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The Mental Model I Use to Reach My Conversion & ARR Goals | Market-to-Revenue Podcast

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If you focus on the foundations first, your conversion and business goals will be met.

I had the pleasure of speaking on the Market-to-Revenue Podcast with Chris Morgan.

He asked me 6 questions:

  • What are 3 ways that your team converts your market into revenue?
  • What are 3 hard problems that you recently overcame?
  • What are 2 roadblocks that you’re working on now?
  • What are 3 mental models that you use to do your best work?
  • What are 2 techniques that GTM teams need to try?
  • Who are 3 operators that should be our next guests and why?

In this episode, I’m going to dig into one specific mental model that has helped me reach my conversion and ARR goals quarter over quarter in the last 12 months.

The order in which you do things matters and the biggest gains are in the foundations.

Think of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, which is a five-stage psychology model.

It states that the basic needs lower down in the hierarchy (the pyramid) - like food, water, shelter, security, and rest, must be satisfied before individuals can attend to needs higher up in the pyramid, like relationships and accomplishments, and then, finally, self-actualization - achieving your full potential and creative activities.

I like to look at the attainment of organizational success as if it were a hierarchy of growth needs.

I first learned about this model while taking a conversion rate optimization course through CXL.

I highly recommend you visit their mini-degrees and courses to strengthen your knowledge.

If you focus on the foundations first, your conversion and business goals will be met.

Then you can ask the question, “can I retain customers now?”

I see so many marketing teams - small and large - all super talented - skip critical elements to launching campaigns or going to market.

I get it. I’ve done it too. We all want to be involved in the sexy part of marketing right away:

Personalization, persuasive copywriting, design, and landing page optimization - to name some key elements of the marketing growth hierarchy.

If you look at Maslow's pyramid, these actions would be the equivalent of self-actualization.

Marketers skip the foundations, which is essentially validating and securing everything you're going to execute in the persuasion phase.

They often overlook the 80% of the equation which needs to be nailed before persuading your audience:

Researching, optimizing metrics, and reducing friction before going to market.

This structured process helps you:

  • Stick to what your audience cares about
  • Keep track of everything you need to do - because there are lots of moving parts
  • Understand which priorities are going to give you the biggest gains
  • Understand which resources should go where - who should do what and how much it will
  • Mitigate risks or challenges as a team

Securing the foundations takes patience, practice, and legwork.

Other reasons why marketers struggle to make actionable progress in securing and optimizing the foundations:

  • They do not know where to start
  • They do not have the resources to pursue research and optimization
  • They are pressured to bring in results quick

There’s hope.

In this mini-guide, I will help you overcome the barriers you might face when it comes to building and securing your foundations to meet your conversion goals.

Here are the 6 steps of the growth hierarchy I follow:

Identify Your Goals

Why is it important? You need to understand where you need to be in order to sustain and grow your business

Why you might need to improve this: You may be focusing on the wrong goals that won’t impact business

Key elements: Cost per high intent conversion, cost per opportunity, net new ARR, average sales price, sales velocity

Tasks & Analysis: Closed won analysis, funnel analysis, loss analysis

Understand If There Is Customer Fit

Why is it important? You need to know who your target audience is and if you are targeting the optimum audience for your product or solution; you need to understand their motivations and needs, their journey, and how they evaluate solutions

Why you might need to improve this: The number of people expressing interest in your product might be lower than expected or your close rate might be below industry average or your forecast

Key elements: Target audience; customer motivations & needs; customer journey; SEO keywords analysis; channel placement

Tasks & Analysis: Segmentation analysis; motivation/needs insights; customer interviews; customer journey map; keyword analysis; channel selection matrix

Optimize Data and Analytics

Why is it important? You need to have the infrastructure in place to understand if you’re even investing money in the right place.

Why you might need to improve this: You might be getting radically different results from one quarter to the next

Key elements: Analytics & tools setup; attribution; campaign tagging

Tasks & Analysis: Analytics health check; attribution model; measurement plan

Assure Good Function and Delivery

Why is it important? You need to know if your customers are able to interact with your organization correctly, digitally and offline

Why you might need to improve this: You may have a big drop off or leak in various points in your funnel

Key elements: Accessibility; mobile-first; page load speed; website bugs; marketing or sales development email delivery rates

Tasks & Analysis: Technical analysis; coverage; SEO technical audit

Ensure Assets Are Usable and Intuitive

Why is this important? People tend to drop out of the funnel if they do not find their experience usable and intuitive based on their buying preferences

Why you might need to improve this: Your conversion from website visitors to high intent leads is low; you have a high drop off rate

Key elements: Information architecture and navigation; copy & CTAs; layout and flow; visual styling; target audience optimization; channel optimization

Tasks & Analysis: Customer surveys; feedback; benchmarking

Focus on Persuasion

Now you can get to the sexy part, which most start with first. The persuasion.

Why is this important: You will struggle if your message and hooks do not resonate with your audience's motivation and needs

Why you might need to improve this: You might see a low quantity of prospects engaging with your content and message.

Key elements: Personalization; hooks & triggers; landing page optimization

Tasks & Analysis: Web analytics review; heatmap tracking; heuristic website analysis

Research, plumbing, and hygiene are the new sexy in marketing.

The biggest gains are in the new sexy.

Start there.

Then persuade your audience.

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