How Field Marketing Can Align Marketing and Sales: Nick Bennett

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In an ideal world, B2B SaaS marketing and sales teams move forward in lock-step.

In reality, they often operate in silos.

The result? Sales complain that marketing gives them crappy leads. Marketing counters that sales can’t close deals.

How do you address this conundrum? The answer may be field marketing.

While it may not be the best-known marketing term, field marketers quarterback sales and marketing activities. 

In this episode, Nick Bennett offers insight into field marketing; what it is, how it works, and why it is so effective.

It's Mark Evans and you're listening tomarkets, part as people don't feel marketing, and youmay get a variety of answers and perspectives. It's not as high profileas worth hacker content, marketer or social media specialists, but fieldmarketing plays an important ble in reading the gap in marketing in salesto attract and engage customers and drive revenue to peel the perbubbly about dealmarketing. I'm talking to Nick Bennet, director of account based and FieldMarketing and Alice in Boston, welcome to marketing spar. He thanks Abi Mark Super Excited Idea,obvious first question: What is field marketing? Does it have a low profileor does it operate under the radar? Because, to be honest, until I ran intoyou, I didn't even know there was something such as field marketing. Ithink, honestly, I think it varies. Companied a company, especially I likethe Betboron and so like my definition of field marketing, is that you're theperson that's quarter backing all of the programs on the marketing side todrive pipeline and revenue for the sales team. So it's like fieldmarketing to doto field marking has always been thought of. As strictlyevents and like I've been trying to solve in kind of debunked at that myth that it's onlyevents- and it's really- you want to be looked at as another tool in thearsenal for the sales team. Okay. Well, that's a good start, I'mstill not getting it. It might be easier if you describe what's the daytoday, world, like for field marketer. What do you do? How do you work withsales and marketing? What are you responsible for? How can your successbe measured yeah, so I think honestly, one of the biggest things every day iscompletely different, at least in my world. It's like perfect example thisweek, we're at Friday already it's great, so I have been putting togethera cow, specific landing pages so like leveraging that one to onepersonalization, I've also been jumping on sales calls where being in the martext space. The sales team leverages me to hop on calls with them a lot to justtalk about how we use it ourselves. So I've been spending a lot of my time onsales. Calls listening to Gong call seeing what our customers and prospectsare talking about, so that I can make sure that the messaging that we'releveraging on say these landing pages or the events that we're doing all comeback to tell an actual story that is interesting. Besides that I'm also hopping on Brs, Iam running. Events is another big piece of it thatwe do, whether it's you know sponsored events or hosted events, so like everyday, is completely different and it's I've never met a field marketer whereMonday, though Friday they're doing the same exact thing every single day. Sohow is that different than a marketing coordinator or the VP marketing,because abstentive Ly, a marketing leader should be working with sales,should be looking at landing pages overseeing content, but it sounds likea field. Marketer is almost like a Jack of all trades where there their job isto actually get their fingers in a lot of different pies under the auspices ofthe head of marketing. Is that is that accurate, yeah yeah? I think that'sdefinitely a good representation of it. It's like you want to be a full stackmarketer, it's like you got to you got to understand events. You've got tounderstand the digital piece. You got to understand, content creative, likehow does it all come together, but you're, the one that is, I guess,pulling those levers in determining with the sales team where we need to goand then leveraging the other pieces of marketing. So what's the power dynamic, maybethat's the wrong term between a field marketer in the head of marketing,because if you're, the one who is active on a number of different frontsand helping the sales team make better...

