Successful sales means goods are shipped, services are rendered, contracts are signed, cash registers ring. Clear-cut win or lose, by the numbers.
Marketing results are fuzzier. If Marketing’s mission is to serve up engaged, enthusiastic leads, ready for Sales to close – measurements can be slippery. Exactly what makes “good leads” that fill the “coffee is for closers” cup? How can those closers know whether these hot leads are really sales-ready? Did Marketing engage them with timely, relevant information for maximum efficiency?
Basically, how well have we moved that tire-kicker along the pipeline we call …
The Buyer’s Journey. The path from Suspect >> Prospect >> Web visitor >> Lead >> Hot lead >> Trial customer >> Repeat customer >> Brand recommender
You’re not selling impulse purchases. Your sales are more complex, with more dollars at stake. Your sales and profit growth depends on finding, identifying, informing and engaging prospects, which means Marketing and Sales need to execute a strategy that moves buyers along on their journey efficiently.
You can’t manage what you don’t measure.
- What do you use to collect data on who’s in the pipeline? Goldmine? SalesForce? One of a dozen other CRMs? Maybe Excel spreadsheets? A rolodex from 1989? Post-it notes?
- What do you use to inform prospects? Email, using MailChimp or Constant Contact or Campaign Monitor or another ESP?
- What do you use for Social Media monitoring and outreach? Hubspot. Hootsuite or maybe a green intern you just hired?
- What do you use for marketing automation, to tag website visitors, see what pages they visited and for how long? To see if this was their first or fifteenth visit? To respond to prospect behavior and trigger useful, well-timed responses?
- What do you use for analytics, to see if any of this is working? Maybe Google Analytics? If so, did someone accountable report results today? This week? This month?
- Are the tools in your “marketing stack” (including your answers to questions 1-5) integrated seamlessly? Can salespeople access all tools with one login? Do you see a daily report? Can you measure the ROI of every marketing tactic?
Getting a Sales & Marketing Management [S&MM] toolkit would give you real-time numbers to manage these complex issues. When customized strategically for your business, you can both raise your marketing effectiveness through marketing automation, and allow your closers to focus less on sales grunt work and do more what they do best: close.
This article was contributed by Bob Killian, founder and CEO of Killian Branding, whose agency created my brand name, logo and website.
Dave Baney is the founder and CEO of 55 Questions, LLC and author of "The 3x5 Coach: A Practical Guide to Coaching Your Team for Greater Results and Happier People", which is now available in Paperback or a Kindle version at https://tinyurl.com/y8ecykfy