All too often marketing and sales teams are thought of as different –and sometimes opposing – sides of your business. Yet, in truth, they are both crucial parts of the sales process and the most successful strategies involve them aligning and working closely together.
A simplistic version of this is: Marketing creates brand awareness and generates leads, while sales then converts those leads into customers.
When there is a disconnect between these departments, there are a lot of leads and opportunities left on the table.
Here are three ways marketing teams can support the sales process:
- Attend sales calls.
Communication is key when it comes to supporting your sales team, but this extends past just regularly touching base with your sales team to understand their needs and challenges (although that is important, too).
To be the most successful marketer, you should hear how your sales team actively pitches your product or service to a prospect. This will help future marketing content to best align with what your company actually does, which will in turn set your sales team up for success.
- Create targeted sales enablement materials.
Hearing your sales team actively pitch and go through the sales cycle with a prospect will also allow marketers to have a better understanding of what kind of sales enablement materials they can actually use.
No one wants marketing creating collateral that won’t help. It’s a waste of time for the marketing team and a waste of materials for the sales team.
When you actively go on sales calls with the intention of crafting materials, you can intuitively create collateral. This will take the team farther, faster.
Maybe you hear them spending 10 extra minutes explaining a potential use case, which could be handled with a case study. Maybe you learn the sales team wants to focus on a particular segment, so you boost up customer testimonials in this area.
Regardless of what you hear, you can then craft what is actually needed.
- Align marketing initiatives with sales goals.
At the end of the day, marketing and sales are both working toward having good brand recognition that will lead to business, but their role in that process looks different.
Marketing initiatives should align with sales goals to ensure that the two teams are working toward the same objectives.
If you keep pumping out case studies for a market segment you are currently at capacity and your sales team wants to grow elsewhere, that disconnect can create a lot of friction.
By aligning your marketing initiatives with sales goals, you're helping your sales team reach their targets. If there is a lack of communication and shared goals, then you'll never breakdown the silos and create alignment.
Closing the Loop
Once you are actively engaged in the sales process, it’s also important to close the loop. It’s beneficial for both marketing and sales teams to understand where leads are coming from and the full journey of your customers.
One place to start is simply asking your new customers how they heard about you. It’s a simple step, but one too many companies skip over. While you may have automations in place that can tell you this as well, how often are you asking the question to your customers so that you know your technology is up-to-date and producing correct answers for you?
By working together, marketing and sales teams can create the best output and better plan and target in the future.