Growth Insights for CEOs

Sales and Marketing Synergy: Why Cross-Functional Alignment is No Longer Just an Option

Posted by Slade Kobran


As a CEO, you strive for harmony among your functional teams.

It’s a comforting feeling during those weekly leadership meetings to hear that sales and marketing efforts appear to be coordinated – key personnel are collaborating on projects, keeping each other informed, using a common language, and possibly even delivering cross-functional reports from Salesforce and other analytical tools.

But beneath this veneer of peaceful coexistence, are your sales and marketing teams truly integrating their efforts in a way that will add impact – and revenue – to your bottom line?

Chances are, in your organization, true sales and marketing alignment – a level of connectedness that includes joint planning sessions and common goals – remains elusive. 

In fact, a recent survey conducted here at Chief Outsiders among mid-market companies discovered that nearly one-third of C-suite executives noted a misalignment between their sales and marketing teams. Further, only one-third of that group reported that their sales and marketing teams were working toward a common set of goals.  I’ve seen the impact this has on many client companies – finger pointing, recriminations, lost opportunities and lower revenue. 

Marketing technology provider Hubspot, in its own gauge of the global marketplace, found that only 22 percent of corporate employees would consider their organization’s sales and marketing relationship as “tightly aligned” – though, separately, both cited lead and traffic generation among their most mission-critical current challenges.

With so much riding on executing an effective and efficient go-to-market strategy across all aspects of the organization, making sure sales and marketing are aligned through all stages of the customer’s buying journey is more critical than ever.  If your sales and market teams are not aligned, it’s time to focus on getting them there.  My colleague, Karen Hayward, has already written an excellent post that lays out a recipe for Marketing and Sales to be in perfect harmony. If you haven’t already read it (or even if you have a want a refresher), you can check it out here 

In this ebook, we’ll take a look at the research we compiled from our own direct conversations with CEOs and sales and marketing leaders. You’ll not only see how your organization stacks up to these business leaders, you’ll be able to read their suggestions on how to improve sales and marketing alignment.  You’ll also hear from several Chief Outsiders CMOs, who have developed their own successful approaches to achieving sales and marketing alignment.



Topics: Marketing and Sales, Sales and Marketing Integration, Alignment, CEO Strategies

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