The Revenue Operations Flywheel
Learn about the Revenue Operations Flywheel created by Denamico to help companies identify and prioritize potential issues with their revenue technology and revenue operations based on areas of impact for customer-facing teams.
Revenue operations, or RevOps, is the aligning and to varying degrees, the combining of marketing, sales, and customer service teams across the full customer lifecycle to drive growth through operational efficiency.
RevOps holds all teams accountable to revenue, freeing up departments to focus on the customer. It’s a holistic approach that is designed to break down silos between departments dealing with customers and clients.
The primary drivers of revenue operations are shared technology, processes, and data.
That being said, RevOps is not simply for operational efficiency.
The alignment of revenue teams also results in enhanced customer experience and improved employee satisfaction and engagement.
According to Yamini Rangan, CEO of HubSpot, in Not Another State of Marketing Report 2021, "Customer experience is the number one driver of growth in 2021 and beyond. This has been happening for a while, but 2020 really accelerated trends in digital transformation and buyer-seller relationships and there is no going back."
While we can understand the importance of a great customer experience, we often overlook the benefits of creating exceptional experiences for our employees and colleagues.
This focus on internal experiences is especially important these days as the acquisition and retention of top talent has become even more competitive.
Customer demand has accelerated and shaped a new speed of business across all industries. Many companies, however, have failed to keep pace with heightened customer expectations around digital channels.
The “one-click” experience mastered by big businesses is no longer limited to B2C or e-commerce. B2B brands are also faced with the challenge of meeting their customers when and how they like to be communicated with at their own pace.
This has forced some organizations to develop or buy solutions to solve for specific use cases in siloed departments rather than taking a holistic approach to digital transformation based on overarching business goals.
- Marketing may have a content management system to host a website, another tool to send out email campaigns, software for text messaging, and spreadsheets to pull all the data together for monthly reports.
- Sales might be working with presentation software, a CRM that provides task notifications, and a call-tracking system.
- Customer success could be focused in another system to track incoming tickets and prioritize customer issues.
- From an operational standpoint, teams might be pulling together data manually to create reports for leadership and finance.
All of these disparate solutions can lead to technology bloat, inefficiencies, confusion for teams, inaccurate data and insights, misalignment, and a poor customer experience.
The alignment of people, processes, and technology is NOT an easy task. However, to have success with customer experience and employee experience alike, you can identify areas of friction in your RevOps Flywheel.
Here are some real examples of friction that stall business growth:
- Teams are working in silos using systems that are not integrated.
- Data is not being shared across team lines.
- Processes and handoffs are not defined, documented, and followed by all.
- People are leading departments without collective revenue responsibility and goals.
It’s time to break down the silos between departments and to take a holistic look at the technology we are using to solve for the customer, see if we can improve how we are sharing important data, and take accountability for increasing operational excellence across customer-facing teams.
This fact is true: Today’s most disruptive companies are winning on customer experience AND they are winning when it comes to employee experience and operational alignment!
Thinking about RevOps and aligning revenue teams, however, can be overwhelming. This is one of the main reasons Denamico developed the RevOps Flywheel.
Our goal is to help companies identify and prioritize potential issues with their revenue technology and revenue operations based on areas of impact for customer-facing teams.
We’ll start by analyzing eight areas of impact as represented above. Given the vast array of tools available for teams in marketing, sales, and customer success, we like to begin with Tech Integrations.
Moving clockwise, we'll land on the single source of truth for successful businesses, the Customer Relationship Management tool, or CRM.
The next area of impact revolves around Sales Enablement, including the technology, process, content, and automation to keep salespeople focused on what they do best.
That leads us to another important aspect of revenue operations: Data & Reporting. Without real-time information about your leads and customers, it becomes increasingly difficult to meet them where they're at in the buying journey.
Your Website & Content Management System (CMS) comes next in the analysis to figure out if your site is working as hard as it can to attract new leads and delight customers alike.
