The product works very well for scoring and nurturing. Once salespeople started really using it and concentrate on warm rather than cold leads, they started hitting their [target]. It was a highly effective system for improving sales performance.
It also allowed our sales and marketing departments to work much more closely than they ever had. Marketing was now able to run very targeted campaigns aimed at specific leads to help move them through the funnel for improved collaboration between the teams. [It] was highly effective.
Very effective tool for the marketing department to aquire brand new leads by running marketing campaigns.
Perhaps this is not a reflection on the product per se, but it required significant change management to implement it. We had to change our internal processes to match the salespeople already had an established process – they were used to looking at leads in an account queue in SFDC – but they had a different starting point. It was hard to get them to change their regular habits. It took weekly education and a carrot and stick approach. Initially, we were allocating leads by hand and I gave salespeople who were using the product the warmer leads. It took a quarter to get people using it. Once those people using the system they started to dramatically improve their performance; the others took notice and starting using the system also.
It also took a while to generate adequate data for the lead scoring process to work. We needed some volume of data before we were able to determine what constituted a hot lead. This definitely took some time.
The product doesn't work out-of-the-box. Technically, we had to work through a lot of things with Marketo to get it up and running. There was a fair amount of integration work to do before we could get started. This created some clean-up work too.
• We quickly narrowed the choice down to Eloqua and Marketo and selected Marketo based on personal recommendations and because of the scoring functionality. We also looked at HubSpot (another Matrix Partners firm) but felt that the tool was not as robust was either Marketo or Eloqua.
• Head of Marketing really liked Marketo. Our venture firm had also recommended it highly. I had met Marketo’s CRO and we established a good personal connection and I thought they would be a good partner for our business.
• I’m a data guy and I was initially very struck by the robustness of their scoring system idea of scoring systems which I thought was a perfect match for what we were trying to achieve.
• Also, Marketo is a newer product than Eloqua and therefore has a more modern UI which I thought was important for our user base.
This is a highly collaborative process. I put a steering committee together with participation from the CRM (SFDC) team, data analysts, and marketing to make sure that it got done. We held weekly meetings to deal with any issues and make sure we hit our launch date. I essentially product managed the process, which was a huge effort and should not be underestimated. It took us a couple of months to iron out system ownership/deployment issues but would have taken far longer without a focused project team.
Our customer service rep came on site for a couple of days to configure scoring, apply rules to reflect our business process. The marketing director worked closely with him and was trained during the implementation process. She, in turn, trained the sales people. Ultimately, she headed the NYC Marketo user group.
I found it to be very intuitive. However, the sales team still struggled a bit. This was not really a product issue since all they had to do was open a tab to look at leads. The issue was just getting them to change their process.
We have a custom applicant lead system called Passport which we use to acquire applicants and recruiters. It also provides self-service functionality for recruiters. We allow recruiters to post a job and job seekers can then apply for that position. The recruiter can search up to 50 names in the DB. Once they reach that limit they had to add more profile details go get further access. All of this data was sent to Marketo where recruiters were scored based on activity on our site with a view to moving recruiters up from the free version of the product to the paid version. The big task was integrating scoring with our profiling mechanism in Passport. The more profile data provided, the higher the lead score. This score was also informed by more traditional metrics like website click-throughs etc.
Leads are passed from Passport to Marketo where they are put into a nurturing program and lead scoring program where we profile and qualify the leads more effectively. The best leads are then turned over to salespeople. (NOTE: There is an override button, where very hot leads can be turned directly to sales without having to go through this process.
SFDC: Hot leads were visible on a Marketo tab within SFDC so salespeople knew which leads to pursue.