There is always an obvious gap between your sales and marketing teams. And along with this gap almost always comes miscommunication and a general sense of frustration when one team isn’t cooperating. It is a huge feat to align your marketing and sales team, but it’s completely worth it! By having your sales and marketing on the same page, you can see some major revenue spikes! The first and foremost step you can make is to clearly define your sales funnel
Probably the biggest factor that can disrupt the cooperation between your sales and marketing is the sales funnel. Sales may think it’s defined in one way, while marketing is trying to attract leads in a completely different sales funnel. They can argue over the amount of steps that a lead has to undergo before becoming a customer, and they can even use totally different terms to describe progress. They key is to unify the sales funnel. It can be extremely difficult to properly align the two on the same terms for your sales funnel, but once you do, the benefits can be overwhelming.
Need help opening up communication? Contact IMPACT and we can implement an effective inbound marketing strategy that can help to align your marketing and sales.
Defining the Sales Funnel
How are you supposed to make sure that your sales and marketing teams are on the same page? Well, here is a few steps you should follow. But before starting these steps you want to make sure that you always have a good open line of communication between the two teams! This is vital for aligning you sales funnel.
What is a Good Lead?
This is huge. If your sales are looking for one type of lead, and your marketing is trying to attract a totally different one, you’re not going to be too successful. This is just wasted time and energy. You want to make sure that when marketing hands off leads to sales, that sales get what they are looking for. The marketing team needs to know the qualities and characteristics that good leads have so that they know what they’re doing! The leads that most often convert are probably the ones that sales wants to see more of.
You need to know which leads are interesting in buying, and if they are a good fit for your company. Do you want to be dealing with a huge corporate CFO or a mom & pop sandwich shop owner? This is something that marketing needs to know.
Develop a “Qualified Lead” Definition
Organize a meeting between the two teams and make a concrete definition of what “the perfect lead” is. When you know exactly what both parties need in order to be successful, you can’t lose! Marketing knows what they need to look for, and sales is happy because they are racking up sales like it’s their job. Oh wait, it is! Anyways, bottom line is that with clear cut definitions, it makes everyones job a little easier.
Identify Patterns of Your “Perfect Lead”
Once you know what you’re looking for, figure out what they do when they’re in your system. Track their activity, and see what turns leads away. Now you can make educated changes to your lead nurturing campaigns, and start to keep those perfect leads in your sales funnel.
When you have enough information on your perfect lead, start to organize their activities. Separate them into stages, and see how different marketing techniques affect them while they are in these different stages. This process is all about observation, so dedicating time to lead analysis is important in this stage.
Set Your Sales Funnel for All
These stages that you’ve made are now your sales funnel. Some have 4, even 5 tiers to them. It’s basically your leap map. Use your lead behavior, and identify which stage of the sales funnel they are at. Then use your various marketing campaigns to push them further down the sales funnel, and closer to a sale.
Make sure you are keeping track of your analytics! As you apply and change marketing campaigns to the different stages of your sales funnel, see how they are affected. If adding something causes your perfect leads to slip, get rid of it! This is why the sales funnel is a great way to organize all your information. When you have clear cut, defined sales funnel stages, you can more efficiently market to your leads, and continuously provide your sales team with awesome leads that they can easily convert into sales for your company.
Are you interested in defining the stages of your sales funnel? Contact IMPACT and learn how we can help develop these stages for your company.