According to Salesforce’s most recent State of Marketing report, marketers are the glue that connect disparate teams, like sales and service, together across companies. Nearly half (45%) of marketing leaders say their organization is leading customer experience initiatives across the business.
As marketers are increasingly viewed as the hub that influences customer experiences across a customer’s lifecycle, it’s important for them to find ways to enable other business segments — especially sales.
Here are five things marketers can do to ensure their sales teams are performing in tip-top shape:
Encourage unified data.
In 2019, marketers are projected to use a median of 15 different data sources. Add those to what sales teams are using, and you have a recipe for a muddled data soup. This is why it’s so important for teams to align around a single view of the customer through shared insights. By enabling sales teams with information such as a lead’s score, grade, and activity history, marketers can be sure that reps are prepared to have relevant conversations with their most engaged prospects.
Provide branded assets.
Marketers want to keep their brand intact, and sales teams want to keep their pipeline moving so they can close more deals. While these two objectives can sometimes clash, marketers can turn this situation into a win-win for both teams by providing sales teams with on-brand, pre-approved marketing assets. For example, using a feature like Engage Campaigns through Salesforce Engage, marketers can create a library of marketing-approved templates and (automated) nurture tracks that sales teams can customize for their prospects.
To learn more about Salesforce Engage, join our upcoming webinar, Introduction to Pardot Engage, on Tuesday, February 19th at 2:00 P.M. EST.
Warm up cold leads with re-engagement campaigns.
How do you make cold things hot? Turn up the heat.
Oftentimes, when leads go cold, sales teams tend to let them go. After all, they need to focus their efforts on the leads with the most potential to close, not the ones who haven’t opened an email in the past six months.
But during long, complex B2B sales cycles, especially in industries like healthcare and life sciences, it’s a mistake to let these cold leads freeze. Marketers can take the lead on nurturing dormant leads, re-engage those prospects with personalized journeys, and then pass them off to sales teams for follow-up once they’re ready for another conversation.
Agree on how to score leads.
Sure, marketing teams think they know what a good lead looks like. But sometimes, sales teams think marketing teams don’t. As Hamlet might say: Ay, there’s the rub.
When marketing and sales teams have different ideas of what makes a qualified lead, the hand-off between marketing and sales can quickly go awry. That’s why it’s important for marketers and their sales counterparts to agree on how to score leads.
Ask for the sales team’s input — and give them yours.
When in doubt, it never hurts to ask for your sales team’s input and feedback. Ask them key questions, such as:
- Which types of assets would help you close more deals? E-books? Sell sheets? Case studies? “How to” content? Infographics?
- At what point in a lead’s journey are they dropping off the most? Why?
- What are leads saying in their conversations with you that the marketing team may not know about?
On the other hand, it’s equally important for the marketing team to provide information to sales teams. For example, marketers should share information about upcoming campaigns, content calendars, a monthly theme or focus, and more to give sales teams insight into the latest content initiatives.
While the marketing-sales clash is sometimes billed as a raging battle, it doesn’t have to be that way. Marketers are on the hook for proving that their strategies and tactics actually work. Likewise, salespeople have monthly, quarterly, and annual sales goals — and they rely on marketers to do their jobs well to make that happen. By working together, both teams can succeed.
Read more about sales and marketing alignment on our blog.