For many B2B businesses, their sales and marketing teams are crucial aspects to their success. Yet the two departments are often unsuccessful when it comes to collaborating adequately and tend to blame each other when a lead falls through. Your sales and marketing teams work great on their own, but they would work even better together. We call this Smarketing, the alignment of sales and marketing teams created through frequent and direct communication between the two teams. Smarketing has the power to help both teams reach their goals while boosting company revenue.
What does the journey to Smarketing look like?
Sales and Marketing Alignment
First, let’s discuss why the sales and marketing alignment is so important. Not only will it make your business work more cohesively and structured, but it also impacts the customer. Now, customers are able to find everything they want and need to know about a product or service online. Years ago, customers would have to go through the sales team in order to find this information. The marketing team is in charge of guiding customers to the sales team to complete the lead.
Marketers are playing an important role in the buyer’s journey. Now that they have a greater influence over the sales cycle, they need to work even closer with the sales team to make sure both teams know what it will take for prospects to turn into pleased customers.
Smarketing Best Practices
In order for sales and marketing team integration to work, you have to do it right. Here are some of the best tips for smarketing:
Have meetings frequently
The best way for sales and marketing teams to work together is to make sure they stay connected. Having meetings regularly is a great way to avoid miscommunications and stay on track with your business goals. Discuss how the sales team is doing with their goals and meeting their quotas and how the marketing team is doing with upcoming campaigns and content. The marketing team can offer support if needed to the sales team, and vice versa.
Have a process for creating content
Sales reps are constantly talking with prospects and they know what makes them want to become established customers. They can provide feedback to the marketing team and help generate ideas for future content creation. During meetings, the sales team should express what kind of content they would like to have to share with prospects and attract more leads. Have a central document that the sales team can add ideas and references for content at any time.
Include the sales team in marketing campaigns
Your marketing team is continuously promoting new campaigns and content. It’s important for the sales team to stay up-to-date with these promotions so they know what their leads are being offered. The marketing team should share a calendar with the sales team consisting of all the information about upcoming promotions, including the specifics such as dates, times, descriptions, etc. Once the campaign has launched, you should offer the sales team insight into the campaign, such as talking points, a list of leads your offer is generating, as well as weekly motivation. Providing your sales team with up-to-date results that your campaign is seeing will help them to know where their focus should be when it comes to capturing leads.
Brochures, company overviews, and presentations are all sales enablement resources that your marketing team creates for these campaigns. These resources should be easy to locate, allowing for your sales team to have straightforward access to them. The resource’s location is also a great place to store your campaign calendars, up-to-date offer links, and specific content that can be used for a market or persona.
Create shared goals within both teams
Typically, sales and marketing teams have different goals because they also have different KPIs, or key performance indicators. For instance, the sales team may be focused on monthly revenue while the marketing team is more focused on building website traffic. When it comes to successful smarketing, both teams need to have shared goals. KPIs, namely conversion rates and lead values, are ones that both teams can measure and work towards.
Share feedback and analysis
Have your teams go over feedback they’ve received, KPI performance, as well as what they’ve learned during the course of a campaign. This helps to encourage communication throughout the team members and promotes learning from each other.
Show off your sales team’s expertise
Marketers are responsible for promoting all aspects of your business – not only your products and services, but also your salespeople. With smarketing, your marketing team should help to promote your salespeoples’ expertise in what they do and show customers that they are trustworthy. One way to help establish credibility and familiarity between your customers and your sales team is by having the marketing team interview them for a blog. Additionally, you can encourage your salespeople to share your company’s content on social media. Have your marketing team write social media copy and provide them with the content – it’s an easy way to get promotion for both your sales team and your company!
Shadow your sales team
Having a few of your marketing team members shadow the sales team for a day or two would provide a great learning experience. As they listen to their phone calls, they can envision what it’s like to be in a salesperson’s shoes. They’ll gain a deeper understanding of how the sales team speaks to prospects and explains how their businesses can use your products and services. This will help to spark ideas for future marketing content and how to build effective follow-up emails for offers.
Celebrate your teams and get to know each other
Following these best practices will help to make your smarketing journey a smooth process. However, the most important tip we can give is to have your teams get to know each other as people, and not just the moving parts of your business. Business leaders should organize team lunches, outings, and celebrations to encourage your employees to spend some time together. Also, you should be celebrating your successes and recognizing hard work. Team members are more likely to stay focused and motivated when it comes to working towards your business’ goals if they know they will be able to celebrate what they’ve accomplished. Celebrations and get-togethers help build trust, comfortability, and support among your team members.
During your business’ journey to smarketing, you should remember your main goal – having your sales and marketing teams work better and more effectively. Communication, goal-setting, teamwork, and having fun are all elements of the process that you should be focusing on. By following our list of best practices, your smarketing journey will be a smooth transition.