Tech Marketer Talks: How CommVault is Driving ROI with Data-Driven Marketing

Sandra Nangeroni
Sandra Nangeroni

Senior Director, Marketing & Sales Enablement

data-driven marketing with CommVaultWe recently sat down with a few members of CommVault’s Marketing team at our Boston ROI Summit to discuss how they’re utilizing TechTarget to drive ROI through data-driven marketing. We were joined by Dawn Colossi and Staci Gullotta.

Dawn Colossi is Senior Director of Worldwide Corporate Marketing CommVault with 20+ years’ marketing experience and drives marketing strategy to create worldwide demand through strategic content-based campaigns. She’s relentlessly focused on modernizing CommVault’s digital strategy to take a data-driven approach to deliver the right content, at the right time, to the right target through multiple channels. 

Staci is eMarketing Manager at CommVault, with 8+ years’ experience in digital-marketing, content-marketing and marketing automation. She shapes eMarketing strategy for worldwide eMarketing campaigns that drive global demand across multiple customer personas and buying stages. 

Can you give us a little background on CommVault?

CommVault is a leading Data and Information Management  Software company focused on providing organizations worldwide with a radically better way to protect, manage and access data and information.

What things are you focused most on in 2015?

Sales and marketing alignment is one of our top priorities. In Corporate Marketing, we see the progress we’re making with engaging our customers and prospects with compelling content that addresses their pain point and helps them with finding a solution. Based on the type of content they are consuming and by reading their digital body language, we can identify projects, buying teams and specific issues they are grappling with. In 2015, we need to translate that data into actionable information for our sales team. And, we need show our sales team how this will translate to increased productivity and, more importantly, how it helps them stay focused on selling.  Our goal is to make sure sales is equipped so when they’re calling on accounts they understand exactly what’s going on in that environment, what the key pain points are, and are starting conversations at the right place so they’re more relevant.  We need to make sure they’re equipped with having the information to contact the right members of the buying team, at the right time, with the right information.

As it relates to your demand generation strategies, what role is data analytics playing and how does that impact the conversations you’re having with sales?

It’s become much more of a data-driven and metrics-based conversation with sales. In Marketing, we measure and monitor digital behavior and as a result can better show what marketing’s contribution and influence is on closed/won deals.  We collect information from multiple sources including TechTarget’s Activity Intelligence that helps us assess how buyers are engaging not only with us, but with our competitors too.  It enables us to see who is highly engaged and downloading multiple content pieces and where account buying teams are being formed. We then feed that into our larger database to understand where buyers are in the buy cycle and what their digital body language tells us as indicators.

We are also acting as change agents to educate others internally why it’s important to balance out content, make it into consumable pieces, and how to understand what the data is telling us. Most importantly, we are sharing how we’re applying all that intelligence to do better overall marketing and selling.

What is the focus of your content marketing strategy?

We split our content by solution and pain points and define our personas across the buyer’s journey. That helps us know where each persona is at each stage of the buy cycle, how they consume content at each stage, and what their preferred consumption method is. We then divide that content across web, email, 3rd party publishers and sales enablement to tell a complete story across the entire buyer’s journey. That way we are able to deliver new, relevant content at each CommVault touch point to deeply engage them.

Can you describe the various tactics you are using to engage buyers?

We break out IT buyers into 7 personas, across 4 buying stages. Then we understand what type of content they like to consume at each stage and where they consume it and what their preferred consumption method is. Ultimately, that gives us a clear map on which personas across which topic areas have the most strength and where the gaps are where we need to supplement with more content.  It is essential to understand each place where researchers are engaging with us so that can be used as an indicator to where they are in the buy cycle. The idea is we tell complete story across the entire buy cycle.

Can you describe your “Always-On” strategy and types of ROI you’re seeing from that?

We have an entire presence running on TechTarget websites so people can download content by solution and pain points any time.  Every single piece of content has a self-nurture component and embedded call-to-actions with additional assets they can download that pertain to different solutions.  Those nurture streams are always running. Simultaneously, we have Brand Engage Units (BEUs) by personas running on TechTarget sites and Embedded Sites on SearchCIO so the CommVault brand is always present. We also use IT Deal Alert Qualified Sales Opportunities so sales can be following up with active projects that are going on right now.  The BEUs engagement rates we’re getting are 10-30x industry average click through rates from units back to its content and we’re seeing re-engagement rates up to 80%.

