Manage Your Marketing Automation Platform Migration

TLDR: Migrating to a new marketing automation platform is a demanding project. We’ll help you plan it carefully to get the results you want.

Why migrate platforms? The decision to migrate to a new marketing automation platform is one to treat with care. You might be looking to solve the pain points of your current platform, gain more advanced features to support your growth, or see more value for money by focusing on specific capabilities.

Why it’s a heavy lift: Moving to a new marketing automation platform can get these results and revitalize how your marketing team performs, but this isn’t a project to underestimate. Migrating to a new platform is a technical, resource-intensive effort that requires careful planning to yield results with minimal disruption.

What’s in this article for you? If your CMO or Marketing VP is pursuing a new marketing automation platform, this Tough Talks Made Easy is for you. You’ll learn how to:

➡️ Set realistic expectations on timelines and performance.

➡️ Advocate for the processes.

➡️ Understand how to execute the project correctly.


Size up the task

Before you get off the ground with a platform migration, your marketing operations team needs to be clear on the demands of the project. Leadership might assume that features shared between platforms will translate identically from one to the next, and therefore expect a much faster turnaround than what’s feasible.

There are a few points of guidance you can give to address the project scope.

👉 Migrating to a new platform means rebuilding your marketing automation system from the ground up. This means you can’t resume with your new platform exactly where you left off with the previous one.

👉 Present how key features differ between platforms to leadership and your team.

👉 Determine the pieces you can migrate cleanly versus infrastructure to build anew, similar processes versus functions the team needs to relearn.

Before your team starts building any infrastructure, Marketing’s evaluation should deepen until they’re able to set priorities for the migration.

Some of the key questions that should be answered at the initial risk assessment, include:

  • What assets and programs are critical to migrate?
  • Which prior integrations will you need to reestablish?
  • How deeply will you need to clean your database?
  • Without historical data on your new platform, how will you interpret the first few months of reporting?


Time it right

Naturally, a significant project like this will have productivity consequences for the team.


“You’ll want to budget 12-16 weeks to get your assets and database from A to B.”


You’ll want to budget 12-16 weeks to get your assets and database from A to B, accounting for all stakeholder approvals.

While your team handles the migration and gets to grips with the new system, advocate for this to be a cool-down period for campaigns, events, and other intensive projects like rebranding or moving to a new website.

After all, Marketing will be best set up to succeed by ramping up to normal only when they’ve mastered the new system.

To make that happen, highlight the need for a dedicated team to help with training and project support. Whether your experts come from SOPs, MOPs, or IT, they need hours in the week scoped out in advance to assist.

Continuity is another key thing to account for.

Base the timeline for your migration on the contract with your current vendor. A crossover period between the two platforms, where you gradually dim the switch on your current system, is essential to prevent from going dark. To stay up and running, suggest to leadership that you begin the migration with at least a month left on your outstanding contract.

Ultimately, your planning should conclude with key stakeholders all on the same page about the work to come. Encourage your team to contribute to a project management resource that breaks down tasks and responsibilities, dependencies, tactical elements, and required buy-in.

This, along with agreed-upon and documented definitions for key terms and processes (e.g. lifecycle modelling, lead qualification criteria), is crucial for your team members to work in sync with one another during the migration.


See it through

Once your migration’s in motion, effective project management is vital to ongoing success.


“A delay in one area of the migration has consequences for other moving parts.”


A delay in one area of the migration has consequences for other moving parts, so encourage your team to participate in weekly sync calls, sprints, and targeted meetings to share status updates and proactively keep on top of risks.

As the project progresses, all of the stakeholders involved in the migration are going to be learning about how your new platform works; to help with onboarding and knowledge transfer, have them contribute to a resource that outlines how all new processes and functionalities work.

A platform migration is a project made of many different factors—from timelines to training, priorities to vendor contracts—and the closer your team collaborates to understand the task at hand, the better the odds are you’ll put together a plan that works.

No matter the size of your organization, migrating to a new marketing automation system is a complex and resource-intensive process. For any support you need with planning or executing a platform migration, Revenue Pulse is here to help.

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How Sales Leaders Can Improve Performance Management

TLDR: The industries you sell to are changing all the time—are your methods of managing Sales performance keeping up? Learn how to help your Sales leaders win business and incentivize the team.

Sales is a numbers game: The main objective of a Sales function is creating revenue. And it’s easy for sales leaders and Sales Operations to quantify and break down into quarterly performance targets. From this, Sales teams are heavily measured against “tried and true” activity metrics that, in theory, generate revenue—calls made, emails sent, demos scheduled.

Adapting to shifting landscapes: But meeting these benchmarks doesn’t guarantee results. Many industries are evolving continuously, where the issues that people care about and their preferred spaces and methods of communication are in flux. As a result, leaders need to be on top of the internal and external dynamics of their spaces—what’s happening in the field and with the team—because the “proven” performance metrics and engaging conversations of the day could expire in a month.

What’s in this article for you? In this Tough Talks Made Easy, we’ll help you have conversations to rejuvenate your Sales function. You’ll learn how to:

➡️ Encourage your Sales leaders to think laterally about performance management

➡️ Go beyond stagnant metrics and make space to build industry awareness, boost team morale

➡️ Make meaningful customer connections


Adapting to the space

Gone are the days of sales being purely transactional.

Consumers today are:

  • wise to the sales cycle
  • plugged into online communities and emerging trends in their industries, and
  • have high expectations not only of the products and services that vendors offer but of the relationships they can build with potential business partners.

For sales leaders, this means it isn’t productive to fill out the days of your reps by having them place dozens of calls and send hundreds of emails each week at the expense of more strategic work.

