How Andres Muguira uses Predictable Revenue methodologies to improve the performance of his Marketing and Customer Success departments
Collin Stewart, CEO
14 June 2018
Full disclosure: we’re big fans of Predictable Revenue.
I know, I know… this is probably coming as a surprise. But, it’s true. The system works; the methodologies laid out in the book help companies, large and small, make money. We’ve seen it countless times – and it’s awesome.
But every now and then, we connect with a sales leader that teaches us a thing or two, and shows us how they are evolving the Predictable Revenue system and growing their teams at jaw-dropping rates.
“I love Henry Ford, in particular, how he revolutionized the factory line by dividing different processes,” says Andres Muguira, Managing Director of QuestionPro Latin America, on recent edition of The Predictable Revenue Podcast.
“So, when I read Predictable Revenue it was an instant connection. I loved how Aaron [Ross] described the different specialized positions in sales. After reading it, I started applying a lot of the methodologies and and I’ve been able to grow my business 50% year over year.”
Predictable Revenue for Marketing
More often than not, we associate rapid rapid growth with high-performing sales teams. And, generally speaking, that connection is correct – the more sales closes, the more money the company has in its coffers. But leads have to come from somewhere, and instead of focusing entirely on outbound sales (the expected target for Predictable Revenue methodologies), Muguira turned to marketing.
In particular, he thought using SDRs to consistently prospect to related companies, influencers, and associated publications to establish content partnerships would yield an avalanche of inbound leads.
He was right.
In two short years, Muguira’s marketing team has helped produce 30 webinars, 300 backlinks (shared content), and established the company amongst the top search results for 180 specific keywords. Oh, and they’re also bringing in between 3,000 – 3,500 leads per month.
“Before sales, I was a digital marketer. So, it made sense for me to apply these techniques to marketing. And, it worked to get great our content on other sites, or establish webinars, for example. My thought was that it was like a sale, but easier because we didn’t have to get any money from who we were talking to,” he says.
“The impact has been tremendous. We’ve seen immense growth.”
Predictable Revenue for Customer Success
Muguira had routinely tried to increase revenue from renewals, but could never get the results he wanted. So he thought: why not bring devoted, sales-focused positions to customer success?
To incorporate those new roles, he split the customer success department into two main divisions – Account Executives (sales), and technical roles, similar to Solutions Engineers. The Account Executives would interact with all the customers, receive any complaints, build rapport, and pitch renewals or upsells. The technical positions, on the hand, would actually diagnose and fix the technical issues.
“I tried for a year to have high-level technical people solving problems, as well as trying to upsell or renew customers. So, I thought, if I need both SDRs and AEs in sales, maybe I need both technical people and closers,” says Muguira.
“The people that should be in contact with our current clients, should have a sales background. And the technical people, who don’t always want to face clients, can make the technical decisions.”
You didn’t think we’d forget about outbound, did you?
With the success Muguira had implementing Predictable Revenue Methodologies to other departments at QuestionPro Latin America, it was only a matter of time before he established an outbound team.
But because inbound had been so successful, Muguira was able to stagger the growth of his outbound team by first testing the waters on small deals to prove it could work, then expanding the team and having them focus solely on big ticket accounts.
“I did outbound recently, for a couple months, closing strictly $900 deals. And it was working. I feel like starting with smaller deals helped me believe in outbound,” says Muguira.
“Those early closes motivated me – I knew this worked. And it would work for larger accounts.”
Muguira’s experiment with smaller accounts is an interesting counterpoint to what many new outbound teams tend to focus on. Because outbound is expensive – sales reps, tools, and data subscriptions all cost money – outbound teams often chase bigger deals to prove the investment made in them was worth it.
But, bigger deals take time. And so does ramping up a new outbound team. So, if a new outbound team goes after larger deals straight away, it could be months, even up to a year, before the deals start coming in. Starting with smaller deals, however, could yield results immediately.
“We went after the smaller deals – we learned, we gained confidence, and then went for the bigger fish,” says Muguira.
“Over time our average deal sizes have gone up.”
From those humble, $900-deal beginnings, Muguira says he now has his outbound reps focus on deals between $20,000 – $50,000.
“We are going after whales.”
Growing the team
To support this kind of rapid growth, Muguira has had to expand his team dramatically over the past few years. Just three years ago, the team was just one person. Two years ago they had grown to 12, last year they jumped to 22, before doubling to 44, where they sit now.
Of the 44 team members, 17 are in sales and customer success, and 7 more are in marketing. The remainder of the team is spread across HR and other operational roles.
“In Latin America, it’s still really early stage in regards to SaaS companies, so it’s been a huge accomplishment to be able to grow that much,” says Muguira.
And he’s right – that’s a lot of new jobs. But with the consistent expansion of the company, Muguira expects more hires to come. More sales, more marketing, more customer success professionals, all will be needed. And each of them, regardless of what department they work in, will get a crash course in Predictable Revenue.
After all, it’s how QuestionPro Latin America grows.
“If I hadn’t read Predictable Revenue, I would not have been able to grow the team or this company at this speed,” says Muguira.
For more on how Muguira has evolved Predictable Revenue to grow QuestionPro Latin America, check out his recent edition of the Predictable Revenue Podcast.