I guess many of us would approach this question by thinking about our own experiences in the workplace, and perhaps even how deep-rooted these are in us.
Some of us may have always been trained in ‘one way’ in sales or in marketing; cut us in half and it’s written through us like a stick of candy rock. We may not have ever been allowed to perform business in any other way.
Others of us may have moved to different companies, or industry sectors, and had the opportunities to gain a broader outlook, depending on the organisation’s culture or philosophy. These people are industry’s bread rolls, fortunate enough to have soaked up the streams of juicy knowledge thrown their way.
A way forward was ultimately born – one in which new ideas to generate business was based on ‘what works, and what doesn’t work’. We need to get back to basics…
Breaking it down
…If we go back to the basics of sales and marketing, we arrive at a definition along the lines of: Marketing uses research and persuasive strategies to generate potential leads and sales. Sales is the tactic used to close the leads and sales. Quite simply put, I agree, but it boils down to strategy and tactics.
So, if Sales and Marketing work closely together, using the same strategy and tactics, would this generate more leads, sales and return clients? The answer is quite possibly: ‘Yes, it’s called Account Based Marketing (or ABM)’.
Account Based Marketing
Fundamentally, any successful business needs to make sure that its Sales and Marketing teams are speaking to each other to ensure that they are talking to the same audience.
For a long time, marketers have created campaigns for people in a particular market or industry. At the same time, Sales has been focused on targeting just those accounts that are likely to buy. With ABM, Sales and Marketing are both focused on specific target accounts and are working together, communicating effectively and efficiently, towards a common goal.
Account-based marketers are focused on targeting specific accounts, individuals or companies. Marketing activities gear their campaign towards these specific accounts and not just aiming a general broad sweep across the sector the account sits within.
Sales activities are also geared towards the same accounts… that leads to harmonious operational activities between sales and marketing, resulting in increased revenue.
It’s no use having the Marketing department talking to start-ups, and the Sales team talking to enterprise level clients...they should act as one team, with one goal.
Sales and Marketing = Joined-up thinking