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Bring sales and marketing together

In many businesses, the relationship between sales and marketing is akin to that of the Montagues and Capulets, both equally stacked in the game of love and war.

Today, we extend the olive branch and show that sales and marketing are fundamentally intertwined; one is not as effective without the other.

Here’s why.

1. Because making money is not easy

Making money requires a fine tuned and well greased money making machine (ie. the spinning cogs that are your sales and marketing staff, your internal processes and sales pipeline). When running at optimum efficiency, you can achieve a reduction in the cost of acquisition and sales.

Unfortunately, the reverse is also true.

For example, Darren operates a small accounting and financial services firm in Western Sydney. He was telling me his recent fax campaign went dismally. Darren’s campaign was cleverly written, his offering was highly valued and he had targeted his communications appropriately to each market segment. What let him down was that fact that he blasted his fax out to 5,000 recipients, far too great a number for his two business development managers (BDMs) to follow up, assess each client’s needs, close the deal and then account manage.

By the time his poor BDMs were able to follow up the campaign with phone calls, the leads had gone cold. They got many expressions of interest but only 2 new clients, making the cost of acquisition per client incredibly high.

2. Because the machine needs to be constantly fed

Whether you provide a product or service, your sales pipeline is the selling journey that prospects go on to become a customer or client. Give or take a few steps, a typical sales pipeline is mapped out below:

Leads – Qualified lead – Sale – Customer – Repeat customer

Without marketing, it’s a slow and arduous road to get leads. Without sales staff, it becomes difficult to close the sale. Businesses should have staff and processes that facilitate each stage of the pipeline, but when marketing and sales are misaligned, either bottlenecks appear or the pipeline stops being fed.
The net result – no leads, no revenue. It’s that simple.

Thus, sales strategies and marketing strategies must work hand in hand to attract and push leads through your pipeline.

3. To get the most out of the machine

Ideally your business should be maximising the dollar value per sale.

If you run a small business, you will know that acquiring new customers costs more than selling to existing ones. There is no simpler way to increase your revenue than to have existing customers, who already know and enjoy your offerings, spend more.

To achieve this, you need great customer intelligence and great execution. Finding market niches, developing competitive strengths and ultimately, selling the right offering to the right customer requires knowledge about your competitors, customers and your markets. All of this is reliant on the information and development synergies that stem from sales and marketing.

Although it seems quite obvious, you would be surprised at how many companies’ sales and marketing activities don’t sing in unison (even the big companies often get this wrong).

Develop your sales strategies, develop your marketing strategies and make sure that the two are aligned because now you can see that the costs of failing to do so maybe greater than you think!

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