Head of Marketing Winnie Palmer on Successful Teams and Reducing Roadblocks

1st April 2022

Winnie Palmer is the EMEA Head of Marketing of Seismic, a leading global B2B SaaS firm enabling sales and marketing teams to execute consistent stories that help maximise go-to-market (GTM) effectiveness. 

Known for achieving exceptional business results, Winnie has led and transformed GTM functions across a number of the industry’s most prominent technology brands. She has held global and regional leadership positions at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, Microsoft and Nokia, driving digital transformation and scaling business growth.

With digital channels now the norm for communicating with buyers, sales enablement is really coming of age. This is the last mile and an entirely new frontier for commercial organisations in terms of leveraging data to inform hyper-personalised interactions across the sales funnel. 

Sales enablement is improving seller productivity and effectiveness, while enhancing services and the client experience. Being able to truly leverage the power of data is allowing organisations to streamline and harmonise the end-to-end funnel development, customer experience and sales cycle to maximise go-to-market effectiveness and ultimately provide greater business outcomes.

2. How tough it is to work in this industry, and what advice would you give? 

The industry is grappling with a significant shift to hybrid selling and digital engagement. Not only because of the changing ways of working and buying, but also because of the new generation of buyers and clients, who are inherently more digitally native and socially savvy. What’s more, they are known to be more sceptical when it comes to trusting information.

This is all presenting challenges for B2B go-to-market (GTM) teams. In response, the most successful firms are leveraging AI to help recognise behavioural patterns and identify new revenue opportunities from all the data that is too great for humans to process. Using analytics in this way is enabling more informed and accurate decision making.

3. What are some of the pain points in marketing that you’ve experienced?

In the past, B2B marketing relied heavily on contributions from sales and product leaders for content creation and distribution. This often created roadblocks and hindered marketing’s effectiveness. However, to some extent, marketing teams are now bringing products to market alongside sales and product teams.

There is a new breed of CMOs emerging who are confidently taking the reign as the new chief revenue officer or chief executive. Businesses must leverage their unique positions as the natural cross-functional leader, taking the responsibility for customer engagement and providing the perfect technology infrastructure. 

We’re beginning to see seasoned marketing professionals transition from CMO to CRO, particularly in the tech space. Sales happens at the final point of the buyer journey, but selling cannot be effective in the digital era without strategic marketing that canvasses the target market segment and provides a positive impact at the market level.

4. What’s a marketing achievement that you’re happiest about?

Building a star team. It’s not about building a team full of stars, but ensuring that my team as a collective is effective. This has been true in every businesses that I’ve worked for. Without the right people who work well together towards the same mission, there’s no business.

5. How do you improve your data In B2B marketing?

Using data and information feedback to inform not only your planning, but all ongoing activity in near real-time and improve processes end-to-end, is key. Optimising the entire buyer journey will ensure that clients engage at the right time. Businesses should start by identifying the metric framework as a data requirement to drive data collection, and implement an optimisation and enablement process that helps continuously maximise performance.