The days of a “marketing communications” team focused on and measuring success on activity-based efforts are long gone. Fair warning to the marketing managers and directors who build empires with people – your days are numbered! The organizations that will throttle the competition are leaner, smarter and know how to use technology to engage customers to drive revenue. Marketing teams that focus their demand generation merely by producing brochureware, random email campaigns, and tradeshow activity will lose.
Marketing departments are expected to do more with less. Most importantly, these Revenue Marketing Teams are measured more on impact to revenue than anytime ever before. (Or at least they are expected to measure impact to revenue.) The best people to staff these teams will possess unique skills and attributes that combine creativity and hard-nosed business sense. Think of these unique teams and experts like Marketing SEALs or Marketing Special Forces. Smart, tough, tightly knit small groups, focused on well orchestrated steps to accomplish a mission. Empire builders who measure their success and egos by hiring tons of people won’t survive in the era of Revenue Marketing.
Here are some critical skills and attributes we recommend for recruiting the best marketing operations expert for your revenue marketing team.
Ability to Envision a Business Process
Marketing automation platforms enable the business process of demand generation and revenue marketing. A marketing operations specialist must be able to design a process with the vision of end to end results. Additionally, a marketing operations specialist must coordinate a process outside of the department with Sales and Support teams. A marketing operations specialist must envision the steps a potential buyer will follow.
Implementation of a Business Process with Marketing Automation
Envisioning a business process is one thing. Implementing the business process with a marketing automation platform is a special skillset that requires business savvy and technical acumen. Sophisticated workflows require a powerful engine to support the steps, especially when lead nurturing and scoring programs are involved. All are enabled and supported when properly implemented with a marketing automation platform.
One of the most critical roles a marketing operations specialist has is managing customer data in a marketing automation platform and in some cases, the CRM platform. (Politics aside, owning the customer data makes perfect sense. Sales can still “own” the relationship.) Data management is critical from the types of information captured, how much is captured, when in the buying process, where, and how. This information helps build profiles and shapes the ultimate success of customer marketing efforts. A marketing operations specialist can help build and shape this overall strategy.
Effective communication skills help set proper expectations on strategic initiatives and tactical execution. Additionally strong communications help report results and ensure executive-level support.
Hands-on Marketing Automation Platform and CRM Experience
Eventually CRM and Marketing Automation platforms will be available in a single platform. Before this market convergence occurs a marketing operations specialist must understand the intricacies on how data and information flow between the marketing automation and CRM platforms. Basic levels of technical acumen are a must-have skillset.
Think Strategically and Execute Brilliantly
Strategy without execution is hallucination. Marketing folks are great at talking strategy with great ideas and grand visions. The ones who succeed will put the strategy into action with brilliant tactical execution. A marketing operations specialist must see the big picture and use technology, content, and process to make a revenue marketing process work. Avoid the people who merely want to attend high-visibility meetings and merely “own” the usage of a marketing automation platform. Find the expert who has strategic brainpower and makes great things happen!
Without content, marketing automation platforms lack the fuel to drive campaign efforts. A marketing operations pro may not be THE overall curator for content. But they can work to mobilize an entire organization to support content creation for customer marketing efforts.
These are some of the most critical skills and attributes we see with the most successful marketing operations specialists and marketing automation experts. Don’t be misled by the tag of “automation”. There is a ton of heavy lifting involved with these special people who help drive revenue for an organization!
We’d like to know your thoughts on skills and attributes you find most valuable!