How Relationship Mapping Can Drive GTM and Growth Strategy
Relationship Mapping is often thought of as a sales-driven activity. It’s hard to understand the ROI of relationship mapping, how it impacts GTM and growth strategy, etc. You put the key decision-makers you’re going to engage into a slide deck or a spreadsheet and consider that the end of your mapping. This “map” rarely comes back to mind. You often leave that effort, data, and knowledge at the bottom of your Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive. You may call out who reports to who. However, there’s minimal information provided that helps the sales team tackle the account and win the deal.
This exercise typically involves documenting the organizational hierarchy of contacts, their support level, and other information about each contact. One major problem with this approach is that the data is unkept. You likely look at it a few times a year instead of using it actively to drive strategy and growth! Literally, the reason we wrote this blog.
So, why is relationship mapping so helpful for sales teams, and how can other departments within an organization utilize it as well?
Stakeholder Type and Support
Here’s your first opportunity to leverage your marketing team. You have people who may be “neutral” or “indifferent” to your product, or even worse, a blocker. Build segmented lists of blockers and champions. Target them with case studies from companies that are similar to theirs and how they’ve benefitted from your partnership. Everyone involved in your GTM and growth strategy has a vested interest in understanding the stakeholder landscape, where there is risk, and how to prioritize their time and efforts. Let’s get into it:
Champions: These people are fully aligned with how your service/solution will help their company. They will make introductions to other stakeholders, and give you important information on navigating their organization. This oftentimes ends up being the person who reaches out, if they request a demo.
Supporters: They will sign on and put their name behind any initiative related to you and your business. When it comes to stakeholder maps, we break down the ROI of having at least 1-3 supporters in any deal.
Neutral: Keep an eye on neutral people, especially if their influence within the company is high. They can impact deals in a positive or negative direction depending on your engagement.
Blocker: Work with your team internally, along with your champion to try and soothe this relationship and align with them before they derail your efforts. If you have more than 1-2 blockers, your deal or customer is at risk. Negative stakeholders should be handled carefully.
The Impact of Good Relationship Maps on Sales Performance, GTM and Growth Strategy
There are a multitude of reasons why relationship maps are helpful for sales teams, especially when it comes to new pursuits. There is a major opportunity for teams to collaborate around these maps in how they go to market and find additional avenues to drive sustainable and consistent growth. Think of a target account you’re going after, what’s your account plan? You’ve clearly labeled who is involved in the buying committee or the sales process, how much influence they hold, and (maybe) how much support they’re throwing behind your product or service.
Monitor the engagement of these people in your Marketing Automation platform, along with BDR/AE engagement with these people inside of your CRM. With time, you can see how effective you are at not only engaging these individuals, but you can also understand whether your approach is moving these blockers or neutral stakeholders to endorse your service or solution.
Another example of effective Relationship Mapping is managing your most crucial accounts as a business. Build out a map of everyone who was originally involved in buying your product. Assess who led the charge and who was more passive. With a good map, you’ll not only understand the original team but have a good understanding of who could be involved if you are to expand within the account. Is there potential to sell into other business units? Do you sell multiple products that the customer could benefit from, or is there potential to sell additional licenses?
Questions we hear often
You’re this far in, and you might be asking… when should I build a Relationship Map? How do I decide which accounts are worthy of the effort? At what point in the sales cycle is it time to put all of this information together?
Taking the time to properly flesh this out is a great Revenue Generating Activity (RGA) and will pay dividends over time for both CS & Sales.
Use-Cases should take place in three scenarios:
- Once an opportunity is “qualified” – it’s time to make sure you stay multi-threaded and engage the key decision-makers at the account. Track how often different people are being engaged, and how your interactions with them have gone.
- When identifying key accounts you want to sell to – such as your important prospective companies in an account-based approach. This is a great way to ensure consistent personalized touches to the buying committee.
- Segmenting your highest spend customers and mapping out 2-3 business units to engage and monitor progress against – Your customer support team can tackle this to help the customer reach their goals with your product or service, while also being proactive in providing value to reduce churn or less spend.
Once you get in a routine of mapping out your key accounts, you’ll never go back. This is a great way to bring the different teams that touch accounts together and work through a process that will help your team land, expand and maintain positive sales momentum.
Demo Prolifiq’s Relationship Mapping Tool Today!