Ah, the age-old conundrum: you spend countless hours and brain cells creating high-quality demand generation content, yet sales teams and Channel Partners have no idea it exists. The reality is, sales and marketing teams typically work in separate silos, rather than in sync, and as a result stellar content (more often than not) falls by the wayside. In fact, 80% of content created by marketers goes unused by sales, which accounts for a considerable amount of missed opportunities. We know you’ve heard it a million times before, but in order to effectively engage prospects and drive demand , marketing and sales must come together. And more importantly, marketing must create enablement content that sales will ACTUALLY want to use.
Why Should Marketing Care?
It’s no secret that salespeople are results-oriented, hence the common mantra “always closing”. While marketers on the other hand are focused on intentional content that fills the funnel. Between competing demands and schedules, timelines are rarely aligned, which can not only cause angst, but more commonly leads to renegade sales tactics. Sound familiar? This LinkedIn survey actually found that despite the fact that 60% of marketing and sales professionals believe this deviation in departments hurts the company’s overall financial performance, they remain misaligned.
Teams that depend on each other must have a cohesive strategy in order to thrive. But how do you achieve this synergy and influence sales to share your content?
Want Loyal Salespeople? Let Them Customize!
If you’re asking “what kind of content will sales actually use”?, the answer is simple: ANY content, so long as they can customize it! Salespeople and Channel Partners alike know the key to sales success comes by way of building relationships. And in today’s “helping economy” these relationships are more personal than ever. As marketers we need to help sales educate prospects with content that not only aligns to their preferences but can also be easily personalized and shared any way they want.
By giving salespeople the ability to customize a piece of content, they get to put their own mark on it. Whether it be their contact information in a one-pager or eBook, or a personal quip to a video like an introduction or a closing “thank you” with a call to action, they will be much more likely to share content that feels like it’s coming “from them”. What’s more, giving sales the ability to personalize content makes them take stock in it, while still giving them control, especially as it pertains to retaining the lead.
Think about it. If marketing sends 1 piece of content via 1 email to a list of 10,000 contacts, it’s not going to get much exposure. But if instead you send that same piece of content to your list and to your salespeople for them to customize and circulate with their leads, you’ll get much more traction. This practice also improves open rates, because we are more likely to open an email after seeing it twice. In this case, the first time via marketing, and then again via a salesperson, who by the way will come across as an actual human. When you coordinate and align with sales in this way, the result is what we like to call here at Spark, the “megaphone effect”.
We Saved the Best For Last
Last but most certainly not least, allowing sales to share their personalized content — when, where and how they want — not only makes good business sense, but it offers a level of customization that reaps huge rewards! Consider your own behavior. If you take the time to ‘get personal’ about something, you inherently take on a sense of ownership. Salespeople who customize content naturally want to promote it. It’s as simple as that. So, beyond email, you can encourage them to link custom content in their digital signature, post it in a social update, or better yet include it in a text to clients.
The win-win-win of course is that sales will leverage the great content that marketing pours its heart and soul into creating, all while driving exponential reach and allowing sales to maintain their leads!
Want to talk more? That’s what we’re here for! Contact us anytime.
And be sure to check out these related blogs if you haven’t already!