Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Rise of the Value Management Office (VMO)?

B2B solution providers are realizing they need to do a better, more consistent and comprehensive job
of communicating and quantifying value to ever more frugal prospects.

However, most investments are spotty and most value programs are falling short.

Does this remind you of your organization?
  1. Your Marketing works hard to develop what they believe are effective value propositions, insights and messaging, all too often without enough sales and value consultant involvement. And then, they post black-box ROI calculators for customers to use on the corporate website.
  2. Your Sales enablement creates their own set of value presentations and tools, and these often don’t align with the marketing positioning and tools. Then, the sales tools are thrown over to sales reps and channel partners without enough education, certification and support to move the needle.
  3. Value Consulting is invited into the big deals, bringing their own twist on value engagements and business cases. Customized spreadsheets and reports are delivered which may or may not align with what the prospect already received from marketing and sales.
  4. Once the sale is made, too little effort is placed on assuring the value proposed is actually measured or delivered.  Value realization is an afterthought, or not measured at all.
  5. Product Groups seem like they are working in a vacuum, adding features and functions without regard to what customers actually view as valuable.
  6. And through the entire engagement process the Value Intelligence as to current prospect costs and true value delivery is squandered or locked in individual prospect records and sales / consulting spreadsheets.
Think about the duplicative spending from the islands of value messaging, tools and training, lack of leverage, and the ineffectiveness of disjointed approaches with prospects and customers.

Could this be why the #1 revenue growth challenge for B2B solution providers remains “the inability to effectively articulate unique value” for the fifth year in a row?

A cohesive, orchestrated and optimized approach is needed to get value marketing, selling and consulting right.

A New Center of Excellence - the VMO

To overcome this challenge, many leading B2Bs are turning to VMOs: the center of excellence aligning value marketing, selling and consulting, - with the mission of proposing, proving and improving value to customers.

The goal of these VMOs? To centralize best practices, tools, insights and databases, in order to provide much needed rules, guidance, standardization and governance and drive better efficiency and effectiveness in value investments.

Without a centralized office, it is difficult to assure that value is implemented cross functionally, and delivered consistently throughout the buyer’s journey. The VMO can help drive the approach across groups and throughout the journey:
  1. Value Marketing – helping to develop and deliver value messaging frameworks, insights / benchmarks, go-to-market content (like challenge / value infographics) and tools (like cost of “do nothing” and ROI calculators).
  2. Value Selling – Driving the development and delivery of sales-ready value messaging, presentations, storytelling, quantification and proposals, assuring sales reps and channel partners have the right tools, processes and education / certification.
  3. Value Consulting – providing standards, engagement practices and tools for pre-sale financial justification / business case proposals, post-sale value realization, and value intelligence benchmarks and databases.
  4. Value Product - gaining a better understanding of the priority challenges and value customers want most / actually derive, to help prioritize evolution and innovation.
Most often the VMO is born from Value Consulting or Sales Enablement, but regardless of the catalyst for the group’s creation, should consist of a cross functional team of Product, Marketing, Sales Enablement and Business Value Consultant / Engineering team members, working together to drive the programs, practices and deliverables. As well, the VMO should gather and promote executive directive and support.

Some of the tangible benefits VMOs help organizations realize include:
  1. Consolidation of dozens of different, inconsistent and less than effective value messaging, presentations, tools, contractors and programs, helping to reduce duplicative internal efforts and leverage strategic sourcing from 3rd party collaborators.
  2. Increased Speed and Agility, leveraging standards frameworks and collaborative, additive efforts to accelerate programs from a common metrics, knowledge and practice base.
  3. Transition and Adoption, a collective effort from different groups in all customer communications to drive product to value.
So, does your organization have a VMO or are you considering one?  
If you want to hit proposed growth goals, now might be the perfect time.


Learn more about the importance of a Value Management Office and best practices in the book: Frugalnomics Survival Guide - How to Use Your Unique Value to Market Better, Stand Out and Sell More 

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