During a fun and illuminating breakout session at 6sense’s recent CMO Coffee Talk Retreat, more than 100 marketing leaders divided into eight groups, each tasked with unpacking important topics facing...
During a fun and illuminating breakout session at 6sense’s recent CMO Coffee Talk Retreat, more than 100 marketing leaders divided into eight groups, each tasked with unpacking important topics facing CMOs today.
Discussions ranged from the roles and responsibilities of CMOs, to building effective marketing teams, to strategies for ABM and product-lead growth, and much more. It was a lively and fruitful conversation!
Here’s a closer look at what these 100+ experts had to say during these insightful breakout sessions.
This group unpacked the evolving role of CMOs, and how as the role expands, so too does a CMO’s responsibilities. “There’s no beginning or end to being a CMO,” one attendee said.
Indeed, aspiring CMOs should expect to take on more responsibilities than ever. Attendees noted what CMOs-to-be should prepare for:
Another group chatted about the Dark Funnel — the anonymous “digital breadcrumbs” that B2B buyers leave behind as they conduct research. Specifically, the group discussed how to illuminate and influence it.
Their key takeaway: Storytelling and consistent messaging are critical for influencing prospective buyers. The best way to accomplish this is with media such as:
And while account engagement platforms provide incredible, automatic insight into the Dark Funnel and buyers’ interests, they’re not the only way. The group made a compelling case for asking buyers directly how they heard about a solution, what kind of information they received, and more.
Every CMO dreams of having a go-to “single source of truth” digital dashboard that could provide at-a-glance info and analysis on the state of the business, the pipeline, and other key metrics. For now, no such solution exists.
But what if it did? What would CMOs want to track with this perfect product? Interestingly, this group didn’t come to a consensus on its must-have capabilities.
Why? There are many variables to consider since every marketing team is different, the group members realized. They did agree, however, that execs should have their own separate dashboard, and so should sales — but everyone should be looking at the same KPIs.
They divided up the KPIs into five categories:
Becoming successful at ABM requires sales and marketing to be perfectly aligned — and this harmonious relationship must start from the top of the revenue team. This group of CMOs unpacked how they had aligned their own revenue teams.
Best practices included:
What does the ideal marketing team look like? Here’s what the marketing leaders in this group offered:
Product-lead growth strategies, such as free or limited product trials, build buyer confidence and help buyers become internal champions for the solution. There’s an emerging challenge with this approach, however: Many companies are wary of offering them.
Many sales orgs see PLG as a threat, even though it can be a very effective sales tool, one attendee said. Letting potential customers test out a solution with their own data lets them see how they might benefit from it, and creates a way for them to share the experience with others in the company.
Why are PLG strategies so influential? The average buyers tend to be Millennials, who are comfortable with technology and want to learn about it on their own. They also prefer to hear from peers, not analysts or salespeople, so customer references can also be helpful in closing sales.
Sometimes it’s hard for other divisions within a company to understand what marketing does, and why it’s so important. This group of CMOs discussed how to best convey their department’s value across an organization. Their advice:
How can marketing teams execute an effective ABM strategy? This group offered these tips:
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