How to Connect Your Sales Process to the Buyer Journey

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Buyers today no longer want to feel like they are being sold to. Instead, they are looking for someone to guide them to the right purchase decision at the right time. Your sales team needs innovative tools to connect with prospective customers and guide conversations in every stage of the buying journey.

The relationship between marketing and sales is an integral part of a successful sales enablement program, but many organizations face challenges in navigating the journey to alignment.

Listen in on Aaron Aggen, Account Executive at memoryBlue, and Vincent Sanchez, Business Development Representative at Expert Marketing Advisors, discussing how to achieve a successful union between marketing and sales to close more deals and drive revenue.

“Everything is a metaphor for sales”

You will learn:

  • Why marketing and sales alignment is critical to selling success
  • How to strengthen your sales enablement initiatives using the latest strategies
  • What KPIs and metrics are best to measure success
  • How sales enablement can help shorten the sales cycle and increase revenue

Vincent Sanchez

Yeah. Okay. Hi everyone. We’re here to talk a little bit about sales enablement, specifically how to connect your sales process to the buyer journey. I’m Vincent Sanchez. I’m a work as business development here with expert marketing advisors. I trained externally with memory blue. I’m currently going through their academy which is two days of bootcamp at their headquarters in DC and six weeks virtual classes.

And it’s been a pleasure so far. And it’s great to have Aaron on here who is with memory blue.

Aaron Aggen

Yeah, I appreciate you guys hosting me and letting me join in on this. Yeah. So I’m with memory blue here. I’m a county executive actually worked at memory blue back in 2018 and 2019. Left them by our program design, got hired out by a client and then ended up coming back here and.

You know, happy to be partnering with expert marketing advisors. I’m going to kind of teach you guys how to, you know, as you mentioned, go through this and kind of cohesively integrate marketing and sales together to create a better buyer journey. So I’ll kind of, we want to, you know, how do we foster healthy relationships between sales and marketing?

I don’t think it’s. Shock to people that add some companies or a lot of companies, sales and marketing, aren’t the biggest fans of each other. And so we really want to foster a healthy relationship. And I think that starts at truly understanding at the end of the day, what each department’s end goal is at the end of the day.

So Vince, I’ll let you kind of take away the marketing side here. Sure.

Vincent Sanchez

Yes. You know, marketing sales, you know, like, like Aaron was mentioning, you know, there are two sides of the same coin. So they work alongside each other. And their end goals are very similar, even though their direct objectives are slightly different.

So for the marketing objectives, you know, we want to spread awareness of the company and their products and services. We also want to generate leads for the sales team and we also want to match the company’s products and services to their target audience.

Aaron Aggen

Yeah. So. Pretty cut and dry at the end of the day, it’s to close deals and generate revenue.

And so it’ll kind of want to ask you guys a question and then we’re going to pull up a poll here, but want to see how many touches to a client to candidates prospect. Does it take for you to just land a single conversation?

All right. So I know you got a couple of answers in here. They said eight, and that is true.

All right. So yeah, on average it takes eight touches. Whatever you want those to be just to land a conversation. Salespeople, how would you, like if you only had to do three or four of those, because marketing did the other ones for you marketing, how would you not have to send out eight or nine just to get one lead from sales?

Because they’re complaining, you’re not bringing them anybody. And so we want to work with to be able to integrate the two departments so that Hey, I has to do for marketing has to do for him. And you think when you drive down. Your town, when they’re going through city hall votes, how many times do you see seven or eight flags with people’s names in a row?

It’s because on average it takes seven or eight times for something to stick into someone’s mind. It’s the same thing here. Well, we kind of want to discuss where the disconnect between sales and marketing is. Why do these two departments often have issues with each other? Why do they. Talk great to each other.

But then at the end of the day, when they get back with their team, they complain. And at the end of the day, the issue was miscommunication or non-communication You know, so the teams have to work together. They got to have similar goals, but they usually don’t understand what each other’s goals are.

