29 May 2019

Let’s break down the sales and marketing silos

by Adrian Weller

Tradition has dictated that B2B relationship and marketing departments have their own distinct functions and can never be brought together, but the wall between them has never made much sense.

Imagine if, as a marketer, you had direct access to your customers — beyond feedback surveys and lengthy research projects. You could chat to them about their needs and goals, find out how they use your products, services and programs, and get to know how they prefer to communicate. Wouldn’t that make your job a whole lot easier?

The thing is — your B2B relationship team knows all those things. They’re deeply familiar with the critical conversion process of the B2B sales journey. They know what makes your customers tick. They know what problems your customers are looking to solve, and they probably know what customers love (or resist) about your product or service.

Your best salespeople are highly skilled in forging the human-to-human connections that strong business relationships are built on. Working alongside them is not only the best way to map the sales conversion process, it’s also the best way to simplify and humanise your entire customer journey. It’s time to break down the silos. Let’s connect sales to marketing, and both of them to the ultimate goal of your marketing strategy — generating more revenue by meeting customer needs.

To add Value (V) add Human (H) to the B2B2C equation.

To map out your sales journey, you need to start by understanding your business strategy, brand architecture, customer value proposition and — crucially — the people you’re selling to. You can do this during a discovery workshop by talking to sales teams or relationship managers. Not only are they the end users of the sales tools you’ll end up creating, but their insights can also be more revealing than any marketing brief. When you layer in competitor insight and customer empathy mapping, the true picture of your sales journey can be enlightening. You can draw on the expertise and insight of your sales teams again to understand where the friction is at every stage, and then create the tools to support those sales conversations and guide customers through the process.

The result? Whether your process is high-touch one-on-one conversations, a lengthy conversion timeline, a formal tender process or is supported by automated emails at scale, customers will have a better experience. Your sales teams will feel motivated and more confident using the tools you provide for them — and you’ll measure positive change in client conversion and retention.


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