Livin’ in a Silo?  Bust out by leveraging Marketing Automation + CRM together


Ever been in a siloed organization?

Maybe we should ask, “ever not been in an organization with invisible walls between departments?” We see so many clients where it feels like marketing and sales are from different companies that it seems the exception rather than the rule. Both groups have the company’s best interests at heart, but wow, do they have misaligned agendas.  

And it feels like they’re leaving so much value on the table by not collaborating better with each other.

Technology is a danged fine way to bring Sales & Marketing together.

Indeed, Sales and Customer Service, or Marketing and Customer Service, or … all three. There are ways a CRM + MAS (Marketing Automation Software) platform can help get Sales and Marketing aligned and force conversations on standard definitions that might have been nothing more than assumptions before.

So. If your marketing automation platform pulls data from your CRM as the basis for email lists, that’s the first step in collapsing some walls. Because if Salesforce is the source for Pardot, it’s tough to be effective unless:

  • Sales have provided tacit approval for marketing to “talk” to their contacts
  • Marketing must lean on sales to ensure the database has enough attribution for them to pull a good list – Accounts have the right type, Contacts have the title filled in, email addresses are accurate, etc.
  • Sales must have their contacts in the CRM, to begin with before Marketing can even know who they are.

Next, you’re going to have to communicate on messaging and content.  

  • What is likely to engage the audience?  
  • Who should the emails come from – the sales rep who owns the account, or a generic marketing account?
  • If there is a call to action (and when wouldn’t there be?), what is it?

If marketing produces a “lead” for sales, what is the definition of “lead”?

  • You’re going to need to decide what information is minimally necessary, you know. First, Last, and email address woooon’t cut it. Probably the company name, company type, and phone number. Likely more, depending on what you’re after.
  • What their interest level is certainly matters. We’ve seen client marketing teams sending out architects who attended a lunch and learn or a homeowner who ordered a sample. And sales looking at them saying, “uh, why? Who said they wanted to be contacted?”
  • Knowing the value-added outcome best be defined. Why are you even presenting this person to sales?

Is there anything worse for marketing that the feeling of leads disappearing into the “sales black hole”? If marketing has agreed to spend tons of money acquiring leads, what’s sales commitment to following up on them?

  • Having sales agree to follow-up steps and a conversion path process for marketing leads?
  • Do you have time expectations set for how quickly they’ll follow up?
  • Do you have a clear definition of what the “final resting place” of each lead should be for either a positive or negative outcome?

How is marketing set up to support sales with existing customers and influencer accounts?

  • Do you have clear rules of engagement set for when marketing is allowed to or excluded from engagement? (If you’re in the midst of a big negotiation or have a pipeline deal open, marketing messaging can be tone-deaf, for example.)
  • Have you defined how marketing engagement can be a force multiplier for sales? Campaigns that send emails on behalf of the sales rep, helping maintain visibility and adding value?

We think you’ll see that if you are forced to think you’re way through such processes, it will be complicated for sales and marketing to dwell in their own isolated worlds. You simply can’t and hope to be effective.