9 Questions for Marketing and Sales to Avoid ‘Terrible’ Leads


“These leads are terrible!” said every Sales person at least once in their life. 

As a Marketer, that sucks to hear. Though it’s not always all Marketing’s fault…

Over the years, Marketing and Sales have gotten a lot closer. Where they used to work in silos and communicate infrequently, today’s Marketing and Sales teams are more aligned than they’ve ever been. Alignment is increasingly important in understanding both your ideal target accounts and ideal buyer personas, and in measuring the effectiveness of your campaigns. 

Where Marketing and Sales alignment struggles most

Honestly, communication is the biggest hurdle between these two teams.

Have you ever said to yourself “Ugh I don’t understand why they can’t seem to get this right…”

If you have, my next question would be to ask if you actually vocalized your concerns with those who aren’t “getting it right”. More times than not, that doesn’t actually happen.

Marketing provides insight for the top of the funnel, but they can’t provide good leads without the feedback from Sales at the bottom. Additionally, the feedback won’t be helpful unless it’s tangible. Marketing usually has questions like:

  • Why aren’t these leads great?
  • Where in your sales process are they getting stuck?
  • What metrics specifically do you have to prove these leads aren’t converting?
  • What feedback have they provided you?

In other words, some of these leads from Marketing may suck, yes, but if that phrase is being used consistently it’s more than likely that Marketing and Sales aren’t actually in alignment on their shared revenue funnel.

9 Questions to Ensure Marketing and Sales Alignment

To ensure Marketing and Sales are coordinated, use these 9 questions before every campaign: 

  1. What’s the specific pain or problem we solve through this campaign?
  2. What makes our solution different from competition?
  3. Who is our target? Who has this pain or problem? (Be specific in your target account and buyer personas)
  4. What are the goals of this campaign? (Again, get tangible here)
  5. How do we define Marketing Qualified Lead? (Definition, hand-off, responsibilities, etc.)
  6. How do we define Sales Qualified Lead? (Definition, hand-off, responsibilities, etc.)
  7. What specific responsibilities does Marketing have to drive and nurture leads?
  8. What specific responsibilities does Sales have to nurture and close leads?
  9. What specific metrics will we use to track success? (Remember revenue-generating metrics are more important than vanity metrics…)

Before any campaign launches, ensure both teams are in agreement with their answers. We know organizations can continue to function when these teams work in silos…though I can’t promise you they’ll be effective. 

Without Marketing and Sales alignment, your revenue generating machine runs the concern of becoming stagnant.

For those who want to continue to grow, use these 9 questions to bridge the gap between Marketing and Sales.