Another tightly connected area to identify gaps or opportunities is around Marketing Automation. This is where technology impacts customer experience 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Automation that moves at the speed of your prospects allows marketing teams to focus on the next area: Content & Campaigns. Here we listen to the voice of the customer, analyze performance, and make sure we have relevant content for strangers all the way to brand advocates.
Last but not least, we'll dive into what's happening on the Customer Success side of the relationship because we all know that referrals, reviews, and the longevity of a relationship can provide substantial revenue growth.
Are systems for your marketing, sales, and customer success teams integrated?
How many different digital tools are your teams using to perform their jobs on a daily basis? According to ChiefMartech.com, the average for an enterprise company is 120.
Even with small to mid-sized businesses, the number can be surprisingly high. Are all of those tools integrated into your systems? Given the integrations, are you sharing the most important data, or are you limited by the integrations that are in place?
Whether you feel the pressure of a mounting tech stack, or you have a handle on it and need to document everything your teams are using, a tech stack audit is a good place to start.
As we continue to think about integrations, here are some quick evaluation statements to consider. You'll find them in each section on this page to help you identify and prioritize which areas of RevOps could use more attention.
Tech Integrations Evaluation Statements:
- We clearly understand how our technology enables our marketing, sales, and customer service teams.
- Our systems for marketing, sales, and service teams are integrated and share important data.
- We have a process for evaluating new technology to grow our business.
- We have a standard operating procedure to implement new technology, train users, and foster long-term adoption.
- We discuss how to reduce redundant systems within our tech stack.
Do your salespeople have the right tools, collateral, and technical skills to focus on selling rather than administrative tasks?
Customer Relationship Management systems have evolved over the years and now can be customized to your business requirements and individual needs.
A CRM allows you to manage your existing customer base, connect to sales and marketing operations, build a strategy, and in turn, see ROI.
What information is most relevant to a company, however, will change as the business scales over time. For a CRM to remain useful, processes and data cleanliness should be evaluated annually.
Regardless of the system you use, is your CRM intuitive and easy to use? Does it help employees to do their jobs better? If not, it’s not going to be utilized.
CRM Evaluation Statements:
- Our CRM is integrated with other core systems, including our website.
- Our CRM is easy for people to update and it helps our team members do their job better.
- Our teams leverage the CRM on a daily basis.
- Our CRM helps with forecasting.
- We see our CRM as our single source of truth for the success of our business.
Do your salespeople have the right tools, collateral, and technical skills to focus on selling rather than administrative tasks?
At a 10,000 foot view, do your salespeople have the right tools, collateral, and technical proficiency to focus on selling rather than administrative tasks? According to research conducted by InsideSales, salespeople only spend 37% of their time on revenue-generating activities. That’s a frightening statistic.
There are some great tools for salespeople to reduce redundant tasks, which allows them to actually focus on sales. Surprisingly enough, we find that many sales teams with access to these tools haven’t had the proper setup or training to fully adapt the tools and utilize them on a daily basis.
At a glance, can salespeople gain insights about whom they are connecting with through email using the integration with Gmail or Outlook? Do they have available meetings tied to their calendar for leads to schedule some time?
Are they required to log manual notes about or emails and calls? What about following up manually with repetitive emails that could be automated? Enable your sales folks to remain focused on the activities that bring in the revenue.
Sales Enablement Evaluation Statements:
- Our sales team has the insights on prospects and leads it needs to reach its goals.
- We automate the ability for leads to schedule meetings with our salespeople.
- When our salespeople make calls, send emails, or have meetings with contacts, crucial information is easy to track and update.
- Our sales team can focus on revenue-generating tasks versus admin activities.
- Leads are automatically routed to salespeople based on criteria we already know about prospects.
Can leadership and other teams review real-time data to make informed decisions regarding sales, marketing, and customer success strategies?
Data and reporting are at the heart of success for many companies. There is nothing worse than having to manually put together reports from multiple systems, trying to format it in a way that tells a clear story of efforts leading to revenue, and doing it in a scalable and repeatable way. This is where dashboards and customized reports become extremely important.
