Sales and marketing teams used to work separately, but today they need to work together in order to attract a modern buyer. In today’s digital world, the sales approach must be collaborative and strategic between both the sales and marketing departments. There may be some disagreement here and there, so both teams must work together to establish common ground and joint goals. Otherwise, a successful collaboration is not going to be achieved. However, if a sales team and marketing team can work together and combine their efforts, a significant impact on the buyer can be made.
Why Does a Sales and Marketing Collaboration Matter?
The collaboration between a sales department and a marketing department is vital to the success of the entire company. After all, when they work together the customer’s buying experience is improved and this can boost financial success. This is why both teams should work together when creating a strategy, when setting goals and when putting all plans into action. In fact, LinkedIn’s research revealed that 79% of those asked agreed that there’s a growing trend of sales team and marketing teams aligning.
Interestingly, sales and marketing alignments are consistent regardless of whether we’re looking at a small or large company. This means that achieving collaboration success can be helped with a number of steps, regardless of company size.
Stages for Successful Sales and Marketing Alignment
- Marketing Messaging
Leads and Prospects: When you are first trying to generate leads, the marketing message should be centered around fixing your audience’s problem and away from sales of any kind. If you also have a lead and are hoping to turn them into a potential buyer, aim the marketing message at showing them what needs to be done to fix their problem. It’s best to clearly show them what needs to be done and the exact steps they need to take to solve the issue.
Potential Clients: If you are aiming the marketing message at someone who has already shown an interest, focus on reinforcing their choice to choose you as a company by showing them testimonials. This will help them to take the next step towards making a purchase or getting in touch.
Existing Clients: The marketing message to existing clients should be to build trust, confidence and state of mind. Do this through regular content and correspondence, filled with helpful advice.
- Sales Activities
Leads and Prospects: Focus on using social media and social selling to build credibility. It’s important to highlight that the buyer’s problem can be solved with a specific solution.
Potential Clients: When focusing on selling to potential clients, you should determine if the client is likely to be a customer you want. If they are, pitch the services and close the sale.
Existing Clients: Sales activities to existing clients should focus on ensuring they are a satisfied client. You can also start to introduce the idea of referral opportunities; this is also where upselling is beneficial.
- Marketing Goals
Leads and Prospects: The aim here should be to raise brand awareness and inform potential buyers about what you do. If a buyer already appears interested, work on lead generation to encourage them to become a customer.
Potential Clients: Once a lead has been gained, the focus should be on working on the lead to decide which are most likely to use the company. Then, focus on converting these leads into sales.
Existing Clients: The marketing goal for existing clients should be to retain them as clients, engage them continuously and inform them of deals, offers and products.
- Sales Enablement
Leads and Prospects: When it comes to selling to leads and prospects use digital advertising, SEO and marketing on social media. It’s also helpful to organise email marketing and events.
Potential Clients: When selling to potential clients you should target the strategy specifically. Ensure you understand the potential clients’ behaviour and target your selling towards this.
Existing Clients: Use engagement campaigns and selling strategies to remind clients of who you are, what you do and what you are offering. It’s important to always be present in the lives of existing clients, even once the sale has been made.
- Content Marketing
Leads and Prospects: Content marketing is vital in gaining leads and prospects. The goal of content marketing should be to educate the target audience, whilst guiding them towards a service or solution. There should be a large focus on evidence and data, highlighting what sets the company apart from others.
Potential Clients: Content marketing is ideal for potential clients, as it can sway them into making a purchase. It’s beneficial to share testimonials; this builds trust.
Existing Clients: When content marketing to existing clients, the focus should be on highlighting that you are a reputable and trustworthy company through manuals, user guides and product information. This prevents them from taking their business elsewhere.
- Sales Results
In order to achieve sales results, follow the previous five steps and it won’t be long before a number of leads and prospects become clients in fewer steps. Plus, with these steps, sales teams and marketing teams have a framework to work to as one. In regards to existing clients, working together will result in high retention rates, more clients and more referrals.