Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Marketing is on Mars, Sales is on Venus

By Kevin Green, President and CMO, Truent

Building a rocket ship to bridge the go-to-market gap and boost revenue into the stratosphere

You know the old adage men are from Mars, women are from Venus? Well, a more applicable version of that today is sales and marketing teams – and it’s an astronomical problem. In fact, that disconnect costs businesses more than $1 trillion per year

In today’s economy, it’s paramount that revenue-generating teams align on a  go-to-market strategy. This requires open communication between sales and marketing regarding marketplace trends and evolving customer needs that impact an organizations’ growth. But when the marketing and sales functions seem like they are on two separate planets, it’s nearly impossible to drive alignment. 

The solution: revenue intelligence. This is the information collected about a web user’s content consumption activities and research behaviors. In a digital world, the view into a prospect’s behavior is often limited to clicks and keystrokes. But revenue intelligence expands that view to include actual online discussions and interactions, enabling go-to-market (GTM) teams to segment their target account list. With deeper insight into a prospect’s peer influences and the intent derived from those peer-to-peer conversations, businesses can allocate their team’s time and resources to focus on leads more likely to convert.

So how can businesses leverage revenue intelligence to build a metaphorical rocket ship, bridging the gap between sales and marketing? Let’s dive in. 

Buyer Journey Mapping

Buyer journey mapping is the process of identifying common research and engagement trends among buyers to map the typical paths to purchase across buyer segments. It’s critical to GTM processes because it forces marketing and sales teams to look at how customers actually experience a brand, versus perceived interactions. 

As an example: A financial services company using “sales cycle” as a keyword may generate more clicks, but not drive a high volume of sales. Alternatively, the keyword “B2B repurchase buyer + online sales cycle ” may result in fewer clicks, but increase sales. Buyer journey mapping paints a clear picture of these preferences, allowing teams to better deliver on prospective buyers’ expectations.

However, it is often informed by first party data only. Marketing teams  put together what they believe to be the buyer journey, based upon the first party data they have and anecdotal evidence obtained from previous successful conversions – and, as a result, the process almost always excludes the actual customer. Conversely, third party data sources leverage derived data based on anonymous users pageviews and clicks to determine if a prospect is actually in market. This leads to a significant amountof false positives or incorrect contacts as IP Matching fails to connect the right prospect with the right company.

A more successful approach is starting with a known contact accurately connected to a business that fits your target Ideal Customer Profile (ICP). With this information, revenue teams can identify the right people are in the right places with the right content – ensuring alignment on which messaging, webpages, and online marketing materials are a priority for accounts. 

Account Identification & Selection 

Revenue intelligence also streamlines account identification and selection processes by signaling which prospects are on the verge of purchasing. Equipped with this data, GTM teams can prioritize time and budget toward higher-value prospects further down the buyer’s journey or a top-tier in-market account on the target account list. 

Marketing and sales teams use the data points to identify industry segments that are a good fit for a particular product or service. They are able to analyze intent signals to identify patterns among specific firmographics (industry, company size, etc.). 

In turn, these trends indicate a higher likelihood for accounts to be “in market” to buy a particular product or service, unearthing a host of prospective target accounts with unique characteristics to build an ICP. With a well-defined ICP, sales and marketing teams can pinpoint exactly who they should target, so they can streamline their outreach efforts, attract the most valuable prospects, and lower the overall customer acquisition cost (CAC).

Personalize messaging & content strategies

All that said, having a curated list of leads is only half the battle. Equally as crucial is developing impactful messaging and positioning. Both marketing and sales teams contribute unique insights to create a 360-view into what prospects want to know. 

By leveraging intent signals, teams can weed through which insights are most impactful for prospects. Teams can then work collaboratively using revenue intelligence to prioritize developing the content and messaging that resonates with potential buyers and helps drive ROI.

Take digital marketing teams, for example. Instead of selecting target accounts based on revenue or size, digital marketing teams can adapt their account based marketing (ABM) strategy to focus on who is actually in-market to buy. From a tactical perspective, this means that instead of limiting marketing efforts to predefined accounts, teams can conduct outreach based on timing. As a result, marketers will see increased lead engagement and ROI on ad spend, which takes the shape of increased leads, conversion rates, and ultimately demand – all of which significantly lower the odds of missing a deal.

With ongoing economic turbulence in the market, alignment between marketing and sales is key to success. Automating the aggregation and synthesis of data into a full, accurate, and up-to-date understanding of prospective buyers promotes synergy between the two functions. In turn, this data must be clear and understood by both parties. Sales teams in particular mustbecome more educated on prospect data and how that impacts more traditional pipeline or forecast metrics.

When paired with the right intent partner, businesses are able tosource, digest, translate, and apply data sources to further align GTM teams quickly and efficiently — and ultimately stand out in a crowded market.


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Jennifer Evans
Jennifer Evanshttp://www.b2bnn.com
principal, @patternpulseai. author, THE CEO GUIDE TO INDUSTRY AI. former chair @technationCA, founder @b2bnewsnetwork #basicincome activist. Machine learning since 2009.