...decisions, connect with prospectsbetter. How does that align with what the headof marketing is supposed to be doing and their responsibilities yeah, Ithink it comes back to their goal- should be more strategic of like okay.This is the overall theme or messaging of goals that weneed to hit the field. Marketer is usually the one that's doing a lot ofthe tactical work that is like rolling up their sleeves in every single daylike there that go to person that the sales seem can kind ofleverage. Okay, so to borrow a baseball term, andit's well known that you are you- have a passion for baseball and sounds likeyou're, a pretty good pitcher, our field, marketers, five tool players,given that they're involved in brand building customer building LeGeneration Marketing is that is that an accurate depiction of of someone who'sa field market because they're good at a lot of different things? Yeah I mean honestly, I think so t t tthat's a great example, because I've never even thought of that, but I thinkso. It's like you have to be able to Understande everything and, like I'venever worked in other functions within marking. I've always I started off insales, went straight to field marks with I've, never done product marketingor like content or anything, but I still have to understand how all thosepieces work can tell that story so that the prospects it customers at the endof the day are driving pipeline and ultimately revenue. I guess one of theways to look at is that field marketing could be like the perfect pathway to bethe head of marketing, because at the head of marketing none only you have tooperate strategically, but you really have to have understanding of how thedifferent pillars work and how they come together. So when you're, a field,marketer you're really getting your hands dirty in a lot of differentplaces, and that strikes me as awesome experience. If you want to become amarketing leader- and you really want to drive strategy because you've beenthere done that yeah exactly and so it's funny. Couldthey mention that, because, like a lot of people, say okay, you know: What'syour long term gold, do you want to become a CNO? Do you want to becomelike a VP of marking because it's like you understand all of those pieces andI feel like it's an easier path and I mean ultimately, you could go from likefail marketing to a head of demand Gen to ultimately leading a marketingorganization, at least that's the path that I know a lot of people have taken.There's a lot of talk these days growing amount of talk about abambars.I think, as it becomes increasingly difficult to connect with prospects.The idea of account based marketing has a lot of appeal, because you canfocus your efforts on a small group of of customers, I'm interested in gettingyour take on the relationship between field market and ABMARSCH. Is it justanother marking activity that you're involved in or is it a different kindof relationship? Yeah? It's honestly, it's the same thing like I've alwayshad he the understanding that field marketing really equals Ab, because, ifyou think about it like field mark is I guess this is more pre covied but likethey were always in the field, they would be responsible for a specificterritory. Save the east coast and so like within that East Coast they areresponsible for driving pipeline for target accounts with the sales team.That's really all I yea is they're just doing it on like a smaller scale versuslike a national or global skill, but yeah I mean I think it's definitely thesame thing and it's funny because a lot of people be like, why is your titlesay: a Cottas in field marketing? Personally, it's more of the field,more of t e, The am side of it, but I just I've been in film marking for solong that I didn't want to lose that as part of my titles. So it was likeimportant that I had it for the community that I've built, but honestlyit's the same exact thing, curious about your take on Abmelech and the manattention that is receiving right. Now you see companies like terminus andthey're actively waking the flag for a B M, and Chris Walker will talk aboutthe value of Ab M. Are we looking at a matter of Marketing Focus and amarketing efficiencies, because, as marketers we can spread our efforts?All over the place and as markers we love to do that, because it's a lotmore fun to be using different channels. But what is the focus on ab mean toyou've, given that so many bas...

