As inbound marketers it is easy to get involved in writing blog after blog and get excited about generating leads and sending emails. But what are we really trying to accomplish? We are trying to collect these leads to sell them our products, which means we need to help these leads complete their buyer’s journey. Yet many times this can seem more like a battle of sales vs. marketing; let us use Lord of the Rings as an example of how this works and how we can change our perspectives.
Forming an Alliance
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Lord of the Rings, it is the story of a fellowship’s mission to destroy the evil power through trials, battles and adventure into the known. Legolas the Elf and Gimli the Dwarf are two of the main characters, their friendship is a great example of how rough beginnings can still bloom into something great. They tend to have quite a few disputes throughout this cautionary tale, but in the end learn to work together for the main cause of destroying evil.
Both Legolas and Gimli are intelligent, brave and strong but they are both are hardheaded in the way they view things. They both want to succeed in the same goal but struggle to agree as to how. Likewise in many cases, sales and marketing teams have the same goal in mind but may not be aware of the necessary strategies both teams must have. Hence this creates a rift between them when it does not need to be.
Legolas is like the marketing team; he is an observer, listens to everything and is aware of what needs to be done to start the mission. Gimli is the sales team; he is a doer, he focus is on the battle field and finishing the fight by winning whenever possible, even at risk of losing his life. Throughout the story you see how they grow from mistrust and reluctant allies to friends who are willing to die alongside each other.
Holding a Council (Team Meeting)
It is important to realize that just like Legolas and Gimli, the Sales and Marketing teams have the same end goals; to nurture leads and build a strong customer base. Through the fields of battle –err- I mean, by the teams meeting together and strategizing you can better understand what you need in more for your business. Fight alongside each other; determine who needs to bring more to the table.
Be sure to ask yourself questions like these to determine who needs to take the reins:
- Do we need to attract more visitors to our website? – Marketing Team
- Do we need to focus on calling/emailing people more to close? – Sales Team
- Do we need surveys to find out what our customer base loves about our company? – Sales Team
- Do we need to research what people we need to attract? – Marketing Team
- Do we need to develop a new content offer to convert visitors to leads? – Marketing Team
- Do we need to re-strategies how we contact our marketing qualified leads? – Sales Team
As inbound marketers our goals must be aligned with those of our sales team, we must have a friendship that grows and is ever-changing as our company’s goals shift. Determining what our company needs can better bring our focus forward and find out which team needs to take the lead.