S_t_ r_ a_ t_ e_ g_ y: K.O. in 3 rounds
Let’s kick off with some serious right and left hooks: “I need more and qualified leads, marketing is not providing me any”, “Sales is not telling us what they need”, “Marketing is not giving us not the right tools to work with in the sales process”, “We provide sales with plenty of leads, which they are not able to follow up, why bother to generate more?” and what to think of this uppercut: “Our senior management wants reports about everything, I rather spent my time selling”
This is a classic battle, and guess what? 89% of our customers have a disrupted, non-collaborative sales- marketing “machine”. But how to tackle this battle?
Our experience tells us in many cases the challenges don’t come from the number of leads or incorrect sales supporting materials at first. Clearly the misalignment is coming from a miscommunication and a lack of understanding on what both departments are working on and required to deliver. Most of the quotes above are based on opinions rather than facts, coming from an emotional reaction, which potentially could be leading to reactive attitude in both departments rather than building on a proactive environment, striving for marketing and sales excellence.
Round 1: Fighting these battles requires a shift in culture and attitude. Change requires:
- Building understanding and involvement
- Clear and open communication
- Clear KPI’s and reporting
- Management of expectations
This builds an environment that is based on mutual understanding with buy in from all parties involved, creating a do it together mentality and supporting culture.
Round 2: Senior management. They need to build and facilitate the right supporting system and provide long term commitment in doing so and ACT upon it.
Round 3: In addition to this I strongly believe it is a must providing the teams with the right underlying IT tools, like a user friendly CRM system, lead nurturing tools and marketing campaign management systems and depending of the maturity of the organization involving skills, process, structure and IT you could be even thinking about changing your market and customer approach, knowing your potential customer inside out using Predictive Intelligence. Predictive Intelligence? Yes, the game changes rapidly. Big Data and Internet of Things are not the future, they are the now.
Applying a step by step approach with small successes, building skills and strong focus will be the K.O. to your inefficient and ineffective marketing and sales battles. But be aware you will receive some body punches changing the game.