I plead guilty to enjoying a cold beer or two, and I’ve watched with amazement as the decade-long bull market in the craft beer industry shows no signs of abating.
Marketing puts a lot of work into generating leads, but despite the effort, lead conversion rates often disappoint. That’s because, providing the sales team with quality leads is only one piece of the equation. Marketers also have to provide sales with the knowledge to help them convert those leads into customers.
According to Aberdeen Research, companies who are “best-in-class” at aligning marketing and sales had a 20 percent average growth in annual revenue as opposed to a 4 percent decline in “laggard” organizations. By leveraging increasingly popular cloud technologies, lead management software and sales aps, marketers can bridge the gap and empower sellers with pertinent information and tools to advance the sales process, increase average deal size, decrease sales cycle lengths and improve pipeline management. At the same time, with use of this technology they can gain better insight into what the sales force needs and what’s working.
Providing relevant and truly useful sales support
Sales reps are looking for quick snippets of information to help them know what to do and say in the different stages of the sales cycle. With mobile and cloud-based technology, marketers can better support sales interactions with customers. Distilling knowledge to its core, such as key messaging points and memorable examples, and making this information convenient for sales reps to access on-demand can successfully improve their time-management, boost their performance, and increase their productivity. For example, by integrating sales support materials into Salesforce, MobilePaks enables sales reps to manage their leads, as well as access relevant content to propel the sales cycle forward. In addition, marketers can use this technology to create opportunities for two-way dialogue with the whole sales force and get real-time feedback via comment boxes or recommendations and more.
Honing Productivity ─ Focusing On What Really Works
In a perfect world, sales and marketing would have an open line of communication but traditional divisions between siloed marketing and sales teams often lead to uncoordinated strategy and execution efforts. Since they are typically not on sales calls and removed from the sales process, marketers are often creating marketing materials in a vacuum. Perhaps, they have occasional dialogue with one or two people from the sales team, but this only provides a limited view into what resonates with customers. Because they lack this critical insight, they often find themselves creating tons of content and collateral that doesn’t really have an impact because it’s not what the sales team wants or needs. Or worse yet, the sales team doesn’t even know it exists. The work marketers do means nothing if they don’t get it in the salespeople’s hands and on the tips of their tongues.
Using cloud-based technology and sales aps, marketing can connect with sales throughout the whole cycle and gather feedback from the field to get total visibility on what’s working and what needs improvement. In addition, with proper analytics built-in upfront, companies can collect user data that ties back to business objectives such as lead conversion, sales performance or new employee onboarding. Plus, performance, consumption and activity metrics will allow the company to have a deeper understanding of the factors that are influencing employee success. This way, marketers can see what sales reps want and what they value so they can develop better tools that actually get used. This will not only provide value for the seller, but will also lower the cost of sales and marketing because the materials produced are more effective.
Companies that transform their sales and marketing alignment are more likely to increase market share and profits. With mobile and cloud-based technology, sales and marketing alignment becomes much easier. Reps can access relevant information such as sales training, job aids, playbooks and battle cards from any device, when and where they need it. At the same time marketing can gather feedback, measure knowledge retention and assess overall impact. Ultimately, this collaboration improves the productivity of the marketing department and increases lead conversion from sales leading to a decrease in costs and an increase in the bottom line.
Chanin brings years of experience in technology, business management and marketing to guide the development of MobilePaks. In addition, she continues to spearhead the constant advance of VIA (MobilePak’s sister company) into new technological landscapes, from mobile and game-based learning solutions, machine and hybrid translation to multilingual product launches in 32 countries.