on July 16, 2014

Marketing and Sales Alignment: New Strategies for New Buyers

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An evolution in the buyer journey has caused a fundamental marketing sales teamworkpower shift in the direction of the consumer. As marketing controls a greater share of the purchasing conversation, the roles of both marketing and sales are changing.

What must follow is a new dynamic between sales and marketing, and new strategies to capture and convert leads.

Agree to Accountability.

As Trish Bertuzzi (@bridgegroupinc) explains, sales and marketing have decidedly different strategic approaches: Team-to-many vs. one-to-one, a team approach vs. personal accountability, and so on.

While the methods may differ, what marketing and sales can—and must—agree on are goals, buyer personas and expectations. The delineation of marketing vs. sales touchpoints, and a process for lead handoff, must be clear. In addition, each team should commit to KPIs for which they will be held accountable.

Champion Inbound Selling.

Like it or not, the game has changed. Buyers are savvier, more researched and device-hopping. The consumer is in the driver’s seat, putting marketing and sales teams in new and sometimes unfamiliar roles.

As HubSpot CEO and co-founder Brian Halligan (@bhalligan) put it, “There has been a sea change in the way people shop for things and the way they buy things. So there also needs to be a sea change in the way you sell things. I call this new method ‘inbound selling.’”

Advocate inbound as a critical part of both marketing and sales strategy. Encourage sales to spend less time cold calling, and more time closing the deal with nurtured, sales-ready inbound leads. (And make sure that's what you're delivering.) 

Share Resources.

Your marketing team may have created a library of valuable content: blog posts, case studies, white papers, tip sheets, product web pages and more. But creating marketing assets is only half the battle. Give your content some real legs by tapping into the sales team.

Break down organizational silos and partner with the sales team. Because from first touch to final sale, we’re all playing on the same team.

For more ideas on partnering with sales, read my new post “Market Your Marketing: Make Sales Content Champions” on Relevance. Relevance (@relevance) is a new online publication dedicated to helping marketing and communications executives solve their online content visibility challenges.


Image Credit: woodleywonderworks via Flickr

Taylor Radey

Taylor Radey is the director of marketing and a senior consultant at PR 20/20. She joined the agency in April 2013 with a background in digital and content marketing. She is a 2009 graduate of the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism at Ohio University, where she received a Bachelor of Science in Journalism, with a focus in public relations. Full bio.