There is an ongoing dispute in many organizations that needs to be resolved. No we don't mean the no good Dallas Cowboys vs the rest of the country, we're referring to the battle between marketing and sales.
The feud has been going on for decades and we're tired of having to choose sides. Here’s a little context.
Marketing teams argue that sales doesn't want to get with the times and accept the effect of marketing on inbound sales. While sales departments argue that you can't compare blogging and backlinks to the results of good old fashioned cold calling. But this madness needs to stop. Which is why we’ve provided, 3 Reasons why Marketing and Sales NEED to Get Along (in no particular order).
Marketing and sales have different objectives but are ultimately after the same result, more business at a lower cost. Instead of feuding looking for the best way to up the other one, why not see where your services overlap and how you can join forces?
For years both departments have taken different routes but with search engine optimization (SEO) taking over in terms of marketing efforts, there is a lot that marketing can learn from sales, whether it's marketing a startup or an established business, working in the trenches with your customers.
Sales can also learn from marketing on how to be more effective with their time. Not to say that they’re not but there are cold callers that spend hours on end calling and many don’t track their results or emerging patterns. Marketing departments tend to be ahead of the curve as far as latest tools that improve day to day operations.
Old school sales people are big on numbers. How many people can I reach out to and how many of those have we closed? If we lose one account here and there, it’s just the cost of doing business.
This is a dangerous mentality to adopt as customer retention in many cases is more cost effective than customer acquisition. A happy customer is a returning customer which already equals to a brand new sale. Satisfied customers will bring in prospects that are way past the awareness and consideration stage of your funnel. This is where the two departments can work together.
Have the sales team worry about selling and learning as much as they can about pain points. Sit with the marketing team and create landing pages, case studies and emails where referrals are encouraged. With these tools you can reach out to current clients for referrals and landing pages can be used to target other prospects in various industries.
This along with pushing the phones will have tremendous benefits for any organization.
To reference #1, the two departments need to be targeting the same type of customer, otherwise known as a buyer persona. The sales team understands pain points, goals and objections that are part of every sale. While the marketing department knows how to harness this information and through either organic traffic (SEO) or paid advertising (SEM) target this persona. I’ll elaborate.
If your target market is companies in Los Angeles where the CEO is between 35-55, has a company with 50-200 employees and is in the SaaS industry, this is the type of information that can make you more money. You might not target every single one of your customers with this information but this will be enough to try out various marketing campaigns.
By segmenting your target market, you will be able to work with your sales team and have an ample database of potential customers. Much better than cold calling your way to an ideal persona.
Once your marketing objectives are met, you let your sales team do what they do best, close. The handoff is exactly what it sounds, marketing grabbing lists and handing them off to sales to convert them into paying customers.
Unfortunately, we’re all too busy downplaying the other department to really see the benefits of working together. It doesn’t all have to be in perfect harmony but understanding how each department works will make the sales job a lot easier and marketing’s results more tangible. Which is great for when quarterly assessments roll by with upper management and investors.