When you think about marketing and sales, you’d think they are two sides of the same coin, and they are. However, many company owners don’t really see it that way. Instead, they see marketing and sales as two separate entities that operate individually and without collaboration.
These are the same company owners that withhold information within silos and keep wondering why their company’s profitability and bottom line aren’t good enough. Well, that’s what happens when marketing and sales departments aren’t on the same page.
Both marketing and sales have a common goal, which is to help a company grow and become more profitable. However, how these two departments approach this goal differs in many ways.
Sales focuses on converting a lead into a customer. A sales rep will accomplish this by talking directly with a potential customer over a phone, email or any other means of communication.
Marketing, on the other hand, seeks to build company awareness and help leads familiarize themselves with products or services the company has to offer so that these leads are more willing to convert once they get far enough down the sales funnel.
That being said, let’s see how marketing and sales can actually work together to produce better and more efficient results.
Marketing provides information about consumers
One of the most important steps in every marketing campaign is to research the target audience. Without knowing who your potential customers are, what they like, expect or need, you cannot hope to win them over.
Some of the top marketing companies focus on researching their audience and creating buyer personas. These personas help marketers understand which marketing strategies to use and how to send the right messages to potential customers. This information is vital for the sales team as well.
When the marketing department shares all the information they’ve managed to gather about consumers, then the sales department can use that information to make more informed decisions.
When sales reps truly understand a consumer, it becomes much easier for them to convince that consumer to convert. They can do it by creating a personalized offer that the consumer won’t be able to turn down.
Sales can help marketers understand customers better
As mentioned before, an essential part of every marketing campaign is research. However, no matter how much marketers research consumers, they can never truly have the whole picture. Not unless the sales team helps out.
Sales reps communicate with a lot of customers on a daily basis. They know what makes customers tick and they know how to use that to their advantage. Providing this information to the marketing team can easily lead to the creation of better and more efficient marketing campaigns.
For example, let’s assume that your company that specializes in website design from Florida wants to generate more leads. Your sales reps can tell you want consumers usually expect and which pain points they’re trying to solve so that your marketing department can craft tailored messages or content.
Just like any marketing department has the means to obtain specific information, so does the sales department have the means to discover specific things about customers. The two departments can, therefore, complement each other quite well.
Marketing can retarget leads
Many potential customers decide not to convert. However, that doesn’t mean they’ve lost interest completely. Maybe your current offers just don’t suit these consumers at the moment.
The sales department knows who these cold leads are, and they can provide all the necessary information to the marketing team. Marketers can, therefore, proceed to retarget these cold leads with new offers and nurture them until they’re more willing to convert.
The marketing department can then pass the information to the sales team, telling them that these cold leads have now become more interested so that sales reps can zoom in to close the deal.
As long as vital information is being passed back and forth between these two departments, the company can achieve much better results. That’s why it’s of the utmost importance to have marketing and sales working together instead of keeping them apart.
Sales can test marketing efforts
In most cases, marketers create campaigns and strategies based on the information they’ve collected through research. However, they can never know for certain if the campaign’s performance is going to be exceptional until it’s well underway.
That’s why marketers oftentimes keep a close eye on vital metrics and KPIs to monitor their efforts. The sales team can greatly help out with that.
The sales reps can tell marketers if the number of incoming leads has increased or if the conversion rates are going up. If that’s the case, then the marketing campaign is doing its job well.
Moreover, sales reps can tell marketers from which sources the leads are coming in the most. This will help marketers understand which channels to focus their attention on.
On the other hand, if the sales team reports that conversions aren’t improving and that the number of leads is decreasing, it probably means that marketers need to readjust their strategies and make the necessary improvements.
How to ensure that marketing and sales are working together
With their efforts combined, marketing and sales can achieve astonishing results. But the real challenge is to get them to work together in the first place.
The main reason is that after years of misguided leadership coming from many company owners, marketers and sales reps have developed a sort of rivalry.
Now, this obstacle can prove to be problematic, but it’s not something that cannot be solved. All you have to do is come up with the best approach on how to bring these two departments together. The more these two blame each other for poor results, the more your company’s bottom line will suffer, which is why you have to put an end to the argument. Here are a couple of ways you can do that.
- Make information freely accessible to all and avoid information silos.
- Schedule regular meetings between sales and marketing teams.
- Help them understand who owns which part of the sales funnel.
- Help them decide what they can do for each other and why.
- Provide them with the right collaboration and communication tools.
- Try to identify common issues that may hinder these two departments from doing their job.
- Organize brainstorming sessions.
- Create test campaigns to determine who the two departments collaborate with.
When things go sideways, it becomes easy for sales and marketing to point fingers at each other. Instead of arguing and bickering, teach your teams to find the problem together, as well as come up with a solution. That way, your company can truly begin to develop further.
Sales and marketing go hand-in-hand together. No one can deny the fact that one is less effective without the other. The main reason is that these two share goals but have different methods of achieving those goals.
Still, many of their efforts align more often than people tend to realize, which is why they must work together so that they can perform even better.
Bringing these two departments together may prove to be a challenge, but once you overcome it, your company will greatly benefit from it.
Ellie Northcott is a long-time marketer, currently working as a freelancer in Miami, Florida.
Editor at Digital Strategy One.
She is also a passionate writer and loves to explore new, innovative and digital news.
In her spare time, she is an eco-activist.