GoToEcosystem – Modernizing the Sales Funnel

GoToEcosystem – Modernizing the Sales Funnel

January 11, 2022

As industries continue to digitally transform, Ecosystems orchestrated by a small number of leading players are now mediating markets, shifting customer buying patterns, and allowing companies to massively outperform their peers. In previous blogs, we argued this Ecosystem sea change cannot be managed by sticking closely to old paradigms. As Ecosystems modernize markets, GoToMarket needs to be modernized leveraging a new GoToEcosystem approach.

A key component of a company’s GoToMarket that must transform in the new GoToEcosystem paradigm will be the Sales Funnel. We know we are picking on a sacred cow, but we firmly believe that using a traditional sales funnel to manage your XaaS business is about as rational as driving a car based on what you see in the rear view mirror.

We propose a new Eco/Sales funnel to modernize MQL, SQL, and Close activities for 3 reasons:

-The sales funnel ignores ecosystem context. It fails to consider your customer in the context of all the solutions that have proximity to yours and that your customer already uses and trusts.

-The sales funnel assumes you are outside the market. The sales funnel begins by focusing on “creating” Awareness. This outside-in approach fails to consider the existing web of mindshare relationships and awareness that already exists with the Ecosystem.

-The sales funnel is no longer the most efficient or effective way to scale lead generation. Creating an MQL is becoming more and more expensive. As the noise-to-signal ratio continues to increase, there has to be a more effective way to drive customers from awareness through advocacy.

The Modern and Improved Sales Funnel Incorporates Ecosystem Influence

A modern Sales Funnel has to take into account Ecosystem influence.  An Ecosystem surrounds your customer. As Jay McBain points out, “90% of IT’s $7 trillion in spending will be partner-assisted by the end of the decade.”  And as Adam Michalski articulates in his introduction to Account-Based Networking (ABN), every Revenue Leader needs to update their thinking from direct, co-selling and indirect stovepipes to directly leveraging ‘The Buyer’s Sphere of Influence’.