A thought provoking article titled “Marketing Automation Makes Me Wince” by former IBM marketer Jeff Bartman should make everyone consider whether they are in a low touch or high touch sales model.
Knowing the difference is key since Jeff’s opinion that marketing automation is overrated makes total sense if you are in a high touch sales model. High touch models are all about high ASP products that require a high touch sales effort, with generally long sales cycles, low lead volume and high conversion rates. Months could be spent getting to a C-level executive for a key meeting. You can’t have a 1% conversion rate on this meeting, you need to be closer to 70% conversion rate based simply on the effort to get the session. Marketing automation is not going to get this meeting set up. Lots of relationship building, phone calls, political maneuvering and lunches will. This isn’t to say that automation and content and inbound doesn’t play a role here, it is just not the focus.
|Low Touch||High Touch|
|Sales Cycle Length||Short||Long|
|Required Lead Volume||High||Low|
|Lead Conversion Rate||Low||High|
This blog is focused on the low touch model. The volume of transactions and leads and traffic and touch points required for low touch selling is an order of magnitude bigger than high touch, more classic enterprise sales.