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“Revenue Performance Management”

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“Revenue Performance Management”

A thought from this interview – Phil Fernandez on YouTube @ Dreamforce: Eloqua and Marketo have both started using the term, “revenue performance management” to describe their market. A quick Google search indicates that a number of other players have as well – Qlutch, Cloud 9, Right 90, among others.

Is this term really going to stick?

Dan and Chip Heath wrote a book about the stickiness concept. One of the key things that they point to in their book is something that they’ve called “Curse of Knowledge”. The Curse of Knowledge makes the user of terms (like “Revenue Performance Management”) presuppose that their listener knows what they are talking about. Their example, when a CEO continually speaks about “maximizing shareholder value”, he may be speaking over the heads of the vast majority of his employees who never took a business class in their lives.

So, “Revenue Performance Management”. I get it. It broadens the playing field for software vendors who felt pigeon-holed into “marketing automation”. It demonstrates the depth of their tools and practices – beyond just outbound or inbound marketing to the very essence of the relationship with the customer from marketing through sales to fulfillment – the revenue generating process.

But if the average employee of a Fortune 5000 company, which is presumably their audience, were to stop and break apart the phrase – “revenue performance management” – what would they be led to believe? Does the phrase make sense? In the end, will customers throw aside “CRM” which has been in use for 2 decades and begin referring to RPM?

“CRM” as a term does not carry with it any promised impact – it’s not “Customer Relationship Improvement Management”. RPM seems to. I suspect those prospects – think client-side tools buyers – who want to get funding for the MA Tools project may use the term. If those clients succeed with marketing automation then they will have validated the concept. So, if more companies have success with a very challenging technology, marketing automation, look for the term to succeed as well.

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I like winning. From baseball and Uno to Trivial Pursuit and working with clients - it doesn't matter. I founded vConstruct to help companies better compete because I like seeing others win too. A big Red Sox fan living in Austin, Texas, I'm also the proud recipient of multiple consecutive presidential fitness awards from grades 3 through 8.

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