Marketing and Sales teams are well aware of a transformation that is taking place in the Marketing world: the shift to Predictive to redefine data and insights for Marketing strategy. In fact, 63% of Marketers acknowledge that they need to implement Marketing intelligence in order to improve segmentation. Though Marketers are in front of the transformation, executives, legal, and budget committees may not be as well informed. In order to help convince the internal decision makers, your Predictive vendor must provide you with the following resources.
1. Case Studies
Through initial conversations with your Predictive sales rep you should be able to identify and address pain points within your Marketing organization. Ask your rep for case studies that reflect your buyer use case. Case studies can be oriented in two ways: company-specific or use case-specific.
Company-specific case studies help your organization identify with another organization in the same industry or of similar size. The company-specific use case is effective in a hyper-competitive market, when you want to gain insight into how competitors are gaining an edge.
Use case-specific case studies help your company understand an important problem that you face. Use case studies are usually more valuable to your organization, and they don’t necessarily need to be industry specific. The reason is that two companies may be direct competitors, but they may have completely different go-to-market strategies.
Action step: Consult with your vendor to get case studies that are industry, size, and use case specific. View Radius case studies.
2. Objective Vendor Opinion
What are the experts saying? Analysts consult with clients on a day-to-day basis regarding Predictive technologies. SiriusDecisions, Forrester, Gartner, and TOPO are all experts in the new, emerging space. Your Predictive vendor should provide you with recognized industry-focused analyst reports.
If you’re a client of one of the above firms, set up an inquiry to speak with an analyst who lives and breathes Predictive. If you’re not a client, most predictive vendors will provide with you with licensed analyst reports or allow you to download them on their websites. Obtaining analyst reports will aid in the vendor selection process and support your decision to the executive team.
Action step: Ask leading analyst firms for analyst reports and research to see what they’ve written about specific Predictive vendors. View Forrester’s Predictive Report.
3. A Compelling Business Case
As you continue on the buyer’s journey, a compelling business case and ROI analysis is influential in getting your executive team on board. The main question is will the Predictive solution pay for itself? A cost/benefit analysis is necessary when presenting to an audience that is unfamiliar with a technology solution. At the end of the day your executive team wants fast justifications for spend with simplistic, outcome-oriented information on what the solution will do for bottomline growth.
When approaching your Predictive sales rep for a business case be prepared to share your company’s conversion rates, lead volume metrics, contract values, and other key benchmarks. This information is necessary for the vendor to generate an accurate business case.
Action step: Set up a consultation with a Predictive vendor that you are considering to discover your use case, and lay the foundation for a compelling proposition.
4. Proof of Concept
After you’ve seen a demo of Predictive software and your team is aligned on your use case and goals, conduct a Proof of Concept (POC). POCs come in many forms, whether it be a customized demo instance, a trial, a paid pilot, or a custom presentation. Ideally, a POC with predictive providers incorporates your data and a tailored model, which allows you to assess:
- New Customer Insights
- Usability / Use Adoption
- System Integrations Requirements
- Data Accuracy
- *Campaign Lift
- *Potential ROI
*Due to many independent variables and campaign response curves, measuring for campaign lift and ROI in a proof-of-concept should be reserved for paid pilots, which vendors will typically offer to enterprise clients.
Let the data speak for itself—analytics that show impactful insights and opportunities to achieve lifts in conversions or productivity will support the initiative to implement Predictive.
Action step: Talk with your vendor to assess which POC is best for you.
5. Rollout Plan and Customer Success
Predictive is a new space which means users need ongoing support. However, many predictive vendors have yet to build robust support teams, content, and services. Inquire about how the vendor will help you effectively integrate Predictive into your workflow to maximize value. A dedicated Customer Success team and defined support offerings is a great sign that the vendor is equipped to make you successful with the product and wants to maintain a strong partnership.
- Are there onboarding processes or trainings?
- Is there is 30/60/90 day customer success plan in place?
- Does the vendor’s product help support quarterly business reviews?
- Are there online support portals and responsive representatives?
Showcasing rollout plans and the vendor’s support offering will be an added confidence boost to a skeptical group of executives and approvers.
Action step: Research vendor success portals, and develop a relationship with a Customer Success Manager.
You see the value in Predictive. Leverage resources from your Predictive vendor to champion the solution internally and help your executive team understand its value. The vendor’s ability to support you should be not only a factor in the assessment of your Predictive vendor, but a signal of the success of your partnership down the road.