Sales Trends to Keep Up with in 2021: Unified Lead and Campaign Management Plus Fluid Buying …

Advanced forecasting may remove some risk from your sales planning, but you must also remove risk, waste, and inefficiencies from your pipeline in order to execute. Let’s recap some tools we introduced in 2020 to help with that and preview what’s coming in 2021 to help take your seller experience to the next level.

Efficient sales execution starts at the very beginning before leads and opportunities become deals. This means unifying the buying and selling process so your customers have an uninterrupted buying experience. And you’ll help your marketers and sellers focus on generating and cultivating the best leads. 

Prioritize your pipeline with a solid integration 

There’s currently a gap when it comes to orchestrating a fluid digital buying experience. 55% of digital sellers rely on a combination of manual tools and applications that aren’t well integrated. 

In 2020, our customers focused more attention on unifying lead management from Oracle Eloqua Marketing Automation through to Oracle Sales. Integrating the two bolsters Oracle Sales with marketing intelligence that guides sellers toward the right customer targets, campaign priorities, and outreach activities to drive better sales outcomes. A detailed engagement history travels with every sales lead. Sellers can leverage Engage templates to send on-brand emails and then track how well their prospect interacts with them. All this offers guidance for better decision-making and preparation for engaging with each prospect.

Most recently, we’ve added AI-driven lead scoring. This looks at first-party and historic data in the CRM to calculate a score that predicts how likely a particular lead will actually convert and close into business. Sellers can sort and organize their view based on this lead score so they can quickly prioritize leads that make the most sense to work on.

Collaboration is key 

A truly unified buying experience requires more than a sales rep mastering signals from marketing. Sellers have a wealth of knowledge to share to make campaigns even more effective. So we’ve made it easier for them to convert leads and add their own contacts to Eloqua campaigns right from their CRM. We’ve also provided sales management with in-depth campaign ROI reporting so they can assess which marketing initiatives drive the most revenue and give that feedback to their marketing counterparts.

Extending this collaborative approach to channels is also easier. Oracle Partner Relationship Management can help streamline the whole process of joint go-to-market with partners. That includes lead handoff, managing market development funds, making sure partners have properly branded content, and even a Partner Finder tool so end customers can find the right partner to work with.

Looking ahead

Better marketing and sales integration can help reduce the time reps waste working the wrong leads. But what about the time they spend on data entry and other administrative tasks when they could be selling? Improving productivity will continue to be a big area of focus in 2021.

To help eliminate the endless searching, wasted clicks, and mind-numbing data entry, we introduced a number of UX enhancements in 2020. We’ll share more on these features and how they can increase productivity for your sales organization in our next post in the series. Stay tuned!

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