Connecting Marketing and Sales Funnels Through a SMarketing Playbook: Part 2
CMO Ryan is starting at a new company. On day one, he walks into his new department, and he finds a trainwreck. His new company is losing countless leads due to the lack of communication between marketing and sales. Even worse, the pervasive feeling within his department is that they are competing with sales to see who will bring in more customers, and there’s zero desire to work as a team. There’s no process documentation, everything is siloed, and everyone is frustrated. It’s a CMO’s worst nightmare.
When everything is a competition and no one is communicating, the company and its customers are the ones that suffer.
This is a nightmare scenario, yet it happens all too often. The silos between marketing and sales are a long-standing issue, and as sales and marketing become more complex, the issue is only growing larger.
CONSEQUENCES OF MARKETING AND SALES MISALIGNMENT
When marketing and sales are misaligned, the results can be disastrous, not just for the company, but also for your customers. A lack of SMarketing — departmental collaboration and communication between sales and marketing — results in:
- Missed Opportunities: Marketo and ReachForce tell us that sales ignores up to 80% of marketing leads, spending their time on unproductive prospecting instead.
- Wasted Time: CMI reports that up to 70% of your marketing team’s digital content never makes its way into the customer’s hands—it remains unused.
- Internal Frustration: According to Kapost, only 35% of salespeople think marketing knows what they need, and 47% of marketing teams don’t have a documented buyer’s journey.
WHY A SMARKETING PLAYBOOK
Companies that create a SMarketing Playbook and make marketing and sales alignment a priority, generate 208% more revenue from their marketing efforts.
That’s because a SMarketing Playbook ensures that everyone is on the same page by mapping the internal processes of both marketing and sales. It results in better communication, more qualified leads, a shortened sales cycle, and taking full advantage of the potential synergy between both departments.
The idea is to get everyone on the same page with a unified, visible, and easily understood ‘lead to cash’ process. Then, you can streamline communication and handoffs between all team members, simplify day-to-day lead and opportunity management, and improve conversion and velocity.
With a SMarketing Playbook you’ll have:
- Clear and documented information about what contact information to gather for sales and marketing.
- A documented customer pipeline that outlines every aspect of the sales and marketing funnel.
- Details of all the intricate processes behind your sales and marketing relationship.
Read more in the first blog of this series, “The Importance of a SMarketing Playbook.”
VALUE OF THE SMARKETING PLAYBOOK
A SMarketing Playbook provides a comprehensive outline of both the marketing and sales funnels to ensure that neither team ends up focusing time and energy on activities that won’t produce results. It will help you create a new standard for doing business by empowering sales and marketing to be more productive and deliver a better buyer experience.
By aligning marketing and sales, you’ll create common goals, shared processes, improve employee motivation, and enhance training. Here’s what that looks like when using a SMarketing Playbook to guide your efforts.
Sales and marketing are often given separate customer-centric goals, which is fine except when those goals aren’t shared. It can result in contradictory customer experiences where neither team has the support they need to meet expectations.
On the other hand, common goals lead to mutual success. The SMarketing Playbook can help align your sales and marketing objectives. It will ensure everyone agrees when it comes to important metrics, such as lead generation, MQLs, percent of leads worked, lead-to-customer conversions, and more. The goal: to optimize your internal processes.
Sales and marketing might appear like two distinct departments, but there are many shared processes: attending industry events, sending emails, and creating content—just to name a few. A SMarketing Playbook can help ensure work isn’t wasted, and functions aren’t repeated unnecessarily by keeping everyone on the same page.
The Playbook will outline the dynamic and adaptable sales and marketing processes that work for both teams. Marketers will learn what sales enablement resources are needed for best results (brochures, presentations, etc.), and sales will learn how to be more effective at closing deals with marketing’s help.
With synced goals and processes outlined in the SMarketing Playbook, there is no miscommunication or confusion. Instead, every team member knows exactly what is expected of them.
When sales and marketing align, it boosts overall morale by making everyone feel engaged as a member of the larger team. When sales and marketing both feel that they have a voice in setting strategies and planning content, everyone is more motivated to close leads.
Every new marketing employee can and should be on-boarded with the SMarketing Playbook as his or her guide. It not only ensures that they quickly understand how to support sales, but it provides an outline of the processes, resources, and best practices they need to be successful.
By using the SMarketing Playbook in all training and onboarding, you can set expectations from the beginning, field any questions, and demonstrate the importance of cohesion amongst marketing and sales.
STREAMLINING MARKETING AND SALES HANDOFFS
As a CMO, you’re one of the leaders of team revenue. It’s just as much your responsibility as the Head of Sales, which is why immediately focusing on alignment is essential. It’s your job to ensure that all the work your marketing teams does, directly and indirectly, fuels sales growth.
A SMarketing Playbook can play a critical role in making this possible. It will become your bible for communication and alignment moving forward, and help maximize the percentage of valuable leads becoming qualified.
Check out our SMarketing Playbook Template to get started and to help visualize how your sales and marketing funnels work through the different stages and listen to our Podcast episode, where we discuss the many ways to utilize the SMarketing Playbook’s full potential.