“Sales and marketing alignment” is not a new problem for businesses. Even though the discussion of the topic has intensified over the last several years as new technologies emerged to address it, it remains a challenge for B2B organizations.
Driving this point home are the results of a recent survey published on Marketingprofs that highlights that only 35% of salespeople are satisfied or very satisfied with the marketing team.
As covered in our recent post providing an agenda for the next between the VP of Sales and CMO, there are many reasons for this lack of alignment, ranging from incentives and compensation to the natural friction that can occur between any two organizational groups with different labels and reporting structures.
One way to begin to align people and process is a unified view of the data that flows between sales and marketing teams. This includes the entire lead lifecycle from prospect to customer as well as the how effective the organization is at engaging during this life cycle through both marketing campaigns as well as sales interactions.
Knowing the source of the highest quality leads is important. Understanding which turn into the highest long-term value customers is critical and informs the entire process. Understanding what materials and content are most effective at moving a prospect through the buying journey based on need, product line, or geography delivers an entirely new level of visibility to efforts that have often times been activities lacking concrete and measurable outcomes. Did that eBook really work? How useful was the customer case study at overcoming objections and reinforcing the company’s value proposition?
A unified view from creation of content all the way through how that content is used in “day in the life” sales pitches and follow-up activities is the way to align sales and marketing where everyone understands their role and is continually focusing on improving the process and outcomes.