Octiv attended the 2017 SiriusDecisions Summit in Las Vegas last week. We approached the summit as an opportunity to meet attendees who came thirsty for knowledge of how to build the best and most effective sales and marketing machines. Most of my time was spent interacting with other summit attendees, but there were three core themes that rose above the constant chatter throughout the event.

New SiriusDecisions’ Demand Unit Waterfall

Marketers were in the majority at the SiriusDecisions Summit, and they were excited about the reveal of SiriusDecisions’ new demand unit waterfall. Our friends at DemandGen gave a great recap of the full details here.

The short version is that SiriusDecisions is shifting focus from individual leads and advising companies to focus on an entire buying group as it moves through the funnel.

We have seen reports from CEB that the buying group has grown and is likely to continue to grow. And the more buyers involved in a final decision, the more complex the sales process will become. Buyers are now across multiple locations, functions and levels of the company. Each of those buyers must be able to see why your solution is right for them as an individual, but still solve their company’s overall needs.

Account Based Marketing (ABM) is Not the Only Answer

As mentioned above, buying groups have grow, which has shifted greater focus to alignment between sales and marketing to grow the business together. About two years ago, the concept of Account Based Marketing came to life and exploded. Although ABM is all the rage these days, many companies are finding that it just isn’t right for them – or that it cannot be the only tactic used to drive pipeline.

Other companies are focusing on ways to cast a wider net while staying focused on their target buyers. They are doing it by being more deliberate with the content they are creating, and using more traditional methods focused on a broader segment rather than a named account list.

ABM works well with the right customer segment, provided there are customers with a contract value high enough to deploy the amount of resources to be account based. You need to be able to drill down enough to find a small list that you can truly target. Based on discussions I had with other summit attendees, a lot are running a hybrid approach that focuses on large companies that can be game changers, but still using the tactics that allowed them to scale over the last 5 to 10 years.

Sales Enablement Must Be a Key Focus

The last piece of the puzzle between sales and marketing reaching true alignment is sales enablement. Providing a sales team with the right tools to be successful can only be done when there is alignment from their marketing counterparts. Many vendors at this year’s summit focused on sales enablement as well.

Sales enablement means different things for different people, but in all scenarios it means supporting the sales team and helping them get deals over the line.

There are a lot of innovative sales tools that can be added to your sales tech stack, aimed at driving efficiency and removing tedious daily tasks and giving sales teams more time to do what they do best: sell.

To highlight the activity of the show, here are the some of the best tweets from #SDSummit:

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