At the end of the day. They don’t have the same objective sales is just grind, grind, grind. I need to get people on the phones and sell to them and marketing, trying to get webinars out similar to this, trying to get information on a new product they’re launching things like that. I mean, Vincent, you want to touch on the other.

Vincent Sanchez

Yeah. You know, and a lot of it’s communication non-communication or miscommunication. So, you know, communicating with clients without courting is one. Another funny story was I, you know, I worked sales with EMA and you know, our marketing who handles our social media we had decided to postpone the This webinar because Aaron was actually in Cabo on vacation.

And so he would that info didn’t get relayed to the social media person. And so. That, you know, we were going to have the webinar last week. And so Aaron is in Cabo, sitting there looking at his phone like, oh, I guess I’m doing a webinar next week. But that’s just one big example of miscommunication, you know?

You know, and as Aaron was saying, you know, both teams are unaware of the other teams, goals and objectives. And so it’s on both of us, both of our teams to really align with one another so that we look like a cohesive unit going forward.

Aaron Aggen

Yep. Perfect. So kind of want to talk to you guys now a little bit on how sales operates, kind of what we do in the process.

And then Vincent’s going to touch on after this kind of how marketing operates kind of dive in a little bit deeper to what the objectives are. The goals are everything. So sales, the first thing here is understanding the buyer’s needs at the end of. We are taught from day one. When you get in an SDR sales development, run a business development rep job.

The first thing you need to do is find a paint. And your prospect, if you get on a cold call with someone and cannot pull pain from them, you’re not going to get a conversation. And if you do get a conversation, it’s not going to really go anywhere. So we have to find pain. Well, how do we find that pain?

We have to provide value to them relevant to their situation. I can be selling one product that has a simple message or a simple delivery to someone, but every prospect is going to look at it differently. They might have a different pain in a different network or something like. So you gotta be very tailored in your approach.

You got to provide value to them. That’s understanding through the conversations what’s relevant to them. And there’s also a bunch of just different methodologies in sales. I mean, you’ve got Sandler challenger, spin selling medic. You got all these different methodologies, bands gaps zone that just lead to at the end of the day sign contracts revenues you mentioned is one of our biggest goals.

So with that after our initial call, whether that be the discovery call to cold call, whatever it is, we like to create a cadence of touches with the prospect. If we set a meeting two to three weeks out to follow up with them, especially with the holidays. Now, a lot of people are saying, Hey, let’s reconnect the second week in January.

All right. Well, if I go the second week in January and I have not sent them anything. I have to restart eight touches to get them back on the phone. So now you’ve got to create a cadence. What are we sending them? It needs to be relevant information. Well, how do I get that relevant information? This is where I need to understand marketing marketing helps to provide that collateral, that relevant information, or maybe it’s Hey, I found this article on Google that relates to your situation.

Wanted to share with you and sales, not everything is an ass. They don’t have to give it to you. Just send them something. So you got to provide value in that. And then you do a tailored demo. You can’t just give a demo on the solution. You got to tailor it to the client’s needs very specific. If they don’t feel like you went out of your way to provide them a relevant demo, they’re not going to take the next call or they’re not going to seriously look at your situation.

Solution final steps in sales it’s negotiation of price. Every salesperson’s worst nightmare. They say, yep, we’ll agree to this. And then you send over the contract and four weeks later, they. Red lines galore on. It looks like my high school paper that I wrote. You know, and then we got to get sales with post-sales implementation team, customer success, whatever it is to get them up and running with the solution as fast as possible.

And realistically from there you know, we’re moving on to the next client. Our goal at the end of the day is to bring in revenue. We have a dollar amount of money we need to bring in every single month, every single quarter, every single. So we got to move on to the next once we get them with implementation.

Vincent Sanchez

Thanks Aaron excuse me. And so now I’m gonna talk a little bit about how marketing operates. So at a very high level view, what marketing does is connect your products and services with a target audience. As Aaron and I mentioned earlier, there’s a lot of overlap between marketing and sales. Marketing first starts off with establishing a clear brand identity.