“Tried and true” sales practices are the bare minimum to captivate new business and are sometimes insufficient.

👉 Instead, encourage your sales leaders to think creatively about the practices that generate impact.

👉 Allocate time for the team to get in touch with communities, understand the challenges of potential clients, and get up to speed with the zeitgeist and direction of your marketplace.

👉 Examine how people in the space get their information, the outreach methods you’re using, and how your Sales team positions themselves to solve people’s problems and address their needs.


“Encourage your sales team to meet people in the market.”


Encourage your sales team to meet people in the market. By doing this, their outreach is more in tune with the issues prospects care about, and the better grasp leadership will have of the measures of performance management that are actually relevant and effective.


Talking to the team

Sales professionals are motivated by compensation and rewards, and incentive structures are a delicate aspect of performance management.

Talented salespeople leave companies when leaders change their commission structure without first consulting with them or explaining the rationale behind changes that impact how they earn.

When leaders don’t promote dialogue around targets and incentives, it’s easy for Sales to become frustrated.

Encourage leadership to talk to people in the team and get their perspectives.

👉 Are our incentives working for you?

👉 Are the KPIs we’re setting realistic and relevant to the dynamics of our market?

👉 Appealing to people’s interests and showing respect for their expertise will help create performance targets that people are inspired to meet.

In practice, your SDRs are the people most in tune with today’s market dynamics, customer needs, industry standards, and emerging products and services in the space.


“Without SDR insights, leaders will struggle to come up with fresh and relevant strategies.”


Without SDR insights, leaders will struggle to come up with fresh and relevant strategies. Therefore, it’s a priority to create an open and transparent structure for communication, where people at each rung of the ladder roll up into others and have their voices heard and represented at C/Head/VP level.


This includes Sales Operations.

Sales Ops has the data to provide valuable consultation when revenue is stagnant.

Where are conversion rates falling in our lead flow?

Are the metrics we’re using and benchmarks we’ve set the sales team allowing us to get a sophisticated grasp of how we’re doing and why?

Contextualize your current performance by drawing comparisons to the conversion rates and Sales’ tactics used in stronger-performing periods.

What are we doing differently?

What’s different in the space?

Perhaps you’re seeing a significant drop off at the proposal stage, or you’re signing business that you end up losing. Maybe you’re tracking certain metrics that don’t meaningfully convey how your Sales reps contribute to revenue. Whatever the data reveals, your insights help Sales leaders tweak their strategies and approach to managing the team’s performance.


The bottom line

Sales isn’t a “set it and forget it” sort of field, and this also applies to performance management.

✅ Encourage your sales leaders to stay on the pulse of industry dynamics

✅ Invite team perspectives on KPIs and incentives

✅ Celebrate using time creatively, freeing people to make meaningful customer connections and learn about developments in their space.

This approach to business development is far richer than a strict adherence to activity metrics, and it’s likely to get results—a Sales team in high morale, incentivized to hit targets, generating a healthy pipeline.

Get in touch for any guidance you need in Sales Operations.

Why Data Hygiene in Sales Matters

TLDR: Is your CRM heaving with old records? Time to clean up your data. Learn how to advocate for good data hygiene to your Sales leaders.

Why data quality is crucial: Sales teams struggle to succeed without clean, well-organized data. To work efficiently and make the right decisions, people at every level and in every function of your sales team need easy access to accurate, relevant information.

Data challenges in Sales Ops: For Sales Operations, good data hygiene can be challenging to maintain. Sales Ops handles information from different avenues which are often difficult to standardize. Think contact forms, data enrichment tools, research from Sales reps. As a result, CRMs bloat with duplicate and incomplete records that only become less viable as time goes on — and this bloat costs in many ways.

What’s in this article for you? If your CRM is heaving with records or your reporting doesn’t match the reality of your team’s performance, it’s time to clean up your data. In this Tough Talks Made Easy, you’ll learn:

➡️ The impacts of poor data hygiene

➡️ The need for continuous effort to keep data clean

➡️ How to inform your team of best practices that will keep your data clean and your sales team on track

➡️ Do you use Marketo + Salesforce? Explore our Data Hygiene Management offering


Why data hygiene matters

Companies waste 12% of revenue on inaccurate data. And bad data encroaches on everything your sales team does.

👉 Leads to inaccurate analyses of opportunities in the pipeline.

👉 Results in sales reps making muted progress on deals, chasing prospects that are past their relevance to your business.

👉 Creates a lack of clarity on the accounts, industries, and regions you should be targeting and how to target them.

👉 Causes technical debt, smaller pipelines, leads being routed to the wrong places, and hours burned cleaning up and correcting messy databases.

Why do these problems arise? A lack of clean, consistent practices around how your organization handles data. Often, this is due to business culture. Your sales leaders might, for example, oppose deleting data. They’ve paid for the methods to acquire this information that could, at some point, yield business.


It pays to part with data (sometimes)

Records that have been sitting cold in your CRM for years with no signs of engagement cost more than they’re worth.

Insights expire, industries evolve, and peoples’ interests and roles change.

After a few years of inactivity, you’re more likely to reengage a prospect inbound, in response to a different product or service line, than what you’ve previously been sending them.

And at that point, as far as their potential as a customer goes, they’re an entirely new prospect whose old data is no longer relevant.


“Your organization should understand that data hygiene = time and money well spent.”


Your organization should understand that data hygiene = time and money well spent.

Before renewing your CRM instance, see what your capacity costs annually.

