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How to succeed in getting sales and marketing to work harmoniously

This outtake is from an hour of discussion recorded exclusively for our Pivotal Marketer Community on Facebook (where the full recording is available) sees Mike Berry, marketing trainer and consultant and MMC’s Rene Power discussing how sales and marketing can practically work together to achieve common outcomes and some of the winners and losers in the pandemic.

It’s the third in a series of serialisations on marketing strategy, be sure to check all new posts as they publish (or see the recommended reading below).

Ring fencing a percentage of budget for experimentation. Just before we move on, I’ve got a comment in the chat on Facebook which I think is appropriate to pick up right now.

And it’s along the lines of how in a very sales-led organisation do we help to change the mindset with some of these models that we use and get people thinking more in terms of a market or a marketing perspective?

I’ve come across businesses like this and it is about engaging those people in the process really explaining the benefits of this work and how it will ultimately get you more of the right sorts of customers. Well have you got any insights to maybe share on that? So sales led organisation.

Mike Berry:

Yeah. It’s interesting, isn’t it? What is a sales led organisation? Are we talking B2B or B2C and I suspect it might be B2B. In which case you definitely have, there’s definitely a role for the senior salespeople.

Some of the recent jargon is ABM (account-based marketing), but maybe the salespeople wouldn’t want to let him to be called marketing because they don’t believe in it.

There can be some fundamental prejudices. When I’ve seen B2B working best, sales and marketing actually respect each other and recognise that each is doing a very important job.

And in big organisations, one way of absolutely killing that cooperation is for the two senior people not to get along. Then it becomes very tribal “we’re the sales guys and how those marketers who really don’t get it, do they?”

And the marketing people think all the sales guys are thugs and would just give away all the profit by reducing the price in order to get more volume.
And of course good salespeople are not like that and good marketing people are not like that.

If I were the CEO, I would be encouraging marketing and sales at the senior level to publicly respect each other and attend each other’s meetings and say, “Look, in a B2B situation marketing can really help us in sales. They can open the door for us. They can give us support. When you call your prospect, they can say, oh yeah, I saw you on the website. I’ve heard of you guys. Yeah, you’re doing a lot in this. And you can say to them, just have a look at this link, our marketing guys have put together this video on YouTube. It will explain to how we installed this for one of your competitors.” (which always gets the prospect listening because they’re all concerned about their competitors).

So then marketing is opening the door for sales and marketing should also recognise that they can’t sell the product directly from the website.

Their job is to work with sales and some of the best case studies in B2B or marketing and sales working really closely together with personalised messages, with CRM, with all that stuff that Salesforce and their competitors do so well.

In other words, marketing automation, you’ve got every touch point with the prospect is harmonised and synchronised right up to the sale and beyond.
And that’s not as common as it should be. There’s still a lot of prejudice and misunderstanding.

So. if a sales based organisation is like that, it has to come from the top and it also can be led by the departmental heads actually sharing some for their people. “Yeah, come on let’s play nicely with those marketing guys because they are helping us at the end of the day.”

And marketing saying, “Well, we need sales. So can we just sometimes attend each other’s meetings, network a bit and build some bridges up and down the organisation?”

The old cliche is silos, isn’t it? And if you live in the countryside, silos are good but in marketing silos are definitely bad.


Yeah. I think the challenge in a product organisation partic