funnel: if a rep doesn’t follow-up with a lead within 24 or 48 hours, re-route the lead to a different rep. After a pre-defined amount of time, if a prospect doesn’t engage, you need to move it to your Nurturing cycle to try to re-engage it.
Explore must-attend conferences in 2024, including the renowned SaaStr Annual. Follow SaaSMQL for insights into SaaS events 2024.
In this comprehensive guide, we'll equip you with the tools and knowledge to get started with ABM, delving into how ABM works, key components of successful campaigns, and best practices for marketing to high-value accounts.
If you’re a small business in the SaaS space, the marketing landscape can seem overwhelming. There are countless platforms and apps out there that claim to help your business grow, but not all of them will be right for you.
As a SaaS company, you know that the success of your business depends on the number of new customers you get. You also know that it's getting harder and harder to get those leads because your competition is fierce.
If you’re a SaaS professional, you already know that events are an invaluable resource for small-business networking, SaaS lead generation, and even getting out of your comfort zone.
No matter what stage your SaaS startup is in, landing a whale–a big client that will account for a majority of your revenue–will help you generate the ARR required to keep growing. At this year’s SaaStr, the team at SaaSMQL showed hundreds of SaaS leaders an effective way to do just that. 🐳
Last year we shipped over 27,000 boxes on behalf of our clients. and learned a few lessons along the way. In this article, we’ll lay it all out for you.
SaaS demand generation is an essential part of getting new customers and growing your business, but it's not easy to do well. Read these 7 precious tips on how to build a powerful SaaS demand generation machine.
Let's take a look at the components of a great SaaS direct mail campaign that you can implement today to spur new growth.
In this piece, we will explore 15 of the most common mistakes beginners make with SaaS Marketing, and how to avoid them, so you can save time and energy lost by following ineffective methods.
What does it actually cost to get a new customer? This is a vital metric to master if you are looking to scale up your business in the near future. If you are a SaaS startup looking to build a predictable customer acquisition engine, or a SaaS Company that is ready to scale, this article is for yo
Demand generation is the most crucial role for every SaaS company. Startups need to get on board with key strategies that promote SaaS lead generation, and generate a consistent pipeline to feed the growing sales team. Do you have all the necessary elements in place to run a successful demand gene
In the following guide, we walk you through the basics of ABM and customer lifetime value — and why CLV is so critical for an effective account-based marketing strategy in the world of SaaS ABM.
SaaS demand generation can be complicated, but there are many ways to get your product to the front of your potential customers’ minds. Here we’ll go over some SaaS lead generation techniques that you can use to increase sales and beat the competition.
This article will discuss why direct mail marketing is so important for ABM's success and how to create an effective campaign. We'll also share some tips on measuring the success of your direct mail marketing campaigns.
SaaS direct mail is also a powerful way to reach decision makers and influencers at companies that aren’t currently using your product or service. When used as part of an account-based strategy, your integrated direct mail has the ability to amplify your results exponentially.
In this article we explain why it's so important for SaaS companies to use outbound strategies and the six steps you need to follow in order to execute effective outbound campaigns.
If you are serious about growth in 2022, and who wouldn’t be with what the global economy just endured, then plan to attend at least one of 2022’s Top 12 SaaS Conferences.
When it comes to SaaS growth, you want to make sure that you are putting your best foot forward. This means working with the best account based marketing agency possible. How do you choose?
We have compiled a list of the top platforms for every SaaS companies interested in launching and scaling their Account-Based Marketing strategy.
Nurturing enterprise accounts requires continuous education through multiple channels before they might see a need for your solution. Here we discuss the most effective ways to use multiple channels to nurture your target accounts.
The shift to virtual events in 2020 and 2021, along with uncertainty about when live events will resume, makes this year’s budget planning a bit tougher than others. However, you can use the same methodology to set your team up for success in 2022.
If you’re targeting mid-market or enterprise companies, you can't rely on a single channel to drive engagement and qualified leads. Here we share examples of campaigns with solid ROI and show how to integrate different channels into a unique workflow.
HubSpot and Marketo are considered the #1 and #2 marketing automation softwares in the world. ActiveCampaign, on the other hand, is a powerful and easy-to-use marketing automation & sales CRM platform designed for small businesses on a budget. How do you decide which is right for you?
You might have a golden list of accounts that the sales team wants to focus on, but you don’t have the budget for a shiny new ABM platform. Jasmine Chung, Demand Generation Manager at Openprise, showed us how they are doing it at their company and the results they are seeing.
Intellimize used SaaSMQL’s expertise to launch targeted ABM campaigns, integrating Direct Mail with automated emails and LinkedIn ads to engage with 800 accounts within their ideal customer profile. Their investment generated $4.6M in ARR pipeline.
