Reverse engineering is the process of working back to a solution from an end result. In the era of result-oriented marketing (how did we ever afford to do it differently?), reverse engineering can help marketers refocus their efforts and resources to ensure marketing delivers results that are in line with business goals.

Let's take a simple scenario.

It's time for your quarterly board meeting. This time, you're going in with a spring in your step. Last quarter, you really nailed it with your marketing programs. You did a webinar and a whitepaper promotion, and you had your biggest tradeshow of the year. Together, these programs generated over 1,000 leads for your sales force. You did your job. Now it's up to sales to follow up on these leads and convert them into real opportunities.

You present your numbers and sit down with a winning smile on your face. Next is the VP of Sales. After presenting last quarter's results (they didn't quite make the numbers, but "it was a good quarter"), she talks about next quarter. The pipeline is dry, she says. There are not enough marketing leads. You hold yourself not to bolt out of your seat, but you politely ask what about the 1,000+ leads you just passed to sales. These are 1,000 names, she says, but they are not good leads.

You've heard this before. Who is right?

The biggest problem is that nobody knows. The conventional process of sifting through thousands of leads and trying to figure out which are the good ones is time-consuming and expensive, and in most cases there is no follow-through. Much of your marketing effort goes to waste, but you don't know why.

Here is how you can do it differently with reverse-engineered marketing.

Stage One: Figure Out WHO Sales Wants to Talk to

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Eran Livneh (elivneh@MarketCapture.com) is president of MarketCapture (www.MarketCapture.com), which provides results-based marketing services to B2B software companies. He also publishes the MarketCapture blog.