If your sales and marketing teams work together instead of against each other, you’ll not only build a winning brand, you’ll kill the competition.
Sales and marketing teams, in general, have been known to have some serious beef with each other. A recent survey shows 51% of marketers are not satisfied with the level of communication between the two teams and 53% of sales professionals are not pleased with marketing’s support.
In a nutshell, it’s a game of shifting the blame when things don’t pan out the way everyone hoped.
I’ve seen it first-hand working with marketing and sales teams in organisations both large and small. In some cases, the disconnect is so big, it’s almost as if the marketing and sales divisions are separate companies.
Don’t allow this to happen in your organisation. As a business owner, make sure your sales and marketing teams work together as one solid unit.
How can you get your sales and marketing teams to buddy up and tackle the goals they have in common? Make sure they know that they have the same end game and have them collaborate in these five ways.
Related: The 15 characteristics of people who succeed at sales
1. Collaborate on content (Give them some ammo)
An outstanding sales enablement strategy is for marketing to create content that sales can use in their proposals and throughout the selling process.
Both sales and marketing need to work together to understand their audience and create targeted content that speaks directly to customers and is executed at just the right time in the buying cycle.
The best way to create this content is for marketing and sales to work together. Marketing creates content that is relevant and engaging to the target audience, while sales can inform content that is personal and customised to the individual customer.
This type of marriage will create perfectly balanced content that will drive leads all the way through the funnel.
2. Share all data
Don’t ever let one team gather data that the other team can’t access. Sure, some marketing data is irrelevant to sales, but more often than not, it’s not. Don’t put parameters on what either team will share. Universal access will lead to better communication and deeper insights, and will prevent duplicate work.
3. Give marketing teams access to customer questions
Sales people are the contact point for many customers, which is why sales people (instead of the customer service line) often receive emails with questions about operating/using the product.
The marketing team can use these questions to generate more content topics.
An in-depth article tackling a difficult problem, a how-to series for beginners or an instructive video are all great opportunities for the marketing team to utilise these insights.
Related: 14 Sales experts share their secrets
4. Require job rotations
This one is a little more extreme, but something I feel can be extremely valuable to a company. Have your marketing staff work in a sales role for a period in your business. I think this is a wise investment. If marketing is going to help sales, it’s good to understand the sales person’s experience, first-hand.
5. Meet more frequently
The marketing team and the sales team need to meet at least once every two weeks. Sending emails and staying updated electronically is good in the interim, but short face-to-face meetings are most effective.
You want to discuss the problems each team is having so the other team can help. If you see problems or issues developing, this is the time to make everyone aware so that you can put a plan in place.
Potential sales customers often feel that sales reps can’t relate to their positions and that sales reps don’t have relevant case studies or information. If sales reps report that they’re running into these problems, the marketing team can come to the rescue.
Creating some case studies and writing content that gives sales reps the right insight into the people to whom they’re selling can help avoid these issues, showing customers that sales reps do understand what they’re looking for after all.
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