Looking for some no-nonsense SEO tips to boost your site’s search engine rankings? We sat down with Aaron Moskowitz, Director of SEO at Golden Hippo, and covered 5 easy-to-implement tactics that help increase your website's ranking and boost inbound traffic.
By tracking and taking action in improving essential metrics you can position your team for better performance and productivity. Here we provide some insights into what we believe are the most important KPIs every young B2B SaaS company should track as soon as revenue streams arise.
Here we explain step-by-step how at SaaSMQL we are able to consistently generate over $1M in new sales pipeline every month by using a targeted direct mail approach. We also discuss mistakes to avoid during the process and how to track the campaign performance.
Direct mail is the best-performing direct response channel, bringing in results “10 to 30 times better than email”. Most companies don’t leverage direct mail because it's hard to execute, and requires plenty of time and resources. Here we will go over the 7 steps to launching a direct mail campaign.
In a recent webinar for DemandGen Club, Arun Sivashankaran (Founder & CEO of FunnelEnvy) shared the good, bad, and ugly from his years of experience with B2B demand generation teams tackling account based analytics & personalization.
How do you know which programs are generating qualified leads and pipeline, and which aren’t? How can you make sure a lead is tagged correctly throughout the entirety of their buying journey? Here we discuss the basics of B2B marketing attribution.
Modern ABM marketers are seeing direct mail emerge as an effective channel for B2B companies to engage and convert target accounts. When direct mail campaigns are integrated into a broader account-based marketing strategy, they become a powerful channel to break through noise and reach prospects.
Your marketing “tech stack” is the set of technologies your organization uses to execute and analyze marketing across the customer lifecycle, and scale your business. The key goal of your marketing tech stack is to measure the impact of your marketing activities - making difficult processes easier.
Given the special nature of a direct mail package, it’s no wonder the average response rates are higher than email. Receiving a nice gift right at your desk in the middle of the work week is memorable, and shows that the sender made the effort to do something different.
A strong Demand Generation program allows a company to predictably scale the number of Opps sourced by simply increasing marketing spend. Whether you’re just starting out or have been running Demand Gen programs for years, here are a few core “sins” that your team should avoid at all costs.
Intent data can tell you when your target accounts show strong buying signals, allowing you to target the right people at the right time. Yet, many sales and marketing teams still aren’t sure how to include this new type of data in their workflows, let alone incorporate it into actionable programs.
Scaling is hard. You can have the best sales team in the world, but if they’re not focusing on the right accounts, their work likely won’t amount to new clients for your business. When you focus your efforts on ideal target companies, you maximize the campaign’s efficacy and conversion.
The lead handoff process is one of the biggest bottlenecks for every company trying to grow their sales pipeline. Marketing has invested money and resources to generate qualified leads, but they are not always properly assigned to the Sales team and followed-up with.
Low confidence in marketing attribution and ROI often causes SaaS companies to cut investments on demand generation. By tracking your CAC and the value of each stage of your marketing funnel, you can allocate your budget to drive real growth.
When direct mail campaigns are integrated into a broader account-based marketing strategy, they become a powerful channel to break through the noise and reach your ideal contacts.
Learn how to build effective Account-Based Marketing campaigns using LinkedIn Ads. We'll present specific examples and step-by-step instructions on how to target your named accounts and drive qualified leads.
In this video you'll learn how you can leverage intent data to increase conversion on your ABM campaigns and engage with your target accounts. We'll provide an intro about buyer intent data, the difference between 1st party data and 3rd party data, and how to track customers' offsite behaviors.
In this video you’ll learn how to draft a demand generation budget starting from your revenue goals. We’ll discuss about funnel metrics, Customer Acquisition Costs (CAC), what line items should be considered when creating the budget, how to forecast your ROI, and what tools can help you.
In this video you'll learn how to build the right target account list. By focusing all your efforts toward the ideal accounts, you'll maximize campaign's efficacy and conversion.
In this video we'll share lessons on how to generate pipeline sponsoring third-party conferences, how to best manage follow-ups and track results, and how to scale the strategy to 100+ events per year. We'll also discuss about best practices on how to run your first user conference successfully.
Direct mail has been emerging as an effective channel for B2B companies to engage and convert their target accounts. When direct mail campaigns are integrated into a broader account-based marketing strategy, they become a powerful channel to break through the noise and reach your ideal contacts.
The 8 most common sales mistakes that I frequently notice in venture-funded SaaS startups. These include adding territories too early or hire a bunch of AEs when there is no pipeline. Avoiding these early mistakes will impact your ARR from the beginning.
Marketing is no longer incentivized to simply generate leads at the top-of-the-funnel and throwing them to sales. The metrics that matter now are account engagement, number of opportunities generated, pipeline ($) and revenue.