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    08/02/2023 |

    The Role of Revenue Operations in Businesses With Aggressive Growth Goals

    Over the past few years, revenue operations has become a major role at most fast-growing companies. Unfortunately, this role is still a bit of a mystery to most small to mid-sized businesses.

    While those companies continue to work through challenges related to marketing and sales execution, it’s important to understand how revenue operations and straight execution are closely related.

    This article will uncover some of the advantages associated with having a revenue operations role and how it contributes to realizing increased lead flow, new customer acquisition and overall revenue goal attainment.

    Revenue operations, commonly referred to as RevOps, is a holistic and strategic approach to aligning and optimizing all revenue-generating functions within an organization.

    It brings together the traditionally siloed teams of sales, marketing and customer success, along with finance and other key departments, to create a unified and collaborative ecosystem focused on maximizing revenue growth and customer satisfaction.

    The primary objective of revenue operations is to streamline processes, consolidate data and implement efficient technology solutions that foster data-driven decision-making.

    By breaking down departmental barriers and fostering cross-functional collaboration, revenue operations aims to enhance operational efficiency, improve customer experiences and ultimately drive sustainable and scalable revenue growth for the organization.

    Let’s dig into some of these areas in more detail and highlight how the role would add value to almost any organization.

    Alignment of Marketing, Sales and Customer Service

    While the historic divide between sales and marketing has started to thaw in recent years, we still see most companies with two teams, two leaders and often two very specific agendas.

    In related news, customer service is rarely at the revenue table, making it even more challenging to drive revenue from your current customer base.

    This really has to change and change quickly. The role of revenue operations is one way to bring these three teams together once and for all.

    Having one person who is working to consolidate everything revenue from an execution perspective and working with leaders from each of these three areas is a positive first step.

    Technology Use Cases

    The person responsible for RevOps is almost always also responsible for the technology that supports revenue generation at your company. Yes, your customer relationship management (CRM), marketing automation, website and customer service tools are what make up that technology stack.

    Part of keeping revenue on track is understanding how technology is going to help you grow revenue and creating the use cases or situations that highlight how technology can actually help you grow faster.

    A use case is a specific scenario or situation that describes how a user interacts with a system, product or service to achieve a goal. It outlines the steps, actions and interactions between the user and the technology, providing a detailed narrative of the intended functionality and benefits that the system offers.

    Here’s an example. If you need to shorten your sales cycle, your CRM could potentially help in several ways. By defining these improvements, the person responsible for RevOps can get your CRM optimized to deliver those specific business outcomes.

    In many cases, companies have outdated or disparate technologies. This could be holding you back from hitting your revenue goals. Having someone who can identify those issues, find solutions and then apply the technology to those solutions is going to add a lot of value to any company that’s looking to grow and grow quickly.

    Technology Selection

    Thousands of revenue-related technology options are on the market today. Knowing which one is right for your company, your team and your specific needs can be challenging.

    Reviewing, selecting and then implementing new marketing, sales and customer service technology is a big project on its own.

    Training the teams and optimizing the tools over time is another huge project that someone needs to own and oversee.

    Since many of the best options for revenue growth involve tools that include CRM, marketing, web and customer service, it makes sense to have your RevOps resource responsible for implementation, training, ongoing optimization, data analysis and reporting on your progress across all three revenue-related areas.

    Experiments and Testing

    Once you get your system up and running, you should be able to benchmark many of your key performance indicators (KPIs) to see where you are at the beginning of your journey toward repeatable, scalable revenue growth.

    But once those benchmarks are established, your goal as a company and your expectations for the RevOps role should be improved month over month.

    One of the best ways to achieve month-over-month growth of your KPIs is to run experiments and do testing across all three areas.

    This means testing landing pages, sales emails, changes to the sales process, customer support follow-up and even cross-sell or upsell scripts.

    These experiments should be done every month by someone experienced at running the tests. Specific testing methodologies should be deployed and the experiments prioritized based on areas that need improvement.

    Your RevOps role should be ultimately responsible for overseeing and, in some cases, running these experiments, reporting back on the results and then installing any upgrades that prove viable.

    Ongoing Optimization

    In addition to the testing, there is always ongoing optimization too. These are small fixes that might not need a big experiment to justify the upgrade.

    For example, today your site needs to load lightning fast. When you identify pages that are slow to load, that should be fixed no need to test.

    Another example would be the publication of additional content. When you find highly visited pages, make sure you have the right content to drive conversion on those pages. Missing content can be added as part of this optimization effort. Again, no test is needed until that new content is deployed.

    Finally, looking at your blogging efforts would be considered ongoing optimization. Which blogs are getting the most views, and which blogs are driving the most conversions? Share that data with the marketing team so they can adjust their content calendar to align it with what people are actually interested in.

    You’ll need a RevOps person to get the data, share the data and make any of the optimizations that need to be installed regularly.

    Analytics and Reporting

    This is one of the major areas where a RevOps role adds a lot of value. Data and analytics are everything today. Marketing, sales and customer service are no longer an art but rather a science that needs to be treated as such.

    The key here is NOT setting up dashboards but rather having someone who can look at the data and uncover the insights that will drive your forward-looking action plans.

    Yes, initially this role should be responsible for setting up and building your dashboards or reports, but that should quickly transition into a process where insights are regularly uncovered, shared and used to make high-value adjustments.

    For example, you might be getting a lot of leads but very few are moving to the sales opportunity stage. Why?

    There could be many reasons, and those have to be uncovered. You might be generating low-quality leads. Your leads might not be getting nurtured properly. The sales team might be fumbling the leads. The sales team might be classifying the leads incorrectly. Many possibilities might exist, and they all need to be considered until the actual issue is uncovered.

    Now your RevOps person should create an action plan to fix the issue. They should then track the data and report back on the improvement. If the issue is resolved, the data should show that. If it’s not, additional work may be required to fix it for good.

    This effort is ongoing that happens monthly. The more optimization cycles you can run, the better your revenue cycle will perform.

    The RevOps role is definitely one you can hire for. A solid and experienced RevOps manager or director-level person should be able to do the job as we describe here.

    Be prepared to invest $100,000 a year as a starting point, and you might have to go as high as $150,000 to get a rock star. These people are in high demand.

    An alternative is to work with an agency that brings a team of people to do the work. This scenario would allow you to get started faster. No long runway to find, interview and hire someone.

    This scenario typically gets you more than one person to do the work, review the metrics, help with optimization, educate you and your team on everything RevOps and support any emergencies.

    Typically, this option is going to be less expensive because you’re paying for only the work this team does with no requirements around taxes, benefits, equipment, office space, incentives, etc.

    You can also lean on the agency to help educate you and your team about RevOps, which might make bringing someone in down the road an attractive option.

    Regardless, you should be considering this strategic hire over the next six months. Perhaps start planning now to add this role or investment line item in 2024. The longer you wait, the longer it’s going to take to get you up and running as we described above.

    Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist headshot
    CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

    Mike Lieberman, CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist

    Mike is the CEO and Chief Revenue Scientist at Square 2. He is passionate about helping people turn their ordinary businesses into businesses people talk about. For more than 25 years, Mike has been working hand-in-hand with CEOs and marketing and sales executives to help them create strategic revenue growth plans, compelling marketing strategies and remarkable sales processes that shorten the sales cycle and increase close rates.

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