The path to sustained sales and marketing alignment can be a simple one – simple to do, simple to repeat, simple to remember. All you need is a map. In that spirit, I attempt here to boil down some alignment opportunities for Sales and Marketing leaders.
The chart below shows the three main focus areas each for Sales and Marketing which, if approached collaboratively, can improve business results and transform the relationship. Below the chart is a set of definitions, followed by a few examples of how to apply it to your own situation.
3 Sales goals – Value, Volume, Velocity
Value. Since it is almost as costly to close a small sale as it is to close a large sale, Sales professionals would be wise to focus on increasing the potential Value of each sale. In larger organizations, differently skilled teams manage different sized deals.
Volume. The more deal flow you can create, the better your chances of growing the customer base and improving the company’s financial ability to innovate and fulfill their evolving needs.
Velocity. Increasing the speed of deal flow through the pipeline also increases your capacity to sell, grow the customer community, and learn from them to help you innovate and improve.
3 Marketing goals – Content, Community, Conversion
Content. The more compelling and relevant your content, the more you will attract the audience most likely to benefit from your offerings.
Community. The more your content resonates within and among audiences, the greater your capacity to build a community and engage in dialogue to improve sales, products, services, and support.
Conversion. The more effectively you convert sales, the more you can learn from experience about how to improve the conversion process.
Conversations Worth Starting
Using the 3×3 chart above, look at the 9 intersecting boxes and ask the questions implied by the two nouns whose paths cross in each box.
Example 1: Value + Content. In the upper left intersecting box, where Value and Content intersect, Marketing might ask: How can we improve our Content to increase the Value of each sale? Sales might ask: How can the improved Value of each sale guide us in improving Content? It’s the same question, asked from different perspectives, that aligns your response.
Example 2: Conversion + Velocity. In the bottom right box, where Conversion and Velocity intersect, Marketing might be asking: How can we improve the Conversion process to accelerate the Velocity of Sales? Sales might ask: What sales accelerators can we use as input for improving the Conversion process?
See how it works? You may come up with better questions to suit your organization’s culture and challenges. Now, formulate your own questions using the relevant nouns for each intersecting box, turn those questions loose in your organization, and watch what happens.
Measuring results with analytics, sales CRM and marketing automation solutions can help you measure and manage your improvement. If you need assistance here, contact us.
How’s it working for you? What questions would you ask your colleagues to help you get better aligned? Drop us a comment here; we’d love to hear your feedback! Visit our Resources page for more free strategy tool downloads.
- Sales Pipeline Best Practice (reference chart) (fanfoundry)
- 5 Reasons Marketing and Sales Should Get Married (hubspot.com)
- Does your Marketing Automation have a Human Problem? (SAVO Group blog)
- The use of Hansei in Lean Sales and Marketing (customerthink.com)
- Does your Website copy suck the life out of your conversions? (seocopywriting.com)
- SaaS CEOs: Measure Customer Engagement (ForEntrepreneurs)