Showing posts from May, 2012

Sales Enablement Gets Sirius - 3 Key Research Findings You Need to Know

I had the pleasure of attending SiriusDecisions Summit in Scottsdale this past week, as Alinean was once again a Platinum Sponsor. Some of my favorite sessions at the event were about sales enablement – where the current practices are, and how they can be improved to drive sales productivity (efficiency and effectiveness).

Presented by SiriusDecision analysts Jim Ninivaggi, John Neeson and Pat McAnally, the sessions revealed three important findings, and I’ve included our take on what the metrics mean:

The #1 reason CXO's see sales people? To make them more competitive – Executives don’t want a sales pitch. Instead, they demand insights about how competitive their company is now, and advice on what specific high-value changes can be made to improve their competitive position. 

Are you enabling sales with the tools needed to make clients more competitive - providing diagnostic competitive assessments and consultative improvement advice?

Two out of Three Cx level decision makers want to…

Are CFOs “large and in charge” of technology decision making? Gartner says Yes!

Quick on the heels of a similar study, Gartner reports that CFOs are large, and in charge of technology investments, continuing to increase their control over IT decision making over the past 12 months.

The joint study, by Gartner and Financial Executives Research Foundation (FERF), surveyed 255 CFOs to uncover IT investment sentiment and decision making practices, uncovering that as economic uncertainty continues, CFOs are gaining more control. The highest response, 44%, indicated an increase in influence over IT investments during the past year, while a mere 9% believe their influence has diminished. 

The role of the CFO in this frugal environment: to assure that precious investments are low risk / high reward and are perfectly aligned with realizing business objectives. Survey results were split in that 41% of CFOs are now the leader of the group responsible for IT investments, while 41% indicated were part of a stakeholder group responsible for collaborative IT decision making.

For …

Are you Targeting the Right IT Decision Makers?

It’s not CIOs, but CFOs and business units who reign supreme in the financial decision making process for IT investments, this according to a recent survey by CFO Research Services and SearchCIO.

The research on CIO / CFO alignment surveyed 382 senior finance executives and 300 senior IT executives working for a wide variety of $100M and larger worldwide companies, revealing that:

1) Economic diligence is an important element of the decision making process,

2) Business groups as much or more responsible than CIOs in developing the ROI justification business case,

3) CFOs are large and in charge of approvals.

Show Me the Money
CFOs and CIOs both understand that in this current environment of Frugalnomics, it is vital to provide cost justification on any significant IT investment. The survey indicated the priority business impact elements similarly for finance and IT, as clearly defined improvements in business results, payback / ROI, impact on customer experience and impact on business…

Value-Focused Content Marketing a Requirement

Marketers need to focus more on the value proposition and less on the sales pitch, this according to a new DemandGen Report on B2B Content Preferences.

Based on a survey designed to better understand the preferences of today’s B2B buyer, the report had some important insight for marketers who are developing content marketing strategies:

Show Me the Money - 75% of buyers would like marketers to “curb the sales messaging and “focus less on products and more on value”. Today’s more skeptical and frugal buyers want marketers to reevaluate their content strategies, focusing more on the value proposition and how the solutions can help buyers achieve business objectives and overcome challenges.Short Attention Span Theater - 48% of buyers would like content to be more concise, taking less time to consume. The ideal length for consuming content:
·Webinars – between 30 to 60 minutes,
·White Papers and Case Studies – between 10 and 20 minutes,
·Videos, Interactive Presentations / Tools, Blog Posts …

Informatica Data Integration Maturity Assessment (powered by Alinean)

Do You Know If You Are Maximizing Your Return on Data?
If your company is like most, you have plenty of data. You spend money gathering it, storing it, and maintaining it. But are you really getting all that you can out of it?
See if you are maximizing your return on data to increase your competitive advantage. Take this 14 multiple-choice Data Integration Maturity online assessment to:Assess your data integration maturity in eight different dimensions,Compare your maturity against your peers and industry benchmarks,Receive a detailed PDF report that provides concrete recommendations to improve the maturity of your data infrastructure.

Click here to get your Data Integration Maturity Assessment:

Mobility Value Estimator (powered by Alinean)

A mobile application platform provider needed to prove a better return on mobility strategy for frugal web and application decision makers - making the case for using a build once / deploy many platform versus current device centric strategies.

The marketing team turned to Alinean to develop the Mobility Value Estimator, an on-line value selling and marketing tool, which in 10 minutes could build a compelling case for a better mobile strategy.

The analysis tool includes a quick profile, maturity assessment, and value estimate – resulting in a compelling PDF analysis report – empowering prospects with the important value story and credible metrics to motivate and prioritize a better mobile solution.Click here to see the Mobility Value Estimator

A Better Way to Go Mobile – Interactive White Paper (powered by Alinean)

A mobile application platform provider had an urgent requirement to generate a wealth of qualified leads, particularly connecting and engaging with enterprise web and application managers seeking to take their apps mobile in a timelier, more cost effective manner.

To fuel the demand generation program, Alinean developed the Better Way to Go Mobile Interactive White Paper, which unlike traditional static white papers, leveraged the prospect’s profile to completely personalize the white paper content, creating a customized analysis as to the prospect’s return from mobile strategy.
The Interactive White Paper fueled an Alinean crafted email marketing campaign to select prospect communities, promoting the Better Way to Go Mobile Interactive White Paper. Leveraging the embedded prospect profile data already in the e-mail link, one click from the prospect was all it took to completely personalize and deliver the interactive white paper to the prospect. And as a guaranteed Alinean leads progr…

What Can You Accomplish Integrating MAP and CRM solutions with Alinean Value Selling & Marketing Tools?

I am often asked what key workflow or functionality you can enable if you integrate Alinean tools with Marketing Automation (MAP) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions.

As many of you already know, integration of various sales and marketing tools is essential, especially to enable your tools to:

·Work seamlessly into lead nurturing and sales processes, to automate the development of more personalized and relevant customer deliverables,
·Capture important customer profile and opportunity information, leveraging this intelligence to aid in the lead nurturing and sales engagement process.As you may also be aware, Alinean Value Selling & Marketing Tools do support robust integration with sales and marketing automation solutions and processes. As part of the Alinean XcelLive tools platform, value selling and marketing tools are enabled by Interactive Content Connectors (ICCs) to help you support:

·Data In: having the tool called by your marketing E-mails, Web Registration …

Value Selling & Marketing with the iPad? You Betcha!

The iPad is perceived as a great new business tool, to potentially empower your sales to deliver more provocative interactive presentations, and enable your marketing to provide engaging content to ever more mobile buyers.

And the perception is becoming reality, as:
30% of sales professionals are now using iPads and other tablets in their sales activities (CSO Insights) with 47% of 8,500 sales professionals worldwide reported accelerated sales cycle as the tablets’ greatest advantage (Huthwaite),23% of buyers are using tablets for research on purchases, according to an upcoming DemandGen Report research study, and as a result, "The desktop computer is becoming nearly obsolete as a primary research channel". Enabling Challenger Selling with the iPad For your sales professionals, the iPad represents a new tool with great promise, and this cannot come soon enough as:
Less than 1 in 3 sales professionals are perceived as adding any value to the sales process, and only 13% of bu…