RO Innovation, the leader in customer advocacy solutions that drive revenue, today announced the inaugural winners of the RO Sherpa Awards, who will be honored at the RO Elevate Customer Summit on October 25 in San Jose, California.

The RO Sherpa Awards identify and honor B2B companies with best-in-class customer advocacy programs leading the way in sales, marketing and customer success in the new B2B buying reality. Winners of these awards demonstrate marketing excellence, business impact and strategic value via the execution of the customer advocacy programs at their companies.

“The RO Sherpa Awards recognize visionary customer marketers and celebrate their incredible success in the new reality of B2B sales – that buyers have become more skeptical of sales and marketing messages and increasingly rely on their peers’ experiences to validate those messages and buying decisions. Peer-to-peer influence is the driving factor in today’s B2B purchase decisions,” says RO Innovation founder and CEO Jim Mooney. “The 2017 RO Sherpa winners have embraced this challenge and led the way in putting customer advocacy at the heart of their customer experience initiatives.”

A panel of marketing experts selected seven companies as winners, while the winner of the Best-In-Class Customer Advocacy Program category was determined by customer advocacy and engagement experts at SiriusDecisions, the leading global business-to-business research and advisory firm.

The inaugural 2017 RO Sherpa Awards winners are:

Outstanding Executive Leadership 
Matt Young – Program Director, IBM Corporate Marketing & Communications – Client References – IBM

Exceptional Customer Advocacy Alignment 
Adina Crossley – VP of Customer Advocacy – Apttus
James Lustenader – Customer Advocacy Manager – Apttus
Ai Ngueyn – Customer Advocacy Manager – Apttus

Innovative Feature Use 
Lisa Matzdorff – Director, Customer Experience Program – Symantec Corporation

Most Valued Program 
Carlos Gonzalez – Vice President, Customer Success Operations – Ceridian

Best Customer Program Tech Stack 
Carlos Gonzalez – Vice President, Customer Success Operations – Ceridian

Best Advocate Engagement Strategy
Customer Marketing Team – Mary Ketter, Bria Jones and Johanna Larson – JDA Software

Most Improved Program 
Barbara Thomas – Global Customer Advocacy Lead – Microsoft
Corinne Monty – Senior Director, Marketing Services – Microsoft
Nathan Warner – Senior Audience Manager, Integrated Marketing – Microsoft

Best-In-Class Customer Advocacy Program 2017 
Apttus Customer Advocacy Team

RO Innovation will celebrate the first annual RO Sherpa Award winners during a formal presentation at San Jose’s Doubletree by Hilton on October 25, 2017 at the RO Elevate Customer Summit.

About RO Innovation 
RO Innovation is the world’s leading customer advocacy management platform. It drives faster and more profitable sales by activating the right content and customer advocates at the right stage of the buyer’s journey, while providing real-time analytics on new revenue driven by customer advocacy. RO Innovation is a privately held company headquartered in Denver, Colo.  Learn more at http://www.ROInnovation.com or follow us on Twitter @ROInnovation.