Scope out the data that you don’t need, such as:

👉 duplicates

👉 outdated and irrelevant information, and

👉 metrics that your reps don’t use.

Then, present leadership with the savings you can make by getting rid of old records.


An ongoing process

Remember: This isn’t a one-time clear-out.

You have to keep working on it regularly to make sure it stays in good shape.

To increase revenue, sales reps need access to accurate information that will allow them to focus on the most viable leads. Leadership can help by making data hygiene a part of the culture and practices of your business.

Data should enter your system according to standardized methods of collection and categorization, following a central repository of business definitions that your sales and RevOps teams universally agree upon.

You also want to standardize the fields across channels that people can use to enter information—discrepancies between, say, United States vs. USA vs. US will bloat your database and compromise the accuracy of your reporting.

Sales Ops can take the lead with regularly auditing the CRM and other databases for data quality. Things like:

✅ merging duplicates

✅ flagging records with missing data, and

✅ removing data that are no longer correct or relevant.

Chat with your CRO and Head of Sales about the conditions that make data meaningful for the team:

  • Do we use it in reporting?
  • Do our Sales reps use it in their work?
  • Does it concern prospects who are reasonably engaged given the norms of our industry?
  • Does collecting and storing it drive our desired outcomes?

If the answer is ‘no,’ chances are you can safely delete a record.

To increase the efficiency and effectiveness of your data cleanups, encourage leadership to invest in a data preparation tool to automate parts of the audit.


Helping Sales win

In Sales, data hygiene and quality will make or break your capacity to strike deals and achieve growth.

Follow these steps and your pipeline will likely prosper:

➡️ Adopt clear and consistent practices for collecting and categorizing data.

➡️ Complete regular audits to streamline your databases to only include accurate and relevant information.

Visit our data hygiene management offering for more guidance on maintaining good data hygiene practices.

Is Lead Routing Right For Your Business?

TLDR: Lead routing tech distributes incoming leads to sales representatives. It’s important to choose the right lead routing system to maximize revenue potential. Evaluate your business needs, consider manual assignments for certain scenarios, and justify the cost based on conversion rates.

What is lead routing? Whenever a lead comes in, your sales team needs to decide who will work on it. Lead routing is the process of distributing incoming lead records among your sales reps. It allows Sales to automate the flow of leads based on various methodologies, assigning records based on factors like their region, industry, seniority, and prior relationships with reps. Done right, routing keeps leads moving fast and towards the people best equipped to convert them.


“A process that delivers leads slowly, to the wrong reps, will restrict your revenue potential.”


The benefit of third-party lead routing: CRMs and marketing automation platforms tend to have built-in lead-routing functions, but using them isn’t the only approach your sales team can take. Third-party solutions offer more advanced features that may justify the cost depending on your needs, while businesses in some scenarios can opt to handle lead assignments manually.

What’s in this article for you? The decision falls with your sales leaders, and it’s an important one to consider—a process that delivers leads slowly, to the wrong reps, will restrict your revenue potential. In this Tough Talks Made Easy, you’ll learn how to

➡️ Evaluate the market of lead routing tools

➡️ Focus on the features and performance factors that matter

➡️ Advise your sales leaders on the lead routing system best suited for your business


Route planning

As with any potential tool acquisition, you want to consider a new lead routing system through this lens: Is your business in the right state — with the right needs — to justify the costs?

In some scenarios, Sales can manage without an automated lead routing mechanism. You’re likely suited to a less sophisticated setup (for instance, where one senior sales person identifies and assigns leads by hand) if your business:

👉 Works with few inbound leads

👉 Serves a niche sector

👉 Has a small sales team

👉 Tends to receive warm leads

That said, if you’re experiencing issues like slow follow-ups or low conversion rates, it suggests that your current routing processes aren’t working. Listen to your reps:

  • Are they getting leads suited to their regional or industry expertise?
  • Are incoming leads from companies that are already in your database going to the people familiar with those accounts?
  • Are they able to strike while the iron’s hot?

If the answer to any of these is ‘no,’ it’s time to rethink how you’re routing leads.

And if your business has a large sales team serving global markets in various industries, you stand to benefit from the efficiency and granularity of a dedicated third-party tool.


Making the case

Annually, you’re looking at between $20k-100k for a lead routing tool.

If your Head of Sales is reluctant to allocate the budget, gather data on your conversion rates and customer responsiveness. If you can estimate any revenue lost to broken lead routing, frame the tool as an investment to recuperate and exceed the value of that lost business.

As you explore tools on the market, assess each option with these factors top of mind:

👉 How thoroughly does the tool allow you to build routes and orchestrate processes?

👉 How smoothly does it integrate with your CRM and marketing automation platform?

👉 What’s the learning curve?

👉 Can it identify incoming leads who work at a company that already exists in your database?

👉 How can this help to improve SLA fulfilment?


“Lead routing tools tend to be simple to integrate with a CRM.”


Lead routing tools tend to be simple to integrate with a CRM. The only significant overhead to anticipate is for Sales to decide, document, and build routes in the system. Once you’re up and running, keep track of the following metrics:

✅ SLA completion rate

✅ Revenue intake and forecasts per quarter

✅ MQL to SQL

✅ SQL to opportunity

✅ Customer/prospect response rates

After several months of reporting, you’ll be able to surface the ROI of a lead routing tool to your Sales leaders: fast, efficient workflows that play to the strengths of your reps and set them up to succeed.

Get in touch for more guidance on Sales Operations processes and tools.

MOPs and Data Science: How to Get the Green Light on Collaboration

TLDR: The need for marketing ops to surface dollar values, improve processes, and validate ideas makes data science a natural ally. When MOPs and data science teams work together, revenue and lead generation become easier to predict, benchmark, and grow.

