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Q1/2017 New Year Resolutions

A Fluent Moment

New Year Resolutions: Sales and Marketing Alignment

Little is more invigorating than the fresh January air and the clean slate that comes with the New Year. It offers a chance for us to set personal and professional goals, develop a plan, and begin working the plan.

In the excitement of setting new revenue targets, prioritizing channel relationships, and developing new solution offerings, we sometimes overlook the opportunity to improve our existing internal processes. Are there ways to increase sales team productivity? How could we accelerate sales cycles? Where might we reach new audiences to grow the customer base? A key component to this is examining the alignment between sales and marketing.

A great way to assess the sales and marketing alignment in your organization is to determine the level of communication between your sales and marketing leaders and their teams. Ask yourself 3 questions:

  1. Do my sales and marketing leaders have a regularly scheduled meeting? How often do they meet?
  2. Are my sales and marketing leaders focused on the same solution offerings?
  3. Do my sales and marketing leaders have shared goals and expectations to help achieve those goals?

The first question is the easiest place to start. Most of us will answer “yes” to the first part and be proud…until we look at the second part of the question. The opportunity here is to get your sales and marketing leaders together exclusively or more frequently to discuss strategy, pipeline, and process that will help keep your salespeople following up on leads, and providing them the content to do it more efficiently.

The second question should be a focus of these meetings. What new solutions are you focused on promoting? What offerings might be ongoing, like service contract renewals? If your sales and marketing leaders don’t have the same answer, this is the opportunity to get on the same page and develop a marketing strategy that will receive its due attention from the sales team for maximum efficacy.

The third question is the mortar in the foundation for sales and marketing alignment. When these departments have shared goals and expectations, there is clearer communication on what leads will be passed over to sales and where they will be in their buying cycle. These details provide the context sales teams need to support any marketing campaigns, and results for everyone to strive toward.

The New Year brings with it opportunities, challenges, and successes yet unseen. Our responsibility is to prepare ourselves with a plan and processes that optimize our chances to meet and exceed our goals for 2017. Improving sales and marketing alignment will lay a strong foundation to build upon as the year progresses.

From all of us here at AFV, we wish you a happy and successful 2017!

 

 


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