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How do I decide which tactical piece to implement first in our strategy for revenue engine?

I have developed our first company strategy for our revenue engine and I have buy-in at the exec level.
Sid Kumar
Sid Kumar
HubSpot SVP, Revenue Operations (RevOps)February 7

There are four key foundational pillars to a RevOps strategy: 1/Talent, 2/Process, 3/Systems, 4/Data. I'd start with Talent and Process changes in the near-term, while starting to build your plans and roadmap for your Systems tech stack and Data architecture. In my experience, you need all these capabilities to operate a world-class RevOps function which can scale with your organization. However, each of these areas have different time horizons to impact. For example, Systems and Data investments are foundational capabilities that will take a longer time to yield a return (18 to 24 mos) whereas you can start to make Talent and Process changes that can have near-term impact to show near-term impact and drive sustained momentum for your strategy. One area which I've found to be high leverage is getting your organization entirely aligned around a single view of the customer journey with clear North Star success metrics and organizational owners who are accountable for driving success at each stage.

2974 Views
Cambria Moreno
Cambria Moreno
The Riverside Company Director of Revenue OperationsMay 31

Pipeline is a leading indicator of success so I always believe you should start there. You need more time, money and effort in generating pipeline than you do in closing deals as you kick off a revenue engine. I would start by making sure you have a clear marketing strategy, rules of engagement with your incoming interest and a solid development team to prospect. Your first closed deal is going to come much later in your strategy and you will need a decent number of at bats depending on your win rate to accomplish that first deal. Make sure you invest the time into your pipeline generation methodology.

555 Views
Justin Trana
Justin Trana
Databricks Senior Director Sales OperationsAugust 29

Whatever makes the sales team more effective! The more you can focus on the tooling and infrastructure that keeps the sales team effective and focused on selling, not admin, the better. Your customer in building a revenue engine is the sales org and if they are losing patience while you build structure around back-office tooling you will lose their support for the future phases of work.

526 Views
Tyler Will
Tyler Will
Intercom VP, Sales OperationsApril 2

There are a few different angles I would consider when evaluating what to implement first for your revenue engine.

First you should understand the dependencies each of the tactical elements you have designed for your strategy. It probably does not make sense to implement something first that won't function well because the things it depends on are not yet up and running. By mapping out the dependencies of your various strategy elements, you can start to sequence your work in a way that makes the most sense. As a silly example, you would never fully design, hire, and onboard an SDR team and then pivot next to generating leads for that team to work. They'd sit around with nothing to do until that was up and running. This dependency mapping effort can also highlight foundational work you need to have in place before proceeding with other things. At a really early stage company that might be a CRM, pricing web page, or some basic data infrastructure. Later on it could be more complex like a sales enablement team, account scoring models, or compensation software.

Second, I would think about where you can build iteratively to account for the dependencies. Using the same example, the dependency mapping would say that we need marketing leads before we need SDRs. But if you fully stood up a marketing program, website, lead routing, lead scoring, etc. and had zero SDRs to handle those leads, you'd be wasting money as well. So you need to figure out how to launch these things somewhat simultaneously. Maybe you start with a little marketing and have the leads go to AEs without SDRs to test your campaigns, routing, volumes, conversion rates, etc. Then you can add in a few SDRs, go back to enhancing marketing, back to SDRs, and so on.

Third, I would do some prioritization with a prioritization matrix, using sizing and likelihood of success to determine where to work. You want something big enough to drive the business but that also isn't a highly risky endeavor. Your question implies this is a pretty big project so start with the things that matter a lot to the business but that you believe the organization is capable of delivering.

Finally I would consider if there is a need for "quick wins". Strategies often take a while to show value so, depending on the patience of the people you work with and the level of buy-in you have, you may want to consider ways to show some value early. This was a classic play from my consulting days where we would always try to produce something that created value in the first 30 days of a project so they client would say "aha, we're getting something for this!" This can be as simple as launching a new dashboard that shows business performance and where you can highlight what is changing, or it could be a smaller part of the overall initiative without many dependencies that you can stand up quickly and point to as progress.

In the end, you almost certainly will not be able to do things perfectly sequentially. You'll need to start somewhere, then build enough of the piece influenced by that to make part 1 successful, go back to 1 and do more, then revisit part 2 and launch part 3. This is what makes the job hard (and fun!) - we talk a lot about "building the plane and flying it too" which reflects this iterative nature of so much strategy work.

440 Views
Ignacio Castroverde
Ignacio Castroverde
Cisco Senior Director, Global Virtual Sales Strategy and OperationsApril 18

Choosing the first tactical piece of your revenue engine strategy to implement first is a pivotal decision, as it directly influences other initiatives in the pipeline. This is because executive buy-in signals a green light and therefore supports some other projects that hang in the balance. To choose the best tactical piece to start with, consider the following steps and decisions:

1. Begin with quick wins, which are tactical that yield visible results quickly. Quick wins boost team morale, give confidence in the strategy, and provide the “proof of concept” necessary to keep other stakeholders aboard.

