When it comes to lead generation, people often get confused and try to put it into one of the two categories: sales and marketing. If you closely examine lead generation, you’ll understand it is a mix of both sales and marketing, occupying a convenient middle place between the two. Many businesses are starting to realize this and making appropriate changes in their work processes to generate better results, keeping every team member on the same page.
As the synergy between sales and marketing becomes crucial, the traditional silos that earlier separated the two are breaking down. Businesses are now focusing on a more collaborative approach that improves their lead generation processes. If your sales and marketing teams are focused on achieving individual goals, overlooking the bigger picture, it’s time you bring them on the same page. You can use the insights covered in this article to streamline sales and marketing for better lead generation.
Understanding the Disconnect Between Sales and Marketing
Before exploring ways to align sales and marketing, let’s first understand how the disconnection between the two is hampering the lead generation results. Earlier, sales and marketing were viewed as distinct entities with divergent metrics and goals. While the marketing teams focused solely on building brand awareness and getting quality leads, the sales team focused on converting these acquired leads into customers.
This misalignment in goals often resulted in missed opportunities, misaligned priorities, and miscommunication. It contributed to the following pitfalls.
- Mismatched Messaging
If sales and marketing aren’t aligned, you can lose many leads due to mismatched messaging. For example, the marketing team may use a different message to acquire leads, while the sales team (unaware of the messaging) can use a widely different message during sales, leading to lost conversions.
- Lack of Accountability
A lack of common goals and a unified strategy can make both teams ditch ownership of their respective roles. This lack of accountability eventually leads to finger-pointing, creating a disturbance in the work environment.
- Leads Getting Lost in Translation
One of the common occurrences in businesses with misaligned sales and marketing teams is lead mishandling. When sales and marketing teams are not on the same page, leads acquired by the marketing department may not always meet the criteria set by the sales team and vice-versa. As a result, valuable resources are wasted, and quality leads are lost during the handover process.
Strategic Alignment of Sales and Marketing
If your lead generation campaigns aren’t converting at the desired level, you may consider reviewing the alignment of your sales and marketing team. When both work in tangent, the chances of leads converting into customers improve significantly. Some of the best ways to align both departments are shared below.
- Establish and Communicate Shared Goals & KPIs
This is a fundamental step to align sales and marketing for maximum effectiveness. Having shared goals and KPIs will enable both teams to collaborate and work towards achieving the same objectives. For example, instead of letting your sales and marketing team members operate in different silos, align them towards common customer acquisition goals, revenue targets, market share objectives, etc. It will eliminate conflicting priorities, allowing both teams to concentrate on what matters the most- more results from lead generation. Working in collaboration also fosters a sense of unity and shared responsibility, positively impacting business processes.
- Promote Open and Continued Communication
Effective, clear, and continuous communication is the key to alignment. The results are often visible when sales and marketing communicate for result-driven collaboration. Organize frequent joint planning sessions and regular meetings, so both are aware of the lead generation goals, approach, etc. Additionally, keep various channels open for uninterrupted communication and facilitate ongoing collaborative initiatives. Continuous dialog between sales and marketing teams enables them to fast adapt to market changes and messaging for effectively capitalizing on emerging opportunities.
- Define Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) Together
When sales and marketing are aligned, everyone clearly understands the target audience. It facilitates channeling all efforts on the lead types that are highly likely to convert. A crystal clear understanding of ICP significantly improves lead quality and ensures efficient resource allocation takes place. So, before you launch your next lead generation campaign, hold joint meetings so members from both teams can participate in ICP definition processes. It will enable everyone to align their strategies with the specific needs and preferences of the ICP.
- Implement a Robust Lead Scoring System
Every business must have a strong lead scoring system in place to identify which leads are more likely to convert and which ones should be dropped from lead nurturing processes. When sales and marketing teams collaborate to create and follow the same lead scoring system, they can better prioritize their tasks and efforts so maximum leads convert. Such systems are excellent for a seamless, streamlined lead handover. It also keeps the sales funnel full of qualified leads with a high conversion probability.
- Utilizing Technology for Better Integration
Technology has fast evolved by leaps and bounds in recent years, so finding relevant tools to speed up and improve the lead generation process is easy. If you want to align sales and marketing to improve your lead generation processes, use CRM and marketing automation tools. They can create a seamless integration between the two, enabling sales and marketing team members to access real-time lead data, valuable insights, etc., leading to increased efficiency. It will also promote data-driven decision making to eliminate guesswork from the lead generation process.
Generate Massive Lead Generation Results by Aligning Sales and Marketing
As markets evolve and customers’ expectations change, businesses cannot sustain without aligning their sales and marketing efforts. Those who timely recognize this fact and proactively work towards alignment will always enjoy a competitive edge in lead generation. That being said, every business must recognize that sales and marketing alignment isn’t a one-time project. It is a continuous process that needs attention for fine-tuning to achieve shared goals. So start by breaking down traditional silos, fostering collaboration, and embracing technology to drive massive business success. To know more about the process of aligning sales and marketing in B2B lead generation, schedule a discovery call with us now!