The importance of data literacy: Marketing is now a data-driven discipline, where a top priority is to understand what generates revenue and drives growth. Data literacy is crucial for MOPs to handle data, structure their systems, and answer decisive business questions.

The problem for most MOPs teams: Unfortunately, teams often lack the skills and resources to manipulate and turn data into an asset that generates value. Data scientists are the ideal collaborators for MOPs to validate ideas and improve processes, but they’re hot commodities in every workplace.

How to get the collaboration green light: When budgets are tight, it’s easy for C-Suite to overlook marketing when approving spending for data science projects. So, if you want the green light on a collaborative project with data science, show your CFO and CIO that the ROI makes sense.

What’s in this article for you? In this Tough Talks Made Easy, we’ll guide you through the conversation you’ll need to have with your CFO. You’ll learn how to:

➡️ Make data-driven decisions.

➡️ Collaborate effectively with data science teams.

➡️ Justify data-driven investments to leadership.


How data science enriches marketing

One of the most persistent challenges marketing teams face is proving their success.

If you’re in a low-margin business in particular or otherwise facing cost strains, there’s extra pressure from your CFO to show your contributions to the bottom line.

Marketing as a space also has many ‘common sense’ generalizations of best practices floating around, but the likes of “never send an email on a Friday” don’t hold water for your business without evidence.

Without the data or the know-how to interpret it correctly, your team is validating decisions and measuring success in the dark.

The need for MOPs to surface dollar values and make good judgment calls makes Data Science a natural ally.

MOPs collects lots of data from campaigns, which Data Science can turn into detailed customer profiles and identify purchasing behaviors.


“Data science connects and maps the entirety of your business’ data to spot patterns and understand how to optimize processes.”


Data science connects and maps the entirety of your business’ data to spot patterns and understand how to optimize processes. Where Marketing generates leads, Data Scientists automate changes to the lead journey to trigger positive engagement behaviors.

When MOPs and Data Science work together, revenue and lead generation become easier to predict, benchmark, and grow.


Collaborating with purpose

Data science teams work their magic using emergent technologies, like machine learning and artificial intelligence, which are expensive for companies to deploy.

This means collaborative time with Data Science and new tools requires a budget for development, which involves your CFO and CIO.

Considering the costs, your C-Suite is looking to allocate data science resources only to teams that can justify the investment with impactful results.

You can make a few points to leadership in response.

👉 By modeling the business end to end, Data Science can see what brings in the most revenue, and as one of the most commercially-minded teams, Marketing should be at the top of the list. The more you invest in making campaigns compelling in response to audience data, the more likely the business will win deals.

In other words, investing in Marketing boosts the whole organization.

👉 The insights that Data Science provides can create a strong audience for a product/service and attract more customer segments to it.

👉 Collaborating with data science can help find solutions to streamline operations through automation and cutting processes to achieve better outcomes.

Bottom line: Whatever your proposal, frame it to C-Suite with intended results and impact in mind. 

After all, you’re not running experiments for their own sake — you’re working with Data Science to help Marketing make or save more money than you spend, investing less per lead generated than you bring in. That’s the language your CFO and CIO speak.


Set appropriate expectations

Leadership can be adverse to risk or expect quick results, which means your CFO or CIO might be hesitant to play the long game.

A dose of reality: if you’re trying something new, you need time to ride it out, make sense of findings, and realize the benefits.

Suggest running campaign experiments with small subsets of your audience first, as a proof of concept, to make the idea more palatable to a hesitant CFO. 

On the whole, explain the analysis and modeling you want to do, the included limitations, and what you’re trying to achieve with revenue when testing certain actions.


“If you can estimate the ROI at 1.5-2x what you spend, you’re likely to get the green light.”


Focus on how the results can benefit the business, and if you can estimate the ROI at roughly 1.5-2x what you spend, you’re likely to get the green light.


Investing in success

MOPs and Data Science together can be a force of nature, making the wealth of data that Marketing collects actionable and steering better strategic decisions.

Come to any conversation with leadership with a clear plan of action and a confident sense of how collaboration with Data Science can boost the bottom line.

Need some help with data? Drop us a line to chat

The True Value of Agency Project Management

TLDR: An agency-side project manager (PM) bridges the gaps between your organization and agency partners throughout a project. A PM ensures you’re on track to deliver the project on time, within budget and scope. During a project, an agency PM will help your organization plan deliverables and timelines, follow coherent processes, communicate effectively between teams, troubleshoot issues, and monitor and mitigate risks to the things you want to achieve.

Which projects benefit from project management? Projects like marketing automation platform (MAP) implementations and migrations are often heavy to plan and coordinate. Migrations and implementations involve bringing many different stakeholders together throughout the project to share updates, deliverables, and decisions against agreed timelines and scope—a particularly complex task in larger organizations.

How PMs help: It’s easy to underestimate the demands of aligning communications and actions between various accountable stakeholders in an agency-client relationship. As a result, organizations may decide not to involve an agency’s PM to steer the progress of a project. This decision adds a high level of risk for big projects like migration or implementation.


“Having an agency-side PM is essential to keep your internal teams and agency partners on the same page.”


Do you need an agency PM? Even if your organization has an internal PM assigned to the project, having an agency-side PM is essential to keep your internal teams and agency partners on the same page.

What’s in this article for you? In this Tough Talks Made Easy, we’ll help you navigate the intricate space of project management, particularly in the context of complicated projects. You’ll learn how:

➡️ To effectively communicate the value of agency-side project management to key stakeholders and decision-makers across departments.

