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Podcast Episode 23: Aligning Marketing & Sales (Part 1)

Jeffrey Lambert
May 21, 2019 3:52:00 PM

You may be part of a company that has separate sales and marketing departments. You may be the marketing and sales department all on your own. No matter your situation, it’s important to align both of these worlds so they work together instead of against each other. We’ll show you how on the next two episodes, so let’s get started with Part 1!

Episode Transcript


Jeff Lambert:                00:00                You may be part of a company that has separate sales and marketing departments. You may be the marketing and sales department all on your own, no matter your situation. It's important to align both of these worlds so that they work together instead of against each other. We'll show you how you can do that on the next two episodes. So let's get started with part one.

Jeff Lambert:                00:34                Hi everybody, and welcome to Inbound Academy brought to you by Rizen. I'm your host, Jeff Lambert. So creating content for consumers to educate themselves may seem like just a marketing function, but generating and promoting that content works best when you implement it seamlessly between not just your marketing department, but your sales department too. Why is that? Unity towards the same goals. But accomplishing this task of unifying both these departments is a tough thing to do. So to lay out a strategy for how you can approach that, I've invited Rogelio Rodriguez back to the studio. He's the CEO at Rizen. Rod, thanks for stopping by again.

Rod Rodriguez:             01:15                Thanks for having me, Jeff.

Jeff Lambert:                01:17                Now as we jump into this topic, I'm going to need your help because when it comes to creating content and attracting customers, my mind tells me that that should solely be the marketing department's job. Why is that not the case?

Rod Rodriguez:             01:30                So marketing and sales are more effective when they work together towards accomplishing a goal, right? Um, both marketing and sales have the same goal. It's essentially to grow your organization by increasing sales and generating revenue. But oftentimes both sides work on that by themselves and have very little communication... or any meaningful communication if that. So it really reminds me of of a stat from Forrester Research. They said only 8% of companies believe that their marketing and sales teams are aligned.

Jeff Lambert:                02:09                Wow. That, that is a shockingly low number. And I would think too, that you might have some competition between these departments. That's common too in businesses, right?

Rod Rodriguez:             02:19                Yes, absolutely. Just as an example, marketing will say "Hey, we generated 100 leads" and sales will turn around and be like "Oh. 100 crap leads." That's what often happens or what I've seen happen.

Jeff Lambert:                02:34                So this is a new approach to this situation. You're basically saying you want to take these two warring tribes and put them on the same page?

Rod Rodriguez:             02:40                Yes.

Jeff Lambert:                02:41                Okay, let's talk about how to do that. Because if I'm a business owner and especially if I'm in a situation where both departments don't get along very well or they're not talking to each other and it seems like that's 92% of the businesses out there according to that research study. Let's talk about some steps that leaders can take to begin that integration process - bringing them to one page. To one strategy. So why don't we start off with step one? Where would I begin?

Rod Rodriguez:             03:08                Sure. The first step in aligning marketing and sales involves establishing a foundation of what happens when a potential customer begins interacting with your brand. So both sales and marketing teams should be using similar terms, acronyms, to identify the leads. This really helps create organizational unity and increased communication effectiveness.

Jeff Lambert:                03:33                Okay. So can you give me some examples of terms that might be used by both sales and marketing?

Rod Rodriguez:             03:39                Sure. I think it's, it's the questions you could ask are like "what is a lead?" "What characteristics define a conversion?" What a common language is. It's important for the entire departmental unity. But examples could be a MQL, marketing qualified lead which then moves into an SQL, hopefully a sales qualified lead. And then what determines the conversion after that, right? Do they become a customer after becoming a sales qualified lead?

Jeff Lambert:                04:15                Okay. So by using common terminology, it really does put people on the same page because when you use those terms, both departments are going to know exactly what you're talking about. And I'm assuming you can measure more specifically, like analytics when you're using the same terms too?

Rod Rodriguez:             04:32                Absolutely. Once they're defined, you're able to measure the progress towards moving to these different stages or terms.

Jeff Lambert:                04:40                Okay. So I've created a common language between my departments. So they're sharing the same terms and they really are using the same metrics to measure, like we said, what exactly is a lead, what is an MQL, et Cetera, et cetera. Okay. What would be the next step that I would take?

Rod Rodriguez:             04:55                So the next step in aligning sales and marketing teams surrounds setting common goals. So if marketing teams set a goal based on clicks per social media post or views per video, those metrics are useless numbers to a sales team, who usually set goals based on actual revenue they raised.

Jeff Lambert:                05:15                Yeah, that makes sense. So instead of having two separate goals, so marketing's working on this and sales is working on this, there are now supporting each other in one goal basically?

Rod Rodriguez:             05:27                Absolutely. The key is to create a common goal for both teams to work together towards. A setting or a sales target both teams need to hit. And you'll see the daily communication between the group increase exponentially.

Jeff Lambert:                05:42                And what do you think is the result of doing that for both teams? In addition to increasing communication?

Rod Rodriguez:             05:49                Well, I think marketing will no longer focus on metrics that don't generate revenue and sales will take marketing efforts more seriously when attempting to engage potential leads.

Jeff Lambert:                06:03                So let's talk about maybe some questions that each employee should ask, whether they're in sales or marketing. Those common goals, like you said, that we're working towards. So if I have a new idea (and I'm in marketing) for a video, or if I'm in sales and I have a new idea to be able to pitch a lead to a potential customer, is there a common set of questions I could ask to layout exactly if this meets the goals of both departments?

Rod Rodriguez:             06:28                Sure. Uh, I think the first question and the most important question I think is, "does it solve for the customer?" So does the action help my customers solve for the customer? The second question I would look at is "does it solve for the company?" The third being "does it solve for the department?" And the fourth being "does it solve for me?"

Jeff Lambert:                06:50                Okay. And by asking those four questions, I can really think about if what I'm trying to work on meets the common goal that I've set.

Rod Rodriguez:             06:59                Absolutely.

Jeff Lambert:                07:00                I hear this term a lot thrown around in terms of marketing and it talks about "vectors." Can you jump into that term a little bit and how it may relate to this?

Rod Rodriguez:             07:10                Sure. I think Elon Musk famously stated that every person on the team is a vector. Your progress is determined by the sum of all vectors. So you know, Musk, what he meant by vectors, is that he was referring that each member of an organization, if all members aren't pulling in the same direction towards the same goals, no progress can be made.

Jeff Lambert:                07:36                And that right there is one reason in itself to eliminate competition between departments. Okay. So as a business owner or a leader in my company, I've started off by creating some common language that can be used by both marketing and sales. And we've talked about setting common goals. So people are working on the same overall progress for the company. I think these are two great places for us to start with in terms of helping our listeners be able to figure out how to do this alignment and for the sake of time I want to go ahead and make sure that we go into this a little bit more so we're going to be doing a part two to our listeners so stay tuned for the next episode and we're going to go over a couple of more tips that you can take when it comes to being able to merge your marketing and sales efforts. And Rod, as always, thank you for coming to talk about this topic with us.

Rod Rodriguez:             08:30                Absolutely. Thanks for having me Jeff.

Jeff Lambert:                08:31                And we just want to say thank you again for joining us for today's episode everybody. Remember you can expect a new episode every week day. It's always going to be no longer than 10 minutes and it's always filled with advice is going to help you grow your business. And remember, if you're looking for inexperienced, friendly and results driven team that can help your organization checkout risen by going go that's arisen with the z. You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Linkedin by searching for the username risen inbound. That's one word, risen inbound. Remember, you can also help us reach new people by leaving a review on your podcast app of choice. As always, thank you for your support and we'll see you on the next episode.


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