But although at times I can be nostalgic, I still hold firm that a marketer needs to be able to connect to the sales team and work with, not dictate to, the foot soldiers that are out there interacting with our target audiences.
Many times I have witnessed the battle between marketing and sales, which usually consists of exchanges along the lines of: ‘You’re not providing enough leads’, which is inevitably countered with, ‘I am not here to spoon feed you’. Anyone familiar with the sales / marketing dynamic will be familiar with this type of special pleading. Yet the truth remains we should all be adding our weight behind a common purpose – and that is to produce results.
There is an art to connecting with sales. The key is to really listen to what they are saying, value their input and show how we as marketers can honestly and effectively add real value.
Measurement and accountability are two of the primary ways of doing this. Always be transparent about your activities and their results, as this ensures the sales side of the equation knows exactly what marketing is striving to achieve. Don’t be afraid to celebrate success when a direct hit is made, but when there is a miss, above all, learn from it and don’t hide behind the cloak.