Marketing and sales teams are less aligned than ever. Physical distance has siloed their work even further, and sales teams are growing dissatisfied with marketing-created content.
If this sounds familiar, know that you’re not alone. The term “smarketing” has been around for a long time and means aligning your marketing and sales teams to help both departments better understand the target customer, helping marketers create more informed content and sales better close their deals.
Without this, teams can easily fail or cost a company more money on campaigns or initiatives that only have partial buy-in. Misalignment creates a domino effect, and the stress may cause teams to fall back on less integrated, and ultimately less successful methods of outreach such as cold calls or non-personalized email spam.
Marketing and sales, though very different, should rely on each other to perform a symbiotic dance routine of sorts that captivates prospects at scale . New sales enablement practices and technology have become more accessible than ever, giving marketing and sales the tools to communicate, share materials, increase their ability to collaborate on crucial content and stay aligned on tactics, goals, strategy and results.
Collaboration Produces Content Sales will Actually Use
Marketing content is one of the most important resources for sales teams. Unfortunately, sales teams don’t use two-thirds of marketing-generated content, and 54% of marketers don’t know what materials sales teams use. The lack of Active collaboration and communication between the two creates more work for everyone and expends more resources than necessary.
To remain successful, sellers need access to relevant, timely content and must know how to use it effectively in the field. On the other side, marketers need to know the current selling climate to figure out what to create and how to give sellers consistently useful content.
Communication is the best method of staying on top of each department’s needs. Your marketing and sales teams must be more intentional about regularly updating each other to increase alignment. With one-third of teams not meeting on a regular basis, it becomes far more difficult to create useful materials. Scheduled meetings between marketing and sales take up little time yet make a big difference for content creation and closing deals.
When teams are remote, however, collaboration and communication can require even more effort than before. Leaders in both marketing and sales need to encourage regular virtual or hybrid meetings — where some people might be in-person, while others join virtually (and some might only watch a recording asynchronously) — and create an alignment plan, not only with other leaders but directly between marketers and sellers. Asynchronous communication, or meetings and presentations attendees can watch on their own time, allows teams to communicate faster and quickly share up-to-date information, staying on top of the dynamic sales climate without having to adjust or accommodate every employee’s schedule. This ability to collaborate asynchronously has grown more important with remote and hybrid work becoming the norm.
Sellers Can Help Guide Marketing Content: Co-creation is Key
The idea of “smarketing” starts with the understanding that sellers can help marketers reach their target customers and marketers can help sellers better close deals. If neither understands the other, sellers lose important leads due to a lack of timely marketing materials and an unfortunate cycle of missed sales begins unless addressed.
Your sales team knows what’s going on in the buyer’s market. As a result, they can help marketers, providing direct information and evidence into what’s led to interested customers or dead ends. These insights save time by reducing external research and give marketers a constant feed of new insights and strategies to create and efficiently provide sales teams with content.
When marketers become more agile, content works better. Even if one strategy worked for a week, it doesn’t mean it always will, and new content success relies on feedback from your sales team. Make sure to use alignment meetings to ask for feedback on what’s working and what’s not. This is a crucial step for effective co-creation of content where marketers are creating and adjusting content along the way with near real-time sales and market feedback.
Marketing and Sales Have the Same Goal
The remote work dynamic has created an even greater divide between marketers and sellers. Even within companies, different teams often use completely different collaboration tools, making it nearly impossible to communicate without both teams putting in some extra effort.
Companies need to invest in sales enablement technology that bridges this gap, giving each team easy access to communication channels, content and feedback. Today’s sales enablement tools can help by combining mobile and video technology to ensure all assets are accessible at the moment of need from any location.
In the end, marketing and sales are on the same team working towards the same goals. With more emphasis on collaboration and alignment, your company saves time and resources while driving successful sales outcomes.
About the Author: Wayne St. Amand is the Chief Marketing Officer of Allego. He is responsible for driving business expansion through Allego’s global corporate and product marketing initiatives. As Allego’s Chief Revenue Officer, George Donovan is responsible for achieving the company’s customer acquisition and sales goals. A proven sales leader with over 20 years of sales, marketing, operations and management experience, George is a sales enablement enthusiast who loves tools and systems that empower people.