...companies are trying to implement itand as important? What are some of the keys six successwhen you haven't actually done a B before yeah? I think it's yeah. I definitelythink it's seto being able to figure out okay, we're working on hit a subsetof a counsel, it's more of a targeted approach which honestly should helpwith spend, because, if you think about, if you're going back to that like sprayand prey mentality of like everything else, that's out there you're justspending money across channels and levers and all these things, but theymay work they may not. They may not even be your icepond unless you reallyidentified what those are, but it's like. Okay, you've come up to for us.It's fifty account on the net new, seven and fifty accounts on theexpansion side, and so out of those fifty accounts on the net new side. Forexample, we have very strategically in personalize the one to one experiencefor each of them, so it's a very targeted. We know the path that we wantto take them down this content specific to that there's a specific kind of evenwith gifting like how we play across in that journey it. Ultimately it's goingto lead to a higher conversion versus just sending it out to you, know Aleco,because if you send him to a website- and it's just like okay, they may ormay not convert, they may raise their hand a kind of request, the Demo, butif you're personalizing that experience for the person and not just the persona,it hopefully works a little bit better and then the second piece of yourquestion is the biggest thing I think is the list nailing. The list is likefifty percent of the job, because it's like you can't market, I can't say:okay, we're going to go ack to these. These accounts a I was going to say youknow not those those might not be great accounts. You have to develop the listtogether and you have develop the K. Pis and metrics together to make surethat it's, except it's a successful program and if it's just like marketingdoing their things, sales doing their thing, it's still very silent. It's notgoing to be it's not going to be that successful and you have to really rallythe entire company around in Abama and it more becomes not even just a PM, butit's like a cop based everything or combes you AB X as another hot termthat a lot of people are using right now and it's like okay, you've gotsales to marking. You really just bring it in like the customer success side,that's what we're doing to it's. Just young! The list was the biggest piece.So a couple ways we can go here: one fall up a little bit on the list, andso are you talking specifically about a list of customers and once you havethat list, how much deeper do you need to go to determine? Okay, these are theinfluences. These are the decision makers. You have to be precise so thatyou've got not only personas, but you know exactly who you want to talk to.Yeah, absolutely so, it's like we break it out into a few different pieces whenwe're starting to determine our wraps only cover named account. So each triphas about ninety named accounts. We don't care territories currently and sowithin those ninety named Accounts Perret. There is four things that welook at when picking a like ter one ab m account, and so the first thing isaccounts with the biggest potential for growth to compliment kind of our landexpanse strategy. It's just like what our product is and so like once we canget into say marketing. It helps us kind of break out into other functionswithin a company. The second piece is a cos that are already identified on OurName accountest. So basically, the sales team actually develops that nameda countless. We then together, develop this Abama piece. T E. The third pieceis, you know, best fit accounts that are based on our ability to servicethem and make them successful. Present Day. We don't want, we don't want to set accounts up forfailure that we know are going to end up churning, because we can't dosomething for them. We want to make sure that they're successful like saywe sign today and we're launching them on Monday, like we want to make surethat by Monday we are a hundred percent...

...are able to make them successful andthen the last piece- and I think this is a big one for us- and I think just abim in general is a count to add credibility to our bread and theenterprise space. And so, when you see you know a dobe in other large accountslike that that are customers it. You know like similar companies that are inthe same space or saying sizes. Them will see that I dine Oh hum, okay, ifthey're using it. Maybe I should check them out to, and I just kind of likemakes our job a little bit easier and as to the credibility piece where wecan then still personalize an experience for them, but it just kindof adds that extra layer you mentioned something earlier about marketing andsales working together and not operating in silos and a podcast thatit did recently with John Mantike, and that was something that we explored alot, because what happens in a lot of organizations is sales is doing itsthing. Marketing is doing its thing and in many cases, customer success isdoing in this thing and there's no coordination. There's no sense of we're.Moving and lock stopped block step together so that we have a plan ofattack and we're all coordinated. What rule this field marketing play andmaking sure that all those pieces come together so that you work as a team asopposed to sort of individual players. If we're going to go with the baseballor sports analogy yeah I mean, I think honestly, I thinkyou're, that middle person between everything, it's like a it's a two waystreet. So you've got the field which is really the sales team and so you'rekind of that person. That is hearing things from the field, relaying it backto h, q from h, q, Your you know the marketing team you're passing stuff tothe sales team, so you're that, like middle person within the two way street,that's delivering information and also relaying information, and so it's likeyou want to be able to not be another corporate marketer, that's jammingstuff down peoples through specially the sales team, or you know, CustomerSuccess Team Everyone's busy they're trying to close deals like how can yoube looked at as a like asset versus just another market? That's you knowtrying to get me to do too many things and not make me hit my number at theend of the day, and so that's where I feel like that's, where a filmmarketing really shines like being able to be that that leverage piece andbuild those relationships like I started off in sales before I went tomarketing, but I always walk a pretty fine line between sales and marking,where I don't want to be looked at as like a corporate marketer, but I alsodon't want to be looked at as a sales person. I kind of balance that line,and I build these relationships where they trust me, because I can delivervalue, but then, when I need something from them, they know that they'll beable to give it. To me without issues sounds great. You spend a lot of timeon link talking about content and the value of content, which I findobviously is a content driver marketer. I find that interesting and relevant. Ido want to get your take on the role of content within the ABAMOCHO viously, ifyou're developing personalized campaigns and you're being very focusedon specific people with specific interest, then how do you make surethat your content is relevant, is on point and is developed and offered atthe at the right time in the right place? What kind of strategic approachdo you take, and how do you make sure that you can tactically execute in avery flexible, a Naga away? Yes, I think it's understanding wherethey are in, like the the buyers life cycle in developing or developing or ifyou have the content already like figure out where to deliver it withinthat life cycle, because if they're, you know top of funnel, where they'rejust starting to understand or say, they're going down the gifting path,and it's like okay and there's some companies out there starting to exploreit. But right now we just kind of send give cards to people. Okay want to kindof do one piece of content down there and that's more of like the one to one to many one to few approach. whereit's going to be delivering content where they are, when you get to one toone in developing specific content for...