So you have to understand yourself, what is your value proposition? What can you offer? That is different. And like Aaron said, it’s understanding your buyer, understand their pain points and what are their needs. You have to understand your market segmentation. Is there a place in the market for your product or services, and you can use certain frameworks to further segment yourself.

Like, you know, marketing makes you seize the four PS product price promotion place, or the four CS consumer wants consumer cost, convenience and communication.

So a lot of the success of marketing comes from having a good go-to market strategy. So this is utilizing your resources to deliver your unique value proposition to the customers and achieve a competitive advantage. So you want to relay how you’re going to enhance the overall customer experience and why they need your products or services.

A good go to market strategy consists of target audience. Marketing plan and outlining a sales strategy, and that’s something we have to coordinate with the sales team. It also includes studying current market so you can confined, so you can find competition and demand, as well as understanding your distribution.

You know, what mediums will you get out your products and services. So how do we get that message out? It’s important to use multiple channels, email SEO, SCM techniques in parallel social media. You have to be active in all. And as we said earlier, it takes eight touches on average, just to land a conversation.

So the point of the go-to market strategy is to shorten the buyer’s journey by presenting them the right info at the right time in the right place. So you want to have good content marketing strategy as well. And building relevant content helps customers connect with the benefits of important trends, products, services, and that can be in the form of blog, posts, articles, white papers, or webinars.

And last but not least, you need to have good feedback on reporting. So we need to make sure that our processes are working right. Every team works differently for our clients. We have repeatable playbooks that we’ve used and tweaked over the years. They’re tailored for each client and we give them to the client.

But at the end of the day, it boils down to execution of the playbooks. And are we reaching our target numbers? Here at EMA, we do we work on agile marketing. So we do one week sprints with a weekly deliverable meeting just to ensure that. Our clients needs and delivering results week over week.

Right. That’s different for every team. That’s just how we work. You want to constantly take a look at your KPIs and metrics and make sure that you’re benchmarking them with other players in the markets. You know, you want to take a look at different stats like for social media, for example is your audience growth growing?

Are you getting more engagement and impressions and you also want to take into account sales revenue, right? That’s a big metric that you have to look at because we might have. Which means our marketing is doing his job, but if it’s not boosting sales, then we need to make some changes. Or maybe that’s a Aaron’s fault.

Right. And the sales team’s fault. And then, so for lead scoring that’s important for the marketing team to do as well. And that’s another big part of communication to the sales team. Are we increasing the number of leads? Part of the leads that we’re sending qualified, you know, the pipeline that we have should be updated constantly so that we send quality leads back to the sales.

So kind of now with that, how do we integrate successfully? How do we make sure everybody is on the same page and happy? And we don’t have complaining, we don’t have people talking bad about each other behind their back at the end of the day. We’re all at the same company, we’re all working hard. We’re all trying to provide for families for ourselves.

We’re all trying to have end goal of creating a business, making the company better. So one of the big things is communication. We gotta have consistent messaging marketing, can’t send out something. And then two days later, I, as a salesperson, can I send out something that’s not consistent? It’s got to be aligned.

Same thing. Can I give clients, can’t give candidates too much information. That’s completely all over the place. Gone multiple directions, but you want to hit on the next.

Vincent Sanchez

Yeah. So, you know, we have to clearly define your roles and responsibilities and you got to work together and align on those goals.

So, you know, as, as we just said, you know, marketing is going to go out and get the leads for you. We’re going to generate those leads. And sales is going to go out there and try to close those deals. But at the end of the day, we have very similar goals. We all need to drive revenue. Yeah, that was it.

Yeah. So, I mean, I like to think of sales and marketing as like a, a circle of family that works together. And I think it’s where one jobs ends the other begins so we can work together. So I like to think of it as you’ve got a circle. So marketing starts by providing content relevant information to provide leads when they provide a lead.

They hand it over to me and the sales team and their job is essentially done with that prospect or whatever the case is. Obviously there’s more goes into it, but now it’s my job. I take the lead and I end up running it through process demos, negotiation, contract signing, implementation upon implementation marketing.

