In many organizations, the sales team are on the front-line using content the marketing team has created. But as is often the case, the content isn’t what the sales team necessarily needs, whilst marketing teams remain unaware of this issue.
Without this visibility not only do marketers not know if the messages they send out are working effectively, but they also have no control over the marketing content that’s very often heavily edited within other departments.
This then creates ‘content chaos’ whereby no one truly knows what version of an asset is being presented to the customer. This ultimately undermines any content or messaging strategy a business is trying to land.
So, what’s the answer? AI enhancing human collaboration.
It’s all about collaborating, not just peacefully coexisting
In reality, marketing and sales are two sides of the same coin. They offer separate functions within an organization but still need to work in conjunction with each other in order to be successful.
As it stands, it’s no longer enough for these departments to simply coexist. Instead, they need to work together, sharing insights that add value to each other and their organization. It’s imperative that these two teams are properly aligned and collaborate effectively in order to drive ROI for the business.
Both teams face barriers to efficient working. When sales fall short of expectations, marketing assumes it was a result of poor execution of an otherwise outstanding rollout strategy. In turn, the sales departments assume that marketers are out of touch with what customers are genuinely thinking and aren’t providing them with the right content.
In short, each group frequently undervalues and misunderstands the contributions of the other.
Marketers typically generate collateral and content for sales, and while the sales team closes leads, marketers are left in the dark about what worked and what didn’t. As a result, there’s no way of truly knowing what marketing assets are doing well and where time and budget could be better spent. Just 65% of content developed by marketing is ever used by sales, most of it wasted because it’s not deemed useful.
This lack of cohesion has a negative impact on business performance. We’ve seen both teams stumble (and the organization suffer) because they are out of sync with each other, especially during the research and consulting stages of strategy building. In contrast, there is no doubt that when sales and marketing work well together, businesses see significant improvements in key performance measures. In fact, according to Forrest, companies that align sales and marketing teams achieve 24% faster growth rates and 27% faster profit growth.
In order to be most effective, generate more leads and close more deals sales and marketing must have a symbiotic relationship. Sales enablement facilitates this process
by delivering the correct content to the right people at the right time and providing invaluable insights to learn from along the way.
Why marketers need to have a seat at the revenue table
Having a seat at the revenue table and knowing how their content and campaigns contribute to a deal and revenue allows marketers to obtain valuable insight into one of their most powerful channels – their go-to-market (GTM) sales team.
They can then understand what messages are resonating with audiences and how they can replicate them in order to increase ROI and add value to the time spent creating assets.
The critical task required for sales teams to predict leads, pipelines and revenue with confidence should not be handled exclusively by them. Instead, both departments should have a place at the revenue table to be able to discuss ways in which marketing and sales can work together and align their efforts to drive ROI.
This ideal alignment can be easily achieved through sales enablement. These solutions not only give both the sales and marketing teams full visibility over assets and the revenue they drive but also help to bridge the gap between content creation and sales calls
Sales enablement is more than just a ‘nice-to-have’ sales tool
Put simply, sales enablement platforms offer so much more than just a useful sales tool. They are a full solution that helps to connect your sales and marketing teams and technology across the sales cycle to great success for businesses. This can include assisting with content organization, aligning your sales and marketing teams, and even making onboarding new salespeople simple and painless.
If you’re not employing a sales enablement platform from the get-go, you’re behind the curve. Marketing and sales teams need to work from one source of truth and having the visibility of one another’s team’s success, will allow both to see their impact on ROI and have the ability to replicate this in the future.
Overtime, revenue generation will be seen as a collective responsibility thanks to greater access to insights providing businesses and their brands the inside track, they need to unleash their full potential.
By Nikki Dawson, Head of EMEA Marketing at Highspot.