If you want to grow revenue faster, consider how well your marketing and sales are aligned. Much like a car that pulls to one side and shakes as you drive down the road, when marketing and sales are misaligned it slows you down.
Fortunately, the opposite is true. When marketing and sales get into alignment revenue flows more smoothly enabling the company to grow.
1. A Consistent Message Boosts Trust
Trust is the commodity of sales. Yet we live in a low-trust world. Buyers are more skeptical than ever. Therefore it is critical to ensure that we do everything possible to build trust rather than erode it.
Recently I was talking to a sales professional who shared this story. Halfway through a meeting with a prospective client the prospect pulled out a printed email from his folder. “What you just shared with me is not what this email I got from your company last week says.” Ooops! Trust is eroded.
The message from marketing needs to align with what the sales team is saying. In my book, Revenue Growth Engine, How To Align Marketing and Sales To Accelerate Growth (Get a Free Copy Here), I recommend companies create a Focused Message Plan. This allows marketing and sales to work together to create a unified message. This message can flow across the website, social media, online advertising, sales conversations, collateral, and proposals.
2. The Right Content At the Right Time Increases Close Rates
In sales it is important to share the right things at the right time. As a sales manager, I remember many times sitting in meetings with a new rep and a prospective client where the sales rep would bring something up that was totally out of sync with the question the buyer had at that moment.
The questions that a prospect has early in the buying process are different from the questions they have right before they decide to go with an offer. Once the deal is approved, a whole new set of questions arise.
Marketing and sales can work together to ensure that the right information is provided proactively at the right time during the Client Experience. This helps reduce the friction and motivates the buyer to move forward.
3. Ongoing Communication Boosts Cross-Selling
Sales guru, Mark Hunter, loves to say, “You don’t close a sale, you open a relationship.” The marketing and selling doesn’t stop when a buyer approves the order. It has only just begun.
While the sales team is celebrating the new order, the client begins their slide into buyer’s remorse. Did I make the right decision? Will the company come through?
Joey Coleman, author of Never Lose a Customer Again, shares data that shows that a new client decides in the first 100 days if they will ever do business again with your company. What happens right after the sale is critical. You need to communicate after the sale, counteracting buyers remorse and by answering questions and reinforcing why the decision was a good one.
The need to communicate continues throughout the relationship. Read most surveys of customers across any industry and you’ll hear, “You never write, you never call unless there is a problem or you want to sell me something.”
Instead, what if marketing and sales worked together to ensure a steady stream of helpful ideas with clients? This would set the stage for client satisfaction. It could open the door to cross-selling opportunities. It also creates the environment where raving fans give referrals.
How to Get Marketing and Sales Aligned
There are many more reasons why marketing and sales alignment is crucial. In Revenue Growth Engine I recommend that companies get clear on their Ideal Clients and the stages of their Client Experience. Using this, marketing can work with sales to create a Focused Message Plan along with Playbooks for each stage of the Client Experience. This reduces friction and increases the motivation to proceed. The net result of this alignment is more revenue!
About Darrell Amy
Darrell Amy is the Visionary at Convergo.co, a team dedicated to helping entrepreneurial companies create predictable growth. He is the author of Revenue Growth Engine, How To Align Sales & Marketing To Accelerate Growth. Darrell is passionate about helping generous leaders grow so they can make an impact. In addition to being a contributor to Forbes, Darrell is a frequent presenter at events like the EOS Conference.