This is a little rant. Because in recent conversations I had with clients and with podcast guests, the following issue came up, over and over and yet is completely ignored by most.
To get a seat at the table, marketing needs to own revenue first.
Understanding the Status Quo
In my experience, what happens at most companies inside of marketing goes something like this:
There’s blog posts. And podcasts. And emails. And videos. And webinars. And co-marketing. And guest posts. And social media.
And yet no one’s really sure how marketing contributes to revenue. The marketing team is always busy doing stuff. But the content team isn’t sure how they contribute to revenue. And creative? Forget it.
Demand Generation is good — but they’re always stressed out because they feel like they own the weight of the whole number.
Setting Revenue Goals
You can fix it. It starts with goals.
And every sub-team in marketing (content, product marketing, demand gen, brand marketing, whatever you call them) need to have clear goals tied to revenue.
You can do it. Maybe it’s leads. Maybe it’s meetings. Maybe it’s pipeline. But you can hold every team accountable to revenue in marketing.
The majority of the marketing teams I know operate this way. Just doing stuff.
That’s why the best thing you can do as a marketing leader is to get as close to revenue as possible.
Ignore the best practices and traditional marketing channels. Just start at the bottom: what do people do before they buy? You can figure it out.
Reaping the Benefits
And once you start to build a clear revenue machine in marketing, then you get a free pass to do the fun stuff, like podcasts, online conferences and what have you.
On top of that your team will be more motivated, because they actually see their contribution to the overall success of the business, as well as the individual impact they can have.
I made that mistake myself in the past and if you don't take care of this first, you'll be forever trapped in the "marketing-is-doing-stuff-but-nobody-knows-what" cycle (which means you don't get the budget to do what you want to do).