At Refactored, one of the founding principles of our agency is that we provide customer-centric marketing services. Why? Because regardless of your industry, company size, or product, if your customer isn’t at the heart of everything you do, you won’t see results.
That was the theme of BMA Colorado’s December Keynote Meeting, “Align or Die: Getting Marketing and Sales to Deliver Value for the Customer.” Our team took a field trip to Denver to attend, and we were reminded of the tremendously positive results a company can get when sales and marketing are aligned to the same customer-focused goals.
In our minds, starting with the customer in mind means:
Everyone in the organization has a shared understanding of who an ideal customer is, what that customer’s needs and pains are, and how a product or solution meets those needs.
Everyone has the same goal: to serve customers and thus grow revenue for the whole company.
To support their shared goals, marketing and sales actively align their activities, collaborating and providing mutual support.
The BMA’s Keynote Meeting reminded us that this type of alignment is not just nice to have any more—it’s an absolute necessity.
Sales and Marketing Alignment Delivers Big Benefits
Industry research from every corner confirms the value of sales and marketing alignment. MarketingProfs research reveals that companies with tight-knit sales and marketing teams enjoy 38% higher sales win rates and 36% higher customer retention rates. And SiriusDecisions says B2B organizations with tightly aligned sales and marketing see 24% faster three-year revenue growth and 27% faster three-year profit growth.
Seems like a no brainer, right? Oddly, it’s not that easy. A surprising majority of organizations (92%) have NO strong alignment between marketing and sales, according to Forrester Research.
The result? Content marketers blithely churn out content while forgetting about sales entirely. Sales complains that they can ’t find relevant content to send to prospects. Marketers send leads to sales, but most aren’t qualified, so sales reps ignore those leads and spend enormous amounts of time prospecting.
And ultimately, company revenue suffers—big time.
Want to Learn to Play Well Together? Now Is the Time.
Many factors conspire to keep marketing and sales teams at odds. But a central element is the culture of the company itself. Organizations that cling to traditional concepts of marketing and sales are likely to wind up stuck with sales and marketing teams that have wildly different goals—and different definitions of what it means to successfully meet those goals.
But if your organization wants to break out of the traditional mold, now is a great time to do it. As more organizations strive to formalize sales enablement and sales and marketing alignment, resources and expert advice has become more accessible.
Start by taking a look at your company structure. Identify differences in marketing and sales teams, paying particular attention to:
Knowledge and resource sharing systems
SLAs between the teams
Then, help your teams break the ice by starting with our recommendations for fostering better communication.
And finally, don’t hesitate to look for help! An agency that specializes in sales enablement and sales and marketing alignment can bring fresh insights and a neutral, balanced perspective to creating the change you’re after.