This Marketing Smarts podcast with Mike Volpe, CMO of HubSpot, provides insight on how one might enable and encourage sales and marketing to work together effectively and productively.
“You guys are a bunch of clowns who just do arts and crafts all day!”
Is that what your sales team says about the folks in marketing? Do you harbor your own negative thoughts about your counterparts in sales? Ever wonder how you might get these two hearts to beat as one?
For insight on how one might enable and encourage sales and marketing to work together effectively and productively, in this third episode of the Marketing Smarts podcast, we took up that very topic with Mike Volpe, CMO of HubSpot.
The root of all discord in the relationship between sales and marketing is “a broken definition of a lead,” Mike insists, which means that taking a close look at your business and clearly defining “sales qualified leads,” is the first step towards putting the relationship on a more harmonious footing.
Once you’ve all agreed on what a lead is, you need to set specific goals on how many of these marketing is going to produce every month, every quarter, every year. At the same time, the sales organization has to commit to marketing that they will follow up on leads with a certain frequency within a specific timeframe.
In other words, the collaborative definition of a qualified lead needs to be reinforced by a reciprocal accountability as to what happens with leads once you have them. Interestingly, at HubSpot, this accountability is formalized via Service Level Agreements (SLA) set up between sales and marketing.
The third pillar of a good working relationship between sales and marketing is measurement, and specifically, frequency of measurement. As Mike points out, you don’t want to find out at month’s end that you only generated 800 leads when the goal was 1,000. Measuring on a monthly or even on a weekly basis will not give you enough time to course correct if things are getting off track.
The sooner you know if you are in danger of missing your goal, the better. For this reason, Mike measures his team’s progress on a daily basis. Doing so allows him to stay agile, re-prioritizing and re-focusing activities in real-time to catch up when it looks like lead production is lagging.
Finally, Mike stresses, as in any relationship, communication is key and so, naturally, there has to be solid communication between sales and marketing for things to work properly. In Mike’s case, this starts at the top with monthly meetings between the sales and marketing management teams, but it doesn’t stop there. Ongoing communication between sales and marketing translates into greater customer insight and can serve as the source of new ideas and new marketing initiatives.