This Is What Salespeople Say They Need Marketing To Do Better: 14 Ideas from Televerde Survey

Televerde’s new B2B sales and marketing alignment survey report, What Does Sales Need & Want from Marketing? ranks the top 14 things that marketing can do better to help win more deal

The responses, from more than 200 B2B sales executives surveyed in the first quarter of 2017, clustered around three basic categories—messaging, leads, and relationships.

In the messaging category, salespeople want better marketing materials, more case studies and testimonials, and better websites, but they also want clarity around what exactly is coming from marketing.

In the relationship category, sales wants marketing to check in on their needs more often.  Sales would like Marketing to create better target personas and attend more industry and influencer events.

And as far as leads are concerned, sales obviously wants more qualified leads and better-qualified leads.

Sales relies on marketing to lead the storytelling framework and get the right messaging and materials to buyers, particularly in the early discovery stages.

The complete survey report reveals actionable insights you can use to align your sales and marketing teams and give your company the best shot at a healthy pipeline.

What Sales Really Thinks of Marketing

More than 75% of respondents said they get “good” or “excellent” leads from marketing, and more than 90% of respondents felt that marketing understood the products or services their companies were selling.

That doesn’t mean there’s no friction, however. More than a third of respondents said that the two departments weren’t aligned, and 38% of respondents said that the relationship between marketing and sales was “hit or miss.”

Respondents were asked to identify their top 3 alignment challenges. Out of 10 choices, the four top responses were:

  • Lack of regular communication (37%)
  • Different success metrics (33%)
  • Inadequate lead qualification process (30%)
  • Diverging priorities (27%)

According to the respondents, communication is a key factor in improving the relationship between sales and marketing. Regular meetings, optimally weekly syncs, among all team members—to specifically discuss the state of the sales pipeline and key accounts—were highly recommended.

More consistent delivery of useful marketing tools was also cited as a great way to align the two departments. Respondents indicated that they want “better messaging,” “more industry and influencer events,” and a “better website.”

With more information available across more channels, buyer expectations are at an all-time high. It’s more important than ever for sales and marketing to align on messaging and engagement

While Sales and Marketing Alignment Shows Signs of Improved Communication, New Challenges Necessitate More Collaboration

Marketers, the business world’s storytellers, provide their sales teams with a host of tools they need to drive leads, close deals and bring in revenue. Televerde, the global demand generation company, surveyed more than 200 B2B sales leaders for its What Does Sales Need & Want From Marketing survey.

The results show impressive overall growth in alignment between sales and marketing, opportunity for account-based marketing initiatives to drive further alignment and a continued need for enhanced communication between groups.

While previously treated as distinctly separate entities, the state of sales and marketing alignment is improving. The majority of sales professionals surveyed think that sales and marketing are aligned at their companies, with more than 75 percent characterizing the leads they receive from marketing as “good” to “excellent.”

Survey results include:

  • 77% said the quality of leads generated through marketing are good to excellent
  • 62% feel sales and marketing are aligned within their companies
  • 34% cited a lack of regular communication as the biggest challenge to aligning sales and marketing, while 33% cited the differences in the way sales and marketing measure success as the biggest challenge
  • 45% said marketers usually deliver on the tools/assets/activities promised
  • Industry events (50+%), value proposition (46%) and customer case studies (42%) are the top three assets sales wants from marketing

Key take-aways include:

  • With social channels rapidly evolving as an information source, marketing and sales need to quickly adapt to how information is shared
  • Account-based marketing has the ability to drive exceptional alignment, meaning both sales and marketing must regularly discuss accounts and strategy
  • The customer is the biggest information resource. Sales and marketing must seek out customer insight together and share and analyze stories
  • Marketing automation and sales enablement tools must be invested in to ensure consistent communication and provide a central hub for knowledge sharing
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