➡️ PMs drive collaboration, alignment and risk mitigation.

➡️ PMs bridge the gap between your organization and the agency, ensuring timely input, decisions, and updates to prevent project delays.


The PM’s value 

At a high level, PMs ensure that your team and the agency are working towards the same goals to deliver a project on time and within the budget and scope.

PMs accomplish this by:

👉 Planning and setting up meetings between teams.

👉 Coordinating the delivery of action items.

👉 Raising awareness of risks and causes for delay.

👉 Pushing stakeholders to make timely decisions to keep the project moving as planned.


“Stakeholder alignment is the key area where PMs make a constructive impact.”


Stakeholder alignment is the key area where PMs make a constructive impact.

Migrations and implementations involve many different tasks and decisions. These projects also involve various teams in your organization — such as Marketing, Sales, IT, and Digital — each has responsibilities and decision-making power.

PMs track when input and decisions need to be received and connect these teams to provide timely and relevant updates. Without an agency-side PM to play this role, deliverables, and decisions can slip under the radar and delay project completion.


How PMs work

Involving a PM right from the beginning of a project maximizes your ability to succeed.

During the initial kickoff session, PMs create the spine of a project by constructing a plan for deliverables, responsibilities, and timelines. A clear understanding of these pieces is essential for stakeholders to deliver and communicate as needed to progress the project.


“PMs bridge the gaps between your organization and the agency throughout the project.”


PMs bridge the gaps between your organization and the agency throughout the project:

Agency-side PM responsibilities include:

  • Ensuring that the agency has captured all the relevant discoveries.
  • Establishing who from your organization is required to participate.
  • Following up with stakeholders to ensure that input and decisions follow the agreed timelines.
  • Helping to identify, mitigate, and monitor delivery risks.

Through mediation, agency PMs help you achieve success.

Stakeholders from your workplace can go to the agency PM to discuss and address feedback on the project’s progression.

Should a colleague raise concerns about the project or develop new requirements, PMs work with agency teams to find solutions.

An agency-side PM will ask questions like:

  • Is your organization’s request in scope?
  • How can we make this work?
  • What impact will any changes have?
  • How can we address any risks?

Having a PM to ask these questions lets teams get organized, make improvements on the move, and solve potential issues as they arise.


Alleviating project management challenges

PMs experience some persistent challenges when project managing MAP migrations and implementations.

Timelines are often compromised when organizations lack the resources to participate and provide input as planned or juggle competing projects (e.g. a web launch) that are likely to interfere with the process.


“PMs proactively work to anticipate and minimize risks to project delivery.”


Unclear ownership of tasks and scope creep born from underestimating complexity can also cause disruption and delay. In these scenarios, PMs proactively work to anticipate and minimize risks to project delivery.

For example, an agency PM can help your organization involve the most relevant stakeholders and sensibly delegate tasks and responsibilities. PMs can also factor competing projects into the initial plan and continuously monitor the risk of interference.

Tips for working with an agency PM:

👉 Scope creep: Avoid strain from scope creep by taking time before the project begins to review the steps involved and decide where your organization needs the most support from the agency.

👉 Project delivery: Define clear goals and priorities to help the PM organize stakeholders and deliver the most pressing items and achievements.

👉 Identify stakeholders early: Identify the people within your organization who need to be involved and establish ownership and accountabilities for the project.


Steering projects to success

MAP migrations and implementations are complex undertakings, and the agency PM plays an indispensable role in guiding them to success.

From the start to the end of a project, agency PMs contribute effective planning, process management, risk mitigation, troubleshooting, and alignment between your teams and the agency to deliver results on time, within scope, and within budget.

For any further guidance with MAP migrations and implementations, Revenue Pulse is here to help.

How to Guide Leadership Through “Shiny New Tool” Syndrome

TLDR: Getting a new tool often seems like an attractive solution to a pain point, but without careful planning and an audit of the solutions in your stack and on the market, another tool to manage = another problem to solve.

Why bring in new tech When your team has a pain point or stress-inducing process to iron out, adding a new tool to your stack often seems an attractive solution. Perhaps leadership brings experience of using a certain tool to solve the problem at hand. They might know of comparable companies using a piece of tech and benchmark your stack against theirs. Or, they’re excited by the promise of results — ‘plug-and-play’ accessibility, increases to revenue and productivity that justify the investment.

How to assess new tech: Beyond the hype, however, these flashes of inspiration alone aren’t solid enough reasons to adopt another new tool. As we write in the Martech Optimization White Paper, careful planning, evaluation, and an audit of what’s currently in your stack are crucial to identify the most sensible solution for your business. Without these, more tools can easily add complications, go to waste, or run counterproductive to what you’re trying to achieve.

What’s in this article for you? In this Tough Talks Made Easy, we’ll help you influence a more critical approach to tool adoption to maximize the return on your dollars and your time. You’ll learn how to:

➡️ Assess new technology adoption

➡️ Understand the demands and challenges of a new tool

➡️ Evaluate your current tech stack and the options on the market


The real demands of new tools

Sometimes, leadership will advocate for a tool they’ve used in previous companies.

While the solution may have the correct capabilities to solve the problem at hand, selective experience with a tool can cause decision-makers to view it through rose-colored glasses.

If they only began to use the tool after the implementation or ramp-up period were completed, they’re likely unaware of the more challenging elements of getting off the ground. You need to ensure the solution that leadership advocates for has the correct capabilities to solve the need at hand.

