In today’s B2B marketing landscape, your strategy must be targeted in order to reach your growth goals. Whether it’s digital marketing, inbound marketing, direct marketing or the actual sales conversation, buyers expect a personalized approach. To get to the point of (successful) personalization, your organization must understand buyer needs. Truly understanding them is a bottleneck in the Sales Enablement environment.
This problem occurs when there is too much of an emphasis on product features, rather than the buyer themselves. Focus too much on your product and you risk losing your customer. Successful companies manage to link product value with buyer need. In order to execute this optimely within your salesforce, you need to develop cohesive messaging. Both marketing and sales are responsible for this. In order to give you a better understanding of these two stakeholders, we’ll dig deeper into both stories:
Marketing’s Side of the Story
Most B2B companies think that marketing has the biggest responsibility over identifying buyer needs. Looking at the traditional sales funnel, marketing is responsible for entry, and is thus the first stakeholder to understand and address buyer needs. If marketing doesn’t do this well, they can’t attract leads, and sales can’t close them. Ultimately, your business won’t grow.
The key factor for success is being hyper relevant to the audience. In other words, marketing is responsible for making sure that the messaging about the product and value perfectly matches with the buyer needs. In marketing campaigns, but even more when delivering the message to the sales team.
This issue is often a bottleneck for many companies. Many struggle with delivering a consistent buyer focused message. This can ultimately result in an ineffective, and mostly, blind sales team. Not exactly what sales enablement is all about.
Sales’ Side of the Story
It would not be fair to point the finger for poor communication solely on marketing. In fact, marketing has little control over how sales handles buyer needs. There might be content available that’s perfectly fit for the buyer’s needs, yet if sales doesn’t feel like using it, they won’t. To make sure that this doesn’t result into a typical blame game between sales and marketing, having a sales driven marketing culture is the way to go.
A good salesperson should be able to react to the buyer’s needs during the sales conversation without a problem, and if marketing did their job right, there should be content ready to educate the buyer. Content that salespeople like to use, and buyers love to consume.
That’s not everything, if there is misalignment between sales and marketing on buyer needs, it should be sales that takes the first step to inform marketing. Only then can you talk about a sales driven marketing culture. Only then will you be able to convert happy customers and scale your business. It’s a two-way communication process that drives a business to be more buyer-centric. That’s why a sales enablement role is important. This person is in the middle of sales and marketing, making marketing more efficient and sales more effective.
Truth be told, if you don’t have a person who’s dedicated to sales enablement, you’re going to have inefficiencies.
A marketer? Maybe. A salesperson? Potentially. The best option is to go for someone who understands both worlds. Someone who know’s how a marketing team works and how things are run from a sales perspective. Only then can you break down these two silos, resulting in a powerful sales machine that’s hyper relevant to the buyer.
- Marketing is responsible for delivering buyer need insights
- Sales is responsible for delivering feedback and additional insights
- Without a good communications strategy, you’re blind to buyer needs
- Without someone responsible for sales enablement, you aren’t going to hit the sweet spot of sales growth.
Back to You
Do you have someone who’s responsible for sales enablement? Is that person actively communicating buyer insights between sales and marketing? Are they breaking down these two silos?
This article originally appeared on the Showpad blog.
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