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  • Writer's pictureMatthew Coppola

8 Robust Ways Sales and Marketing Can Work Together

Sales and marketing staff collaborating with eachother
Sales and marketing staff working well together.

When sales and marketing work together, metrics soar, costs decrease, and life cycles are more concise. In fact, sales and marketing alignment can lead to 38% higher sales win rates. Conversely, it’s estimated that poor alignment can cost organisations 10% or more of annual revenue.

As quoted by Jill Rowley, who said it best;

“Marketing needs to know more about sales. Sales needs to know more about marketing. We all need to align better around, with, for, and to the customer.”

Here are the eight ways sales and marketing should be working together.

1. Break down barriers with the right hires

Bridging the divide between the two departments starts with who you hire.

Try looking for candidates that have worked in both sales and marketing roles. Look at your recruitment process and add a few questions that force the candidates to talk about their experience working with both teams. Ideal teammates speak both languages and empathise with their respective challenges.

The sales team should work hard to collaborate on and share the content marketing puts together. And vice versa, our marketers rely on input from sales on nearly every project. Injecting their opinions from the front lines strengthens the tone, use, and reach of our content.

Perhaps when creating a job advertisement, include a selection criteria which asks for the ability to collaborate with sales and marketing. You can also use this as one of your interview questions.

2. Create KPIs and OKRs that support each other

The Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) or Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) of your marketing and sales teams don’t need to exist in separate silos that never intersect.

In fact, your business has a higher chance of increasing your ROI by focusing on KPIs that are significant to both departments.

Make your sales and marketing teams have the same goals but different OKRs to get to these destinations together.

3. Foster relationships between teams

This is one of those strategies that is both fun to write about and fun to implement.

Fostering relationships goes beyond just holding regular meetings with the teams this includes closing the gap between teams by team building. The use of Linkedin is another great way to collaborate.

Seeing every deal that gets closed and rooting for them is an excellent way to foster public praise that encourages teammates to keep up the hard work.

Many relationships will nurture themselves; sales and marketing leaders just need to get the ball rolling by encouraging 1:1 meetings to work together to get things done.

4. Leverage expertise

It’s harder for some teams to accept this than others, but…Not everyone can do everything.

When it comes to aligning sales and marketing, recognising who holds what unique talents and insights is critical for joint projects, managing expectations, and achieving unexpected victories.

The key to leveraging expertise is learning how to really embrace the varied skillsets, backgrounds, and personalities on the two teams. Because diversity breeds different. Review their CVs to understand better their skills and experience.

And when it comes to getting noticed in sales and marketing different is what you want. It’s how a sales rep avoids a hang-up on a cold call. It is how a marketer breaks through an inbox.

5. Collaborate on sales content creation

Creating content that sales teams can use in their proposals and throughout the selling process is a good start for sales enablement strategy.

At the end of the day, you want content that does two things: drives traffic and creates revenue. Taking the time to work with marketing operations to setup proper attribution dashboards helps senior managers analyse content ROI.

However, there are some differences in what each department should handle. Marketing should create the positioning, voice, and general feel of the outbound email content, while sales should take that content and customise it to the lead.

6. Systemise lead scoring

Marketing and sales teams need to have an ongoing conversation about lead conversion — what’s working, what’s not, who it’s working for, etc.

It’s important to ask these questions, to figure out why it’s working or not working.

Those changing results and targets of a company’s “why” increase the urgency for clear communication and getting on the same page. Both sales and marketing teams need to create one system for scoring and evaluating.

7. Develop buyer personas

Sales is the front line of any successful company. They know who’s buying and why those customers are motivated to buy in the first place. Marketing understands the industry at large and who they should be targeting. The best buyer personas are born from a mixture of marketing research and insights from your actual customer base.

The sales team can provide important insights and generalisations on the leads they’re interacting with the most, while marketing research can inform broader insights like patterns and commonalities. Sales and marketing must direct their efforts at the same prospects and be completely aligned on decisions and pricing.

Together, sales and marketing need to create comprehensive buyer personas to better target their ideal customer, increase acquisition, and create targeted ads and pitches that are symbiotic.

8. Use collaborative analysis

When you’re trying to align two departments, it’s not enough to just focus on KPIs and collaborative practices. When you’re breaking down departmental barriers, the lines will likely blur between what the marketing and sales teams are working on.

It’s important to analyse and measure the results as a team, which will help everyone get on the same page about ROI and understand how collaborative efforts are impacting your bottom line.


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