Sales and Marketing: The Original Game of Thrones

sales vs marketing

This is a great infographic from the Pardot team on organizations where sales and marketing struggle to align themselves. As a marketing consultant, we’ve struggled with sales-driven organizations as well. One key issue is that sales-driven organizations often apply the same expectations they have for their sales team to the marketing team.

We get hired by sales-driven organizations because they realize that their brand hasn’t built awareness, authority and trust online and that their sales team is getting demolished by competitors that do. But then once the investment is made in building that awareness, authority, and trust – the sales leader starts chomping at the bit on lead quality, lead quantity, speed of the close, and value of the engagement. It’s a very strange expectation to apply in the short term. We want to measure momentum when it comes to marketing.

We want to ensure, with a great marketing strategy, that we continue to grow awareness, build authority, and gain trust. Through communication with the sales organization, we want to make sure that we’re producing the right breadcrumbs that will help the sales person close the sale. Over time, we want to watch lead quality improve, lead quantity increase, cost per lead flatten out, increase the speed of close and value of the engagement. We should be observing this over a long time… months and years, not instantaneously.

With different goals, motivations, and tools, aligning your company’s sales and marketing departments can be a daily challenge. With each team staking their claim to different areas of the business process, it can be hard to find any common ground with which to bring them together. However, when sales and marketing work together to generate leads, nurture relationships, and close deals, a company can thrive. Matt Wesson, Pardot.

Attribution is trickier. I don’t believe that any sale should be solely attributed to either or. Your sales person should be able to step forward and thank the marketing team for informing and driving the lead towards the close. Your marketing team should be able to provide overall analysis on how their efforts are helping the sales representative. That’s why I appreciate the conclusion of this infographic – pointing to how marketing automation – with lead grading / scoring, lead nurturing and reporting will help the sales team and direct the marketing team to improving overall acquisition strategies.

Side note: As a Marketing Soldier, I’d put my CMS with landing pages and calls-to-action way ahead of Twitter and even Adwords. Content (with an established brand) has to be the foundation of any inbound marketing strategy.

Sales versus Marketing and the Game of Thrones

What do you think?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.