Now it takes back over there now working with the client alongside customer success, customer implementation to say. What about our solution brought you to us? What was interesting, what was relevant? What was not relevant? What worked for us there, then regurgitating that information, taken it back, creating better material, better collateral to now send that out to more people which provides more leads.

And in turn sales is now getting more revenue, more demos, the whole nine yards, and it’s just a consistent circle. So John’s at the end of the day. Intertwine. They’re together. They work together. But I like to viewers a circle that we have to work together. If that circle breaks, it’s not going to work. We can’t have people going back and forth.

So what’s the end result of this. At the end of the day, it’s going to make the buyer’s journey much smoother. Last thing we want is marketing and or sales to get messaged by somebody saying, Hey, you sent me nine messages in the last four days. Take me off of everything. Do not ever contact me again.

Well, that came down to our miscommunication. Sales, didn’t tell marketing that they’re going to send out a bunch of information to this people. Marketing didn’t realize that we were in a sales process with them and just sent them information that had nothing to do with what we were talking about. And I think today it makes your team look cohesive together.

You work better, a lot more enjoyable. The culture at the company is going to be way better. It’s going to give people staying with your company longer. It’s going to have people wanting to join your company. They’re going to see how you talk with about your company. Everyone’s going to get excited. Vince, you get anything else to add on the end result

Vincent Sanchez

Now?

I think that was spoken.

Aaron Aggen

Beautiful. Thanks. Perfect. Yeah. So now kind of at this time, you know, we want to open it up, any questions kind of see, you know, what questions you guys might have for us, what we can answer. If there’s anything you guys got, you can go ahead and type them into the the question bar.

All right. So then said I got one here for coming through. All right. Is marketing. What do you specifically need from a sales team, sales leader, account executive STR to make your life easier? What are some things that we can do?

Vincent Sanchez

I think I’m staying consistent with the messaging. I think that should be communicated because like you said, you know, there’s sales might be saying one thing and then, you know, the marketing might be saying something else. Especially with like, if there’s like deals going on sometimes like I’ll be doing, I’ll be doing them.

I’ll be reaching out to a client, a potential client, you know, there’s a promo going on. I had no idea. So messaging, I think, should be related to. And I’ll turn that back to you. What do you think that marketing should be doing

that? Yeah, I, I think kind of understanding, you know, what messaging you guys are going to be sending out, or maybe you’re asking questions with clients and candidates.

And I think one of the big things is you know, I build relationships with a lot of clients, you know, I’ve got a full pipeline, I’m talking to a lot of people throughout process and need to understand exactly what is going on. You know, if I build a good relationship with the client that I’m selling to an, a process.

Some sales cycles are 12, 18 months, nine months. You know, you’re building a relationship with this person. And so being able to have that upfront conversation and say, Hey, what worked for you? What didn’t, what intrigued you about this? And relaying it back to you guys you know, helped us out at the end of the day, because Hey, you might be able to put together a flyer for me or a pamphlet that I could send out.

But if I don’t tell you guys what it is, then there’s nothing that we can do in that area. So got another question that popped up. And that said, how long does it take to get on the same page with the new marketing and or sales head? I think realistically it shouldn’t take that long. I think the, you know, if you ask, how long does it.

A lot longer than it really is. And I think that’s because when marketing and sales come in, they’ve got their head down to fix their department. They’re not worried about the other departments. They got to fix their department. They want to get new things going and whatnot. I think a simple, Hey, let’s connect for an hour, maybe two hours, depending on how long we need to connect and just lay everything out.

What do we need? So I think it’s a twofold question. How long does it. A lot longer than it should right now, realistically, you should have this kind of in the first week at starting a new job or whoever comes in, whatever the case is, I think it should be no less than a week. Just need to find time on people’s calendar.

