Sales is from Mars, Marketing is from Venus


Posted By Kaitlyn Myers | May 16, 2013


The theme at last week’s Sirius Decisions Summit was alignment - how do we get Sales, Marketing, and Product aligned?

Kudos to Sirius Decisions for effectively weaving this theme throughout the sessions during the event. This alignment topic is so relevant! With new technologies and methodologies, our environments are ever-changing, and everyone is moving so fast! In order to be successful, we must work together and “talk” to each other.

It sounds so simple, doesn’t it?

Successful organizations are working inter-departmentally and planning and strategizing together. Less successful organizations are missing that alignment component and working in silos. Or, missing key people during the planning process. So, it must not be so simple.

It made me think about Sales and Marketing in terms of the age-old struggle men and women have with communication and working together. (Product – we’ll pull you guys in on a later post.)

We’ve all heard the saying, “Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus”. Those of us in Marketing would probably use similar worlds-apart definitions by saying that sales seems to be on Uranus. All the friggin’ time! But, for this analogy, and because I don’t want to start a fight with my sales team, I’ll say, they’re on Mars and we’re on Venus.

                  Sales is from Mars, Marketing is from Venus

For us modern marketers, "lead to revenue" is what it's all about. Tying our marketing and lead generation efforts to sales and increased revenues proves impact and alignment with strategic business objectives. These metrics-driven discussions were a key point made over and over again at the Sirius Decisions Summit. But as we learned, the tools aren't enough. Without clear, open alignment between Sales and Marketing teams, true visibility and optimization of the end-to-end buying cycle isn't possible.

Sales doesn't care about what Marketing cares about. Sales is the hunter/farmer – out finding the “big kill”, while Marketing is busy nurturing prospects and building relationships – and writing blog articles. We have very different ideas about how to grow our business.

Lead scores, drip or nurture campaigns, or even how many times prospects are coming to your website doesn't mean squat to a salesperson. Sales doesn't want to go out and dig through a library of awesome content and marketing tools we’ve created for them. And they certainly don’t appreciate that we painstakingly created 10 versions of 20 datasheets with custom messages for the different vertical markets they’re selling into. They need the best information and tools fast so they can move that deal forward and cash their commission check. Plus, we know we could bring them as many leads as there are stars in the sky and we’d still be told they don’t have enough leads.

On our planet, we Marketers care more about relationships, market awareness and getting noticed. We want to nurture relationships and warm folks up before hitting them with a sales pitch or packet of information that may not apply to them. Hey – we've seen in the numerous webinars we watch that these methods work! And, we put so much work into creating valuable content to HELP the sales team. Why can’t they understand these things are important!?

The truth is, both functions are critical to the survival of any organization. We need to communicate and work together to build a long-term, healthy, and successful relationship.

So, how do we build a bridge across the galaxy and align our two planets when it seems like we’re worlds apart?

Those 200 pieces of content that you created could be much more effective if they were put in the sales rep’s hands at the exact right time they needed it – just like a shooting star. Instead of asking Sales to board a rocket ship and fly over to the Marketing hub where all that good stuff exists, wouldn’t it be so much easier to deliver the right content at the right time in the selling cycle? And, dare to dream, but wouldn’t it be otherworldly if you could actually see, in real-time, the effects of your marketing campaigns, events, content, etc. in one central location? What a cosmic shift that would be in your company!

It’s no secret that the way we market and sell, and interact between the two is changing almost daily. Incorporating the various selling methodologies with the latest and greatest marketing techniques and tools provides a much more effective and efficient way for Sales and Marketing to interact – in real-time. Best of all, we’re tailoring our message and style to the prospect. So, all that great intel that Marketing has gathered over months of nurture campaigns is actually being used by the sales rep during the opportunity.

See how all of the dots get connected here? I’m already seeing the Big Dipper start to form...

Big dipper

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