Marketing and sales teams are responsible for new business revenue, which is probably why the two have a history of blaming each other for missed targets. This is why we wanted to dig-in and understand– which team should be held accountable for the quarterly and annual targets? We sat down with Lance Walter and Rosalyn Santa Elena to dig deeper into who is driving revenue and also what levers they have to pull and who can push to the finish line!
What team should be responsible for pipeline creation and revenue, for the greatest success?
It’s no shocker here– every team plays a role. Marketing needs to attract the right leads and accounts, but sales needs to close the deal. Working together, these teams have a better feedback loop and alignment around messaging and tactics that work– to bring in the revenue.
However, it’s not just marketing and sales who play a role. Product teams– they need to stay in-line, to ensure the latest features and offerings are in-line with what the market and your ICPs want from your product. Customer success teams are also responsible to keep churn at a minimum and upsell existing customers– it’s always less expensive to keep a customer and a new one. The feedback look here is critical though, product needs to keep marketing and sales abreast of changes in the product, similar to success teams sharing areas we are seeing churn. Sometimes we can win customers, but not retain them– which is a data point that marketing, sales and RevOps teams need to know.
Where should SDRs sit? What are the benefits or drawbacks of either approach?
At the risk of being vague– it depends. Some companies have SDRs focusing on inbound, while BDRs focus on outbound. Other companies have SDRs who do both. What is the role of the rep– that tells you a lot about where they should sit. Inbound focused reps are usually more aligned to qualifying leads, so they perform well with marketing teams. While outbound reps are more aligned to finding new prospects, so they perform better in sales orgs. Another factor here– what is the career progression for the team? You don’t want to bring in an employee with nowhere to promote them in time!
Let’s talk about “sales and marketing alignment” and “credit.”
“Credit” or the inbound vs outbound split on pipeline creation– it’s great for holding teams accountable to a number, but it’s not great for collaboration or alignment. Especially as a company moves into account-based motions, many opportunities sourced are products of both inbound and outbound efforts.
Alignment, however, can include looking at the full-funnel and digging in deeper to areas that are in need of process improvement or a change in targeting. For example, the common argument– marketing says they are producing a ton of “qualified leads” and yet sales teams will say “none of the leads from marketing are ‘qualified.’” Have the two teams ever sat-down and aligned on the definition of ‘qualified’ for the company? A great place to ensure you are looking at leads and stages in the same ways!
What are the challenges of having limited data into the funnel?
When there’s limited funnel data, or visibility into the funnel is segmented instead of full-cycle– departments aren’t able to see what is actually happening. This is often a scenario where one team is pushing a ton of quantity, but it’s not of high enough quality to convert into an opportunity. Insights into the conversion rates at each stage of the funnel, by channel or source, are needed to pivot away from this cycle.
Limited data can also lead to scenarios where marketing teams report one number, but sales teams are reporting another number. This can be avoided with alignment around how to report on the funnel and what filters should be used.
How can full-funnel visibility assist you in hitting revenue targets?
Cost of acquisition matters around revenue creation, especially in this economy. The ability to look into a full-funnel view and slice and dice based on various levers of control, will help marketing and sales teams align around what efforts are worth the prioritization and budget. Prioritizing campaigns and channels based on propensity for revenue and pipeline creation allows go-to-marketing teams to focus on what matters and not the “fire-drill” efforts that lead to burnout and drive up their acquisition costs.
As it turns out, we can’t get past a shared revenue outcome. Marketing and sales do have to be aligned and in-sync to hit revenue targets– and looking at the same view of the funnel, early and often, to pivot if things aren’t trending in the right direction.
If you weren’t able to join the webinar, you can get access to the recording here. Watch it now!