Industrial Marketing Blog

Sales and Marketing Playing on the Same Team

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The title of this post may sound like an oxymoron but that is the reality that B2B marketers need to get used to. I read a great post by Anne Holland, Founder of MarketingSperpa.

Her post is titled The Secret Key to Marketing & Sales Working Together. In it she writes,

The key is: In B-to-B, sales and marketing will never play as one intramural team; there’ll never be equal recognition for all players. The varsity team already exists, and sales is it. As a marketer, you can be a cheerleader, a water boy, a groundskeeper, a ticket taker….You don’t get to play — you get to support.

She goes on to say,

Once you realize sales are Hollywood Divas at heart, with all the unique talent, fragility, and difficulty that implies, it becomes easier to handle your relationship with them. Even when they drive you nuts, let’s face it, you could never do their job. (If you could, what are you waiting for? Sales will always make way more money than B-to-B marketers.)

To get their support, you must make them feel safe, cosseted, understood, and wholeheartedly supported. Don’t expect recognition. Sales will never fully understand how critical marketing is or how much talent and hard work it takes to do your job. You can, however, expect them to stick up for you in the manner a Hollywood star would if you are a trusted member of their entourage, such as the only hairdresser they’ll ever trust to touch their golden locks. Heck, some stars have even married their make-up artists, bodyguards, or accountants. (However, we all know who the star in the family is.)

I think it is a must read for all marketers because she has listed tips that you can put to use right away. What has been your experience when dealing with your sales team?

Achinta Mitra

Achinta Mitra calls himself a “marketing engineer” because he combines his engineering education and an MBA with 35+ years of practical manufacturing and industrial marketing experience. You want an expert with an insider’s knowledge and an outsider’s objectivity who can point you in the right direction immediately. That's Achinta. He is the Founder of Tiecas, Inc., a manufacturing marketing agency in Houston, Texas. Read Achinta's story here.
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