If up to 80 percent of the customer buying journey is conducted online and through digital media content, your sales and marketing teams need to be aligned and executing from the same “playbook.”
Today, more companies are managing sales and marketing through the same operational business lens in the form of a jointly developed, go-to-market playbook. Four main alignment strategies include proper identification of your ideal customer profile, buying personas and integration into your CRM, marketing automation, and sales enablement platform technologies. In collaboration, sales and marketing will accelerate your speed-to-market and help you optimize your results. There are four main ways sales and marketing can collaborate to work from the same playbook.
- Ideal customer profiles.
Know your target customer and call the right play to attract them to your product or service. The sales mission is to identify the ideal customer profile (IDP) and sell the value to create demand for the product or services. A marketing team’s support in this process is to execute against the IDP by developing marketing content and digital assets that resonate with IDP, resulting in positive business outcomes identified and aligned with your product or service. Both teams work to segment the target customer markets, identify commonalities, and interview current and past customers to develop the insight into making the IDP the first play in the playbook.
- Buying personas.
Depending on your IDP and the market segment in which you operate, as few as one (think small- and medium-sized businesses) to as many as seven (large enterprise) customer buying personas involved in your customer’s sales decision-making process. The sales teams gather critical persona data points and identify titles and roles in the customer decision-making process. Marketing helps influence the decision-making process by aligning strategic marketing content development, based on the buying persona’s purchasing requirements. If you sell to the CFO, then return on investment or investment rate of return could be your content outline. If the CFO is your target persona, then sales acceleration, sales optimization or speed-to-market may help your product or service resonate at the level. Either way, knowing your targeted personas as they are aligned to your sales process requires connecting sales data and marketing. The persona identifies with this in regard to his pain points.
- CRM and marketing automation.
Sales and marketing—working together—can target the same customers and personas. The two arms can integrate into a jointly managed process, whereby structured data helps drive and measure results. It can be done, but it takes hard work by sales and marketing to understand how the business can benefit from running the play. Think Salesforce.com and process/data requirements working with Marketo content management harmoniously to deliver the right content, at the right time. This helps create an aligned approach to your targeted segments.
- Sales enablement technologies.
These are meant to supercharge your sales and marketing teams’ approaches through integration into your CRM and marketing automation platform. This is your sales stack, which improves quality interactions with your IDP and personas. It also creates educational opportunities to free your sales teams to sell more, faster. The marketing team benefits from your sales stack by the analytics integrated into your CRM, enhancing feedback on marketing content and digital assets.
Learn More about Aligning Sales and Marketing
You can learn more about aligning your sales and marketing from a MarketSource Assessment for your company. MarketSource’s sales experts will work with you to define your challenges and design a turnkey solution that produces results in the area of gaining new customers, launching new products, growing market share, optimizing sales expense, or maximizing a mature product.
Our sales teams deliver more than $6 billion in revenue for many of the most well-respected brands in the world and a diverse mix of forward-thinking small- and medium-sized businesses. You can learn more about this topic and MarketSource’s Proprietary Process, Empowered People, and Proven Performance, by contacting us today.