Sales and Marketing: What is the difference and how can they be effective together?

The past 10 years have almost completely changed both the Sales and Marketing departments. It has been interesting to watch as more digital resources pour their way into the scene.

But in the modern era, what are the differences and how do small businesses use these functions effectively? This blog post will look at why they differ, why they don’t differ, and which parts of the sales pipeline can now be managed automatically by Marketing.

Sales and Marketing aren’t completely different

Although traditionally the Sales department has been about getting customers and the Marketing department has been about promoting the brand and gaining interest on a wider scale. The crucial roles of Sales & Marketing in the digital era have become much more entwined, with Marketing now adding more conversion-led focused activities to its remit.

Sales as a function is still fundamentally the same, it now it compliments Marketing much more. Instead of working hard to convert those interested in the products offered, the Sales departments now work alongside Marketing initiatives to bring interested customers into conversion methods and pick up on leads that are ready to purchase.

This effectively cuts down the time your Sales team has to spend on finding and nurturing leads, leaving these conversion tactics to the Marketing department through automated methods.

Sales and Marketing are completely different

Interestingly, the Sales & Marketing departments work closely together and they have an increasing amount in common with one another, as I mentioned previously.

However, they are still two separate functions and in order to operate effectively, the Sales & Marketing departments need to have their sole focuses. Sales still need to focus on the people, it needs to finish the conversion and bring the numbers in. Marketing still needs to focus on branding, messaging, and creating interest in the public forum.

Marketing: General, beginning of the chain and interest growth.

The Marketing functions focus isn’t to convert, it is to aid in the conversion. Using key traditional and digital techniques, such as events and social media the main aim of Marketing is to grow the initial interest in a brand

When it has grabbed interest through this initial sweep, the Marketing functions key role then changes to keeping parties interested. This is through more targeted focuses, such as case studies or downloadable extras and email automation.

This grows your audience and gets them through the first few stages of interest, ready to hand over to the sales team.

Sales: Personal, end of the line conversion.

Your sales functions main focus is not to do the leg work, it doesn’t and shouldn’t be getting the interest from the general public. The Sales function is there to get customers through the final hurdle.

Marketing has already primed these people, they are ready to purchase something and the automation and fine-tuning you’ve been doing gives you an indication of what they are interested in.

It is now up to Sales to bring in the human element, up until this point the most human interaction your lead has had is at an event, if they met you at one, the rest has been a computer program.

Essentially if you look at the “sales funnel”, your Marketing function can now lead your prospects through Awareness, Interest, and Decision, where your marketing techniques come in. With your Sales function focusing on Action, where the conversion happens. So the funnel essentially mixing the function strengths and looks like this:

Sales and Marketing funnel in 2020: Marketing takes care of 90% of the funnel leaving Sales to deal with the final 10%

Sales and Marketing are effective when they complement each other

As you read through this post you can see that Sales and Marketing are effective together, but only if the functions are working to complement each other.

Marketing needs to understand how it can help push prospects over to conversion and Sales needs to understand what Marketing can do to get the conversion and what it has done to coax a conversion.

I help small businesses map out Sales and Marketing key differences.

My services are designed to make sure your Sales and Marketing functions are working to help your business grow. Helping you understand and create marketing automation and effective conversion techniques to get prospects to customers.

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