Alignment is the holy grail of marketing and sales teams everywhere. And it’s no wonder why: Aligned teams work more effectively and perform better.
Having uncoordinated sales and marketing teams leads to unnecessary friction between both teams, making it increasingly difficult for businesses to thrive. Regardless of the root cause, bridging the gap between sales and marketing teams should be an essential focus if businesses want to successfully execute common goals, initiatives, and secure long-term success.
With impending economic turmoil ahead, the need for organisations to gain a competitive advantage in today’s business and economic landscape has never been more important. Equipping both your sales team and marketing teams with the right guidance and tools to hit their targets and deliver on their KPIs should be a top-of-mind priority.
5 Ways To Instantly Drive Sales And Marketing Alignment
1. Share Your Goals
If you want to tackle misalignment, the first step is to recognise that you are all working towards the same goals. Whether these objectives are company initiatives (such as doubling revenue) or specific (such as successfully launching a new product line), it’s important to get both teams on the same page early on to agree on business outcomes.
Uniting perspectives under an all-up goal deepens sales and marketing’s understanding of how their objectives relate to one another and foster better collaboration.
2. Create A Singular Narrative
Companies that align sales and marketing teams achieve 24% faster growth rates and 27% faster profit growth (Forrester). When done correctly, sales and marketing can align on improving areas that drive higher performance, together as one team.
One of the most effective ways to align teams is to ensure that you’re working on a singular narrative. Marketers can spend hours crafting the perfect “TED Talk” on vision and competitive differentiation for a company or product line. These scripts often have a way of becoming the default customer overview deck that marketing teams expect the front-line sales teams to deliver. But it often doesn’t land as both are talking to very different audiences. The impact of this is that businesses can end up with a brand and message that is diluted, or potentially misaligned.
To overcome this, a messaging workshop needs to be set up. Bringing key sales and marketing leaders and front-line salespeople together to craft one narrative that scales from the “TED Talk” down to the initial discovery call, ensures that teams are all brought into the messages that are being cascaded down to customers. This is only truly effective if you have a single source of truth for the company narrative, whether it’s the one customer overview deck or the core sales content that’s needed at each step of the buyer’s journey.
Putting a sales content management framework in place by leveraging sales enablement tools such as Highspot will help you to define “what’s working” with the buyer and get clear on what’s truly impacting the bottom line.
3. Create a Shared Platform for Content Creation and Management
As mentioned in the previous point, without a single source of truth for marketing content, inconsistency and inaccuracy are unavoidable. If teams don’t work together to create a single source of truth, much of the work delivered by marketing departments will be driven by guesswork which can lead to messaging that may not resonate with your buyers. This can also leave salespeople scrambling to find the content they need to close deals and engage qualified leads. All of which impacts your business’s revenue goals.
In our recent report, the European State of Sales and Marketing Alignment over a quarter of marketers said having no single source of truth for their content is a common obstacle, as it means results are hard to find and analyse. A further 52% of sales and marketing professionals also agreed that they don’t understand which assets are driving results for potential customers, leaving them constantly speculating whether they are meeting their customer’s requirements and securing quality leads.
As businesses confront economic turbulence in the months ahead there is now little room for error regarding your sales funnel. Leveraging sales and marketing technologies enables sales and marketing teams to work together seamlessly.
Having access to real-time metrics makes sales performance management easier as sales leaders can track which team members are hitting sales quota and clearly spot the winning behaviours and assets which are driving those results. Marketing teams benefit from being able to see the marketing content and messaging that resonates the most (and least) with buyer personas which can inform their overall strategy.
Having a single platform where both departments have access to the same metrics, provides both teams with the visibility required to create a clear roadmap that helps both sales and marketing teams to work together more effectively to optimise activities.
4. Strategise Together
With shared goals and metrics, teams are able to work together more effectively to build efficient go-to-market strategies.
When sales and marketing leaders come together as a team to understand where the market stands, what buyers need most right now, and how your solution can address these inputs with data points to back up these decisions, life becomes easier for both teams.
Taking the time to get everyone in the same physical or digital space creates room for dynamic, honest discussions. Working together ensures that you have cross-team buy-in, eliminates confusion, and guarantees teams are working towards the shared goals you outlined previously.
5. Invest in Sales Enablement
Sales enablement is the ideal function to increase sales and marketing alignment – and many organisations already rely on enablement to do just that.
For instance, in the case of content, a sales enablement platform can help teams to ensure that marketing assets are never presented to sellers without training and guidance on how to use them effectively which ensures that content is used to its full potential. And that is just one of the advantages a sales enablement solution can provide you with. With sales enablement, your company can replace the risks of uncertainty and siloed thinking with clarity, accuracy and immediacy that will help businesses to drive change at scale.
Sales enablement is something that more and more companies are taking full advantage of to help them secure a competitive edge, consider it the ace up your sleeve that will equip your business with profitable certainty in times of economic uncertainty
To learn more about how to leverage the capabilities of sales enablement to successfully align sales and marketing, download The European State of Sales and Marketing Alignment 2022 Report.