We’ve seen a frustrating trend that’s holding back so many businesses from producing twice the amount of leads they could be getting. The issue lies with the confusing, misinterpreted role of sales and marketing. We’ve seen this cause conflict, undervalue the marketing team and worst of all confuse the brand message and even the customer in some cases. My aim today is voice my view of the issue and add clarity to why it happens and what you can do to get your marketing and sales team working together.
How It Starts
Any time I’ve worked with someone where there is an underlying issue with their sales and marketing team we can generally smell it a mile away. We’re brought in because something isn’t feeling right or the marketing isn’t performing as well as it should be. There’s a clear frustration from sales managers that we aren’t doing as well as we could be and there is frustration from the marketing team that efforts are going unnoticed and sales claim all the credit.
Here is what we’ve seen every time this has happened
There is no target, goal, kpi to measure performance
Having no goal, target or kpi’s is lunacy when it comes to marketing. If you’re good at marketing you need to be able to show it. Naturally the good marketers will inevitably want to be measured to show how much they are adding to the organisation. By having a target they are being held accountable for the results of their work but not only that, the goal has to be in line with the organisation’s goals, generally more sales. Management, sales and marketing have to come together to define this goal and the final say has to be from the marketing team as they will know what they can achieve. Make it unrealistic and you won’t have buy in from your marketing team day one.
There is no strategy or marketing plan in place
This is a very frustrating issue to see, companies with no strategy or marketing plan have generally poor communication. At an initial meeting we might ask the CEO, sales and marketing teams what the business does, who they are chasing and what their goal is. Each team might give a different answer and that is a very clear response, highlighting how poor communication is within that company. If they were all working from a clear plan they would all have the same answer. We’ve even seen teams unknowingly work against each other as the sales team targets one type of client and the marketing team targets an entirely different type of client, a frightening scenario for any manager.
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The target customer is undefined or very broad
Persona’s are vital for marketing, they need to be very precise and communicate clearly what issues you are trying to solve for your ideal customer. We have on numerous occasions seen sales trying to target C-level management while marketing might be targeting entry level management. This inevitably leaves the sales team underwhelmed by filling the pipeline with low quality leads while the marketing team think they are doing a fantastic job by filling the pipeline.
These are just a handful of the common issues we find and it’s something we help other businesses overcome by putting reporting in place and creating a way for teams to feed information to each other. To get your sales and marketing teams working together I’d suggest you sign up to our strategy series where we give you more insights into how to measure, plan and target potential clients.