Marketing automation implementation and reporting for Vocera

The Challenge

A leading healthcare communications company, Vocera Communications is experiencing rapid growth and expansion of its product from a single point solution to a holistic enterprise-grade communication platform. As its product line has evolved, the company has seen its customer lifetime value increase 6x over the value of the initial purchase, deal sizes grow three-fold or more, buying cycles lengthen, and the buyer team expand from a few key people to more than 12 influencers in the average sale. As this shift occurred in early 2014, the company found that scaling its business meant that they could not simply rely on a field sales team to handle all of the nurturing in the lead lifecycle. As Marc Blakeney, Director, Digital & Demand Marketing at Vocera Communications, recalls, “Our company was being challenged to make a shift from a single product to an enterprise software sale with a wide array of influencers. This changed our whole approach to the sales cycle, and it drove the need for rigorous funnel management in both sales and marketing.”

At the time, Vocera was using an outsourced marketing automation tool via a managed service provider. This solution limited Vocera’s ability to access reporting or to generate insights about what was working and what was not. Blakeney continues,
“When I came on board, it took me over a month to measure the marketing-sourced pipeline. And it was a very small number. We had no track record of what was driving leads, which kind of leads convert, how much we should spend, or what content was attractive to our buyers. There was little data in the system to make any meaningful decisions or to look at trends. This lack of visibility had implications across the board from the executive to sales, marketing and operations. It made it difficult to decide where to invest our funds to hit the scale that the company was driving towards.”

In his new role, Blakeney established an aggressive charter. His first task was to develop and implement “revenue performance management” that identified marketing source and influence and connected marketing spend to the revenue it generated. Blakeney realized this new process needed to be owned in-house if Vocera were to effectively track the entire lead lifecycle.

The Solution

Vocera decided that it needed a partner to get this new marketing automation implementation ready quickly. Blakeney explains, “Our goal was to get it up and running in two months. We knew we did not have the resources to do this ourselves, so our evaluation process included consulting vendors to support our implementation. Our criteria included selecting a team with a track record of success who would work well with us and who would implement Marketo best practices. It quickly became apparent that Digital Pi had a real interest to be our partner and not just a vendor. And the quality of the team, with both implementation and technology experts, assured us that Digital Pi would support our broad array of needs.”

Vocera started its process with internal alignment between sales operations and marketing so they were able to collaboratively build a demand Planning. From there Digital Pi applied its marketing automation expertise and methodology, now called a Digital Pi Gold Standard Marketo Implementation, to the team’s objectives. Blakeney states, “We were looking to identify the sources of marketing influence on revenue first from the demand Planning process—to see how people were coming through the funnel— and then to apply behavioral scoring. Secondly, we wanted to add real-time personalization to our website experience based on trackable customer segments. Digital Pi gave us the best opportunity to do this right the first time.”


Digital Pi applied its expertise and a tight partnership with the Vocera team to ensure the success of this new marketing automation implementation. By adding visibility into the lead lifecycle and standardizing its reporting, Vocera now has a very good line of sight between what is working and what is not working with its marketing spend.

“We were looking to identify the sources of marketing influence on revenue first from the demand planning process—to see how people were coming through the funnel— and then to apply behavioral scoring. Secondly, we wanted to add real-time personalization to our website experience based on trackable customer segments. Digital Pi gave us the best opportunity to do this right the first time.”

Marc Blakeney, Director, Digital & Demand Marketing, Vocera Communications

In addition, the company can access this data reporting faster than ever before. The positive business impact for Vocera includes:

  • Rapid time to value With a goal of getting up and running in just two months, Vocera collaborated closely with Digital Pi to make this a reality. Blakeney points out, “Working with Digital Pi to build and fine-tune a project plan and a go-live timeline required that we had a shared idea of goals and objectives and Digital Pi was a great extended team member to help achieve these objectives.”
  • Increased marketing contribution to pipeline By understanding how a contact moves through its demand planning, Vocera has been able to measure, manage and increase the success of its programs. “This new implementation grew our marketing sourced pipeline so that now nearly 25% of our total pipeline is marketing sourced,” states Blakeney. “This is a fifteen -fold increase over our past state, when it was less than
    5%. (And it took me a month to figure that out.)”
  • More effective integrated campaigns Insights into the lead lifecycle have also helped Vocera determine what content is working and what is a key contributor to qualified leads. As Blakeney continues, “We quickly realized, for example, that our spend on search engine marketing was not yielding results and we were able to make adjustments to improve. Before, we couldn’t prove if investments in paid webinars or third party whitepapers were working. Now, we can.”
  • Grew marketing ROI with focused marketing touch on the sales funnel Not only was Vocera seeing more of its marketing dollar influencing the sales pipeline, the frequency of touches and lead quality was also increasing as the company grew smarter about which content to send to whom and when. Summarizes Blakeney,
    “We knew that people consume content multiple times during their lifecycle. We are now able to show that marketing touched more than 80% of the pipeline and moved more opportunities through the funnel. This gives us a better ROI measurement for marketing.”
  • Increased sales pipeline with net new customers As the company transitioned from a single product to a multi-product platform, Vocera compared its sales revenue and velocity pre- and post-transition and found that marketing influenced leads yielded larger deals with longer sales cycles — the type of deals around which its business plan was being built. But more noteworthy, marketing influenced leads were primarily to net new business. According to Blakeney, “Growing net new leads is important to increase our market share. We have found that our customers grow to 6x lifetime value of the initial deal. So we really need net new accounts to reach our goals.”

About Vocera Communications

Vocera Communications, Inc. offers the most robust clinical communications system in healthcare. Installed in more than 1,300 organizations worldwide, Vocera delivers secure, integrated and intelligent communication solutions that enable care teams to collaborate more efficiently by delivering the right information, to the right person, on the right device, in the right location, at the right time. Vocera solutions provide hands-free voice communication, secure text messaging, patient engagement tools, and integrated clinical workflow with EHRs, nurse call systems and physiological monitors. These solutions help improve operational efficiency, quality of care, safety and satisfaction across the continuum of care. In addition to technology solutions, Vocera drives thought leadership and new standards in care to elevate patient, family, nurse and physician experiences via the company’s research collaborative, the Experience Innovation Network.

Digital Pi Services Used

  • Digital Pi Gold Standard Marketo Implementation
  • Revenue Cycle Analytics Impact/Results
  • Completed marketing automation implementation in less than 60 days!
  • 15x growth in the marketing influence on sales pipeline
  • Increased the marketing touches to reach 80% of contacts in the pipeline and accelerating revenue
  • Increased sales pipeline with more net new customers
  • Quickly improved campaign effectiveness with new reporting

Why Digital Pi?

For Vocera, the work with Digital Pi made this implementation a success. As Blakeney remarks, “The partnership with Digital Pi is one of the reasons we have been able to drive these results and in the timeline we were able to achieve. We continue to work with Digital Pi as we transitioned from build to run. Now they help us with daily activities. They make sure we set up landing pages and programs correctly, they help with reporting, and make adjustments to our scoring as needed. Digital Pi has really been a good business partner for us.”

About Digital Pi

Digital Pi helps companies deliver rapid, meaningful value from marketing automation. We believe that marketing automation is at the intersection of every facet of marketing from content strategy to messaging.

With our relentless focus on connecting revenue to pipeline, Digital Pi brings together marketing strategy, processes, data and applications to make marketing automation work for your business.

We know the technology and how to get to the business requirements, expertly linking marketing automation to other applications such as CRM, online advertising or even the customer’s own cloud-based product, so our clients can understand online customer and prospect behavior.

The work of Digital Pi is specific to each customer. We practice the lost art of listening and asking the right questions to discern your needs, always keeping an eye on revenue and opportunities to apply best practices and standards to streamline your implementation.

When you depend on your marketing automation system, you can’t afford to be without an expert who understands your system.

Your marketing technology experts.

At Digital Pi, we use technology to connect revenue to marketing efforts. We fuse marketing strategies, processes, data and applications to make marketing technology solutions work for clients' businesses.

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