Another interesting statistic Marketing Ops shared with us, is by dollar, 10% of our entire pipeline has touched content we are running with TechTarget.  Also by dollar, 30% of our pipeline has engaged in some form of content syndication either with TechTarget or other vendor sites we work with.  We discovered by running on 3rd party sites where buyers are already fishing, it’s impacting 30% of our pipeline.

What’s the main takeaway you want other marketers to know about an “Always-On” approach?

A hard mindset for marketers to break is being used to running campaigns from quarter to quarter on set topics, with a beginning and end and then moving onto the next campaign.  Just because as a company you want to talk about something Jan – March doesn’t mean others aren’t buying April – December. You always need to be on, all the time, with content out there and with a nurture stream and strategy on how you’re going to follow up with them. Otherwise you’re missing some great opportunities.

What were some of the benefits you saw from using this type strategy?

With an Always-On strategy it’s important to always be optimizing too. We work closely with our client consultant team at TechTarget to monitor how our content, BEUs, and Embedded Sites  are performing to understand what content is engaging and what we need to adjust along the way. We make sure we use tactics to surround the buyer at every stage of the buy cycle and what we saw is each tactic then builds off the next. Whether it’s through our brand elements or Embedded Sites on SearchCIO, buyers are engaging in content in many ways and also going back to our syndication elements, so crossover is happening all the time. Having all these things working together has helped establish CommVault as a thought leader across multiple solution areas and demonstrated that buyers are highly engaged with CommVault’s brand and messaging.

How do you accelerate engagement and purchase consideration through the use of data intelligence?

TechTarget’s Activity Intelligence helps us to understand where buyers are in their buy cycles. We use that activity data in our CRM to understand how the prospect engages with us and what buying signals they’re exhibiting to help sales shape their first conversation by addressing their pain points immediately with the information they are looking for at each stage in the buy cycle.  With Activity Intelligence Data we have access to, we’re able to arm sales with valuable information they might never know otherwise.

Can you talk about how you use TechTarget data intelligence with sales?

We use Activity Intelligence Dashboards to help our telemarketing team frame conversations when reaching out to prospects. And TechTarget’s Qualified Opportunities have turned into real pipeline value for us. The data TechTarget provides us across the board is far ahead of other vendors.

How do you show your marketing contribution to pipeline? 

We’ve been measuring pipeline engagement based on where in the buying cycle a buyer engages with content or some type of Marketing activity such as an online or live event. If a lead is qualified by Marketing that obviously is a “Marketing Created” Opportunity. If we see a number of Marketing activities and then the opportunity is created by sales or a partner, that is a “Marketing Driven” Opportunity. After the opportunity is created, prospects continue to engage in Marketing activities as part of the buying cycle and if we’ve done our jobs, we’ve helped keep a prospect engaged, educated and willing to buy—we call that “influenced” or “touched” by Marketing. Right now we can measure that we are touching 80% of funnel from new prospects and 96% of funnel from existing customers.

Can you talk about some of the global strategies you have put into place?

CommVault is growing by leaps and bounds internationally. We are organized now where we have our regional theater teams in place and expanding programs globally. It’s really changing our approach to how we build out campaigns.  It requires taking into account how messaging and imaging translates locally in specific geographies.  We found it very helpful to involve people from our international offices early in the process so we’re globally inclusive right from the start.

In working with TechTarget, what things would you say differentiated them as a media partner? 

TechTarget acted as a strategic partner and advisor and weren’t just trying to sell us something. They did a fantastic job getting in front of us with relevant information that taught and enabled us. They had a vested interest in teaching and educating us along the way and analyzing and giving feedback on what we were doing. It was the driving force in changing the way that we think and was invaluable. They played a huge role in the rehaul of our content marketing strategy and bringing the right people in that understand markets, content strategies, and buyers.

To preview CommVault’s full panel discussion — click here: CommVault Video.


always-on strategy, CommVault, Customer Engagement, data-driven marketing, demand generation, Marketing ROI, Tech Marketer Talks, TechTarget, TechTarget ROI Summit

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