SOURCE: InsideView

InsideView

February 03, 2016 08:00 ET

Report Reveals the Secrets to Aligning Sales and Marketing Teams for High Performance

Distinct Differences Found Between Companies With Leading and Lagging Financial Performance

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - February 03, 2016) - InsideView powers the world's business conversations. Today the company announced the results of a report on sales and marketing alignment based on a survey of nearly 1,000 sales and marketing leaders from across industries. The report, "Crack the Code of Sales and Marketing Alignment", uncovers key reasons why sales and marketing teams are not aligned and reveals best practices in alignment from high-performing companies.

According to the survey, more than one in four sales executives (27 percent) say they could do a better job in marketing than their marketing coworkers, while about the same fraction (26 percent) of marketers call their sales counterparts "a bunch of mavericks." Aligning these teams is a challenge in every company. The report found that high-performing companies tend to be well aligned through a set of key behaviors that directly address the top challenges reported by sales and marketing leaders.

The top challenges to sales and marketing alignment cited were "communication" (49 percent), followed by "flawed and broken processes" (43 percent), and "sales and marketing measured by different metrics" (40 percent).

Only one in five cited lack of sales and marketing technology as a challenge; however, both sales and marketing teams are looking to tools to increase prospecting success. Seventy-five percent of respondents identified "intelligence about prospects and customers" as the most important tool to drive successful prospecting, followed by data/lead enrichment (51 percent), then predictive intelligence (46 percent).

"There's no silver bullet to align sales and marketing," said Umberto Milletti, CEO of InsideView. "It takes hard work, commitment, and innovation on the part of both teams. It also takes support from the top. This report shows that dedication is worth it. Companies that align sales and marketing get results on the bottom line."

Best Practices in Alignment

To address these challenges, high-performing companies have adopted common behaviors that more tightly align sales and marketing. The report found patterns among the respondents who worked for companies that had exceeded revenue goals. The common behaviors of these high-performing companies include:

  • Focus on lead quality. High-performing companies focus on lead quality, while lower-performing companies focus on quantity.
  • Focus on pipeline. Sales and marketing executives at high-performing companies meet to discuss pipeline twice as frequently as their counterparts at lower-performing companies.
  • Focus on data enrichment. High-performing companies place an increased priority on database quality and enrichment. One in four respondents from lower-performing companies said their "database is a mess".
  • Communicate on metrics. Sales and marketing leaders at high-performing companies are five times more likely to work on lead scoring together.

The report goes on to recommend steps on how companies can put these (and other processes) into practice to achieve tighter sales and marketing alignment and better performance.

Sales and Marketing Are Friends More than Foes

To uncover whether the divide between sales and marketing is too big to bridge, the study also surveyed sales and marketing executives on the relationships between departments. The good news is that the majority of sales and marketing executives alike characterized their relationship as positive. However, some negative attitudes remain, often from a lack of understanding of the other team's responsibilities and goals.

Sales attitudes can downplay the difficulty of the marketer's job:

  • 27 percent of sales think they could do a better job in marketing than their marketing coworkers
  • 55 percent of sales thinks marketing isn't accountable for pipeline
  • 65 percent of sales thinks that marketing spends most of their time on branding/events

Marketers stereotype sales:

  • 16 percent of marketers say they could do a better job selling than their sales colleagues
  • 22 percent of marketers said sales people are greedy
  • 26 percent of marketers said sales people are a bunch of mavericks

Despite those holding stereotypes, nearly 60 percent of sales rank the relationship as good, and close to 80 percent of marketing rank the relationship as good. In addition, the majority do not take misalignment personally. Close to two-thirds of sales says they are friends with people on their marketing team, and 90 percent of marketers say they are friends with their sales colleagues. Hostility between the two camps is waning, replaced by respect and an interest in closer collaboration.

For more information about the survey or a copy of the report: Crack the Code of Sales and Marketing Alignment

About InsideView

InsideView powers the world's business conversations. Its leading market intelligence platform helps sales and marketing teams quickly identify new opportunities and effectively connect with prospects and customers. InsideView is the only company that begins with the industry's most accurate company and contact data and enhances it with relevant, real-time business insights and authentic connections. More than 20,000 companies use InsideView data to find and qualify the best targets, engage with more relevancy, close more deals, and retain and expand accounts. InsideView headquarters are in San Francisco. For more information, visit InsideView at www.InsideView.com, twitter, or read the InsideView blog.

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