Tuesday, September 26, 2023

4 ways to get your marketing and sales teams on the same page

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Shreya Christinahttps://cafe-madrid.com
Shreya has been with cafe-madrid.com for 3 years, writing copy for client websites, blog posts, EDMs and other mediums to engage readers and encourage action. By collaborating with clients, our SEO manager and the wider cafe-madrid.com team, Shreya seeks to understand an audience before creating memorable, persuasive copy.

Customers are bombarded with advertising messages day in and day out. In an oversaturated digital landscape, they are starved for meaningful interactions. Audiences crave deeper relationships with brands. So if you want to grab the attention of customers, you need to build a targeted, seamless experience that caters to their individual needs.

It’s impossible to create these experiences without sales and marketing alignment, and the gap between sales and marketing teams is widening. It costs companies over a trillion dollars a year, according to Super Office. A study reveals that 85% of companies believe that aligning marketing and sales is their greatest opportunity to improve business performance today.

Don’t worry if you experience a mismatch between sales and marketing. You are not alone in taking on this challenge. Here are four key steps you can take to bridge the gap between your teams:

1. Create the right organizational structure.Often the division between sales and marketing teams starts with structure. In the current market, a large part of the buying process takes place digitally. With customers doing more independent research, sales messaging needs to become more intertwined with marketing. But who is responsible for which elements?

“One consideration for leaders to drive the right alignment between sales and marketing is creating the right organizational structure, defining roles, governance, accountability and capabilities needed to achieve the goal,” said Thomas Manders, founder and director of Coffee + Dunn, a connected experience partner focused on delivering customer-centric engagement solutions that drive growth. “This will help manage the customer lifecycle and ensure that every defining part of the buying journey is accounted for and managed, including demand generation, customer service, content, business development and product management.”

Clarifying the structure and responsibilities of your sales and marketing teams will help clear up any confusion. Everyone will understand their responsibilities and how their combined efforts contribute to the bottom line of your business.

2. Align key performance indicators.

Vanity metrics have always been a problem in the marketing industry. After all, no one wants to look bad, and the ROI of multichannel marketing can be hard to track. Sales teams, on the other hand, usually set revenue goals that reward results. This immediately creates a friction between the quantity-oriented metrics of marketing (e.g. likes, stocks) and the quality-oriented metrics (e.g. average deal size, customer value for life) of sales.

“Often the problem is that the two functions measure different kinds of thingssaid Jeffrey L. Cohen, principal analyst with the Gartner for Marketing Leaders practice. “For example, many marketing teams are responsible for delivering a specific number of leads (or marketing-qualified leads). This is a quantitative measure. Sales is responsible for providing pipeline and revenue figures, which are primarily qualitative metrics. If someone isn’t right for the solution, it’s hard to close the deal. When both teams are measured for their impact on revenue, they can search for results based on the same types of metrics.

By agreeing on specific shared metrics and how you report them, you align your teams and save time and effort comparing performance reports along the way.

3. Establish communication processes.

Once you’ve established your organizational structure and defined KPIs, you can focus on activating implementation strategies and improving communication. As a study by McKinsey showed, employees who feel engaged in workplace communication are almost… five times more likely report increased productivity. By improving communication between sales and marketing, you set both teams on success.

For some companies, this may mean scheduling regular check-ins or brainstorming meetings. For example, Meghan Flannery, director of revenue marketing at Drift, says her company holds weekly collaboration meetings for the marketing team, sales development rep team, account manager team and partner team.

“These are the four teams that assigned to the revenue target, which are broken down by segments,” Flannery said. “Each of these vital teams reports on growth and compares its performance with the other groups. This constant communication and collaboration helps ensure processes work together and address any discrepancies.”

4. Create customer personas.

Just as you could present the same camping trip differently to three different friends (e.g. by emphasizing the beautiful sights, the short hike to the campsite, or Instagrammable photo opportunities), you need to understand which aspects of your business appeal to different audiences. An effective way to do this is to create buyer personas so that you can understand the specific needs, preferences, and personalities of different target segments.

“Many entrepreneurs skip this step to save time, but canceling this step will eventually hinder your successsays Abby Miller, DMNews editor. “Developing data-driven customer personas for your business will help both sales and marketing move away from ingrained preconceptions. Personas also help your team members present conflicting opinions and ask questions in ways that depersonalize the conversation. salesperson says ‘That’s not going to work’ to your marketing team, the objection can be formulated in a more non-confrontational way.”

By leveraging customer personas, you’ll improve your marketing team’s targeting, help them understand the right channels and formats to share their messages with, and discover insights into your audience’s behavior. This information can then be shared with your sales team to further personalize the buyer’s experience.

Aligning marketing and sales is never easy, but it is possible. Follow these four tips and you’ll be amazed at how quickly and effectively the two teams align.

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