Here at Allocadia, we’ve broken Marketing into two integral parts: Running Marketing and Doing Marketing. I want to quickly break those terms down for you in case you’re unfamiliar with these areas of marketing.
- Doing Marketing involves the execution of tasks and deliverables that marketers wake up to every day. It’s all the work that goes into making events, campaigns, emails, and basically anything that is market facing, a reality.
- Running Marketing is the strategy behind the programs that marketing drives. This includes the plans, the investments and analytics. Running Marketing is synonymous with Marketing Performance Management (MPM).
When you expand the scope of marketing beyond Marketing and Sales teams, Revenue Operations starts coming into play. This is a relatively new term that’s been coming up a lot lately; most notably highlighted by our friends at Radius and Scott Vaughn, CMO at Integrate. At Allocadia, we’re fans of Revenue Operations and, when you look closely, the core values of Revenue Ops mirror those of Marketing Performance Management. Neither focus on execution (Doing Marketing), but rather on what happens behind the scenes–what’s really driving the strategy in an organization (Running Marketing!).
The Importance of Planning within Revenue Ops & MPM
At the core of Revenue Ops and MPM responsibilities is Resource and Performance Planning, which focuses on three different areas: A Go-To-Market Plan, Investment Management and Targets. Each of the three functions must be aligned across the revenue teams, as well as up and down the rest of the organization.
- Go-To-Market Plan: What are our goals and what will we do to accomplish them?
- Investment Management: How are we going to spend our money to reach the goals set out in our plan?
- Targets: What results must we drive (and measure) to assure we are on track to beat market expectations?
When taking on the planning portion of Revenue Ops and MPM, best-in-class organizations do the following:
Align plans with corporate objectives
Developing plans in a vacuum is almost always a guaranteed recipe for failure. Without the context of what the business is trying to achieve, a plan has very little chance of succeeding. High-growth organizations are 2X more likely to align marketing KPIs so that they understand how they are directly contributing to the business’s overall objectives when compared with those organizations that have negative to flat growth.
Ken Evans, Senior Director of Marketing Operations at Fuze highlights this point well, “(Aligning with corporate objectives) allows you to create a plan that is specific to certain business targets, scalable and, at the end of the day, can show a return on corporate investments.”
Structure plans according to industry standards
The reality is, Revenue Ops and Marketing need to coordinate efforts across audiences, channels, departmental functions, product lines, and regions when developing their plans. While every plan and measurement framework is going to be slightly different, you won’t succeed without a formal framework.
For Investment planning, both IDC’s CMO Advisory Service and SiriusDecisions’s Marketing Operations Group have strong taxonomies and benchmarks, all of which Allocadia software can help your team put in place. For Demand Generation and Revenue planning, SiriusDecisions’s Demand Waterfall is a great place to start.
Create top-down and bottom-up plans
Both top-down strategic plans and bottom-up tactical plans are incredibly valuable and necessary. But if you focus too heavily on the top-down plan, you risk losing touch with reality. Jump too quickly to the tactical, activity-based plan and you could end up being stuck in a silo.
An approach that works is to have Revenue Ops and Marketing Performance Management professionals partner with executives to set strategic objectives, bring these to the field, and coordinate a global bottom-up planning process. In a perfect world these two actions would meet in the middle–the reality is that there will always be some negotiation and reconciliation.
MPM and the strategy around it is what Revenue Ops uses to evaluate the impact of marketing and sales, which in turn enables teams to understand return on investment and tell the story of performance in terms of business results. When Revenue Ops are equipped to run the business of marketing and sales, they can make better investment decisions, transform how teams operate, and increase revenue impact.