Planning Tips For 2018: How to Align Sales and Marketing?

For every head of marketing, the synchronization between sales and marketing is one major concern. 2018 will be no different in the same front but you can pay heed to some of the tips that are going to be discussed at length here in this article.

To make sure that your marketing strategies are followed out in the intended manner, you need to create a scenario where the handoff between the two departments occur smoothly; rather in a complementary manner.

4 percent of best-in-class organizations have a strong marketing-sales alignment, as deduced by Aberdeen. The same study helps us figure out that for the CMOs to stay competitive, strong strategies need to be developed for both sales and marketing departments.

Another research revealed that around 90 percent of the marketers believe that the reason behind their failure to achieve the overall marketing goal is the lack of marketing-sales alignment.

What are the benefits of sales and marketing alignment?

If as a business, you are not able to achieve the said revenue targets, or you are unsatisfied with the outcome of your marketing strategies, then it is high time that you get your sales and marketing teams working from the same sales book.

Aberdeen Group also revealed that the companies that have applied the perfect synchronization between marketing and sales were able to grow the revenue 32 percent faster.

Recommanded Reading: How Sales and Customer Service Teams Can Work in Alignment?

If we go by what SiriusDecisions have to say then around 5 to 36 percent of an organization’s growth is driven by sales and marketing alignment. Other notable benefits:

  • Customer retention rates
  • Higher sales win rates
  • Quicker deal closures
  • Shorter buying cycles
  • Less wasted leads

Challenges towards Marketing-Sales Alignment

Sales reps and marketers have named communication as the biggest challenges that they face while aligning sales and marketing.

  • 49 percent of sales reps and marketers name communication as their number one challenge
  • 40 percent of sales and marketing professionals place it as their third highest, the flawed business processes and skewed metrics closely follow this.

Let’s look at the differences:

  • Sales focuses on gaining new accounts, closing more and better deals, renewals of subscriptions and retention of customer and upsells.
  • Marketing, on the other hand, focuses on pipeline, quantity and the quality of leads and brand awareness.

How can you align the Sales and Marketing?

We are listing down a few tips that can help you align sales and marketing.

Let the Two Teams Share a Centralized Working Space

This is simple. You just need to put the two departments is a shared working space.

  • They will be sharing the conference and break rooms
  • They will become aware of the challenges that each department faces during a normal day of work
  • Plan some training session where each department presents their individual working model

Outcome: Doing so will create a clear understanding between the two teams on how their work actions are affecting the overall organizational outcome. This will push them to create a work environment which is progressive and has team members who are working towards the same organizational goal.

Centralize the Reporting Authority

The fastest way to end the battle of power is to centralize the reporting authority. Abandon the posts like VP sales or VP marketing, just get a chief revenue officer.

  • Give him all the power of setting up lead generation and demand a generation program.
  • He will start from the top of the funnel and work with your sales team.
  • He will help in managing those leads.
  • A simple reason why you must go ahead with this flow is that the customers and prospects do not know how you are managing your team.
  • They only care about the fact that you have not responded to them.
  • They will react, if your salesperson assigned to them throws attitude at them,
  • And, they will be affected if they feel as a daily, monthly or yearly sales target and are not getting the help they have asked for, numerous time.

If the sales department is not properly responding to the prospects or is not giving proper attention to the conversion rate of the leads, then you must take appropriate care of this grievous lapse of management. Because at the end of the day they have been generated after spending your hard-earned dollars.

Synchronize your goals and measures of success

Every team has different goals and benchmarks for success. The same rule applies to marketing and sales.

Sales is typically measured on:

  • Number of deals closed,
  • Number of new accounts and
  • Revenue earned.

Marketing is measured on:

  • Brand awareness,
  • Campaign metrics and
  • Top of lead funnel.

To give your marketing and sales a much-needed alignment, you need to merge these measure of success and tie it to the end goal; raising the organization’s overall revenue.

Focus on Compensation

In 2017, compensation paid the pivotal disconnect between the marketing and sales strategies. Marketers penned down their strategies with the ultimate goal of increasing the sales.

The flip side of the story is that only 23 percent of marketers get compensation on the revenue.

But this misalignment can be taken care of with a simple step. Align your incentive programs with shared sales and marketing goals.

Also slip in the KPIs and base the compensation on

  • percentage of annual revenue,
  • share of voice and engagement rates,
  • customer lifetime value (CLV).

Conclusion

2018 is the best year to set the wheels into motion for the sales and marketing alignment. Make the marketing-sales alignment part of your 2018 resolution and get to work with the tips as mentioned earlier in this article.

What if you get a CRM that is smart enough to combine both these individual processes and help you execute your ultimate business strategy for the year 2018? If you want to gain some more insights on how your two different departments can be aligned using Salesmate CRM, then do get in touch with our team.


We welcome you to Salesmate! 🙂 A subtle yet systematic and intuitive sales intelligence-based CRM that provides high quality service without blowing a hole in your budget. Want to know more? Start a free 15-day trial, today!