Sales and Marketing Teams Can’t Operate in Silos
Does your company have a separate marketing team and inside/outside sales team? If so, are they working together or is their lack of communication working against you? Warning: You may be putting your marketing dollars in the wrong place. Find out why it’s important for your sales and marketing teams to collaborate, the minimum effort they must put forth, and some tactics for working effectively together to shorten the sales cycle. Read on:
1. Hold regular sales and marketing meetings. The sales team holds the key to knowing what the customer wants. Sales people, unlike marketing folks, have the luxury of one-on-one interaction with the customers. Therefore, they know what makes the customers tick, which can only help produce more effective marketing. Marketing and sales people should meet weekly or at least monthly to discuss what goes on during the sales calls and how prospects react to proposals and marketing promotions. This regular communication can help determine the best methods for generating leads and closing the sale.
2. Test your marketing campaigns on your sales team. Before you run an ad, send out a sales letter, or print a brochure, have your sales team review it first to see if it makes sense from a customer’s perspective, and closely matches the selling process. They may think of something to add or suggest a change that would make a big impression on the prospect, that the marketing team may not have discovered. It also helps to show the sales team because if they are better informed about the company’s marketing and advertising efforts, they can sell better and can assist with tracking the return on investment.
3. Have a marketing feedback loop. Institute a formal policy of tracking the effectiveness of ads and other marketing material. Aside from traditional tracking methods, such as coupon codes or customized website landing pages, encourage sales people to notify the marketing team if a prospect mentions an ad or campaign (or have them record the lead source in your customer relationship management software or customer database). This also helps ensure return on marketing investments (marketing ROI).
4. Give sales people the tools they need to succeed. Instead of creating the marketing material and setting the sales people loose, ask the sales team what marketing materials or support they need to sell more effectively. Are your current marketing tools working? What are competitors doing to market effectively? What ideas do the sales people have for promotions or other tactics? Helping the sales people close more sales with more effective marketing tools is a win-win for both marketing and sales teams.
So maintain an open interaction in your company between your marketers and your sales people, and work together toward a common goal. Doing so will ensure that both parties work cost-effectively and that you don’t waste a penny of your marketing dollars.