10 Things That Keep Sales Leaders Up at Night (and How Marketing Can Help)

Every night, while some sales leaders dream happily in dollar signs, others are haunted by impending quotas, misaligned teams, and big data lurking in the distance.

If your brain at night is on a spreadsheet instead of counting sheep, rest easy. Marketers are here to help sales leaders meet goals, close deals, and make sales like never before.

Here are 10 things that keep sales leaders up at night, and how marketing can help you get some rest.

1. The Funnel

While the sales process has evolved from traditional “funnel” model to more complex, individualized customer journeys, sales leaders still struggle to move prospects from the top-of-funnel “awareness” to bottom-of-funnel “consideration” in the customer journey.

Strategic marketing, from paid ads to organic content, can help guide prospects along their journey to conversion. Marketing helps tell your brand’s story and educate customers as they become aware of your brand and products, traveling down the funnel and toward a purchase.

2. Bad leads

Trying to sell to a bad lead is like trying to harvest apples from a dead tree — frustrating and not very fruitful. Sales teams will have a hard time closing deals and meeting quotas if your prospects aren’t a good match for what you have to offer.

Through advanced segmentation and automation, marketing has the potential to find the best, most qualified leads who want what you’re selling. That way, you can stop sorting through the bad apples and focus on closing deals.

3. Good leads

With great leads comes great responsibility. Once you have great leads from your marketing team, the pressure is on! Will they slip through the cracks, get lost in the shuffle, or receive conflicting messages from different departments at your company?

Fear not! With an integrated marketing and sales platform, you can create seamless experiences and rest assured that your marketing and sales teams have the same 360-degree view of your customer. Your friendly neighborhood marketer will take care of your leads until they’re ripe for sales conversations.

4. Big data

Big data can give anyone a big headache. The term itself is intimidating, making data seem like King Kong ready to take down your Empire State Building of a sales strategy.

But don’t worry. Unlike King Kong, big data comes in peace, and doesn’t want to snatch up your girlfriend. Marketers can help you harness its power for good. With the help of strong analytics and some savvy marketers, big data can help you find new leads, grow customer relationships, upsell existing customers, and even predict future sales trends.

5. Personalization

So many leads, so little time! When your marketing team is turning over great leads by the handful, how are you supposed to individually nurture all of them, create unique customer experiences, accommodate for their individual needs, keep the sales conversation going, and get enough sleep at night?

You don’t have to go it alone! Your marketing team, along with marketing automation, can do a lot to help. Marketing tools like Pardot can automatically create and deliver marketing so custom that customers will get that warm fuzzy feeling, even from a banner ad.

6. Automation anxiety

It’s easy to get nervous about the impact automation might have on your day-to-day job and how you run your business. But marketing automation can actually enhance how you do your job, and free up your sales team’s valuable time to work on more important, high-level tasks.

No robot can replace the human conversations you have with your customers. But with the power of marketing automation, you can get more prospects ready to have high-quality conversations with your sales reps. When you embrace automation, get ready to sell more and better.

7. Misalignment

Misalignment can quickly turn malignant if your sales and marketing teams have a strained relationship. If your teams aren’t in sync with their goals, strategies, or data sources, you may be on the fast track to failure.

Help marketing help you by bringing them along for the ride — it’s all about communication. When you keep the conversation open and share lead qualifiers, sync data, and work towards the same goal, you’ll find that marketing and sales can be more than the sum of their parts.

8. Chilly leads

We all need to chill out every now and then, but as a sales leader, you want your leads to stay piping hot. If your sales team doesn’t have the time to be constantly following up or communicating with prospects, you run the risk of leads getting cold and falling off.

Marketing can be an incubator for leads in the consideration phase and beyond. While your sales teams are busy, marketing keeps the conversation going — delivering high-quality, personalized messages straight to leads’ inboxes, social feeds, and more. Proper alignment will take your marketing-sales handoff from a snowball fight to a game of hot potato.

9. Unpredictable forecasts

Rain or shine, you’re responsible for closing deals and meeting quotas. When targets aren’t hit, the sales team is often the first to get the blame. Lucky for you, you’ve got marketers on your side, ready to take action and help you meet projections.

With today’s technology, your marketing team can pivot at a moment’s notice to help you get back on course. Customers spending less than expected per transaction? Target larger accounts with bigger budgets and buying committees. Sales for a new product lagging? Refocus your product messaging and enable sales with an updated play and pitch that aligns accordingly . Keep a good relationship with your marketing team, and they’ll help you get back on course.

10. Too much coffee

Next time, split that afternoon latte with a new friend in marketing, and rest easy knowing that your sales and marketing teams are better together. Ready to take your relationship to the next level? Learn more about how Pardot connects sales and marketing teams.