MarketMuse empowers content strategists, writers, marketers, and freelancers to make content their competitive advantage. MarketMuse’s mission is to help writers be the very best they can be by improving the quality of their content. They work with brands like Discover and ClickUp across industries from SaaS to financial services and more.
Marketing superstar Elizabeth Irvine leads the MarketMuse marketing team. Elizabeth has a small but mighty team working with her, including a Content Marketing Manager, Senior Marketing Associate, and Senior Content Strategist. Elizabeth is responsible for revenue through the website and events, inbound marketing and opportunity creation, and brand management.
Elizabeth and her team have ambitious revenue goals, which keeps them in close alignment with the sales team. The marketing and sales teams meet every other week to discuss what the sales team is hearing, where they need support from marketing, and for marketing to share important updates.
The frequent communication between sales and marketing revealed multiple areas of friction in their lead management process.
With thousands of monthly inbound leads (both from self-serve and traditional inbound funnels), there wasn’t a great process for prioritizing follow-up. Without an effective prioritization process, big-name companies were getting lost in the shuffle, resulting in potential missed revenue. Both sales and marketing were frustrated, and it wasn’t a great experience for prospects either.
There was also a great deal of subjectivity around the lead quality. Account executives (AEs) would disqualify leads that Elizabeth and her team identified as a good fit due to a lack of information and distrust in the current scoring system.
MarketMuse has an extensive range of customers. Some leads may appear to have a low potential value but are part of a larger network that could bring in significant value. It is not uncommon for writers to show interest in MarketMuse for their personal blog or content, leading AEs to disqualify them automatically. However, many of these writers work full-time at large SaaS organizations, making them a very good fit.
Elizabeth and her team were working diligently to solve this problem. They implemented Pardot demographic and behavioral lead scoring but found it to be ineffective. The workflow constantly had to be tweaked, and there was a lack of trust from sales on if the scoring was really working. Pardot didn’t always have enough information on the leads to grade them properly.
Elizabeth iterated on the Pardot model several times but ultimately didn’t see it working for the team. It was also taking far too long to determine the impact. With many other responsibilities like focusing on brand, PR, and partnerships, Elizabeth and her team didn’t have the time to continue to invest in a process that wasn’t working.
Elizabeth and her team were introduced to MadKudu, and everyone quickly agreed it was the right solution for them. With MadKudu, Elizabeth and her team implemented a predictive scoring model.
This model enables better processes and outcomes for both the sales and marketing teams. The sales team utilizes alerts and reports to identify the best fit leads. Their reports are filtered to look at leads scored as medium or higher (based on historical conversion data), starting with leads scored as very good first. This process enables the team to focus their energy on the leads that are most likely to convert. With MadKudu in place, the sales team has gained confidence in the scores as they know the prioritized leads are more likely to convert to opportunities.
Elizabeth and her team use their scores for email segmentation. They display different CTAs based on the scores. For example, leads with higher scores are directed to sales, and leads with lower scores are funneled to self-serve. They are also kickstarting an initiative to use MadKudu scores to power website personalization.
With more robust prioritization and trust in the scores, MarketMuse generated 2x more qualified opportunities.
MadKudu reduced noise for the team and created greater efficiencies, allowing both sales and marketing to spend their time delivering a more relevant customer experience. The sales outreach strategy shifted from focusing on volume to sending more personalized emails.
The sales and marketing teams are now aligned on what is considered a very good lead. MadKudu’s predictive scores and segmentation have removed subjectivity, enabling sales to follow up on the best fit leads and ensuring nothing falls through the cracks.
With MadKudu, Elizabeth and her team also have more time to work on their many priorities and initiatives. Elizabeth noted that her team could’ve saved 6-12 months had they implemented MadKudu sooner.
The data from the MadKudu insight reports have also been extremely valuable to the team. Elizabeth has used the insight reports in board meetings, helping to build confidence that the lead management process is working and that the operational changes were worth the investment.