Using content to drive efficacy of the Sales and Marketing partnership.
For the marketing folks, having a consistent ‘flow of quality leads and then their conversion’ is very critical to justify the return on investment in marketing. And it’s no secret that for achieving this objective, Marketing and Sales teams have to empathetically understand ‘a typical day’ in the life of each other very well and work in perfect tandem. A catalyst that can effectively help in this is ‘Content’; especially in this age of digital and inbound marketing. Content, in its various shapes, sizes, and for different channels, has the potency of attracting and driving the desired inbound responders in the form of inquiries, interests, and leads. So if the marketing content is aligned well with the sales messaging, for example – audience’s pain points, expectations, differentiators, value proposition, positioning, etc., you have a solid deal going right there between Sales and Marketing in terms of seamless hand-off, expectations from each other and most importantly, the quality of the outcome!
Here are some practical tips to use content effectively for synchronous marketing and sales teamwork –
1. Ensure accurate and common understanding of your persona – If your ads, social posts & blogs, other content are attracting responders that your sales team is finding difficult to convert, there’s an alert and red flag to take notice of! Could there be a mismatch of Persona understanding between marketing content and sales? If yes, let marketing and sales teams get together and brainstorm this crucial aspect and ensure they shake hands on understanding over who exactly are the targeted buyers and influencers and what buttons to push on their pain points, their solution expectations, desired outcome, etc. What is key here is frequent exchange of notes over quick huddles to ensure they are still on the same page over the common understanding. This way, sales is completely in the know of the content being created and being put out there to help generate inbound responses.
2. Emphasize Persona-focused content – Persona-focused content will help improve the quality of genuine responders who know what they are looking for and why. In other words, they have discovered their pain points and are looking for a fitting solution. Right content focused on the buyer challenge – business or technical – will draw out the serious responders that will help sales teams resonate well right at the start of the engagement. While we recommend this, for different types of products and solutions, a healthy mix of Persona and product-focused content is recommended, depending on the stage of buying cycle focused upon.
3. You don’t have to follow every trend – If everyone is doing it, no one is doing it! Many marketers fall into the trap of incorporating every new content-marketing tactic that is running hot and popular in the market. The problem with this approach is that everyone is adopting it. Ultimately there is no differentiator for anyone. Make content quality your differentiator. Create value-rich, quality content by involving your SMEs, your executives, and solution experts in the content ideation and writing phase. Educate your audience and help them take informed actions.
4. Keep your content updated and relevant – It is a fast-changing business ecosystem, especially in the technology world. It is essential that your content is updated constantly and is relevant to the industry, the times, and to your audiences. The content must reflect the changing dynamics of the industry. This can be effectively done by including industry insights, thoughts, and bytes from your executives from the business side, active involvement of your SMEs, tapping trends and thought leadership of relevant leaders and organizations, etc.