Marketing and sales haven’t historically had the easiest time deciding which accounts to target or how to measure engagement. Too often teams can get caught up in MQLs, which can rely on outdated methods of gathering data — like lukewarm event leads or forgotten form fills — or ideal customer profile (ICP) accounts that aren’t yet in-market to buy.
Leads obtained through these methods aren’t necessarily a waste of time. But you’d have to spend a lot of resources (e.g., time, ad spend, sales calls) sifting through a pile of shiny rocks searching for that elusive diamond when you could be targeting a collection of diamonds in the first place.
6QA: lead and account scoring based on process and math
Because qualified leads have caused friction between marketing and sales teams, it’s useful to have a single source of truth when it comes to lead quality. At 6sense, we’ve pioneered the 6QA (6sense Qualified Accounts), which enable revenue teams to get on the same page about when in-market accounts are ready to convert to an opportunity. We do so by bringing process and science to the forefront of lead and account scoring, eliminating the human subjectivity that often muddies the minute-based exercise of scoring.
“6QAs have transformed the way our sales and marketing teams work together to generate pipeline and revenue,” said Rauli Garcia, VP of Strategic Marketing at Sage Intacct. “6sense tells us which accounts are in-market for solutions like ours, where they are on the buying journey, which contacts are part of the buying team, and which topics they care most about, all of which enables us to drive meaningful engagement at scale. As a result of our shift from MQLs to 6QAs, we’ve generated a 48% increase in opportunity volume with 6sense.”
Objective alignment on target accounts and engagement tactics
We merge historical opportunity data with the following scoring criteria: account profile fit score, contact profile fit score, contact engagement score, and account in-market score. (Check out more 6QA specifics from our CMO Latané Conant on Clickz.)
Simply put, because you no longer have to assign arbitrary scores to activities associated with the buying journey (e.g., downloading a whitepaper, clicking a link in an email, attending a webinar), you can reach consensus on target accounts based on objective resources: data and AI predictions.
The need for next-generation measurement and 6sense’s 3 new reporting capabilities
As revenue teams become more strategic about the methods they use to identify in-market accounts, there’s a rising need for insight into account engagement tactics and metrics to gauge account-based program success. In fact, account engagement is a significant, new performance benchmark — a metric that’s becoming more comprehensive and will change the way marketers and sellers plan.
Perhaps you have your pile of diamonds, but how do you go about structuring your engagement with each one? How do you collect, analyze, and act on subsequent engagement insights for future success?
That’s why we recently announced 6QA Sales Dashboards that enable sales and marketing teams to align on the best time to engage target accounts and contacts; our Segment Performance capabilities that help teams measure the effectiveness of campaigns and activities driving account engagement; and Campaign Performance Indicator that measures and maximizes account engagement throughout the funnel by alerting marketers to underperforming advertising campaigns, prompting them to proactively optimize creative elements or campaign settings. That’s a lot of new capabilities to help marketing and sales teams align, measure, and create more compelling methods of engagement.
“As companies wrap their heads around account-based strategies that span multiple functions, capabilities like these are critical to provide operational benefits and decision-making benefits to various teams. We’re grateful to our very engaged Customer Advisory Board, and innumerable practitioners at companies like Tipalti, Clari, Sage Intacct, Sage, Infoworks, PTC, Tableau, BluJay Solutions, and a host of others that collaborate with us to design capabilities that align to account-based workflows in practice,” said Amar Doshi, SVP of Product & UX at 6sense.
Now, let’s dig deeper into the new reporting capabilities to see what each means for revenue teams.
Enhanced 6QA reporting capabilities
Though 6QA isn’t new, our recent release includes enhanced 6QA reporting capabilities that support the push toward next-generation measurement.
Here’s a look at some of the new features and benefits for 6sense customers:
6sense Sales Dashboards
These are operational dashboards for users’ day-to-day jobs — users such as BDRs and BDR managers (or prospecting teams, which can include AEs).
6QA reporting ready out of the box
It doesn’t require any setup or extra configuration and is designed with our Sales Intelligence experience in mind and available within our Salesforce AppExchange app.
All-in-one account views
Know which accounts to focus on and click in to see the entire Sales Intelligence experience for the individual account, such as activities, next best actions, and more.
One of our key differentiators is how we calculate 6QA (the predictive modeling and prioritization capabilities), as well as user experience, the latter of which is built elegantly around the way our customers want to view account information and interact with it… rather than assumptions about their needs.
In case you’re unfamiliar with the term, a segment refers to a group of accounts to focus on. (A couple of good examples are your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) accounts and competitor takeout or winback accounts.) Traditionally, we’ve had segment analytics that speak to account activities and profile demographics to help customers zero-in on the behaviors of a segment, but this release takes it to the next level by analyzing stage changes over historical past. Segment Performance helps you see what happened within the segment during a set period of time, like specific activities that moved those activities from A to B, and compare it to what may have happened in another baseline timeframe.
See what you’re doing to influence deals
Say you’ve made a lot of multichannel efforts, but you still don’t know exactly what moved the needle, what exactly worked, or which accounts were influenced. For instance, a display campaign reached 100 accounts; 10 had new opportunities created and one was closed-won. No single effort is likely to take 100% credit for that win, but you can see which efforts were useful in influencing the deal by measuring segment performance.
With our new Segment Performance capabilities, you can get insight from detailed reports for as many segments as you need. Some examples:
- See whether you accomplished moving given accounts from stage one to stage two in a set period of time (e.g., a month, a quarter).
- Compare two segments to see which performed better.
- Don’t just guess — use the segment performance data to test out your hypothesis about a particular segment.
- Find out which activities had the best penetration in a given segment.
Most importantly, Segment Performance makes it easier for marketers to look at what they accomplished with a particular segment in order to inform their strategy and spend for the next month, quarter, etc. It’s not only proving out what marketing is doing, but it’s also helping marketers know definitively what could use attention or needs fixing.
Campaign Performance Indicator
In the ad space, there are some platforms that expect you to pay for third-party, hands-on service to manage, run, and see the results of your own ads. But that time is money — and money is money — and you need to be able to launch ads without delay. 6sense’s display ad capabilities are 100% self-service, and campaigns go live within 24 hours.
Automated recommendations provide insight and control
Separate from our Segment Performance capabilities, Campaign Performance Indicator provides important, timely feedback to our users for display campaigns. These features automate recommendations to help inform your choices and success around segment, budget, and pacing.
Say you want to know if your campaign is performing well or what you should consider tweaking; automated recommendations can tell you whether you’re outpacing your budget, if your budget won’t be spent because your segment specs are too specific, etc. Continuing with our self-service first approach, campaign optimization capabilities enable marketers to help themselves further with more insight and autonomy.
Think of it like this: While a self-driving car sounds cool, it can be daunting — independent but not totally in control… where driver assistance puts you in the driver’s seat with the knowledge that help is here if ever you need us to take the wheel, with automated recommendations or help from our brilliant (human) campaign experts.
Taking account-based measurement to the next level
This next-gen approach to measurement isn’t meant to completely replace traditional metrics. It’s giving marketers the ability to look through the account lens, to see what’s happening before leads even come in, and to take it a step further — to look at qualified accounts (multiple people involved in the account) and not just qualified leads (individuals).
Attribution can be very hard to set up and maintain. And in B2B marketing and selling, deals can go on for months at a time. There may not be one right answer to measurement, but there is a right solution: one that inspects what’s potentially working across all these tactics and channels and helps teams come together and act on the data.