We’ve drawn from the key processes that most B2B companies follow. We know the majority of organizations who use demand generation, SRD’s, Account Executives, follow a similar model. Drawing from this experience we created the tools contained in the Lane Four package.
There are four proto-typical processes that our tools help you manage with ease. Our goal is to help you automate these processes, keep you out of spreadsheets, and managing these functions inside Salesforce.
Lead assignment, account matching, and time to follow-up
This flow begins with the creation of a lead, which typically comes from a marketing automation system. When a lead comes in, the first step is to figure out whom it should be assigned to. That assignment is typically based on a whole subset of qualities, such as a lead score, duplicate leads, region, matched account owners or matched account territory. Organizations need robust tools to address these kinds of assignment actions.
Typically, whoever picks up the lead needs to determine if it’s qualified or not, based on various criteria. After the Sales Development Rep (or other qualification rep) concludes that it’s a sales-accepted lead, the next step is to set up a first meeting, discovery meeting, or demo with that lead. For this process, it’s critical to manage an SDR’s ability to quickly qualify a lead and shepherd it to the point of an initial meeting.
The account creation process should be a managed flow, structured so that the right person is assigned the right account, at the right time. In other words, the account ownership should fit into segmentation models, and the flow of ownership between team members should be seamless.
As the activity around the account grows, more people will become involved, including account executives, SDRs, account managers and customer success managers, for example. The effective management of these assignments will help you with opportunity assignments, contact owners, commissioning, task assignments, and much more.
It’s critical for an organization to define when and why an opportunity will be created. What’s more, this should be a shared definition, so that lead-to-opportunity conversion can become a useful reporting measure. It’s also important to understand how the opportunity is created – in a higher-velocity model, it’s created from the lead or demo. In an account-based marketing model, the opportunity is created from the contact.
There should be a clear demarcation of the steps between the lead creation and opportunity creation. If an organization has a clean definition of each step—from assignments, to qualifications, to demos, to opportunities. Conversion rates will be more meaningful when there is a clean division between steps in the flow.
The opportunity assignment step could potentially happen at several different places in the flow, but it’s typically done on opportunity creation. We refer to this step as the SQO/SQL (Sales Qualified Opportunity/Sales Qualified Lead.)
Defining the opportunity means defining several key factors:
- How your organization represents value: The products being sold; recurring revenue; services; one-time fees; tiered and ramped deals
- Key strategic reporting: Definition around region, types, and more need to be built into the opportunity model
- Quotes and document generation for various versions of the opportunity: Once again, a solid opportunity definition is critical for this step, because an organization cannot create versions of an opp until they have specifically defined that opp. After all, you have to know how you’re tracking your data before you’re going to quote!
Once a deal is won, you need to start tracking the contract the customer has agreed to. A contract lays out the terms of the subscription, so that an organization knows exactly what is being sold and how much revenue is being generated.
It’s vital for an organization to build out a renewal pipeline so that it can understand key questions, such as: What is the churn? What is the upsell or cross-sell? How is it managing accounts? And how is it expanding accounts? When you have this structure in place, only then can you generate the key metrics your board of directors are asking for.