“The job of RevOps, or go-to-market operations, is to see the dots, connect the dots, and then draw [and] surface those insights to different GTM leaders. When done well, you’re providing the ‘so what?’” —Alex Biale, Founder & Managing Partner at Domestique
If you’ve ever run into roadblocks around your startup’s data, you’re not alone. Companies with costly tech stacks often reach out to RevOps consultants Alex Biale and Rhys Williams for help with fixing broken dashboards and sifting through murky metrics.
As it turns out, issues with reports and dashboards are rarely the underlying problem. “Oftentimes, it's a number of key data building blocks (i.e. data definitions, data integrity, source-of-truth reports, etc.) that are the issue,” Alex says.
In a workshop for revenue leaders at GGV’s portfolio companies, the founders of Domestique reveal three ways that better RevOps efficiency can unlock your startup’s data for deeper insights:
Before you revamp any dashboards, consider first aligning on a go-to-market framework for running RevOps at your startup—according to Alex and Rhys, RevOps should look at the entire customer journey.
“RevOps is not just sales and marketing,” Alex says. “It’s the entire prospect and customer journey … The goal of RevOps is to provide (or define a path toward aligning on) a source of truth that we can all agree to draw insights from and then start connecting the dots.”
As a former chief of staff at a startup, Rhys also understands common pain points like needing to pull custom reports for quarterly board meetings. Over the long run, a more productive approach might include asking yourself:
By creating on-demand, ready-to-go reports, Rhys says “the next time [you] actually have to put together a board deck, it’s literally copying and pasting in a bunch of dashboards from existing reporting.”
Pro tip: “Only measure data that you can make a decision around,” Rhys says.
At many companies, account executives have a difficult time forecasting because they:
Whether it’s agreeing on the definitions of ideal customer profiles (ICPs) or any stage advancement criteria, Rhys recommends taking the time to define—and document. Ask yourself:
Rhys also suggests emphasizing accountability with a regular forecasting cadence. Consider breaking up meetings into distinct purposes, such as:
As Rhys points out, “everybody always squishes it together in one meeting. And what ends up happening is you don't spend any time on the professional development stuff, and you end up mixing pipeline reviews and forecasting.”
You may also want to consider setting up a Demand Council, Rhys adds. Led by RevOps, this recurring weekly meeting—which includes functional leaders, the head of sales, the head of marketing, the head of business development, and the head of CS—lets you review the WoW funnel data compared against the targets in the annual plans. The goal is to be able to see hot spots well before six months go by, giving you a chance to “identify tiger teams to address [problems and] drive more consistent pipeline across teams,” Rhys says.
Remember: “If it’s not documented, it doesn’t exist,” Rhys says.
“When done well, your attribution model should provide insights into the least—and most resistance—through your customer journey,” Alex says.
If you “build lifecycle stages well and it’s automated,” Alex believes a startup’s marketing team can then reliably answer strategic questions like: “If you had another $100K to spend next quarter, how much pipeline would you create?”
With an efficient marketing attribution model, you’re in better position to glean insights like:
“Your attribution model should allow you to make investment decisions, plus it’s a way to establish how marketing, sales, and customer success teams should think about coordinating,” Alex says. This level of analysis can be especially insightful for longer sales cycles of three to 12 months.
If you feel like your startup’s existing data isn’t accurate and doesn’t provide insights, consider taking a closer look at the systems and processes fueling those dashboards. Ask yourself:
Once you’ve completed this foundational work, you—and your team—should now be in a better position to quickly (and accurately) surface key insights.
Remember: “The magic of RevOps is being able to connect dots that other executives and other stakeholders might not see,” Alex says.