If you’re knee-deep in account planning and prioritization for the year and feel as though you’ve gone into auto-pilot, I’m here to help. Through my work with high-growth sales and marketing leaders from companies such as Pure Storage, Splunk, IBM, and Workday, I’ve rounded up 11 creative ways that our clients leverage Emissary advisors to inform their strategic planning and align their sales and marketing teams.
Whether you’re looking to understand the propensity-to-buy at each of your strategic accounts or you need help creating campaigns and proposals that will resonate with decision-makers across different industries, I hope these use cases help to formulate your thinking on how to leverage Emissary advisors in 2020.
1. Learn how to align your product roadmap with your buyer’s future business needs
INDUSTRY STRATEGY SESSION
An Emissary advisor and former CTO of a F100 brand met with the global CMO of a storage client of ours for an industry deep dive. They discussed product strategy, alignment with the industry’s projected pain points and priorities, and our Emissary advisor was able to confirm overall growth trajectory based on his insight into the market.
2. Train your team at scale with a Slack Q&A
The US distribution marketing team at a Fortune 50 information technology company leverages Emissary on a regular basis by connecting their sales executives with advisors 1:1 to gain account and industry insights. With the goal of scaling their sales program, they hosted an #AMA (Ask Me Anything) Slack channel to provide their entire global retail sales team with Emissary insights. Four Emissary advisors – representing Costco, Macy’s, Best Buy, and Kroger – hosted 1-hour #AMAs virtually via Slack in a channel of 1500+ sellers.
“It went fabulously! We had great engagement. There were hundreds of AEs in the channel and each came away with value.” – Enablement Leader, Fortune 50 IT Company
3. Give your conferences an edge
USER CONFERENCE KEYNOTE
A global hardware and mainframe provider hosted a data and AI conference in North America. They were looking to round out their business track keynote presenters with experienced tech leaders who could provide a buyer’s perspective. Two of our best Emissary advisors – representing Walgreen’s and Macy’s – were tapped to provide insight into the strengths and weaknesses of AI and data capabilities within the retail space. Our advisors traveled to the event, met with our client leadership, and presented their keynotes to an audience of internal and external business leaders who are rarely exposed to a candid IT buyer’s perspective. The audience came away with a true understanding of how to strategically position and implement machine learning to support their buyers’ business goals.
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart for an awesome kickoff session for the business track at our forum last week. We had about 100 attendees to your panel session. Your stories and experience sharing was captivating and engaging.” – Head of Retail/Distribution Marketing, Global Mainframe Provider
4. Get AI insights from a Microsoft exec
ROADSHOW REGIONAL EVENT
A leading security data analytics company recruited an Emissary advisor to be a co-panelist for a local event on the west coast. This event was part of a larger national “roadshow” focused on data capabilities. During the panel, the Emissary advisor, a former C-level executive from Microsoft, focused on the implementation of data best practices from a business perspective.
“Feedback from the event was great and the panel was a hit! Thanks for working with the team to incorporate the advisor.” – Marketing Leader, Leading Security Data Analytics Company
5. Increase webinar attendance with an expert guest
Our client, a data capabilities provider, hosted a large-scale external webinar (600+ registrants) focusing on their product’s ability to operate well within a niche industry. In order to demonstrate the power of their product from the buyer’s perspective, they invited a former C-level advisor from a global Fortune 100 to co-host the webinar. The client team worked with Emissary to educate the advisor on their offering so that during the webinar, the advisor could speak intelligently about how their product could impact that specific market.
6. Host an executive dinner for your C-Level targets
Our client planned a dinner on the east coast with several C-level guests from various global companies featuring their CEO, and sought the attendance of a former C-level executive Emissary advisor to add color and insight to the conversation. Our advisor joined the dinner and participated in the discussion, led by our client’s CEO, which focused on empowering businesses through technology. The advisor’s presence was able to successfully boost the profile and industry standing of the client – the main goal of the event.
7. Align your revenue team on positioning to an industry
Emissary advisor and former CIO/CTO of Proctor and Gamble, delivered the keynote speech at a network monitoring company’s enterprise-wide SKO, focusing on how to win with global technologists. Afterward, the advisor participated in a Q&A led by one of their national sales leaders before leading two breakout sessions with their sales team focused on Proctor and Gamble and their product marketing team.
8. Teach your team how to break through the noise when selling to a CISO
SKO STRATEGIC SESSION
Emissary advisor and former CISO of Sabre Anthem, Sallie Mae and more, presented at a cybersecurity client’s SKO to kick off the year. He presented on how the sellers could land a meeting with the right C-level decision-makers, position themselves as less of a vendor and more of a strategic partner, and how budgeting and business initiatives are prioritized. After the speech and a Q&A with the sales team, the advisor held a 45-minute session with the client’s C-level team to provide unique insights that impacted strategy and leadership alignment.
9. Create ABM campaigns that convert
ABM ACCOUNT PLANNING REPORTS
An open-source software client of ours leveraged Emissary’s team of analysts and breadth of advisors across 15 of their target accounts to receive full in-depth Account Reports. Each report covered the key account’s current initiatives, buying culture, opportunities for entry, decision-makers, major blockers, clip levels, budget cycle, tech stack, and company culture — insights they could not have compiled across any database or public source. This 360-degree perspective allowed them to fine-tune messaging and execute ABM campaigns that resonated.
10. Develop verticle messaging that resonates
INDUSTRY MESSAGING SESSION
Even the best marketers need sanity checks. When the marketing team at a leading storage provider wanted to ensure that their messaging resonated with their target audience, they recruited advisors in their target industries to review and provide feedback on their messaging.
11. Make your QBR’s actionable
QBR Q&A SESSION WITH AN ADVISOR
An advisor and former CIO from a household name technology company joined our client at their QBR in Mountain View, CA for an open Q&A led by a local sales leader. Our Emissary also gave a brief opening keynote describing his experience in the marketplace as a technology leader, and as a technology customer, offering insight into how our customer team can more effectively partner as a solutions provider.