Sales and marketing functions have a reputation for stoking friendly competition. The two can even have outright negative friction. Not every company can focus on the sales and marketing department’s common goals. But this is the company’s source of growth and capturing new customers. When they do have common goals, great results follow. To start building these common goals, you must understand the two different department’s duties and where overlaps exist. These overlaps are where communication must be seamless and at its best, says the celebrated Astro Strategist cum Business Astrologer Hirav Shah.
Hirav Shah says that sales and marketing departments work best when they work together to create synergies that benefit the bottom line. They scale their business and bring it to new heights.
What’s The Difference Between Sales and Marketing?
Hirav Shah explains that marketing is a crucial role in every organization. The results of marketing can be felt throughout the company. Successful marketing campaigns engender loyalty. They also build brand awareness and begin the process of cultivating sales.
Marketers are adept at understanding market segments inside and out. A good marketing plan makes great use of sales data to identify new and emerging segments. Marketers can then change messaging to best capture consumer interest.
Marketers work to create advertisements and commercials to spread awareness of their brand. Introducing new products gains loyalty from customers by doing so. Great messaging speaks to a solid base while also appealing to a wider audience.
Sales Associates Seal the Deal
Sales associates secure commitments, process contracts, and act in a customer service capacity. The sales team has one ultimate goal: increase top-line revenue. Ideally, sales associates make the most of existing resources to grow revenue, thus increasing overall gross profit.
The purpose of sales has changed in the digital world. Selling both businesses to consumers as well as business to business has shifted in recent years. Instead of finding the best fit for clients, sales associates highlight convenience. They compare prices to the competition.
Both work together to align with operations, finance, and other departments in the organization. These departments need to be kept abreast of pricing, volume, logistics, and other important factors.
For example, without operations, marketers would not have products to highlight. They could time advertisements incorrectly. Sales associates might sell more units than are available in inventory.
Sales and marketing are one part of the value chain and must keep in mind its effect on their chain as a whole. Losing sight of this can cause unintended consequences like unprofitable products and poor timing of product releases.
How Can Sales and Marketing Work Together?
First and foremost, keep top-down decisions transparent. Take accountability for leadership course changes. That way there is no misunderstanding when those changes cause discomfort. Acknowledge strains where they exist so that all parties can move forward.
Define boundaries and communicate them with frequency. This is an important aspect of creating space and trust within an organization.
If each person is clear about what their job duties and priorities are, they are more likely to avoid resentment when another person doesn’t pick up the slack. Duties are clearly accountable and can be traced.
Marketing sales and alignment is essential. Align overarching priorities and incentives. Competing economic interests are a recipe for disaster.
For example, if marketers are incentivized to appeal to a broad range of consumers, but sales staff recognize that some products sell better than others, this can cause unintended friction. Make sure bonus structures reflect reality and are copacetic.
Physically place marketing and sales employees together on the floor to build camaraderie. This may seem simplistic, but you are less likely to fight or cause problems with someone you sit across from each day. Never underestimate the power of daily chit chat in dissipating tension.
Finally, use technology to your advantage. The new normal that the pandemic has wrought makes it necessary for sales and marketing to both respond flexibly to changing conditions. Set up company communication lines that are quick and efficient, even in a work-from-home capacity.
What Results Can You Expect?
A fluid operation is good for employees and customers alike. It creates value that cannot be replicated by competitors. It is also a primary reason that good leadership is so essential to modern business. Creating value is, after all, what running a business is all about.
For large and small organizations, you can expect more bang for your buck, or in other words, more return on your investment. This is great for impressing investors and other stakeholders, increasing capital, and engaging employees. When the organization wins, everyone wins.
Moving beyond alignment, you can expect overtime for sales and marketing functions to be truly integrated. What does this mean? It means that in time, a mutual culture develops along with trust and respect. Liaisons may help in the short term, but to be truly integrated the sales and marketing workforces must know each other intimately.
Better communication results in better business decisions. This holds true at every level of the company. Too often bad or indirect communication and misunderstandings lose value for the business. Disorganization abounds. A lack of feedback lets decisions barrels forward without sufficient diversity of thought.
Finally, you will develop better leadership by engendering a culture of respect. Open communication and trust are paramount. No organization that has a negative culture full of backstabbing and short-term decision making will create long-term value for the company. Better leaders will bring you into the future.
Aligning Sales and Marketing for Better Results
Whether your business has separate sales and marketing functions or not, integrating them results in better decisions. It can also create more client impact and overall better profits.
Failing to integrate can mean your business will not survive over the long term. The stakes cannot be overstated.
Hirav Shah says that for better results, set the tone from the top and work with your leadership team to align their goals and treat one another respectfully. Common goals will unite the staff and create more opportunities for the business overall.