How-To Guide Optimizing Asset Management for Sales Success By Clare Price, VP of Research April 2014 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Asset Management has historically been seen as a marketing and branding function. This technology is used to deliver materials to sales but is not within the sales teams’ direct control or influence. Today, as more organizations focus on marketing and sales alignment, many tools and technologies that were once managed exclusively by marketing have become shared marketing and sales functions. Despite this alignment progress on many fronts, Asset Management has tended to remain squarely in the hands of marketing. Demand Metric believes that marketing organizations that retain control are missing an opportunity to use Asset Management to its fullest capability. The purpose of this How-To Guide is to provide Modern Marketers with a clear understanding of how to effectively use Asset Management Systems as a Sales Enablement tool. WHAT IS ASSET MANAGEMENT? Given the breath of the term “Asset Management” across a wide variety of industries and disciplines, we must give it some context. For the purposes of this How-To Guide, we are defining “assets” as content, materials, events and tools that marketing uses to perform its organizational functions. These assets are digital and physical, tangible and intangible. © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved. How-To Guide In our context, we define “management” as the process of collecting, maintaining, controlling, upgrading and disposing of assets to produce the highest marketing and sales performance enhancements and achieve the strongest ROI. Asset Management applications for Sales Enablement support the collection, consolidation and curation of the knowledge-based information to be distributed to the sales team. The focus of these applications is to manage access to content and collateral to make the sales team more productive. Once simple version control and/or check-in/check-out mechanisms, these systems now integrate with marketing content management, marketing automation, brand control and marketing campaign management solutions. They have evolved to support sophisticated use hierarchies based on customer type, channels, distributors and globalization requirements. THE SALES BENEFITS OF ASSET MANAGEMENT As marketing and sales organizations become more aligned, asset management systems must be viewed as a joint marketing and sales advantage rather than simply a marketing resource and distribution center. The Sales Enablement benefits of Asset Management, particularly when coupled with marketing automation, are substantial. They allow marketing organizations to: Develop marketing materials that are sales-centric based on what is working in the field with real customers. Sales benefits from optimized content for each type of sales situation and customer type. Distribute content assets more effectively by creating content groups by type of customers, industries, customer size, stage of the sales cycle and channel. Content is preloaded and packaged for each stage of the sales cycle so sales teams don’t have to “reinvent the wheel.” © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved. How-To Guide Content can be offered to dealer/distributor networks with access control to protect brand assets. Personalize content for individual customers quickly, based on needs and interest. Features like dynamic content personalization offer the capability to personalize content to the individual in real time as they are accessing it. Functions also provide the ability to personalize channel content for dealers and distributors. Localize content for geography, cultural and language. Provide local customer stories for better social proof. Track content usage with analytics that can monitor and measure how and when content is being used which then measures the contribution of that content to the sales process. Control brand and message consistency through authorization levels embedded in the Asset Management system. Enable social and mobile marketing content use and distribution for multi-tiered, multi-channel sales teams and resellers. ASSET MANAGEMENT & MARKETING AUTOMATION Tight integration between the Asset Management and the organization’s marketing automation system provides a more effective solution than using two disparate, unconnected systems. Some marketing automation systems offer digital asset management functions such as a centralized asset repository, user access control, and personalization and localization of content. Asset Management and Marketing Resource Management systems do more. They integrate traditional, digital and social marketing; provide multi-level access control and offer design tools for content creation. Further, they include robust publishing and fulfillment operations for sales and channel marketing that is not always part of a standard marketing automation system. © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved. How-To Guide A critical component of Asset Management is user access control based on a well-defined hierarchy of users’ rights. Asset Management systems that maintain a solid access hierarchy based on flexible permission parameters gives marketing centralized brand and message control while enabling decentralized access and distribution for sales. In summary, tight integration between Marketing Automation and Asset Management enables better campaign management, higher sales performance, better brand control, more streamlined project management, and deeper analytical insights into the effectiveness of content assets. ASSET MANAGEMENT VENDOR SELECTION CRITERIA The following features and functions should be considered when selecting an Asset Management vendor to support your Sales Enablement efforts. Centralized Repository. Repository must support all types of content, including: digital assets, email templates, brochures, sales sheets, presentations, videos, advertisements, direct mail pieces and signage. Access Control. Asset distribution should be fast and efficient based on predetermined user access and user rights controls. The marketing or sales operations group should be able to set permissions based on a wide range of factors. Internally this may include role, responsibility, location, job function, etc. Externally, this may include customers, industries, customer size, stage of the sales cycle and distribution channel. Content/Asset Development. Both preloaded templates and custom design tools should be supported. Distribution. Content flow should be streamlined to move easily from the repository to final fulfillment regardless of whether that fulfillment is to a mobile device for presentation, a printer for publishing, or a design vendor for tradeshow signage. Personalization/Localization. Content should be customizable in three key ways: by the sales team based on customer need; from the sales team to support content needed at each stage of the sales cycle; and to the prospect, customer, or end user. It must incorporate geographic, cultural and language distinctions. © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved. How-To Guide Metrics. The system should track content usage with analytics to monitor and measure how and when content is being used as well as the revenue contribution of that content to the sales process. o Key metrics include: Cost Per Lead (CPL), Cost of Acquisition (CAC), Campaign ROI, Email Metrics, Marketing Qualified Leads and Contribution to Pipeline. o Advanced customer insight auto-analytics should alert the sales team immediately when a prospect responds or clicks-through a campaign. Marketing Automation Integration. Evaluate the level of integration with your marketing automation system. Is it a seamless integration or is data simply shared through API interfaces? The tighter the integration with your Marketing Automation system, the higher the Sales Enablement benefits. ACTION PLAN To select and implement the best Asset Management Solution for your Sales Enablement needs, follow these steps. 1. Use our Content Marketing Assessment to evaluate the maturity of your content marketing program. 2. Use our Content Marketing Assets Database to audit your current content assets. 3. Use our Content Mapping Template to create a visual representation of your content by buyer persona and buying cycle. 4. Use the Asset Management Vendor Selection Criteria section of this report to evaluate vendor solutions based on your content evaluations and needs of your marketing and sales organization. © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved. How-To Guide BOTTOM LINE Enabling your sales teams with the content assets they need to close deals and perform at their peak requires a re-examination of traditional marketing tools in the light of sales and marketing alignment. In that context, marketers can no longer afford to treat Asset Management as the exclusive purview of marketing. It’s time to re-evaluate your Asset Management system and consider re-deploying it as part of your integrated Marketing Automation and Sales Enablement initiative. ABOUT THE RESEARCH ANALYST Clare Price is a Research Director who covers marketing strategy, strategic communications, sales enablement and marketing technology. Clare is a former Research Director at Gartner Group and helped build their Internet Strategies Services with clients such as Microsoft, IBM, HP, Cisco, Proctor & Gamble and Wells Fargo. Her specialties include: brand strategy, brand development, customer acquisition and relationship development, content and digital marketing strategy and social media marketing. ABOUT THE SPONSOR Mindmatrix is a cutting-edge marketing automation and sales enablement company. Our platform incorporates all the functions and metrics essential to your sales and marketing departments into a single software package. Mindmatrix’s marketing automation platform will help you generate leads, cultivate interest and excitement about your organization, and ultimately… close sales. From the initial contact with a potential customer all the way through to their first purchase, and beyond, we have your sales and marketing teams covered. © 2014 Demand Metric Research Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
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