With marketing evolving over the years to become less of a cost centre and more of an impact and ROI driven function that can directly influence sales results, today’s marketing leaders have to adapt use of their marketing automation and overall martech to appropriately measure and analyse different areas of their marketing, with the aim of constantly improving, enhancing and optimizing team efforts.
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This is what can help them drive positive results while making it easier to calculate the ROI of various marketing and sales outreach activities, bottom-line metrics, customer acquisition lags, and more.
Challenges and Concerns
The B2B marketing landscape has been evolving rapidly and if signs are to be believed, there is only going to be more disruption as marketplaces become more competitive and marketing leaders look for newer ways to attract and engage audiences in a multichannel environment that involves an array of online and offline activities.
Tracking processes and leads from multiple sources can become increasingly complex unless marketers set the right fundamentals in place to help them abide by certain must-have parameters to maintain quality of leads, from a growing number of channels.
Marketing departments have to be able to show that all their efforts directly result in new customer acquisition, leads and business revenue growth.
Amid all of this constant need to measure, evaluate and tighten every aspect of the marketing and customer journey, marketers are also dealt with the task of ensuring the right messaging reaches the right people at the right time, throughout what is typically known to be a long B2B sales cycle.
Marketing Automation to the Rescue
Marketing automation software can serve to be a big part of the solution. Martech itself cannot make a difference to a marketing team’s challenges but the right synchronization between different processes, campaigns, marketing technology can better align marketing and sales efforts and measurement goals to improve how a company functions and how leads are managed.
Marketing automation can help drive the right processes that help move and track leads through the buying journey and the B2B sales funnel. Putting centralised marketing automation software in place using the right practices can also strengthen team coordination efforts.
Marketing leaders who use their marketing automation to simplify the execution of campaigns and marketing-sales activities through one platform can also easily track marketing spends and revenue while creating a clear model that improve lead handoffs.
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Using Marketing Automation to Deepen Marketing-Sales Alignment:
Synchronizing Multi-team Efforts
Lack of alignment in marketing-sales will not give a holistic picture of the lead pipeline or status of lead health in a company. This makes it difficult to measure and optimize future marketing and even sales performance.
To show direct impact between marketing spends on business ROI, marketers have to monitor leads and lead responses from multiple online channels, create different kinds of campaigns and lead workflows and lead management processes to distribute qualified leads effectively to their sales counterparts in a consistent manner.
Marketing automation software can execute and track these various facets effectively to provide a more unified overview to marketing and sales leaders.
Improving the Lead Management Workflow and Enhancing the Customer Experience
A critical part of aligning sales and marketing functions involves using centralized platforms to capture customer inquiries across online and offline platforms, sharing this information between teams, using effective lead ranking and lead scoring processes to prioritize outreach based on it, identifying the best channels and type of communication tactics to drive collaboration and deepen engagement with those leads.
Some of the top challenges reported by marketing and sales teams include difficulty in putting proper lead scoring parameters in place, or facing challenges in nurturing the right prospects that are in-market for a product or service, at the right time.
This can lead to high lead-churn rates and lost opportunities. Marketing leaders who rely on strong marketing automation systems to limit these lags and put reliable lead management workflows in place that can be tracked and optimized in real-time by both, marketing and sales executives as the need arises will not only experience a better internal process but will also end up creating a more seamless end-user experience.
Helping Marketing and Sales Maintain long-term Data Quality
You are only as good as your database! A core part of strengthening how marketing-sales teams function as one unit lies in optimizing not only data intake but also data quality. A unified marketing automation system not only provides a more analytical approach to lead management, it can help boost data quality measures to help sales teams prioritize better leads and close more deals.
When sales efforts are optimized with the right lead data, allowing them to focus most of their efforts on either a) prospects that have a high intent to buy or b) those that will show interest in their product in the near-future, the overall sales-to-win cycle will shorten considerably.
Marketing Automation Drives More than Just Marketing
The right marketing automation software based on your current and near-future business needs can help establish a consistent, repeatable and scalable business process.
At a time when constant measurement, innovation and creativity is needed to drive marketing and business ROI, a more holistic approach to marketing and sales processes and lead management can help lay a stronger business foundation.
Inefficient processes, manual workflows, communication gaps, alignment problems, a lack of integration in martech systems and data management starts creating disjointed experiences for internal teams and the eventual end user, prospect and even final customer. The basis of a data-driven approach to marketing and sales starts with the use of unified practices, tools and measures.
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