There are a lot of salespeople in the world who haven’t yet realized they are also marketers. And there are a lot of marketing people in the world who still think they play a role wholly separated from sales within their organization. The world is changing faster than our mindsets. Sales and marketing are converging. This means our thinking, habits, and strategies need to evolve. The marketplace doesn’t want to talk to you! At least, they don’t want to talk to you until necessary. Then, a salesperson gets involved. Or maybe not. Is it possible for a salesperson to get engaged before the customer wants to talk to them? Absolutely!
Salespeople now have tools allowing them to launch very sophisticated marketing and branding campaigns impacting their own personal effectiveness and their companies reputation within the marketplace. This may or may not be a good thing from the perspective of the marketing department. Everybody’s worried about brand consistency and the publishing of content which furthers the mission and message of the overall organization. Accordingly, we can’t have salespeople becoming rogue marketers. But we also can’t have salespeople just sitting around dialing the phones either. They need to fully leverage the marketing tools available to them to get their message to the people who don’t want to talk to them but genuinely have a need. Salespeople need to spend their time talking with prospects having the most significant demand and qualification for their solutions. It’s the newer marketing automation tools that are going to allow this to happen. Sales and marketing people together need to learn how to use these tools and develop strategies coinciding with each other’s internal objectives. (Hint to management: might not be a bad idea to create joint sales + marketing objectives)
Marketing folks are rightly concerned about brand and message purity. The path to making sure salespeople can fully leverage automated marketing campaigns is to build a team where marketing and salespeople work together to design and execute the publishing of relevant streams of helpful content. When customers are looking for help, they will go to the people and companies who provided the most beneficial information along the way. I hope it’s you.