Sales and marketing must work together to define the ideal client and determine how and what to get in front of them. They need to share information and have a plan in place to hand off a lead from marketing to sales.
Social media and the internet in general have changed the way people buy. Today, research is done online long before the potential customer identifies themselves to a prospective vendor. So what can you do to ensure that when the buyer is ready, you’re on the list to talk to?
This is an issue that continues to frustrate marketers and sales across the board. Both disciplines have insights to offer and neither should be working in a vacuum. Marketing’s role is to provide qualified leads to the sales team so they can more effectively close more sales.
I read an interesting article by John Jantsch from Duct Tape Marketing that addresses this very problem.
He states: “My take is that for organizations to take full advantage of the dramatic shift in the way people and organizations buy today they must intentionally blend inbound marketing, outbound marketing and inbound selling in a way that mirrors today’s customer journey.”
He offers some suggestions on how they can work together. Here are some highlights of shared responsibilities:
- Planning – When marketing is creating a plan, involve sales. They have insights that marketing doesn’t. Their insights are invaluable in helping define the customer journey.
- Editorial – Even if sales people aren’t great writers, they certainly can identify pain points along the way and possible solutions for marketing to write about.
- Social – Make sales aware of social opportunities, whether it’s LinkedIn or participating in an industry forum that social is a good networking tool.
- Engagement – Have sales and marketing make calls together or write a proposal.
- Measurement – Forget quantity and focus on quality of lead and how you can take them down the sales funnel. Focus on creating a profitable customer.
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