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The 3 Greatest Threats to a Sales and Marketing Super Team

In an ideal scenario, your sales reps and marketers are working as a team — marketing is setting sales up for the win, and sales is swiftly closing deal after deal.

For many organizations, the “ideal scenario” above probably sounds more like a far-fetched dream. Consider the following statistics:

45% of companies report that their sales reps need help figuring out which accounts to prioritize. (Lattice Engines/CSO Insights) Tweet This

42% of sales reps feel they do not have the right info before making a sales call. (Lattice Engines/CSO Insights) Tweet This

52% of lost sales are due to sales enablement failure. (SiriusDecisions) Tweet This

Judging by the statistics above, we’re looking at some serious sales and marketing breakdowns at many B2B organizations — and if left unaddressed, these threats can completely undermine your sales and marketing teams’ efforts to become a single selling “super team.” Fortunately, Pardot aims to address these threats in a webinar next week, featuring Bob Kelly, Founder and Chairman of the Sales Management Association, and Katie Doyle, Product Marketing Director at Pardot.

Bob and Katie will be providing their unique perspectives on the modern sales-marketing struggle. Let’s take a look at a few of the threats that they’ll be covering in their April 21 webinar — then preview some of their advice for marketers and sales reps dealing with these same scuffles at their own organizations (note: if you’d like more information, you can register for the full webinar here).

Threat #1. Dead-end Calls

It’s a fairly common scenario: your sales reps are complaining that the leads sent over by marketing are a waste of their time, and marketing is becoming increasingly frustrated by the dismissal of their hard-won leads.

At this point, you have two options. You can watch as your two teams reach a standoff, or you can put an organized process in place to qualify the marketing leads that get passed to sales. This requires a conversation between marketing and sales to agree on a common definition of a qualified lead. With that definition in mind, you can set up a lead scoring and grading system using a marketing automation tool that will automatically assign leads to a sales rep once they meet the criteria you specify. This cuts down on tensions over lead quality by ensuring that leads get passed to sales at the right time.

Threat #2. Operating in the Dark

Another threat to your marketing and sales super team? Lack of transparency. Often, marketing isn’t quite sure what’s happening with the leads they’ve passed over to sales, and sales isn’t quite sure where to start their conversations (remember the stat at the beginning of this article?).

It’s important to get both of these teams on the same page in order to really deliver a personalized customer experience. Otherwise, leads may fall prey to neglect if one team thinks the other is following up, and vice versa.

This lack of transparency can be solved using real-time insights into your prospect’s activities. With marketing automation, sales reps can keep track of their prospects’ interests, pain points, and website activities so that when it’s time to start the selling conversation, they know exactly where to begin. Marketers can take advantage of this same information to personalize their marketing communications with prospects, helping to educate them on the topics that they care about most.

Threat #3. Reps Gone Rogue

Even if your two teams trust each other with their lives, your marketing team may still be a little nervous about the content of the messages that sales is sending to prospects. There’s an easy fix to this problem, and that’s to enable sales with marketing-approved content and templates that will ensure they stay on brand. This doesn’t limit reps — it saves them time by placing the content they need right at their fingertips.

Additionally, marketers can take some of the burden off of the sales team by setting up automated lead nurturing tracks to consistently communicate with non-sales ready and cold leads over time. This allows marketing to play a pivotal role in the sales process, and allows sales to be relatively hands-off until it’s time for them to step in and close the deal.

B2B marketers who have successfully deployed lead nurturing programs average a 20% increase in sales opportunities from nurtured leads versus non-nurtured leads. (DemandGen Report) Tweet This

Looking for more ways to turn your two teams into a single super team? Tune in on April 21 at 2pm to catch the full webinar.

threats to a sales and marketing super team