Concerns to address before adoption

👉 Downplayed complications during sales process: During the sales cycle, the complications of running a tool are often downplayed. Vendors might portray a solution as “out of the box” with minor setup, or demo a version of the tool with features, integrations, and reporting already well-established. In reality, the baseline you see in demos won’t be there when you first configure the tool. Ramp-up periods can be prohibitive, and 6 to 12 months down the line, you might be miles off achieving the results you were promised.

👉 Stagnation in your tech stack: When the effort involved in managing a tool far outstrips expectations, and you haven’t planned to inherit the responsibility, that tool can sit in your stack gathering dust. Before leadership takes the plunge, advise them to wait until you’ve gathered feedback from current customers—get a real shot of truth about what it takes to onboard, implement, ramp up, maintain, and get results from the solution.

👉 Assessing impact and viability of new tools: Leadership needs to know if any shift in headcount occurs from using the tool, whether customers are using it to accomplish what you’re aiming for, and the renewal vs. churn rate past the initial contract. Before your CMO reaches a decision, they should be able to answer key internal questions: What are the hours involved with adopting this tool? Who’s responsible? Do we have the budget to give that person additional compensation or to hire someone new to run point? Given our investment, what kind of revenue and productivity lift can we expect?

Tools are vehicles for results – to get anywhere, you need a driver.

Getting a handle on the practicalities will help leadership identify if a tool is right for your needs or viable for your resources.


Evaluating your stack and the market

Mid-to-large organizations often lack a deep understanding of what’s in their tech stack.

When departments have the size and autonomy to buy their own tools, there might be significant overlap between the functionalities of tools owned by different teams.

If this is the case, leadership should explore the possibility of adopting a solution that your organization already uses.

Start by reviewing any documentation that outlines the tools in your workplace. If your organization already owns the functionality you’re after, speak with the tool owner and spend some time using the solution to get a sense of how appropriately it addresses your needs.

An important point for leadership: You might find a tool that facilitates what you’re looking for, but not in the most competitive or sophisticated way.

For any internal or external tool you assess, establish where it stands in the market

👉 Is this solution best-in-class or tertiary in its lane?
👉 Can this tool evolve with your business and perform long-term?

C-Suite’s are after the greatest possible ROI, and that comes by choosing the tool you’ll need five years from now.

To justify any technology investment, leadership needs a clear case for how it adds value.

Confidence in how a tool’s functionalities and integrations work is crucial to making that assessment.

If there’s a risk of integrations or data flows breaking down between updates, for instance, flag this to leadership. Any manual processes or convoluted workarounds a tool introduces compromise your ROI. Conversely, a tool that’s less adept at generating revenue might save the team significant amounts of time — productivity gains that prove ROI.


The bottom line

The martech boom shows no signs of slowing down, which means plenty of noise to cut through.

Approach tool adoption with these principles, and you’ll make every dollar and hour count.


✅ Be intentional with martech investment to work smarter and achieve more.

✅ Balance your current and long-term needs.

✅ Size up the options in your stack and on the market.

✅ Determine the ROI from adding a new tool into the mix.

✅Plan carefully for how you’ll use it.

For any guidance on evaluating your tech stack or the martech landscape, Revenue Pulse is here to help.

P.S. Want more ideas for improving your tech stack? Get a copy of our MarTech Optimization White Paper

Attribution – Your Value in Black and White

TLDR: Attribution assigns credit to marketing tactics that generate revenue to calculate the ROI of marketing efforts. It’s not as simple as spending more on what works. Finding the balance of spending and assessing the tipping point for each channel is crucial. The complex buyer’s journey requires sophisticated attribution models, and marketers must determine the impact of each touchpoint.

“I heard there’s this tech that can get us better ROI like magic!”

The misconception about marketing automation: Among the many misconceptions about marketing automation, one of the worst is the belief that automation does our job for us, like the wave of a wand.

How to discuss attribution with your boss: Discussing attribution with your CMO or CFO isn’t a talk you should dread. It’s a talk you can use to your advantage. That’s because attribution isn’t only the process by which your organization assigns credit for MQLs and sales—it’s also concrete evidence of your precise value to your organization as a marketer.

What’s in this article for you? In this Tough Talks Made Easy, we’ll help you dispel the magic assumptions and ‘set it and forget it’ mentality to explain what’s really going on behind the scenes. You’ll learn how to:

➡️ Explain your attribution maturity in a way that emphasizes your expertise

➡️ Earn the recognition you deserve

➡️ Make an argument for increasing budgets down the line


Explaining attribution data decisions

The challenge you’re facing is clear: you need to communicate the function and value of attribution modeling without effacing the importance of how you analyze and react to the data you have available.

For starters. what is attribution? Attribution assigns credit to how much revenue a specific marketing tactic produces, letting you calculate the ROI on each and every dollar you spend.

Attribution arms you with the data you need to optimize your programs and spend over time—and to clearly report your results in a way that lets your organization buy into your vision.


“Attribution isn’t as simple as spending more on what’s working and less on what isn’t!”


But attribution isn’t as simple as spending more on what’s working and less on what isn’t!

Having the data at your fingertips is only part of the battle. Finding the balance of your spending and assessing your company’s tipping point for any given channel is both an art and a science.

👉 Let’s walk through an example:

Let’s say you’re spending $100K on a channel with 5 to 1 ROI. If you instead allocate $200K, you should make a million!

But not so fast: ROI isn’t constant and every channel can have diminishing returns, where a certain amount of spend changes 5 to 1 ROI into 4 to 1, or less.

If your 5 to 1 ROI only holds true to $150K before dropping to 4 to 1, you have a choice on your hands. 4 to 1 could still be your best bet — but that’s a decision that automation can’t make for you.

