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What do CMOs and Sales 2.0 Junkies Have In Common?

Posted by Mike Damphousse

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This past week I was lucky enough to attend both the CMO Club Summit in New York, and the Sales 2.0 Conference in Boston. There was a definite overlap of key discussion points that I believe is critical for all sales and marketing execs to consider. These are the areas that impact both the marketing discipline and the sales discipline, and where critical mass may be for your company's success. This blog article is obviously not enough to serve every topic, but as an introduction and overview, it will set the stage for future discussion.

  • Alignment of Sales & Marketing
  • Demand Generation
  • Sales Enablement
  • Social Media

They each had significant focus, but as the union of both camp's topics of discussion, the umbrella topic of Sales & Marketing Alignment seems to cover it all. For generations, Marketing has been focusing on branding, products, communications, creating demand and supporting sales. Today, especially with the economy, there seems to be increasing shifts towards the last two - the top of the funnel. Demand generation and sales enablement are the two most significant areas where investments seem to be on the rise. Some highlights below:

  • Marketing needs to understand their customers and their sales force. Get out into the field, ask for feedback, but add value during this process
  • Marketing and sales leaders need to know metrics inside out. Conversion rates at each stage of the funnel. ROI for every program, etc.
  • Marketing should hold sales responsible for what they do with a marketing generated lead
  • Sales should hold marketing responsible for generating the right leads
  • Marketing should bolster and ensure the consistency of the brand messages they have created by creating uniform, adaptable, and readily available sales enablement assets
  • Marketing should know what motivates a sales person, and sales should know what motivates marketing. The two should work together to align these goals

As far as Social Media is concerned, everyone is in agreement it is a hot topic and that there needs to be some strategy and tactics directed towards it. There were examples of sales successes with social media, marketing wins using social media, etc. What wasn't clear was how to maximize the use of social media, and how to control it. Some consensus, some debate:

  • Marketing should drive a uniform effort to properly arm a company to use social media. This includes an official company/brand presence as well as individual users
  • Social media should be used for both inbound demand gen as well as outbound
  • Companies should educate employees on the proper use and respect of social media
  • Marketing and sales management should educate sales teams on the ins and outs, tips and tricks of using systems such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook for sales
  • Consideration of guidelines governing social media since the FTC has ruled that social media contributions by employees are discoverable
  • General consensus: LinkedIn and Twitter for business. Facebook for personal. The exception are Facebook Fan Pages for companies, products and brand presence