3 Tips to Sales and Marketing Alignment

Picture this – your marketing department and your sales team are united as one – holding hands and frolicking in tandem through a meadow, all the while creating amazing content that is useful to marketing, sales, AND your customers, the ideal sales and marketing alignment scenario, isn't it.

January 8, 2020
3 Minute Read

Marketing

Picture this – your marketing department and your sales team are united as one – holding hands and frolicking in tandem through a meadow, all the while creating amazing content that is useful to marketing, sales, AND your customers, the ideal sales and marketing alignment scenario, isn't it.

Back to reality. There’s discord, competition, and miscommunication between marketing and sales. You can’t figure out exactly where the breakdown is occurring, and it’s throwing a wrench in your top-line growth. 


According to HubSpot, companies with well-synchronized sales and marketing departments generated a whopping 208% more revenue from marketing efforts. This is one business process that deserves your full attention.

Here are some tips to implement sales and marketing alignment for an unstoppable revenue activity: 

 

1. Focus on the funnel

A smooth marketing-to-sales pipeline requires a solid understanding of the buyer’s journey. To produce quality leads, your marketing team will need to create content with a clear objective and nurture leads from the top of the funnel to the bottom. Here’s what that means:

  • Creating relevant, helpful content like blog posts, ebooks, and explainer videos brings high-quality leads in at the top of the funnel. In the buyer’s journey, this stage is known as the “awareness stage.”

  • From there, the buyer enters the consideration stage. Now it’s marketing’s job to nurture the lead with emails, webinars, testimonials, brand and sales videos, and more. The goal is to deliver to sales a well-informed lead who views the business positively.

  • By the time the lead reaches the bottom of the funnel, they’re ready for the sales team. Demos, consultations, and personal outreach in the decision stage of the buyer’s journey will be much more effective (and easier) if marketing has nurtured the lead properly along the way.

 

2. Set revenue-based marketing goals

Assigning a revenue value to marketing efforts is more conducive to sales and marketing alignment because it causes your marketing department to focus on gathering qualified leads. If the success of your marketing department is based on the number of leads generated, your sales team is likely to receive a serious amount of low-quality prospects. 

To accurately assign a dollar value to your marketing team’s efforts, you’ll need to carefully track lead attribution. This involves establishing a sophisticated source reporting framework that tracks all inbound channels and lead sources (such as search, social, email, etc). 

 

3. Close the data loop

A smooth handoff of data is key to aligning your sales and marketing departments. Integrating your inbound marketing platform with your CRM creates “closed-loop reporting” by allowing lead records and their corresponding data to be updated by marketing and sales in real-time. This eliminates the need for frequent data migration, which can be cumbersome and prone to errors. 

An integrated CRM also enables you to more accurately assign revenue value to leads captured by marketing efforts, since all data sticks with the same record from the moment it enters your database. Without closed-loop reporting, you would need to match reports from both your marketing hub and your CRM to understand which leads ended up generating revenue, and where those leads came from.

Typically, an integration is established using an API, which allows two different programs to “talk” to each other. Some major marketing platforms, such as HubSpot, have closed-loop reporting built in because they serve as both a marketing platform and a CRM.

If you aren’t using integrated platforms, it’s important to track exported data carefully to ensure that leads retain accurate source information. You’ll also need to establish firm lead quality criteria to avoid the old “marketing is sending us useless garbage!” complaint.

Try these three tips, and let us know if you hear your sales and marketing teams singing “kumbaya” during your next huddle. Hey, anything’s possible! And If you’d like a second set of eyes on your marketing-to-sales pipeline, we’re happy to jump in. Don’t hesitate to reach out to your friends at Tobe!

Picture this – your marketing department and your sales team are united as one – holding hands and frolicking in tandem through a meadow, all the while creating amazing content that is useful to marketing, sales, AND your customers, the ideal sales and marketing alignment scenario, isn't it.

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