And it comes back to the biggest issue. We talked about odor, which is miscommunication or non-communication you know, this, do you have anything to Yeah,

Vincent Sanchez

I think, yeah. I mean, like you’re saying it does take longer. But I mean, like it could, that could be fixed with, you know, it’s just simple, like 15, maybe just like a 15 minute call or something, or like a 30 minute just to sync once a week on what the messaging is.

Aaron Aggen

Yep. No, that’s exactly it. I just got to communicate at the end of the day. That’s the biggest thing is communication. So go find someone on the sales team. If you’re in marketing, if you’re in sales, go talk to a marketing person. Understand what they’re doing day in and day out. They’re two completely different jobs.

With the same end goal is to provide business for the company and create a better company, a better culture at the end of the day. I don’t know. Does anybody have any other questions here coming through?

Vincent Sanchez

I think that’s it. Here we go.

Aaron Aggen

Someone just typed in and said, what would be your main suggestion for organizations that are missing the mark?

Vincent Sanchez

I think you know, I could set it like a weekly sync between head of sales and having a marketing. I mean, depending on how big the teams are, but you know, one, one quick weekly scene between the two would really help nail down the consistent messaging. I think. Aaron, do you have any suggestions?

Aaron Aggen

No, I think that’s exactly it.

You know, I think, you know, having that weekly sync, even if it’s biweekly, just some type of things that you guys could do. It’s no surprise that technology software sales and marketing is ever changing. I mean, 20 years ago, if you were going into sales, you would have never picked up a phone to call someone.

It would have sent them a handwritten letter. You would’ve walked into their office, ask the administrator for time with the person. And now we’re changing times are changing and adapting. You know, with COVID outside sales and traveling kind of became. We sat behind a computer. We had zoom bombers and everything, you know, going on, you got dogs barking in the background, kids playing around.

So times are changing. And I think having that weekly or biweekly meeting between sales and marketing to say, Hey, Marketing. This is what we’re seeing on the forefront. All of my teams are having these conversations. This is what’s most important to people. Can we get some collateral put together that we can send out potentially get some new leads?

You know, in marketing, go ask salespeople. We’re we’re head down, grinding, working with multiple clients, trying to build relationships, go ask to us, Hey, what are, what are you guys seeing at the end of. Have your salespeople, they’ve got good relationships with their prospects, whether they’re in process looking to get a contract sign, just a discovery call or they’re closed.

If they’ve got a good relationship, they have should have no issue at the end of the day, going to them and saying, Hey, I got a quick question for you. I’m sure. Just like you guys are looking to build your business and grow. So by what was relevant, where did I hit the mark? Where did I not hit? You know, if you’ve got a spice of it, like, Hey, I’ll send you a $5 Starbucks gift card.

Here’s a bottle of wine. Can you fill out a survey for me? What was relevant? Last thing I want to do is send you something two months from now. That’s not relevant. We kind of get that information put together and then, you know, continue conversations. That’s going to change six months from now. My message might be completely different because of something.

Vincent Sanchez

Right. And I think the more often that you meet with one another, obviously the better the relationship is going to be, but also you know, the better quality the campaigns are going to be. So you’re going to have more better quality, better targeted campaigns with accelerated programs. And that’s just going to lead to better leads that the marketing team generates for the sales team.

Yup. Well, everybody’s got any other questions. They can type a man. We’ll be happy to answer. It’s not you know, we appreciate y’all coming to this. Please go connect with expert marketing advisors. They put this on loved them. I’ve hung out with them at a couple of conferences, great people you know, so please go connect with them online email them for any questions.

But other than that, we do appreciate everybody joining today. Hope you’ll have a great rest of day and happy holidays.

Vincent Sanchez

Thanks, Aaron thanks for your time in 20 St. Memory blue, you know, I’ve learned so much from them just in these past couple of weeks of training. They have a lot of good stuff to offer their sales academy and really you know, stumbling to some of the best.

So yeah. Thank you, Aaron. It’s been a pleasure having you and thanks for joining us.

Aaron Aggen

Absolutely. I’ll take care of take care. Happy holidays guys.

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