Pipeline Marketing Blog

Why Are B2B CMOs Still Using Excel As Their Marketing Planning Tool?

By Jordan Con
May 12, 2017

Much has been said about the tech stacks of today’s great organizations. In fact, the 2017 Stackies were just published. There are tools for just about everything: website personalization, email automation, cleansing, testing, augmenting, tracking budgets, tracking morale, etc.

Over the last few years, graphics that feature the thousands of martech logos have grown in popularity. There’s the supergraphic from Scott Brinker of ChiefMartec.com, who has been tracking the massive proliferation every year. And then there are the Lumascapes from LUMA partners, who have been tracking vendor landscapes by sectors.

Martech-5000.png

[Source: chiefmartec.com]

But for the most part, when we talk about tech stacks and the growth in technology vendors, we’re talking about technologies for the practitioners of the organization—the email marketing specialist, the paid media manager, the sales enablement manager, etc.—not the organization’s management.

So what about the C-suite, the management team? There have certainly been advances here, too, with great tools for every executive...except for the CMO.

Here’s a look at a common C-suite tech stack:

C-Suite-Tech-Stack.png

While every other member of the C-Suite has great technology, built specifically to help them manage their department and plan for performance, the CMO is stuck essentially in the 1990s with Excel.

If you’re a CMO, or have ever participated in a marketing planning meeting, you know how unsophisticated the process is in Excel. You use average conversion rates and industry benchmarks, and drag them out over the months and quarters to get your plan. It’s surprisingly rudimentary considering all the other advanced technology in your stack, yet practically all organizations do it this way.

It’s time for something new. CMOs deserve a better marketing planning tool and organizations will benefit tremendously from it.

Marketers have fantastic data. With the growth in marketing attribution, more and more marketing organizations have granular data, connecting specific marketing activities to key metrics like leads, opportunities, and revenue. With data as granular as keyword and specific ad performance, CMOs don’t need to rely on low fidelity data like department averages or industry benchmarks.

Here at Bizible, we’re enabling marketing leaders to use their high fidelity data to make accurate plans. With a trove of granular attribution data, we can use conversion rates based on specific touchpoints in specific parts of the buyer journey to project and plan performance. Here’s what that means.

In Excel:

Looking at average conversion rates, 5% of marketing-generated leads convert into opportunities; 10% of opportunities convert into customers. So if we want to generate 5 customers, we need to generate 1000 leads this month. That’s low fidelity. It uses the same conversion rate for every lead, no matter where they came from or what they do in the journey. Low fidelity in, flawed plans out.

In Bizible Revenue Planner:

Using historical attribution data, we know that leads from paid search convert to opportunities at 5.45%, while leads from conferences convert to opportunities at 4.2%. Even more, we know that leads from paid search that use Keyword 1 convert at 6.45% while leads that use Keyword 2 convert at 5.34%. Getting even deeper, we know that leads from paid search that use Keyword 1 and then have a touchpoint from retargeting convert at 8.30%.

Every touchpoint that a prospect has changes the likelihood of a lead or opportunity turning into revenue. Bizible Revenue Planner knows this and uses machine learning to crunch the numbers and create statistical projections, based on each unique journey of touchpoints from the very first touch to closed-won, for future buyer journeys and their likelihood of revenue. Rather than average conversion rates for every prospect, Revenue Planner uses unique conversion rates based on heaps of data to create a more accurate and more useful plan. High fidelity in, accurate plans out.

Bizible-Revenue-Planner.png

[Bizible Revenue Planner]

This sophisticated approach to managing and planning marketing to revenue is what CMOs need to get on an even playing field with the rest of the C-suite.

There is a growing expectation that CMOs start to lead revenue growth in the organization. Nearly 70% of CEOs expect the CMO to do so. In order to achieve that and hit their revenue goals, they need tools that connect their team’s activities to revenue.

For more information on on marketing performance management and Revenue Planner, download the guide below.

 

The CMO's Guide To Marketing Performance Management  Evaluate Your MPM Process And Improve Revenue Generation.  Download Now

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