Bridging the Gap Between Sales and Marketing: Although the disciplines of sales and marketing seem to share similar backgrounds, one might be surprised at the lack of internal communication between the sales and marketing teams of many small businesses. In many unsuccessful companies, there is definitely a gap between sales and marketing. Here are some of the best ways that companies have fixed this gap in the past.
1 – Connect the rewards of both departments to each other
The different pay scales that many sales and marketing departments have serve as a divide in many small businesses. Sales is a results based profession that depends on great marketing, but sales can also blame marketing for a downturn. Marketing is usually a more salaried position, but it can blame sales if its material seems to fall flat.
If the pay of both departments are linked, then both sides will have plenty of incentive to work together. The influence will create a bond that will not allow either side to completely blame the other if an idea falls flat. Ideas will also be much less likely to fall flat, because they will be tested in the real world of sales rather than on the chalkboard in the marketing department.
2 – Create opportunities for crossovers in between departments
In both departments, you likely have people who are interested in what is across the wall. Give those people the ability to move between departments and study the discipline on the other side. This will increase morale and create personal bonds that will allow for more efficiency and synergy between departments.
You can also make it your business to reward the employees who are able to take an idea from the drawing board all the way to a conversion. In other words, the people who master the entire process will be rewarded financially as well as operationally within the company. Do not be afraid to give people the opportunity to expand their own palettes without your express permission. The final result that you want is results, and sometimes you get this when you let people think for themselves and follow their hearts in their professions!
3 – Facilitate the lines of communication within your company
Too often, the sales and the marketing team are kept completely apart. The sales team is on the phone all day, with the marketing team coming up with ideas that they foist onto the unsuspecting sales team in the middle of the workday. This can engender a great deal of misinterpreted energy.
Even if you do not have employees who necessarily want to jump to either department, you should definitely have people who are empowered to discuss future changes in the program before they become law. There should never be a program from the marketing department that is placed without warning on the heads of the sales team. At the same time, the sales team should be held responsible for any marketing campaign that they do not take to heart.
Having a single liaison to handle internal communications may work best for smaller companies as long as that person is respected on both ends of the equation. The message will not get confused between parties, nor will it take a long time to deliver to the appropriate leaders in each department.
Once the sales and the marketing team get on the same page, the sky is literally the limit. Sales and marketing in sync form a positive feedback loop that help to increase the efficiency of the entire company and the ROI in each individual department action. Take the tips above to heart if you are having trouble marrying the dynamic between your sales department and your marketing team.