- Deploy personas throughout the organization by focusing on process, team enablement, and technology and data
- Use technology and data to link persona data to lead management strategies
- Persona-based initiatives should include rigorous use of technology and data to drive campaign performance
Sales tells marketing that they need more leads. Marketing counters that sales reps don’t follow up the on leads they get. Sales points out that lead quality isn’t consistent. Sound familiar?
We work with many clients to help them adopt and operationalize personas throughout their organizations, and time and time again, conflicts arise between marketing and sales on lead quality. Best-in-class organizations tackle this classic quandary by adopting persona-based initiatives and making rigorous use of technology and data to drive campaign performance and make lead management strategies a reality.
As the organizational steward of buyer insights, portfolio marketers in particular play an important role in driving collaboration among sales and various marketing functions to create audience-based campaigns that drive demand and produce high-quality leads. Once organizations complete the development of persona data and insights, marketing’s focus should turn to technology and data to link the organization’s persona knowledge to lead management strategies. Portfolio marketers should work with their peers in marketing operations, demand creation and sales to ensure appropriate focus and execution in three important areas:
- Actionable marketing database. The database needs to be clean and structured in a way so that each record can be associated with the target persona. Often marketing databases contain so many variations of contact job titles or incomplete records that it’s challenging to run queries on target personas. Many of our clients zero in on the most important data points (e.g., industry, job role, job level, company type, buying center) and restructure the database to make it easy for marketing to determine whether a contact is a target.
- Alignment to lead scoring. Persona data should be incorporated into lead scoring decisions as part of a persona-based marketing approach. Portfolio marketers can provide persona data from prioritized target segments for assigning higher point values in lead scoring thresholds. Additionally, demand creation teams can leverage persona data to design nurturing streams and personalized content for target buyers.
- Ongoing data maintenance and update. The continued utility of persona data and persona-based content throughout an organization relies on careful, consistent updates. Portfolio marketers should work with marketing operations to keep persona definition and data clean and updated. We’ve seen client teams produce regular data health reports to show growing sales pipeline and wins driven by persona-based marketing approaches.
Linking persona data to lead management strategies will help sales get more of the right leads – i.e., lead quality over quantity. When marketing can get high-quality content to the right persona at the right time because of persona knowledge and the appropriate use of technology and data, campaign performance and sales lead acceptance rates will also improve.
SiriusDecisions recommend a comprehensive approach to adopting and operationalizing personas, including the deployment of personas through technology and data. Our SiriusDecisions Portfolio Marketing clients can contact their account team to access the SiriusDecisions Persona Deployment Model and the Persona Toolkit. If you’re not a client, contact us for more information.