Breaking the Ice between Sales and Marketing

Working with various  Marketing and Sales teams for many years- creating their respective assets or collaterals-the one thing that I can confidently say that I learned is that they don’t meet eye-to-eye very often. They sometimes fight like a married couple. I, as a third person or a content creator in the room, always wonder how on earth are they supposed to work with each other with so much tension between them!

One of the most common complaints from the sales team is that the marketing team never gives them a quality lead and from the marketing team is that the sales team doesn’t have any respect for the work they do. Both have a need to deal with their potential customers but both never align.

While this is very usual in top enterprises, it is also very common in small emerging companies too. I have seen how people start pointing fingers the moment something fails to meet their expectations. Many have spoken about this issue and there are a lot of blogs and articles written about this. Adding to it, here is the list of the activities, which I feel, can bring the sales and marketing a lot closer and ideally, work as one unit.

BrainStorming on the Market Segments or Buyer Personas together:

Marketing team identifies the target audience they will be focusing their marketing efforts on. If this discussion involves both the teams, you can together arrive at the precise segments to focus on. There might be some segments that are saturated and don’t work anymore. Sales heads can give inputs on the behavioral patterns of various segments, while the marketing heads can give ideas for new segments that they think might work. At the end of the day, what both will be creating is the strategy to attract the customers who will be their ideal target.

Collaborate in creating the communication assets:

Marketing team spends tons of time in producing content that could resonate with their potential customers. They may have a lot of tools to provide data to back their strategy but nothing can replace direct feedback from their actual customers. You know what? Help is right around the corner. There’s none better than the sales team to get these inputs. I recently worked with a company that can be considered a global financial giant. A few months ago, their marketing team had created a deck of videos for them. The content was costly and pretty entertaining. But their sales team had to trash it, it was not relevant to their audience, it was not what they wanted! Just a little collaboration and all that money and effort would not have been wasted.

If the sales team would collaborate with the marketing team when getting the required feedback, they would only get quality content. So it would help sales reps reduce the conversion time of their leads. There is none better than their own marketing team to understand their business and the brand guidelines, to create the required sales assets. So with collaboration, both can win and save time, money and effort.

Have “Smarketing” Goals:

As an Inbound marketer, one can easily get carried away by the amount of traffic one brings to the site, the number of subscribers one manages to increase and the number of signups one produces. While the sales team can keep talking about the achievements they made in the last quarter with the little help they had from the marketing team, the reality is that life will be a lot easier if each shared the burden with the other. Set realistic and tangible targets and work closely to achieve those. For example,

(I) Working together to increase the conversion rates by 5-10%
(II) Getting 1000 quality leads in the given quarter – the quality should be predefined by both the teams
(III) Achieving a sales growth of 20% by this half year.

By being specific you can have periodic reviews and make adjustments accordingly.

Establish the Merger :

At Mypromovideos, we have helped a lot of enterprises- big and small- to produce great animation video content. We understand what happens with both sales and marketing.  The sales team has a need to get sales. They can use the marketing team as a partner service provider to help them build quality leads. The marketing team has a need to produce quality traffic and leads. They can use the sales team like consultants to get the info about the leads which can convert faster. Now the number of leads and sales become a common objective. There is no more different sales and marketing team. There is only one SMarketing team. And the output? It is always great when they both come together.

It takes effort to establish this behavior in any organization and this is something very much ongoing. By constantly reinforcing this behavioral change within the team, one day it can become the work culture which will make life a lot easier. This time, you will have a person to back you up with the help you need, and not someone you feel the need to blame.

 

READ ALSO: Three marketing challenges faced with Financial products

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Anil KumarBreaking the Ice between Sales and Marketing

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