Campaign Manager™ in Action
This week’s announcement of Zilliant Campaign Manager™ was met with excitement by current Zilliant customers and prospective customers alike. The brand-new application expands the possibilities for B2B revenue and margin growth by giving users the ability to scope, prioritize and execute desired campaign actions fueled by AI or custom user-defined actions.
Customers can generate these actions from Zilliant IQ engines (Sales IQ™, Price IQ®, Cart IQ™) or Price Manager™ or upload custom actions from any source and publish those actions into any business system, including Deal Manager™ and Sales Planner™. Common campaign action types include recovery and growth, win-back, excess inventory, product substitution, whitespace/prospecting and contract compliance, to name a few.
Let’s dive into two of these action types in the context of food production to put the value into tangible perspective.
Campaign Manager Action: Contract Compliance
A major business driver in the food production industry is plant utilization. To confidently hit that “magic number” of utilization, food producers need to book large annual or multi-year contracts that lock customers into a volume commitment. Contract business is far and away the most important factor that informs mill capacity planning. But it’s only the first half of the process. Booking the business is great, but how do you track whether customers are shipping the committed volumes throughout the year? If a customer is failing to do so, can you identify it with enough notice before their contract end date in order to rectify the situation?
For many, these questions are unfortunately met with shrugs. When a customer misses its stated volume commitment, plants don’t meet capacity targets. Almost as troublesome, if a customer significantly redistributes its volume across its contract term, plant utilization is uneven and underlying commodity cost variances introduce the potential for unplanned profit leakage.
These asymmetries in booking versus shipping often necessitate difficult conversations internally and with the customer to determine if the relationship should continue. You spent a lot of time and effort booking that deal. To see it miss expectations and potentially sever the customer relationship is a bitter pill to swallow.
With the new Contract Compliance action powered by Campaign Manager and Sales IQ, we’ve introduced a user-friendly science-based capability to ensure each customer lives up to its buying commitments on a predictable schedule. The Sales IQ engine leverages data science to analyze customer-specific agreement and shipment data, cross-checks it against contract length and run rate, then flags agreements with volume commitments that are not on track to be satisfied.
These flagged contracts are surfaced in Campaign Manager, where a user can quickly validate and publish follow-up actions to the sales team. Reps can be alerted within the sales tool of the customer’s choosing, as Zilliant’s high-availability REST APIs make the communication seamless in any system.
Now, rather than a surprise shortfall that gets recognized when it’s far too late to do anything about, Zilliant’s intelligent software puts information regarding troublesome contracts in the right person’s hands at the right time. The next time a customer books 500,000 tons of corn – which you’ve allocated an entire mill to process – yet has only shipped 300,000 tons with 60 days left in the contract, your sales rep will be triggered to follow up with them, with minimal administrative lift needed to glean that insight.
Campaign Manager Custom Actions
In addition to the out-of-the-box actions available in Campaign Manager, customers can drive custom actions based on their own analysis or science. By simply uploading those customer-defined insights into Campaign Manager, the system will execute on them and disperse actions into Zilliant Deal Manager, Sales Planner, or any other business system.
For instance, you may want to apply a surcharge to some customers in the event of a sudden increase in the cost of fuel, while also adjusting freight due to a shortage of drivers affecting specific shipping lanes. Regardless of where that data is gathered – Campaign Manager accepts insights from any source – customers can use it to inform a targeted campaign by defining the customer and product scope, implementing thresholds and publishing talk tracks to help sales reps position the change.
Another custom action can be pointed at a food producer’s flex capacity – the non-contract plant capacity reserved for the cash market throughout the year. This can be a very profitable complement to the large contract business when effectively executed. By loading market intelligence and competitive data into Campaign Manager, you can undertake limited-time price reduction actions in select markets to snag some of these smaller or more regional customers.