Best Practices to Adopt for Sales and Marketing Alignment

July 30, 2020

Sales and marketing teams are important when it comes to selling your products or services. They can help you communicate the value of your products to the target audience. The teams also conduct research to understand their target market and narrow down prospects that could be potential customers. Both teams have different functions and roles they play when it comes to implementing marketing campaigns. Over time businesses have realized the importance of aligning their sales and marketing teams.

Sales teams play an important role as they are responsible to communicate with ideal prospects and ultimately close the deal. They have in-depth knowledge about their customer’s interests and pain points. Hence, they have the potential to increase revenue, retain customers, and build valuable relationships with them. Marketing and sales alignment can help both teams communicate effectively, share insights to build, and implement a robust marketing strategy.

So, what is sales alignment? And how is it beneficial to an organization?

What is Sales Alignment?

Sales alignment are the measures sales teams take to make sure they are aligned with the marketing teams.

Benefits of Sales and Marketing Alignment

  • This alignment will give you a clear understanding of your customers. Both teams can determine the key stakeholders, which can help them engage the right people.
  • Together, the teams can gather information about their prospects while researching the target market or interacting with customers. These shared insights can help them carve out an accurate buyer persona which is important in any marketing strategy.
  • The implementation of various marketing and sales campaigns can be smooth from start to finish as both teams are on the same page.
  • As the teams have thorough knowledge about their customers and are aware of their interests, preference, behaviors, pains. They can provide a great customer experience which will help in conversion.
  • Alignment between both teams can improve your chances of closing more deals and help with customer retention.
  • They can integrate systems and share customer data to provide assistance to any customer when needed.
  • It can also build trust among both teams and create a healthy work environment.

Learn more about how the sales team can help you in your Account-based marketing strategy. Read our blog on Role of Sales Team in Account-Based Marketing.

Best Practices for Sales and Marketing Alignment

Sales Enablement

If you want your sales teams to pitch in on your marketing campaigns, they are not immediately going to have the skills required to fulfil these expectations. Sales teams are not usually familiar with various digital marketing practices. Therefore, sales enablement provides your sales teams with the knowledge, tools, and content that can help them be more efficient. Sales enablement can help you align your sales and marketing teams. The marketing team can provide sales reps with relevant knowledge about marketing campaigns and show them how to utilize marketing resources.

For example, Account-based marketing is one such strategy that requires alignment between sales and marketing. It focuses on a few target accounts to create a personalized experience for the buyers. In this scenario, the marketing team can provide personalized content to the sales team and sales reps can use this content at the right time for the right customer. It seems straightforward but if the sales reps are not familiar with the marketing campaign, they might not be able to utilize this content in the right way. Sales enablement can provide your sales and marketing teams a platform to share knowledge and resources and it can help them deliver a great customer experience.

Regular Meetings

The best way to get your sales and marketing together is by holding regular meetings for discussions. In order to get your sales and marketing teams to work together, the best practice for them would be to share knowledge and resources. Marketing teams can share how they can support the sales team. This is also a good way for all the team members to get to know each other.

If you are launching a new campaign both teams must be involved in the process from start to finish. Both teams can share their expertise to build a strong campaign. Marketers can discuss any upcoming promotions. Sales teams can also give ideas or requirements for content. Sales and marketing managers can also have monthly meetings to evaluate campaigns, narrow down leads, analyze data, and optimization. This is a good way to keep everyone on track with ongoing activities.

Tools for Communication

Utilize various tools or platforms where both teams can communicate as well as share information. For easy communication between teams, you can use tools like Slack or emails. Through email, you can share important updates with both teams. Google Docs can also be a convenient tool to share certain information.

Brainstorming Ideas

In meetings, it is important to have a few minutes to discuss ideas. This can be a good opportunity for both teams to have an open discussion about various sales and marketing processes. Both teams can give their inputs on content ideas that can help get more leads. The sales team can give the marketing team more ideas on what problems their customers face and how certain content can help them.  

Setting shared goals

Sales and marketing have different goals and Key Performance Indicators. Sales teams are more focused on generating more revenue while the marketing team aims to get more website traffic. A good practice is to discuss goals that will be common for both the teams. Some KPIs for example conversion rate cost per lead or MQLs influence and affect both the teams. These common goals can be discussed together, and teams can further share their analysis after the campaign is launched.

Keep sales team updated about campaigns

Marketing teams are often running various content marketing campaigns with promotions and offers. The sales teams should know about these ongoing campaigns to see which contacts have received these recent offers. Customers could also call the sales teams to know more about certain promotions. Marketers can also share a Google Calendar about all the information on the campaigns with the sales team. This will ensure that the sales teams are updated.

Share Data and Analysis

Last but not least comes data analysis. As discussed above sales and marketing have different areas they need to measure. But reports on metrics or KPIs that influence both can be shared. Sometimes you can also end up learning from KPIs that you might think are unrelated. When each team shares their findings there is more room for improvement. This can enable you to further improve and optimize campaigns.

There are different ways to bring your marketing and sales teams together. You can practice whichever suits your organization. The points discussed above can help you get started in the right direction. Sales and marketing alignment can improve the efficiency of both teams. It can also promote friendship and trust. Aligning these two teams will not only improve the overall performance of your campaign but also create a positive working space.

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