...us kind of your tear one accounts, itkind of brings it up and notch, and I can tell you right now: We're notcurrently doing this just because we don't have the band with it's on thelist to get to, but you could also purchase software that could help withthis, and it's like developing the content that one speaks to yourprospects, but also has like their name all over, so they think it's apersonalized piece of content or in pographical or whatever it is for them.It just kind of usually does a better job. You want to be able to. I mean youcould use like a ober flip or a path factory, to kind of fury content wherethey are too I've used. You know a couple of those in the past and it'sworked out really well, they just kind of tell that story and take them to thenext piece and just kind of keep on going down. It's just important tofigure out one. Do you have enough content, the content that you do have?Is it relevant for your prospects and then it's like? How can you take yourexisting content and maybe personalize it to it? A specific accom want to talka little bit about like din. I mean a lot of people have been on Lincoln fora long time, but I would, I would argue that most of us have really used it in adifferent way for the last fourteen fifteen months and to talk about yourLinton experience because, as you probably mentioned, another podcastyou're one of the few field, marketers that is active on link in or least whodeclares the earth therfield marketer. How have you used linked in over thepast year or so, and how has it evolved, like I'm really curious about thejourney that a lot of people are on because as much as people sayeverybody's on linked in and we're all using it the same way, we're not I meana very small percentage of people are actually using it to drive content andI'm curious about your experience and how that is changed over time. Yeah.It's you know when I first started out like I just wanted to get people tounderstand what field marketing was and like that it wasn't just events and howimportant as a pillar it was to any B to B company, and it worked really wellbecause again like there was no one talking about there's still no onetalking out. I think it just. I don't know that blows my mind that there'smillions and millions of people on Lindon and there's thousands andthousands of film markets, because I can tell you every Bob Company hasfield markers. Maybe it's only one. Maybe it's you know you get into someof these larger companies. You've got. You know, fifteen twenty fieldmarketers at a certain company, and it's like no one. No one talks about itand I'm connected to a lot of film market is- and you know all they do ispost. You know, events that they're doing eleven ars, that they're doingand like they don't add any additional insights to it on a regular basis, andI was just like okay this. This is like a niche path that, like I could go downand I could build an audience of like create a community of luck, mindedpeople because there wasn't anything where I could learn from others or Icould bounce questions off of people and since then, we've been able tocreate a slack group for field marketers and event, people and there'sover a thousand people that are in there and we I host a monthly fieldmarking meet up with over you know. Three hundred people were actuallydoing one this afternoon with Chris Walker's coming to talk about fieldmarketing ABN. Where is he c events going post coved? So it's going to bereally exciting and like for me. I actually posted about this today, butit's a side hustle for me like I don't gain anything financially from it, butI don't monetize anything. Although people tell me I should I just give itaway for free and it's starting to get to the point where I have a lot ofpeople. That will say: Hey. Can I pick your brain or you know? Would you beopen to mentoring me and just like a bunch of different things that, likeI've always just said yes, and it was fine when it was one to two people, butwhen that one to two becomes, you know seven to ten per week like, and I havea regular job that I'm trying to do. I have a three year old daughter, likeI'm, you know I'm trying to balance that it's it's tough and like I've justhad to start to say no and like have people understand that I'm not going tobe able to please everyone but O for my...

