Why sales and marketing alignment is essential to business productivity
Gone are the days when sales and marketing worked as separate silos with different business goals. Businesses are rapidly realizing that alignment between sales and marketing is one of the top ways to improve business productivity. Productivity has been declining for over nine years, and sales and marketing alignment or the creation of a ‘smarketing’ team is one way to redress this.
How to create a ‘Smarketing’ team
Sales and marketing alignment will bring real benefits to your business, including increased business productivity, improved efficiencies, better marketing ROI, and overall business growth. In fact, organizations with strong alignment achieve a three-year profit 27% faster and close 38% more deals. To create alignment between these two departments, follow these steps:
- Get them working towards a common goal: Traditionally, there has been a lot of tension between sales and marketing teams, with neither team realizing the benefits the other can bring to the table. To align both teams, decide on a common goal – this can be a revenue target that is approved by the executive team.
- Rethink lead generation: Scoring leads helps sales teams determine where they are sitting in the sales funnel, and whether they need to be nurtured with engaging marketing campaigns or fast-tracked to sales with compelling content and personalized calls to action. Scoring leads only works if both sales and marketing align to create the scorecard.
- Collaborate on content creation: Encourage your sales team to share their conversion targets. Your marketing team can then create content, like blog posts, promotional emails, and other materials, to generate and qualify leads to pass on to the sales team. Creating content based on your sales team’s goals can help you strengthen the bond between the two teams and increase communication.
- Encourage sharing between teams: The more you can encourage sharing between your sales and marketing teams, the better your ‘smarketing’ will be. Marketing teams can help sales by passing on information about customer behavior and preferences. The sales team can use this information to make better decisions about which leads to prospect and sell to. The more contact information a lead record has, the more your sales team can filter and route leads based on characteristics and interests, in addition to activity and engagement. The type of information your marketing team passes onto sales team can come from a variety of inbound marketing channels:
- Facebook users often share their geographical information, interests, life stages, and any challenges they may be facing.
- LinkedIn users often share their job titles, company names, and industries they want to work in.
- Twitter users often share keywords and opinions.
Without this type of additional information, sales teams often spend a lot of time figuring out whom to approach and talk to.
Sales and marketing alignment improves business productivity
Hubspot reports that misalignment between these two departments costs businesses $1 trillion a year, as 79% of leads never convert into sales. Aligning sales and marketing can solve this. Forrester reports that companies with sales and marketing alignment and shared goals and metrics see a 25% increase in quota achievement, 15% increase in win rate, and 27% faster three-year profit growth.
Bringing the benefits of alignment to businesses
For sales teams to be effective in 2017, they need a simple integrated content management process that aligns both sales and marketing. PandaDoc’s single platform provides an all-in-one solution that has helped businesses increase productivity by up to 800% and cut document creation time by 50%.