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Alignment between sales and marketing teams is crucial if either – and the business itself – are to succeed. Marketing teams must understand not only the value of an organisation’s products and services but must also be keenly aware of both their buyers’ needs and their competition’s strategies. As for sales teams, they must be familiar with all of the above, but they are also tasked with building relationships with prospects and customers while tailoring their value proposition with intense precision. For this to happen both must collaborate closely, and yet many organisations find that sales and marketing teams struggle to see eye-to-eye. One of the most common reasons for this breakdown in collaboration, especially in an increasingly virtual-first world, is content management.
Content is key in almost any part of a business, and marketing teams are typically responsible for enabling sales professionals with the assets they need to win customers and drive revenue. With so many businesses adjusting how their teams operate post-2020, many marketing teams have found themselves changing their messaging and branding to keep up with the changing times. pendant ce temps, sellers struggle to find the latest assets and up-to-date content, often referring back to the use of content and messaging that has served them well in the past, which includes outdated information that may no longer resonate – to say nothing of the evolving marketing landscape and new privacy laws such as GDPR. pourtant, now is not the time to just do things “the way they’ve always been done”.
One way marketing and sales can better collaborate and effectively use content is by aligning on goals. What does “good” look like to each team? These groups should be completely transparent with the other about their goals and context, including any changes both in the business and in the industry as a whole. Different existing and potential customers pose unique challenges, such as copy that must be localised, or content that must be more technical. Both teams should have excellent insight into these needs and prepare for them accordingly. When closely aligned with sales, marketing delivers content rich with the new and valuable insights and guidance sellers need to find and use content as successfully as possible. Après tout, a report by Forrester found that 74 per cent of buyers chose to move forward with the seller who first shows insight and value. This means that content should clearly demonstrate its value, and sellers should be confident enough to speak to it during any customer interaction.
To better understand what good looks like, both teams should be aligned on content performance data. Relevant data might include which piece of content is used the most or the least by sellers, or which asset performs best with customers. As marketing develops a keener understanding of how sales leverage the content they create, they can develop more compelling content in the future and retire anything that performs poorly when used with potential customers. Clear analytics prevent these teams from operating within silos, which can result in content being tossed back and forth and rarely integrated into valuable customer conversations.
Sales and marketing both want the same thing, to drive more revenue for their business. Stronger alignment between these two teams can be achieved through regular communication and the understanding that both teams are working towards the same goal. This might look like a consistent meeting cadence or even a weekly newsletter, which might be ideal for teams who work virtually or span multiple time zones.
pourtant, one of the best ways to facilitate this collaboration and communication is to take advantage of a modern sales enablement platform. With an enablement tool, marketers can surface the right content at the right time for sellers while also receiving easy access to performance data – altering them to what content is moving the needle. Sales enablement tools are quickly becoming essential in the toolbox of leading organisations, from WarnerMedia to Vodafone Business. According to a report by LinkedIn, 77 per cent of sales professionals say their sales organisation plans to do more to invest in sales intelligence tools. With a sales enablement product such as Highspot, teams can create sales plays, which are tailored content collections that can speak to specific customer needs at precise moments throughout the sales cycle. A sales enablement tool can take the place of confusing file storage and foster better understanding between teams, who can now cross-reference data, assets and even sales pitches when they collaborate. This means far fewer email chains and outdated files.
Sales enablement is the bridge that closes the gap between sales and marketing, fostering better communication and results. In a world changing and evolving rapidly, sales and marketing must evolve and adopt more mature methods to collaborate. Otherwise these organisations risk falling behind their counterparts.
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Originally published on Business Reporter