Oct 202010
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I’m pleased to share with TLOTL readers the Focus Experts’ Guide: Sales and Marketing Pipeline and Funnel Models. This collection of 14 one-page funnel visualizations was created by sales and marketing leaders who are active on the Focus network. If you spend any time following thought leaders in this space, you’ll recognize most if not all of the other contributors. I’m truly honored to be sharing pixel space with this distinguished group!

You can download the guide here (PDF).

Focus Expert Guide

Below I’ve included some additional links and context:

  • The list of other contributors to the Experts’ Guide

Ardath Albee, CEO and B2B Marketing Strategist at Marketing Interactions
Michael Brenner, Director of Online/Social Media at SAP North America
Michael Damphousse, CEO/CMO of Green Leads LLC
Christopher Doran, VP of Marketing at Manticore Technology
Barbra Gago, Social Media Manager of Cloud9 Analytics
Steve Gershik, CEO of 28Marketing
Sue Hay, CEO of BeWhys Marketing Inc.
Matt Heinz, Principal at Heinz Marketing LLC
Carlos Hidalgo, President of The Annuitas Group
Jon Miller, Vice President of Marketing at Marketo
Adam Needles, VP of Demand Generation Strategy at Left Brain Marketing
Matt West, Director of Marketing at Genius.com
Steve Woods, Chief Technology Officer of Eloqua

  • Craig Rosenberg, the leader of the Focus Expert Network, is currently running a guest post series with each of the contributors on his blog, The Funnelholic.
  • And lastly — for anyone who may still be reading  — here’s the back story on my entry:

I sent my picture to Focus at the end of August, right around the time my daughter attended her first few days of kindergarten. At the time, it occurred to me that I was participating in a kind of show-and-tell for grownups. Just like the objects that kids describe to their classmates, each funnel concept in this guide tells us a story. And the story isn’t just about the funnel as a business process. It’s also about how the storyteller thinks and solves problems.

Prior to submitting my picture, I had white-boarded it twice before for two different prospects. The first prospect said she really appreciated my (impromptu) illustration, as it helped her think differently about her problem.  We haven’t done a deal yet, but had we not had that meeting, I probably wouldn’t have drawn my picture.

The second time I drew it was in a meeting with a prospect who – a few weeks prior — had asked me to send him a “brief, high level write-up on how we’d work together.” I wrote out my proposal in text form, and, per his request, kept it really brief – barely over 1 page in length. But as brief as my proposal was, when I met with my prospect, I could see that I had made excessive use of that obscure, incomprehensible, buzzword-laden dialect: consultantese. Even in sanitized form, I’m embarrassed to share that original proposal verbatim. But I ran it through a word cloud generator (thank you Wordle) to show what I mean.

Scearce Market Development proposal wordcloud


Pretty messy isn’t it? The proposal wasn’t much easier to follow.

Once I drew a simple picture on my prospect’s whiteboard, our conversation became simpler, and we ultimately started working together.

No matter how long I work in this business, I still forget sometimes that consultantese has no place in my sales process. Plain English is better. And a simple picture is even better still, especially if it’s something my kindergartner might understand.