I was able to sit in on a session about Aligning Sales and Marketing by Nick Eades the CMO at Psion. Nick’s presentation was the most insightful content I have seen on sales and marketing alignment, since reading this landmark HBR article.
I can’t really do Nick’s session any justice, but he gave some remarkable insights. For me some of the highlights included:
- Understanding the personalities involved is critical but understanding what motivates the sales team is even more important.
- A great analogy to understand the “lethal personalities” at play – Think Captain Kirk as the leading sales guy and Dr Spock as you’re a typical CMO and you get a good picture!
- It’s not that hard – Sales people want to hit their sales targets and marketing love their data (maybe too much).
- Career marketers (vs accidental marketers) know how to keep it simple and not hide behind complexity. We need analytics but we must keep it simple!
- The forgotten p – Price is one of the most effective tools we have (and likely least understood) to impact the bottom line and help drive sales.
- Better lead generation and management is a bigger issue for most companies than they think, and can most likely solve a lot more problems.
- Functional strength is an important aspect of marketing, you are only as strong as your weakest link!
- Meaningful objectives – You must have goals that can be conveyed across channels, functions and the boardroom. That means having 100,000 followers needs a little more work.
- Find simple ways to express simple strategy – Retain customers, grow prospects!
- Take an account vs product approach to sales and marketing.
- Profitable growth is the ultimate measure!
Nick’s insights may not be applicable to all businesses, they are certainly more B2B than B2C (for a change), but I think it was one of the best marketing presentations I have seen in quite some time. Congrats to the exchange team and the speakers for a truly outstanding marketing event.