Sales & Marketing Alignment Notes from Sara Larsen

Sara Larsen

Trends driving stronger alignment (past 2-3 years)

1)  Buyers journey..customer driven journey, marketing plays a bigger role. Marketing has known this for a while, sales now realizes it. Rise of social selling.

2)  Technology. Its just better than it was 3-4 years ago. The intent signals are more accurate, and its more integrated into the stack

3)  Rise of SaaS which requires a stronger sales/marketing alignment for the full life cycle- not just customer acquisition

Framework of alignment

Questions to ask:

What is our marketing map?

  • Segments
  • Accounts
  • Personsas
  • Buying Committee
  • User, Buyer needs
  • Influencers, Champions, Economic buyers

What outcomes are we trying to achieve-- what is the constitution of Pipeline / Closed deals?

  • What type of customers (back to market map prioritization)
  • Existing, new, divisions, etc
  • What volume, value
  • What deal size
  • What elements are required to drive predictability

Framework to execute

1) People

  • Shared goal alignment between marketing/sales (i.e. Pipeline- NOT LEADS)
  • Training for marketing and sales on the market map and key elements of the desired outcome
    • Common terminology
    • Shared understanding of the market map
    • Deep training on the personas and buying committee- both sales and marketing
    • Common success metrics

2) Process

  • One customer driven lifecycle process (may need to loop customer success in
  • this)
  • Common terminology and ‘gates’ that are part of a common cadence
  • Sales and marketing cadence-- joint. Not a ‘present to us’. Own it together. I.e. Pipeline War room
  • Check in process effectiveness- a process should help with outcomes- do you see that connection. It shouldn’t slow down or limit the team
  • Ensure there is a loop back to product in the process - they don’t need to be 100% involved all the time, but need to be aware of learnings (i.e. is the market map effective to get to outcome, or are there product issues that are preventing close?)

3) Technology - This is an enabler of your people and process. Technology can’t be the sole glue in alignment.

  • Can you answer what “business problem” or “opportunity” does the technology solve? (i.e. its not just cool tech, but its tied to your outcome)
  • Does the technology natively connect across the customer lifecycle (...this may be nirvana..but does it connect in enough of the right places?)
  • Is marketing working more in their own stack or in a shared stack with sales-- integrate to the core platforms that are native to your outcome- this will most likely be salesforce
  • Ensure sales and marketing both have visibility and trust technology decisions
  • Regularly review technology effectiveness ​
Previous Article
6sense Reaches Milestones for Customer, Company, and Revenue Growth
6sense Reaches Milestones for Customer, Company, and Revenue Growth

With increases in company’s customer base and a retention rate that exceeds industry benchmarks, 6sense ach...

Next Blog
Sales & Marketing Alignment is a Journey, Clearly Not a Destination
Sales & Marketing Alignment is a Journey, Clearly Not a Destination

An hour wasn't enough to adequately address all variables and questions around marketing/sales/SDR alignmen...