People often forget exactly what marketing is. Many people don’t understand what Marketing does. This is somewhat of a pet peeve of many marketers. Some organizations call their sales team, their “Marketing” team. Some organizations say they don’t need marketing, let alone allocate 20% for their Marketing budget. Some Marketers take an elitist approach to the Salespeople and think they are completely un-necessary. Even some Marketers reject the idea of a hybrid Sales/Marketing role (which is ideal in today’s business climate). Bottom line — Companies need both. This is not a new concept.
Let’s take a look at this graphic to give you a visual on the topic:
Marketing drives sales. Salespeople close sales. Unfortunately in many companies, there is a positional ego game that is fought between Sales and Marketing. Here’s what we know:
A Sales Team cannot function autonomously without a Marketing Team. The Marketing team does not work for the Sales Team. They drive one another. If your Marketing Team is working correctly, it should be driving leads to the Sales Team, who in turn, should be capable and confident enough to be able to close a sale. This isn’t something just invented today, this is a structure that works in millions of companies internationally for decades.
One thought to keep in mind is: why is mine not working like this? First, literally nothing is more irritating to many marketers than a salesperson coming to them and saying, “Hey I need this done for a customer!” 9 times out of 10, what happens then is the salesperson hands a menial task to the marketer such as making a “nice looking PowerPoint” or “making a flyer”. Let’s say this, if you can’t put together a professional looking presentation or flyer for your customers in the first place; you shouldn’t be interfacing with customers.
Second, is your “Jack of All Trades” Salesperson. This man or woman can do it all. “Sales tools? Who needs them! Give me a business card and I will sell water to a well.” Realistically, this Salesperson turns into “Jack of All Trades – Master of None”. This person is struggling to make sales and due to their ego, typically will drive customers to a more readily prepared Salesperson.
Third, is your “My content closes the deal itself” Marketer. This is the Marketer that refuse a hybrid Sales/Marketing position. “Hey! I’m just over here working on the UX for our website and made some AMAZING business cards! The money will start rolling in!” Yes, these people do exist. Let’s please get rid of them.
Marketers, please remember this: your website, your interactive PDFs, your podcasts, and anything else you do absolutely DOES NOT close the sale automatically. Nothing sells itself. In a world where content is king — sure, your PPC ads bring in leads. Having a Google Search Ranking of 6+ is ideal. Your UX is absolutely unmatched! Unless your Marketing position is a hybrid and you are in a small company which requires you to both market and sell, you HAVE TO WORK TOGETHER WITH SALESPEOPLE. Still, though, even for the hybrid, this applies. You’re not going to spend $900 a week on Facebook ads and just sit back and wait for the sales to come. Your door will be closing and the next Sales/Marketing team will be capitalizing on your shortcomings.
Long story short, Marketing and Sales drive one another. Without one another — profitable sales just don’t happen. Getting caught up in the positional ego game can ultimately kill your revenue, and eventually ruin your company.