...mental hell, it's okay to say no andlike who knows five years from now. Maybe I go down the consulting path andyou know I consult to field marketing teams all over the world. I've thoughtabout it and I've had the piece of marketing Samos coming to me. SayingHey, you know, would you be interested in like doing some like consulting formy team to help them and I'm just like honestly, I don't have the Ben withright now it sounds really fun, but I just can't do it. It's like posting onLinkin every single day for over a year now has like opened a lot of thosedoors for me that I probably wouldn't have before in the end. Go for me iswhenever people talk about field marketing, I want them to associate myname with it and whether that's good or bad, just so hey. This is the guy thatpost on Linkin. Like I love your stuff, you know people talk about Abeam,there's a lot of people that talk about a BMIDH. So it's a little less dish,there's a lot of people to talk about events, but there's no one that talksabout field marking, so I am forming that kind of community and then growingit over time. One of the things that I findinteresting about linked in especially as marketers, is everything's aboutattribution. We want to measure everything we want to quantifyeverything and when it comes to Lindon, I think one of the interesting thingsthat I found over the last year is that there's a lot of benefits that you justcan't quantify. There's opportunities that come up. There's podcastinterviews that you that you get there's all kinds of different ways ofpeople want to work with you that helps you personally professionally. Youjoined Alice three months ago. What role did link didn have in terms ofthat relationship because it sounds like you knew the people before, but itcertainly must have helped that you had this stature and that your brandprofile was a lot higher than it was before yeah. You know it's funny. I was like Ialways joke around. Like did you guys just hire me because of my network, and then I got you know who knowsprobably deep down that that's definitely part of it. But it's likeit's interesting because in the three months that I've been here, I've beenable to get three people hired through my network for open rules. I've beenable to pass about thirty sales opportunities over to the sales team.It's funny because one of the sales drops sent me in a slack yesterday,he's like you, produce more opportunities as a marketer than theentire Dr Team, which was in the two they do it. They do a really good jobhe's like for him personally he's like a you know, you you provide a ton forme and it's great, you know marketers, especially film markets, andthat's who we sell to like they would much rather hear from another field.Market of versus a sales person like I feel like being in the MARTE space, isprobably the perfect path for me because, like outside of that, if I wasin engineering, developing developers or whatever selling to them, my networkwould be useless, and I wouldn't I could probably do a great job at theactual job itself, but delivering the network piece of the inbound that youknow the amount of market is that come to me in bound, say: Hey, you know weuse Xiz, which is a competitor of yours, like I'd, be open to hearing about you.Awesome that wouldn't have happened if, like they didn't start to associate myname with like working here, it is just it pops up. So it's a really great spotto be one final question interesting book that you've read recently orpodcast that you love anything come to mind. Yeah I mean I'm definitely reallybig into Chris Walker's podcast. I feel like any everything that like he do. Iwasn't. I don't listen to. I don't really read many books, although I didread Latini's from six senses her book recently, like the no form, no, whatever it wasreally good. I don't read a ton of books, but I do listen to a lot ofpodcast and Chris Walkers is one that I listen to probably every single week injust I always pull a lot of things out of it as a field market. He talks a lotabout. You know attribution he goes out. He goes down a lot of different passes,not afraid to tell it like it is or go against the grain, whereas, like a lotof people will just like you know, gurgite information, that's already outthere and so like that. I always walk...

...away with some piece of knowledgeableinformation great to have you on the podcast and explain to me and otherpeople. What I feel murder does, I feel, like I've been educated, got a fieldmarketing one on one today, which is really great appreciate that thanks forAvine was a blast. One final question: where can people learn more about youand Alice Yeah, definitely find me out inLinken's, where I spend most of my time, Nick Bennett, although I found outthere is a few other nick bedis in B, to B so find the one that works atAlice and if you want to learn more about Alice, go to Alicompania happy toden with the product myself. Well, thanks for listening to another episodeof Marketing Park, if you enjoyed the conversation, leave or review andsubscribe by, I tunes spot ify or your favorite podcast aft you'd like tolearn more about how I help TV SAS companies and the Fractional smstrategic adviser and coach and an email to mark the markings park. comI'll talk to you next time. I.

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