Today, more than ever, it is critical that your company understands and agrees upon your data “source of truth.” Ensure you have a solid understanding of how your data sources are interacting and establish agreed-upon performance metrics from company leadership. Once you have these questions answered, it’s time to get to work and make sure your data is set up for action, accuracy, and success!
Data & Reporting Evaluation Statements:
- Managers and leadership have clear visibility on activity in our CRM.
- Our marketing team has the ability to shift activities on the fly based on results.
- We rely on real-time data to make decisions.
- Our reports are consistent and accurate.
- We have the ability to drill into real-time data to make informed decisions.
Does your website produce high-quality leads for marketing and sales teams on a consistent basis?
You may be wondering why we’re calling out websites in terms of revenue operations, but today’s websites are built with revenue-generating purposes in mind – regardless of if you are B2B, B2C, e-commerce, or nonprofit.
Static brochure sites are dead. If your site isn’t responsible for enabling sales and maintaining existing customers, it might be time to assess its performance.
Website & CMS Evaluation Statements:
- Our website produces leads for our marketing and sales teams.
- Our website looks great on any device or browser.
- Our website is easy to update, add new pages, and maintain.
- Visitors can interact with our site to get answers in real-time.
- We are monitoring how visitors interact on our site.
Do your marketing efforts convert leads into customers by providing timely content about your products or services using automation?
Marketing automation is designed to make your processes more efficient and reduce friction along the path to purchase in both outgoing messaging and internal communication.
If your team has quality content and an effective strategy to nurture prospects but not enough hours in the day to keep up with the influx of leads, marketing automation can be deployed to send nurturing messages to prospects automatically.
Marketing automation is also extremely helpful in streamlining the handoff of leads between departments. In an ideal world, marketing and sales would work together seamlessly to nurture and convert leads.
If you can identify which leads are likely to convert, you can use automation to notify your sales team that a prospect is ready for some personal attention.
Marketing Automation Evaluation Statements:
- When visitors to our website reach out using a form, we have automation in place to address their needs and inform our team.
- We nurture leads by providing relevant content about our products/services using automation.
- We can identify when a lead becomes hot and should be passed to sales.
- Our marketing automation stops when we know it should.
- We have a process to scale marketing automation and identify gaps in the system.
Does your content speak to ideal customers and provide valuable information?
When it comes to content, authenticity is key. If your content does not showcase your brand's personality or the value you provide to your customers, it’s time to make a change.
Companies that are not authentically themselves — in all aspects of their business — will eventually suffer. Potential clients and customers will see right through the fluff and lose trust in your brand.
While creating your content, provide value by aiming to educate or engage your prospects. In doing so, you will establish trust and credibility with potential customers.
Content & Campaigns Evaluation Statements:
- We create marketing campaigns based on quarterly and annual business goals.
- Marketing and sales campaigns are efficient because our teams have easy access to up-to-date collateral and content.
- Our campaigns speak to ideal customers and provide valuable information.
- Data collected from campaigns is used to inform future sales and marketing initiatives.
- We are able to recreate the structure of successful campaigns across products or services.
Does your company provide easy ways for customers to ask questions, get help, and resolve issues?
Finally, let’s chat about the service components of revenue operations.
Service and customer support are crucial for businesses to retain customers and clients, continue to delight, and extend the lifetime value of a customer longer than ever expected.
Part of this comes down to having great people. Part of it is great processes and leadership, and part of great service comes down to having the right technology.
Successful companies understand their customers and know how to leverage the feedback received to continually improve customer experience.
The key to being customer-centric is engaging, listening, and acting upon the feedback you receive from your customers.
Customer Success Evaluation Statements:
- We have a system in place to keep track of customer requests so our team can stay organized and find solutions for customers faster.
- We enable customers to find the help they need, and reduce the number of support requests.
- Our team can chat with visitors, prospects, and customers in real time.
- We track feedback by sending customer support surveys.
- We prioritize support requests so our team can tackle the most critical issues first.