Sales + Marketing Alignment = Successful Smarketing

Marketing and sales often get lumped together even though they are very different functions. However, for either to be successful, your marketing and sales teams must be in alignment.

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That cohesion will lead to successful campaigns that result in more qualified leads, better brand awareness, and potentially higher revenues.

What is Smarketing?

Sales and marketing alignment, also known as smarketing, simply means that your sales and marketing teams collaborate effectively and work together to achieve common goals and provide a better customer experience that, ultimately, increases business performance.

A good smarketing strategy enables your teams to communicate effectively as well as share tools, systems, and data – all of which results in better marketing campaigns and more qualified leads. When your sales and marketing align, it can pay off. According to HubSpot, companies with sales and marketing alignment have achieved a 208% increase in revenue from their marketing efforts.

Supply Chain’s Sales & Marketing Alignment

When it comes to the supply chain and transportation industries, we are on the upswing in garnering sales and marketing team alignment. According to our recent survey, collaborative alignment among supply chain and transportation companies remains common. 25% report full integration between the departments, which is down slightly from 27% last year. However, 52% say they were aligned in 2023 compared to 48% in 2022. Another 15% of respondents say their departments have a defined relationship that offers some sense of collaboration. But there are still 8% of supply chain companies with independently operating sales and marketing teams.

bar graph describing sales and marketing team's relationship

While it is great to see that the majority of our industry is aligned with a cohesive working relationship, we still have some work to do to improve alignment between sales and marketing departments. We have a few ideas on how teams struggling to work collaboratively can become better integrated. 

6 Tips to Get Your Teams Working Together Successfully

1. Establish Shared Goals and Metrics:

In order to be successful and work as one, sales and marketing have to agree on their end goals. That also means understanding how they’ll determine if those goals are met (i.e., which metrics to track). 


Teams must shift their language from siloed teams like “marketing pipeline” and “sales funnel” to “shared marketing funnel” to emphasize teamwork and that everyone is working toward the same outcome. 


For some companies, they are even changing how they refer to their marketing and sales departments. While marketing is charged with bringing in leads and sales is responsible for revenue, your company can’t achieve increased revenue without leads.


Therefore, companies are establishing a revenue team that encompasses both sales and marketing. This ensures everyone is on the same page and working toward the same end goal.


2. Collaborate on Content Across the Buyer Journey: 

Obviously, this can’t be done until both teams align on the buyer journey and then establish how to communicate with prospects on that journey. 


To collaborate on content creation for the journey, teams should:

    • Conduct regular brainstorming sessions to ensure consistent messaging that educates buyers about the organization and its solutions.

    • Focus on creating resources that sales teams truly need, reducing wasted efforts on unnecessary content.


3. Integrate Technology for Seamless Collaboration:

To ease collaboration on disparate teams, technology is a great tool. It can help with communication, document sharing, task assignment, and progress tracking. Integrated technology solutions such as CRM systems, marketing automation platforms, and project management tools are a great place to ease collaboration. Tools like Slack, Google Docs, and Zoom or Microsoft Teams can ensure everyone stays on the same page with any updates, important project notes, or customer feedback. 


The Revenue Marketing Alliance found that 78% of successful smarketing teams had integrated technology that shared data. 


4. Schedule Regular Meetings:

There’s no better way to ensure you’re all on the same page than meeting regularly and establishing open communication. Use these meetings to share experiences, successes, challenges, and campaign performance.


Ensure representation from both sales and marketing teams to keep everyone updated and aligned.


5. Prioritize Customer-Centric Approaches:

Putting the customer first helps both sides create focused approaches or strategies. When communicating with customers, everyone uses the same language, social proof points, and ideas. 


You can also use Voice of Customer (VOC) feedback to better understand customer pain points, preferences, and language, and then use that in your content creation or even product development process.


6. Celebrate Wins as a Unified Team:

Teams that celebrate together will boost morale and foster a sense of appreciation for all co-workers.


Encourage your teams to share learnings to promote knowledge exchange and insights. Share when metrics and goals are met and congratulate each other on a job well done. 

By implementing these strategies, businesses can enhance collaboration between marketing and sales teams, leading to improved alignment, increased productivity, and ultimately, greater success in achieving shared objectives.

To learn more about how supply chain sales and marketing teams are aligned as well as what pain points they are facing, the marketing objectives they are focused on and the tactics they are investing in, check out our 2024 Outlook and Trends: Supply Chain Marketing State of the Industry Survey Findings.

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