Field Marketer’s Guide to Alignment with Sales
We’ve all been there. You hold a meeting with Sales to brainstorm a new content offer and email nurture campaign to promote an upcoming event. You leave said meeting thinking you’re on the same page. You work hard to complete the content offer and publish the email nurture. You show Sales every step of the way and seem aligned; but yet, somehow you hit send, the leads came through, and there is still a disconnect in what to do next. Sound familiar?
Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t another “sales is the worst, and marketing is the best” statement, but it’s impossible to ignore the disconnect.
Is it that we all have different goals? Yeah, sort of. But in the end, we all have the same top-priority goal of converting leads into happy customers. So how do we, as marketers, get our value and message across in a way that’s impactful and relevant to everyone? Here are some of the steps we take at Banzai to create a happy partnership:
Understand the Lingo
While all field marketers (and sales reps!) should know the basics, such as what an MQL or an SQL means, do you also have a clear definition of what it means for your company? When does a lead become an MQL, and what actions do they need to take to get there? What criteria would move an SQL to an Opportunity (is your organization even using this lead stage)? Understanding what expressions are used within your company, how they are used, and why they are important to both teams will help work together more efficiently.
Set Clear Goals and Expectations
Communicate regularly among teams and create goals for each stage of event outreach. For example, how many clicks do you anticipate from the first email, total downloads of content, clicks to the website, etc.?
In addition, create a plan of action for your event outreach and promotion that outlines the content being sent to leads, ads that are running, and other collateral. Decide when a lead is qualified for sales, how they will be followed up with, and who will be the one to do it. Setting these clear expectations will help create consistency of brand and user experience.
Select Your Metrics
Carefully evaluate what metrics you will be measuring from each marketing and event campaign as well as how they contribute to marketing and sales’ main goals. In addition, make sure you clearly outline who gets the credit.
Know Your Data
Sales reps have a deep understanding of who is in their pipeline, what deals have been most successful recently, and what accounts might need some extra attention. As a field marketer, you might see the leads come through on a registration form, but you usually aren’t in-the-know about every new deal signed and customer interaction they had.
Where field marketers do have amazing superpowers is their ability to dive into company data and trends and see what actions a lead took before they fill out a form. Take some time on a weekly basis to uncover any great data points about the leads in your pipeline, content that’s performing well, and other initiatives that could be useful to sales. By combining your shared knowledge, you will be more effective with your personalization and targeting efforts, making the close and customer delight process that much easier.
Create Custom Content
Customize your current or create totally new content for your event, thinking specifically about your audience and the end-goal. What information would your lead need in order to decide whether or not to convert at your event? What information would help your sales team to better engage with leads and show off your product/solution most effectively?
Tip: White papers and fact sheets that are stat-heavy and easy to scan are perfect content pieces to share at in-person events.
Have A Solid Follow-Through Plan
When an event ends, it’s so tempting to just move on and never think of it again, but there’s a vital step that still needs to happen: the follow-up. Just as you created a plan for following up with leads during your event outreach, you need to do the same for after your event.
Who is reaching out to attendees to thank them and continue the conversation? What about people who registered but didn’t attend? Will you use lead scoring to segment the leads based on activity levels? Understanding who will take the lead on prospects will ensure a more pleasant experience for your potential customers and your team.