Flippin’ Funnels with Julia Stead of Invoca

After nearly eight months of flipping funnels all over the country, we’ve had a ton of amazing funnel flippers share their account-based marketing insights with our community. We would like to start highlighting these on our blog for the greater community to learn from.

We will kick things off with Julia Stead, Director of Demand Generation at Invoca. Her organization went from having very traditional lead-based marketing focus a year ago, to today where they are now close to 90% account-based marketing (ABM) focused. For those who aren’t familiar with Invoca, they are a B2B SaaS call intelligence platform that provides attribution and analytics for marketers to determine where they’re inbound phone calls are coming from. They also help marketers report on  the amount of marketing spend required to drive those calls and the revenue generated from the same.

Julia recently joined us at our San Francisco event to share her journey to ABM success where she was faced with the challenge of growing her sales pipeline without substantially increasing their budget. Check out her video and our favorite flipping points below.


Flipping Points:

2:00 – The only way to get more leads in trade shows, conferences, and sponsored webinars is to spend more money, but the marketing budget certainly was not going to double year over year.

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”][Tweet ” Only 10% of attendees at conferences were potential customers. @JuliaStead #FlipMyFunnel”]

3:30 – The tipping point to starting Julia’s journey began at SiriusDecisions Summit last year where many of the great ABM vendors were present but still in their infancy in terms of platform maturity. She spent the week trying to get her head wrapped around the idea of taking an account-based approach and met with Megan Heuer, Vice President and Head of Research at SiriusDecisions, who helped Julia decide where her team should get started with implementing ABM.

5:00 – Armed with lots of SiriusDecisions insights, Julia spent about a month developing a framework on what ABM would look like at Invoca. From there, they did a small beta program on a small group of accounts from Dreamforce (a show that traditionally did not provide good ROI). Through a combination of a pilot direct mail campaign and great buy-in from their sales team, they blew their goals out of the water. That was all the validation they needed to move forward with the account-based approach.

[Tweet “Our first ABM campaign blew our pipeline goals out of the water. @JuliaStead #FlipMyFunnel”]

6:00 – The next step was for Invoca to adopt an omni-channel approach to ABM. The first part of the process was identifying target accounts that matched their Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). They used a tool called BuiltWith that allowed them to scan websites and gain technographic data.

7:00 – The list was pretty large and it was time to get the sales team involved to pick the ones they thought would be best fit customers. Each rep was told they could pick 100 accounts that were comprised of 25 top-tier and 75 lower priority accounts that are still good fits but wouldn’t get as much personalized attention. Once the reps made their picks, they layered in Everstring‘s predictive analytics to validate the selections.

8:00 – Once they narrowed down the list of target accounts, it was time to find the right contacts within the accounts. The SDRs at Invoca used tools like LinkedIn and Datanyze to help identify two to four contacts in each account.

9:00 – One pain point was figuring out how to associate leads with target accounts in Salesforce, which is not designed for account-based marketing. LeanData helped solve this challenge by matching all leads in the database and automatically converting any new leads to contacts so Invoca could start to effectively market to them.

[Tweet ” We engaged our target accounts using #OmniChannel nurturing. @JuliaStead #FlipMyFunnel”]

10:00 – Invoca wanted to make sure that their message was present and consistent no matter where their target accounts were online. While this is known as omni-channel marketing, Julia likes to refer to it as “just good marketing.” Invoca layered on Terminus to show display ads to their target accounts which had huge impact on the engagement of their direct mail and email campaigns.

11:00 – The last piece of the puzzle was figuring out how to measure the results of their account-based efforts. To do this, Invoca had to change the way they reported the outcomes of campaigns. First touch attribution was no longer effective because the majority of their leads and contacts were being sourced by sales. They used Brightfunnel to help properly attribute results across the entire customer journey.

 If we hadn’t switched our #ABM reporting model, we would have only gotten credit for 20% of our efforts. – Julia Stead

13:00 – One key metric for Invoca was their pipe to spend ratio. This means reporting in a way that answers this question: For every dollar that we’re spending in marketing, how many dollars of pipeline is it influencing?

14:00 – Another way Invoca measured success was engagement within an account. They knew that people often do not click on display ads, so this would not be a great way to show results of a campaign. Instead, the team chose to look at how many accounts were engaged, and also how many contacts within those accounts were showing engagement.

15:00 – After the initial beta ABM program launched in August and September of 2015, Invoca saw almost two times more pipeline in the last two quarters of the year than they saw first two quarters of the year. That was a huge win for them. Their big number one goal was achieved right off the bat. The next was that pipe to spend ratio for our ABM programs. They had a target to increase ROI by 10X and they blew it out the water by achieving a 26X ROI . That was awesome and validated the idea that we could implement these new types of programs. They were all automated through great systems like PrintingForLess (PFL) and Terminus, which made them scalable as well.

By using Terminus and looking at display through an account-based model, we were able to measure results for people that were in direct mail campaigns and email campaigns. If they also saw a display ads, the overall engagement rate and conversion rate for them through our direct mail and email programs increased by anywhere from 50% to 200%. I finally had an actually tangible metric to prove that display was worth our money and I could associate a dollar amount in the lift in conversions, pipeline and revenue that were being influenced by display ads. That a game changer for me when it comes to approaching our digital advertising strategy at that point. – Julia Stead

Hearing Julia’s story of her ABM journey at Invoca was super inspiring and shows that taking an account-based marketing approach can have true impact on the business results. Congrats to Julia and the team at Invoca on all of their success! Keep flipping those funnels.

We’re hitting the road again, and this time, we are headed to Austin for the #FlipMyFunnel B2B Marketing and Sales Festival on June 7, 2016.

The theme of this event will be “Peace, Love and Funnel” and will be a celebration of challenging the status quo in B2B Marketing and Sales. Tickets are on sale now and we are offering special pricing for Smarketing teams. Promo code JSBLOG50 will save you 50% on your ticket.