2. Base the selection on the current impact on strategic success and return on investment. Use an Impact/Effort matrix to assess which tactic has the highest impact for the least effort and which satisfactorily combines short-term gains with long-term strategic advantage.

3.Align closely with business priorities to make sure that you are working on something that will directly impact current business goals and strategic trajectory.

4.Please, determine the resource pool available to you and how to exploit it. Measure the chosen tactic’s resource demands and competences to ensure that the team can execute the tactic and available resources without overstretching initial investment.

336 Views
Kayvan Dastgheib
Kayvan Dastgheib
Tegus Global Head of Revenue Strategy & OperationsMarch 28

The approach to deploying a new go-to-market strategy depends heavily on the stage of growth the company is in and the sophistication of its revenue engine. It's akin to repairing a ship while it's already out at sea—changes must be made carefully to avoid crippling the vessel, and finding yourself adrift at seat, which will severely impede growth.

Typically, a new strategy comprises several components: target market identification, ideal buyer persona definition, product-market fit, pipeline strategy, customer expansion and retention tactics, and product evolution aligned with the go-to-market motion. Assessing these elements against the current state often reveals where the current strategy is most far-off compared to the ideal strategy.

  • For instance, if there is a strong pipeline engine but declining Gross Retention Rate (GRR), it is wise to prioritize components focused on retaining customers and driving value to ensure customer longevity and growth year over year.

  • Conversely, if the pipeline is faltering due to competitive pressure, efforts should be directed towards deploying the components of the strategy that redirect the existing engine towards the most promising market segments where the product-market fit is strongest. Understanding the target buyers, their needs, how the product addresses their challenges, and their evaluation process is crucial in today's tech landscape. Focusing on a narrow, well-defined target market increases the likelihood of strategy success.

  • If customer retention and product-market fit are strong but pipeline growth is lacking, consider deploying the components of the strategy that optimize the pipeline motion. That might mean deploying new partner referral programs, building outbound prospecting teams, or investing more significantly in productive previously tested/theoretically advantageous marketing channels.

It is essential to prioritize which element of the revenue engine requires immediate attention and which can be addressed later. Identify tactical pieces in each pillar that are most likely to drive revenue, balancing time-to-value against risk, and aligning with stakeholder appetites.

In essence, focus on fixing the struggling parts of the revenue engine then optimizing those that are performing well. This approach maximizes the effectiveness of the strategy and drives revenue growth in the long run, while minimizing the short-term disruption risk.

376 Views
Sowmya Srinivasan
Sowmya Srinivasan
HubSpot Vice President of Revenue OperationsMay 1

There's no one-size-fits-all answer. I will tweak my answer to how I would approach making an informed and a strategic decision to kickstart a revenue engine implementation/ optimization journey. Some basic considerations-

  • Company Stage: Are you a startup, a high-growth company, or an established enterprise? Different solutions and business needs based on each stage.

  • Industry: Customers buying behavior, sales and renew cycles are also influenced by specific industries. Factor it in if you cater to a specific market. 

  • Internal Resources: What expertise and resources do you have to implement a solution for your organization? 

Here is a simple framework to decide where to start in terms of implementing revenue engine strategy -

  1. Build a prioritization matrix based on Impact(Value) and Ease of Implementation(Use)

    Impact: Consider the potential impact of ideas on your revenue engine. Which one is likely to have the most significant and measurable effect on revenue growth, lead generation, or customer acquisition and delivers the most value? 

    Ease of Implementation: Evaluate the resources and effort required to implement each idea. Some might require significant changes to processes or technology or simply require a huge change management, while others might be quicker to deploy. A smaller, easier-to-implement tactic can demonstrate progress early on and boost team morale.

  2. Align with existing strategic initiatives: Ensure the chosen idea/tactic aligns with and supports other ongoing initiatives within the company. Fragmentation of efforts can reduce effectiveness.

  3. Consider key Dependencies & Risks: Identify any dependencies between ideas or initiatives.. For example, implementing a new marketing automation tool might need a CRM integration set up first. A high-impact idea might also carry a higher risk of failure so weigh the potential rewards against the potential downsides. Assess, understand and then decide.

As a revenue operations leader, make sure you are leveraging data and insights into your decision making. Some additional considerations to ensure a successful rollout-

  • Start with a Pilot: Consider piloting a high-potential idea on a smaller scale before full-scale implementation. This allows for testing, refinement, and reduces risk.

  • Get Stakeholder Buy-In: Involve key stakeholders from across the revenue engine (sales, marketing, customer success) in the decision-making process. This fosters collaboration and ensures everyone is aligned with the chosen tactic.

  • Measure and Iterate: Continuously track the results of your pilot/implementation and be prepared to iterate as needed. The revenue engine is a dynamic system, and adjustments might be necessary as you learn and gather data.

There are a lot of revenue engine frameworks and revops maturity models. Check them out to decide what is right for your organization.

432 Views
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