When a company understands why it’s important to have a clear sales process as a part of its strategy it’s time to move to the next steps to improve the relationship between marketing and sales and make it even better.

In this article we will analyze 4 processes that your company needs to follow in order to create a real Smarketing (Sales + Marketing) organization and how you can build it around your own needs.   

1. Implement a Service Level Agreement

A Service Level Agreement (SLA) is a contract between the Marketing and Sales teams. The SLA creates a formal commitment between both departments in order to meet common goals to achieve overall growth.

A SLA is a two-way process: The marketing team commits to delivering a certain quantity and quality of leads to help the sales team meet its quota. The sales team commits to follow up on those leads and to make a specific number of contact attempts before abandoning the lead.

To set up the SLA for the marketing team start by asking these questions:

  • How many quality leads does the sales team need to meet the quota?
  • What percentage of those leads is originated by marketing?
  • What percentage of those leads is influenced by marketing?

Once you’ve answered those questions for your Company you can create a SLA based on the percentage of the pipeline that the smart marketing needs to drive. But here’s a tip to make the SLA even more convincing for your sales team: Base the SLA in what’s most relevant to a sales person: money.

2. Unify dashboards and reports

After implementing the SLA you should use the information of your report system to track the progress that each team makes. Not following up with the new system is a common mistake that some companies make which leads to a poor alignment between sales and smart marketing.

If you’re not paying attention to your goals it is likely that you’ll miss all the changes you need to make before a problem appears. What you need to keep everything in check is a group of marketing tools that will give you all the information you require.

Dashboards: Sales and marketing dashboards turn data into a daily view of the Smarketing team’s progress. Dashboards should be shared with the entire team by building them into your CRM system, incorporating them into your marketing software platform, or emailing them to the entire team.

Monthly Reports: Dashboards provide a daily update of the most important metrics for your Smarketing team. But you should also create a monthly sales and marketing report that gives a detailed look at your sales and marketing strategies and results.

3. Hold regular Smarketing meetings:

Another way to strengthen your Smarketing team is to 

let the sales and marketing team get together and interact in person. Regular meetings between the two groups foster communication and collaboration and help sales and marketing managers improve their tactics.

You should hold these types of meetings:

  • A weekly all-hands Smarketing meeting
  • A monthly management meeting
  • Weekly Smarketing Meeting

For a company with small marketing and sales teams the Smarketing meetings can be interactive sessions that encourage discussions and questions from anyone in the group. For bigger companies those meetings should be fast and focused in keeping sales and marketing teams well informed about their progress toward the SLA goals.

4. Stablish other types of communication between sales and marketing

Even with an SLA in place and dashboards and meetings to provide regular updates, marketers might need other ways to show the sales team how their efforts are helping to achieve the goals.

Some other resources you can try are scheduling a weekly marketing update, a weekly product update or even reshuffling the desks so smart marketing and sales teams are mixed together.

Once you get this 4 steps going you should keep an eye for new opportunities to improve your Smarketing strategy. There is always some data that could prove useful or some other tools that you could use. Remember to keep an open channel for feedback and to listen carefully to what your teams have to say. 

Learn more about marketing strategy with a half an hour phone conversation.  During your consultation we want to discover what is not allowing you to achieve your Actual smart marketing assessments.  We want to understand your marketing strategy, identify company's challenges, and give you a plan of action of how you can improve your marketing efforts. During our complementary Marketing Consultation, we will cover:  Perform a website analysis and after the evaluation we will provide you with suggestions for improvement.  Request your free Marketing Consultation and learn how we can help you.

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This post was originally published on hiperestrategia Blog, One of our allies in Ecuador.