I believe that especially in B2B companies, aligning sales and marketing is the biggest opportunity you have to improve business performance.

Sales and marketing teams often have different goals.

Marketing’s goals are often longer term, and their campaigns track big picture metrics like brand awareness as well as numbers around qualified leads. Meanwhile, sales teams are usually focused on the now: this month’s goals, this quarter’s quotas.

This creates friction, when harmony could increase marketing’s ROI and sales effectiveness. So, how you can fix it?

  • First, make it clear that everyone’s goal is revenue, and define metrics of success together for SQLs and MQLs.

  • Then, understand your buyer journey, what your funnel looks like, and where the handoff should be from marketing to sales. You can use your marketing automation system to set up a comprehensive lead scoring system.

  • And finally, make a strategic content plan for your marketing and sales funnel, with resources that can be shared by both teams.

There are also some ongoing best practices that will help keep everyone aligned. ‘

  • Bring everyone together a few times a year to review and iterate on your strategic plan. (Bonus points for getting your marketing and sales leaders together monthly to review results and talk about their challenges.)
  • Share KPIs and goals around revenue, MQLs, and SQLs.
  • Use your marketing automation system to set up a lead scoring system. This will give your sales team visibility into marketing’s effectiveness, while simultaneously ensuring that they’ll be able to identify better qualified leads.
  • Share a Google document with both teams that has an ongoing list of content ideas. This is a low barrier-to-entry way for sales people to suggest content items that would be helpful.
  • Feature your sales team members in company blogs! This allows them to showcase their expertise, and demonstrates to them how much they’re valued.
  • Map your content to each stage of your buyer journey and marketing/sales funnel. Identify areas where content could be repurposed for use by the other team.
  • Add a marketing meeting into every new sales hire’s onboarding process. This will help your marketing team share all their great resources, and give your sales reps a personal relationship that they can lean on. And, vice versa! Make sure your new marketing hires have a good understanding of a sales rep’s challenges.

There are so many things you can do to get everyone on the same page. Not only will you have happier teams, but they’ll be way more effective too!

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