By Win Salyards, Marketing Coordinator at Heinz Marketing
I cannot overstate how vital sales and marketing alignment is to a successful ABM program sale. With a well-maintained sales-marketing partnership, prospects are participants in a seamless sales pipeline transition through to the end, with the right content and message served up to them at the right time. With no alignment, the funnel breaks, prospects receive mixed messaging poorly targeted to where they are in the buyer journey. Sales-marketing alignment can make or break an ABM program, so with that in mind, here are 5 best practices for marketers to support their sales team partners.
Develop Sales Collateral Content
Not all content needs to be customer-facing. It shouldn’t be. Developing content to distribute internally to train and support the knowledge base within the sales (and customer success) team helps keep everyone aligned on your company’s unique value proposition and messaging. Types of content that you should include in sales collateral are assets like buyer persona documents, how-to guides, FAQs, playbooks, battle cards, and more. Work with your sales colleagues to understand what will support them best.
Educate and Coach
This goes hand in hand with sales collateral. Marketing teams should educate and coach their sales colleagues on what messaging should be used, best ways to personalize and email, or how to work through a playbook. This isn’t a one-way relationship. However, marketing teams should listen and learn from their sales partners how best to help them and gain greater insight into the ideal customer.
Build the Right Team of Stakeholders
To support marketing-sales alignment and the previous two best practices, you need to build a team of stakeholders. They should be members of sales and marketing (and customer success if included). They should consist of senior and management team members, those with experience and proven knowledge and success.
Develop Customer-Facing Content that Compliments the Sales Process
Build out content that supports sales’ initiatives and processes. This needs to be bottom-funnel content that can be hosted on your website or sent to a prospect by sales. These can include executive summaries, technical sheets, case studies, and more.
Develop a Rollout and Execution Strategy
Finally, work with your sales team partners to develop strategies for executing and rolling the assets and programs aligned between sales and marketing. Ensure everyone is aligned on goals (sales goals included) and use each asset before launch.
Sales-marketing alignment is critical to ABM success, so don’t sleep on taking that first step in getting your teams aligned. Ensure you’re getting the most from your ABM programs through a healthy sales-marketing alignment strategy.