At the premiere conference for marketing content and demand gen practitioners, Republic Services and Televerde bring home a prestigious Finny Award for Best Return on Investment Campaign
By Mark Evertz
I traveled to the epicenter of demand gen and content innovation this week for Business2Business Marketing Exchange or #B2BMX. No Hall of Fame two-wheeler Mat Hoffman wasn’t there – but Matt Heinz was! I’ve been to a few of these, back when they had the healthy Business2Business Content2Conversion moniker. Name game aside, this event remains the place where false claims and puffery go to die. This is a conference of people who actually do the work that many other conferences talk about. In a house of Do’ers, some take home hardware for a job well done, others still win by creating great campaigns for themselves and clients. Even those who stumbled out of the blocks for one reason or another didn’t leave empty handed.
Don’t get me wrong. There were no trophies for second place or ribbons for participation here. The rewards here are:
- – battle-tested strategies to snag
- – tech stacks that are working
- – tools and talent to fix what’s broken
- – ways to scale your efforts to find more prospects, nurture more people and close more deals
I was fortunate enough to share the stage with Republic Services at their Finny Awards win for Measurable ROI. Without mixing in a bunch of Bull Durham-esqe clichés like “honored to be nominated, all nominees played hard”, etc., I’ll just say it’s awesome when the promises you make to others are promises kept.
A little over a year ago, one of the early champions of demand gen at Republic Services, Ryan Jensen, and I were in a big conference room with the company’s VP of Marketing Beth Graham, and several skeptical executives and sales leaders from the company laying out the following case:
- We need to deploy marketing automation.
- We need content to fuel that automation.
- We need to interview our customers to figure out the content that matters.
- If we do this, sales can sell more and battle objections less – with marketing owning the nurture process.
- If you help us help you, your deals will close faster.
And here’s what happened:
- Marketing Qualified Leads jumped 15%
- Working pipeline increased 60%
- Marketing-attributed revenue generated climbed 300%
- Sales Accepted Leads grew 50%
- A 50% conversion-to-lead rate
- Sales cycle went from 16 months to 4-6 months
- Televerde’s calling campaign contact rate doubled thanks to content and campaign nurture engagement
We had some serious doubters at the beginning, but persistence and a commitment to soaking up info from inside and outside of the company wore down the skeptics.
Looking back now, it’s clear that having the sales team participate in interviews, review content and actually QA some of the campaign created a high level of ‘WE’ on this project. That camaraderie is often lacking in most projects I get involved. Sure, sales and marketing alignment may exist – “I’ll do this if you do that” SLAs and commitments. But this wasn’t just alignment. This was the even rarer experience of what Peter Strohkorb calls “Smarketing” – a true hybrid of the two roles with both committed to each other AND a revenue number.
Marketing, Sales, IT and a team of dedicated do’ers at Televerde and elsewhere put in the time to create the ‘why’ and ‘how’ for Republic Services commercial prospects. This is an example, with a Measureable ROI award, of that paying off big time. The good news for all of us is that if you take that time and share the load, you can see the same level of success. What we did is absolutely a repeatable process.
No short cuts,
P.S. Those of you who want a copy of the presentation Beth, Ryan and I gave at the event, Marketing Automation, Content & The Human Touch – A Recipe For Success, shoot me an email here.