It’s your expertise that allows you to find the tipping point and determine your next course of action accordingly.


The complex buyer’s journey

That example covers the ROI balancing act, but attribution itself is rarely so simple or cut and dry.

While it’s great to attribute a sale to a particular tactic, customers can have hundreds of interactions with a brand before deciding to buy.

Sure, when the time came to pull the trigger, they may have visited your website, but they could’ve been persuaded by an excellent white paper you offered last quarter — which came to their attention thanks to a CRM email — which they signed up for thanks to a social lead gen ad over a year ago.

That’s why attribution platforms offer increasingly complex models, accounting for Member Statuses in many campaigns at different points in the buyer’s journey.


“It takes multiple programs across multiple channels to make a deal happen.”


It takes multiple programs across multiple channels to make a deal happen.

Complex attribution modeling can reveal the marketing history of every touchpoint but it’s up to you to determine the impact of each status and channel on the final deal itself.

That determination is a sign of your Attribution Maturity.


Know thy company

If attribution provides the data, attribution maturity is your outlook on that data.

Attribution platforms provide high-end data-rich attribution but that’s only as valuable as how you parse and leverage that data. And if all we’re using it for is explanation and description, we’ve definitely got some maturing to do.

Fortunately, many of these platforms scale with you as your attribution outlook matures.

Do you want to track a program for everyone who registers for a webinar, or one to track only those who actually attend? Your specific needs and interests can be fine-tuned to arm you with the data that’s most pertinent to your future goals.

So how do you know what programs to implement? You need to know your own company.


“Different attribution models answer different questions—so what questions are you asking?”


Different attribution models answer different questions—so what questions are you asking?

👉 Wondering which campaigns are sparking initial interest? You’ll want a First Touch attribution model.

👉 How about which campaigns are taking leads from awareness to opportunity? A W-Shaped model can scratch that itch.

👉 Or maybe you’d like an overall holistic approach, to give the CMO a full update on all stages of the lifecycle? Then Full Path is the way to go.

Remember: Whatever questions you are asking, attribution modeling gives you the ability to target accordingly. From there, it’s a matter of time, testing, and analysis to arrive at the answers your company needs.


Be the one with the plan

No matter how you’re targeting your attribution, you need a Data Utilization Plan to go from description to determination.

Create a plan based on your team’s needs

✅ Timelines

✅ Key data points

✅ What you’re measuring

✅ Why you’re measuring

Remember: These sorts of plans take time. Build in benchmarks from month to month and year to year to measure where you plan to be and the spend you’re going to make to get there.

And if your higher-ups bristle at the long-game, simply explain that they will never truly know the value of any spend without attribution – and without a savvy marketer such as yourself handling their modeling, along the way.

Hopefully, this helped you get out of your own head and out of the weeds when it comes to communicating attribution to those who need to know.

When it comes to making the most of your modeling or progressing on the Attribution Maturity Curve, Revenue Pulse’s experts are here for ideas, guidance, and support.

P.S. Want more advice like that? Follow us on LinkedIn to never miss an update.

The Secrets to a Happy Consultant-Client Relationship

TLDR: Whether you’re in a MOPs team or consulting in the space, learn methods of managing processes, projects, and expectations to strengthen the consultant-client relationship.

Why is a good relationship important? A strong relationship with a consultancy can help MOPs teams to optimize day-to-day processes and tasks, address issues that have built up over the years, and unearth opportunities to improve the strategic contributions that MOPs makes to the business.

The secret to a good relationship: For consultants and clients to enjoy a successful working dynamic, however, both sides must empathize with the needs of the other and be considerate and transparent around scope and project expectations.

What’s in this article for you? If your MOPs team is beginning to work with consultants to deliver projects, or you’re a consultant in the MOPs space looking to build successful client relationships, this Tough Talks Made Easy will help you:

➡️ Communicate your needs within the partnership

➡️ Better understand those on the other side

➡️ Understand effective methods of managing processes, projects, and expectations to strengthen the relationship


Active listening

When MOPs teams and consultants begin to collaborate, there’s a groove to find between the established ways of doing things internally and new recommendations that consultancies bring to the table.


“Reciprocity and active listening are perhaps the most important qualities.”


At this early stage, reciprocity and active listening are perhaps the most important qualities to get the relationship off to a strong start.

As a client

Before contacting an agency or consultancy, your marketing ops team should adopt a specific mindset for success.

👉 Have clear objectives for the partnership

👉 Be prepared to communicate with the consultancy effectively

👉 Be open to incorporating external expertise, even if it means adjusting established work approaches

As a consultant

If you’re consulting with a MOPs team, responsiveness is essential.

Spotting early opportunities to optimize your client’s workflows and tech stack can quickly prove value and create rapport, but your vision should respect your client’s priorities.

Your recommendations and suggestions need buy-in from the decision-makers and day-to-day contacts in the team—and you’re most likely to get that if you show awareness of what your client needs and how more significant changes will impact them.

Big takeaway

Whether you’re on the client or consultant side, approach these early discussions respectfully.

Take on board your consultant’s rationale for certain changes or what motivates your client’s organizational choices and methods — regardless of how early decisions go, if the other party feels understood and appreciated, you’re creating a solid basis of trust.


Expectations vs. reality

As your projects continue, transparency and open lines of communication are like oxygen to the relationship.

As a client

For a marketing ops team, sessions with the consultant are a proactive way to surface your needs and communicate expectations around expected deliverables and timelines.

