Sales and marketing are the foundation of your company’s success. But even though they have similar goals, you’ll often find both departments working in silos.
If you want to achieve your company’s growth goal, you need to build strong business and marketing relationships and get these teams to work together.
Let’s take a look at what you need to know to support marketing and sales alignment in your organization.
Why Marketing and Sales Matter
Because sales and marketing functions are closely related if these teams work in silos, your income suffers. So the question is: What is marketing and sales alignment and why is it important to business success?
Sales are most directly related to your income. The team is responsible for creating relationships and offer solutions that address people’s pain points.
Marketing is responsible for market research and brand management. These help generate qualified sales leads to work with.
When two departments are not working in sync, you experience problems like:
- Vendors share outdated information and materials.
- Conflicting internal KPIs motivate people to work towards different goals.
- Salespeople don’t know who their ideal customer profiles are and are going after the wrong type of leads
- Marketers use the wrong messages because they fail to capture customer problems
It’s harder to measure ROI when there’s no connection—marketing can’t see if their efforts are having an impact if sales aren’t showing what’s working for them.
On the other hand, when teams are on the same page, you get smoother and more efficient lead generation and conversion. Marketing and sales should be your first priorities. Here’s why.
The benefits of strong sales and marketing alignment
Alignment means there is no unnecessary effort or double work and you see results like:
Stronger messaging and more qualified leads
Sales can convey critical information about your customers and their marketing needs to drive more targeted messaging. In turn, they are able to tailor their efforts to bring in candidates who are more likely to buy.
Leveraging Your Unique Selling Point (USP)
On the other hand, marketing can share insights from their competitor research with the sales team. Your representatives can develop a stronger pitch when they understand the advantages of your solution over the rest of the market.
More support for company goals
When marketing and sales align with their goals, employees can create strategic plans to collaborate and stay focused. When leaders communicate what’s working and what’s not, they can make real-time adjustments to keep goals on track.
Better customer experience
When potential buyers receive consistent messaging and support throughout the sales journey, you make it easier for them to move through the stages and ultimately buy. Thus, customer acquisition becomes easier.
Last but not least, effective cooperation improves your bottom line. B2B companies with strong sales and marketing are 70% more likely to see revenue growth.
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The challenges companies face when trying to improve collaboration
The two main things that prevent teams from working well together are conflicting priorities and poor communication.
- Conflicting Priorities: Both teams are interested increase in income. But due to their different focus, they may try to achieve this goal by different means. If they don’t agree on what they want and how they’re going to get it, teams develop separate paths that may conflict.
- Bad communication: Communication is not always a matter of course, even with aligned goals and a solid strategy. If your teams are spread out or don’t have time to meet together, they aren’t sharing ideas and discoveries. Or if there is no way to communicate effectively between teams, information falls through the cracks.
Now that you have a clear understanding of why you should build positive sales and marketing relationships and what challenges you face, let’s see how you can break down the silos that stand in your way cooperation.
5 strategies for successful sales and marketing teamwork
Here are five tips to improve sales and marketing collaboration in your organization and achieve seamless marketing and sales:
1. Make marketing and sales a top priority
Take the time to educate executives on why the two teams should align. When they understand, they will be more motivated to make it happen.
Sometimes head of marketing and sales hyper-focused on their departmental goals and KPIs. Share why alignment matters and get their buy-in before creating a company-wide strategy. That way, everyone will be willing and able to cooperate and support it.
2. Define terms and establish processes that support collaboration
Ensure good marketing and sales alignment and collaboration it provides guidance on what success looks like. Be clear about how and when collaboration should happen. Create a shared language around roles and procedures to eliminate confusion.
- What is the role of the project manager vs. the manager?
- What counts as a qualified lead?
- What language will we use to talk about our product or service to maintain consistency in messaging?
Then specify what information should be shared and when including market research and sales success data.
- Will teams communicate daily, weekly, monthly, etc.?
- Will they have formal meetings?
- What messages should they have ready for each meeting?
- How will feedback be communicated (and what types of feedback should be shared)?
Defining how teams work together helps eliminate confusion and keeps sales moving.
3. Share company goals and support co-strategization
To get teams working toward the same goals and succeed in marketing and sales alignment, you need to teach them what those goals are and how their teams can influence them. Create formal opportunities for this communicate your goals and for leaders to work together on their strategies to achieve them.
For example, gather leaders for an off-site planning meeting at the beginning of the year. Share your goals. Discuss what the market wants, current customer problems, and how your solution can serve both. Then schedule regular sync sessions throughout the year to report and edit as needed.
By forcing teams to plan their strategies together, it eliminates confusion. And setting aside time for them to do so leaves room for open discussions and sharing of ideas.
4. Use the right communication tools
Remove barriers and open communication by investing in the right technology. With more teams working remotely or hybridly, companies rely more on tools for sharing critical information. Additionally, large, distributed teams that cannot synchronize during regular meetings need less time-consuming ways to connect.
Support teams working across time zones by implementing an asynchronous messaging solution like Slack or Messenger in addition to voicemail and email.
Centralize your communications into agreed channels so that important information doesn’t fall through the cracks.
5. Create an internal training subportal exclusively for sales and marketing
Make it easy for sales and marketing people to find the information they need to do their jobs. Post useful content – from product demos to sales pitch best practices to the latest market insights and competitor details – in one convenient center.
Your learning management system (LMS) can host an online training library and update content. With this tool, you can organize important information, make it easier to navigate, and ensure that everyone has access to the latest versions.
A growing collection of ready-made courses that cover skills
your teams need to succeed at work
Connecting people with the data they need will help each team make decisions and support customers more effectively and efficiently.
Improve sales and marketing effectiveness to increase your bottom line
Regardless of the size of your business, focusing on developing marketing and sales alignment across your teams will greatly impact your success. And this is why a positive business and marketing relationship is essential.
When these two core groups work together, you’ll see higher win rates and greater customer acquisition and retention. And you will create a better foundation for the growth of your company.