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David Mills
By David Mills on February 07, 2022

The marketing failure that only sales alignment can correct

A disconnect with sales leads to marketing failures

Marketing and advertising have changed. Ads are blocked, Google is removing third-party cookies, and iOS is restricting email. But those aren't the biggest challenges faced by marketing, because they need something that only the sales team can provide: a real understanding of customer problems.

Sales has changed too. Since a salesperson is no longer the only place that people get information, effective sales today is a process of building trust and solving problems with prospects. The big disconnect comes as marketing keeps its focus on products and features, too often ignoring the actual problems that sales teams address in almost every customer discussion.

Get a 15-Minute Clarity Call on Marketing and Sales Alignment

Sales teams are the only source for deeper customer insights

The traditional sources of data that are used to drive ads, and the marketing practices of building surface level targeting based upon personas doesn't lead to content or digital assets that move prospects along their decision journey. 

Data alone isn't very empathetic, and a primary value that companies bring today is how their expertise helps solve problems.

Without a close and practical connection between marketing and sales:

  1. Marketing stays at the top of the funnel and lives on the surface of what customers need. That leaves sales teams to build trust that could have been already developing in the marketing process.
  2. The company is left trying to appeal to the prospect based only upon features or prices, which usually leaves out their biggest differentiators.
  3. Salespeople are left to address every objection - even ones that should have been removed during the buyer exploration process.
  4. Prospects are far less qualified - their needs haven't been addressed, and almost all of the qualifying work is left to sales.

15-Minute Clarity Call on Marketing and Sales Alignment

Companies can 3X the quality of their leads by creating a practical process for marketing and sales to sync-up.

When marketing creates content and campaigns without sales insights, it ignores 2/3 of the qualifying process. When you add sales insights into the formation of website content and campaigns, you multiply your ability to qualify and get better quality leads. 

Made with Story Magic

In the product fit matrix, it is sales and marketing alignment that allows marketing to help prospects along the buyer journey and identify good and poor fit leads much more effectively.

Qualified leads can only be developed through ongoing communication and iterative improvements. That requires teamwork.

Both teams need to fight for a customer perspective

Normally it is the sales team that most deeply understands the customer, including their pain points and their needs. Since closed sales depend upon addressing customer problems effectively salespeople are highly attuned to what moves a prospect forward and what stalls a sale.

This kind of natural empathy is a critical insight for marketing teams, and can only be shared when there is give and take that begins at the formation of digital properties like new websites and continues through campaigns and optimization.

In the end, marketing has the same point of failure as poor sales- failing to listen. Except, in this case, it is the failure that comes from the lack of opportunity, mismatched systems, and no communication routine through which marketing and sales listen to each other. 

15-Minute Clarity Call on Marketing and Sales Alignment


Published by David Mills February 7, 2022
David Mills