If your MOPs team lacks experience working with consultancies, they might not understand that consultants have other relationships to manage with unique deliverables and timelines. What might seem like a fair request in-house can be unviable for consultants to fulfill.

For that reason, encourage your team to consider the demands your partners are under and prepare to be flexible. Some urgent turnarounds just aren’t possible for your consultant. Others can be done but require adapting project scope.

As a consultant

Meetings with clients help you keep up with requirements and requests.

A common pitfall for consultants is to view the content of a project in isolation and underestimate the amount of time it’ll take to complete.

Avoid building up client expectations beyond what’s realistic by clarifying the factors that contribute to delays like scope creep, vacations, multiple rounds of reviews in testing and gathering consensus from multiple stakeholders in the discovery phase.

As a consultant, you want to reflect on all these dependencies and share them proactively with clients when setting a turnaround date.


“The train can go off the track without a regular communication channel to set the course.”


Path to success

Both parties should know that the train can go off the track without a regular communication channel to set the course.

Whether you’re client-side or consulting, encourage systems of working that put you on the same page.

👉 Suggest task management software (be it a dedicated tool or a spreadsheet) to assign tasks and monitor progress, and establish weekly status calls to discuss the status of day-to-day projects, longer-term plans, and any issues or roadblocks impeding progress.



The consultant-client relationship is one of mutual participation.

It requires openness and respect from both parties towards the other’s expertise, needs and demands.

Transparent communication around timelines and deliverables and an enthusiastic approach toward your shared purpose are the foundational components of a rewarding relationship that gets results.

For any project guidance, Revenue Pulse is here to help.

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How to Guide Your Hiring Team on MOPs Recruitment

TLDR: Demand for skilled MOPs people far outstrips the supply. To attract and retain the best talent, your recruitment process should focus on the candidate experience and the employee experience.

The struggle to attract talent: Demand for skilled Marketing Operations professionals has long outpaced the supply. The current job market is especially driven by talent. Top MOPs candidates have the bargaining power to take or stay in roles with the most attractive company cultures and compensation packages, and for as long as that’s the case, companies that hire without regard for the candidate experience will struggle to attract and retain the best talent.

What’s in this article for you? If multi-stage interview processes and a lack of long-term thinking for each hire sounds like your organization’s approach to recruitment, it’s time for a Tough Talk.

We’ll help you discuss what effective MOPs recruitment looks like with your CMO and Hiring Manager, so your team can get great candidates onside and nurture them for long-term success.


The candidate experience

Far too often, companies in the MOPs space operate with the assumption that the logistics of recruitment should work in their favor. Really, the process is a two-way street.

In each interaction, candidates are scoping out whether your organization is the right place for them to work, and considering the scarcity of MOPs skills, the people with real potential to excel in your roles hold all of the cards.


Encourage hiring teams to view their recruitment practices through the candidate’s eyes.


👉 Does a demanding job description position your company as a rewarding workplace?

👉 Is a string of multiple interviews with disparate stakeholders (e.g. Sales, Marketing, IT, Leadership) the most considerate use of a candidate’s time?

👉 Is it respectful to require candidates to perform free labor or attend a full-day interview while working a full-time job?

The candidate experience is not just about extending decency. Practices like these fail at selling your company as an inviting and stimulating place to be, which has real business consequences.

If you can’t attract talent, your company faces spending serious dollars on a recruitment agency. And even then, you run the risk of hiring subpar candidates.

Bottom line: The lost productivity and cost involved in fixing the mistakes of an ill-fitting hire will completely dwarf the size of investments your company should have made into

  • Well-researched role requirements.
  • Building a culture that your talent people advocate for.
  • A recruitment process that puts the candidate’s needs first.
  • An attractive compensation package.


To keep people, hire with a purpose

MOPs roles are often multidisciplinary by design, but many of the industry’s job descriptions read like laundry lists of scattershot and highly advanced competencies.

Just like how the right tools for your business are the ones that effectively support your goals, leadership needs to plan and design new roles around the specific needs of the MOPs team.

Before writing the job description

Before your hiring team sits down to write any section of a job description, tell them all about the skill gaps and upcoming projects in the MOPs team.

This is the basis of an intentional hire. Your hiring team can identify the experience that’s truly important for candidates to bring versus skills that transfer or can be taught.

As an example: Many roles seek experience with a particular marketing automation platform. But experience using one platform is highly transferable to another. Unless particular expertise is crucial to the position, keeping the role platform agnostic will attract a broader range of competent candidates who can learn new skills in the role.

This is essential for employee retention.

Rather than looking for a candidate who fits your requirements 100%, prioritize candidates who are 80% there.

Your hiring team can think of it this way: A 100% fit candidate has already been there and done that. Are they going to be satisfied in a job that doesn’t represent meaningful progression? You might offer them a higher salary than their current position, but there’s no telling if that’ll incentivize them to stay long-term.


“Your 80% fit, however, can truly gain something from taking the job.”


Your 80% fit, however, can truly gain something from taking the job. That makes them a better investment. A candidate who can say your company gave them a chance to develop their skills has motivation. That’s motivation to give their best effort, stay on the team and advocate for your brand to their network.

TL;DR: The perfect fit has room to grow.


Your recruitment brand

Desirable places to work all have this in common: They create environments where people want to stay.

To attract and retain the best marketing ops talent, leadership should focus the recruitment process on two things:

  • The candidate experience, then
  • the employee experience.

Treating your candidates and employees with empathy — practices based on candidate needs, a rewarding culture and compensation, hiring to invest in people — is how you create a workplace that people advocate for.

For any guidance you need with building a MOPs team, Revenue Pulse is here to help.