CRM, Gareth Case, Infographic, Uncategorized

Should Sales and Marketing Work Together?

I am writing this post already knowing the answer. What surprises me though is the number of organisations I have either worked for in the past or witnessed first hand, that just don’t subscribe to Sales/Marketing harmony.

In my opinion Sales and Marketing must be hand in hand. They are however, in most instances 2 different character sets and it’s this that often creates the divide. To have a truly successful Marketing team the first thing you need is buy-in from the top. The MD or CEO of the business must believe in marketing and its worth. If he or she doesn’t then you may just be fighting a losing battle. I have worked for organisations where the MD saw the marketing department as a support function, the team that puts collateral together, organises events, writes press releases etc etc. Marketing departments should drive business’s, not support them.

If you are running or working in a marketing team ask yourself if you are truly driving the following:

– CRM strategy
– Propositions
– Lead generation
– Web and Social

CRM is often managed by IT (here is why it shouldn’t be [INFOGRAPHIC]).

Propositions are usually led by product marketing or sales, Marketing must understand consumer demand and how to fulfil it.

Lead generation is often dictated by Sales.

Websites are also managed by IT departments in some organisations.

All of these functions (together with the general support functions Marketing provides) should be driven by Marketing. However, it’s not until the marketing team are fully engaged with sales that this can happen. I am fortunate enough to be working for a company that buys in to marketing and gives me the freedom and flexibility to manage the marketing function properly.

Ask yourself if you are really driving the company forward through your marketing team. If you are, great, if not then you need to find some answers.

Follow me on Twitter for my latest updates.

About garethcase

Gareth Case has more than 12 years experience of marketing in the B2B technology space and has held senior marketing roles at Intermec Technologies, Arc Solutions, Viglen, Athona and now ONI and has experience of working throughout EMEA, North America and APAC. His broad understanding of the full marketing mix combined with a diverse skill set has contributed to the success and growth of his previous employers. Gareth has proven, successful experience in the following marketing disciplines: Offline: Marketing Strategy, Team Leadership, Direct Mail, Campaign Management, Telemarketing, Print Production, Public Relations, Copywriting, Budget Management, Graphic Design, Collateral Design, Presenting. Online: Website Design, Content Management, iPad Toolkits, Social Media, PPC, SEO, Analytics, CRM, E-Marketing, Video. Gareth has experience of working across many vertical markets including Healthcare, Local Government, Education, Finance, Insurance, Manufacturing, Logistics, Retail, Media, Not for Profit and Legal. He has started this blog ‘Inside a Marketing Mind’ to share his experiences and promote debate around the latest marketing innovations. Follow Gareth on Twitter here – http://twitter.com/gareth_case and subscribe to the blog for all the latest updates. For a more detailed synopsis of Gareth’s skills and experience, please visit his blog or LinkedIn page


13 thoughts on “Should Sales and Marketing Work Together?

  1. This discussion is very important, although, we marketers, we know the sales and marketing departments need to work together. I’ve followed some discussion about the end of the marketing department, because this knowledge could’t be limited to only one department. The marketing knowledge should be incorporated in all departments of companies.
    In my opinion I think the person responsible for marketing should manage the entire company, because only he can see the sales, the products and the consumer division together.

    Posted by Lucas Pelaez | September 22, 2011, 12:57 pm
  2. I hope other people find your blog post listed here as helpful as I have. I run a weblog myself and would be pleased for you or the readers on your own website to check out. Please go ahead and read through my site just like I have with your own and leave a remark or two if you discover anything interesting. Thank you.

    Posted by 托福補習班 | September 22, 2011, 5:32 pm
  3. You have some invaluable ideas about this subject. Keep up with a good work

    Posted by Courses For Marketing | September 22, 2011, 6:13 pm
  4. It seems to me that the bigger the organisation the further apart the marketing and sales departments are.

    That’s why I love working with small business owners who understand the importance of marketing. For these companies sales and marketing are firmly interlinked.

    Posted by Nicola Macdonald | September 25, 2011, 8:44 pm
  5. Sales and marketing are often defined as one although there is a distinct difference. Knowing how to market a product or service, in other words discovering the market reach/scope and then developing a marketing plan that creates business opportunities around it is to incentivate sales to occur.

    However, sales can take place without any marketing plan. The salesman, or company that understands the relationship between the two can build an effective marketing plan to increase sales potential.

    Sales then is the act of making the actual transaction i.e. the offer for demand. Meet demand and sell an item or service. The key is finding the ideal approach.

    This is an extensive subject that incorporates diverse techniques learned from many years study and on the job practical knowledge and experience.

    Most definately Sales and Marketing work together. One without the other would be boloney.

    Posted by Carl Boniface | September 26, 2011, 12:55 am
  6. I think it is essential especially for large organisations before you step into marketing to acquire some sales experience. I used to work for FORD and before stepping into marketing I spent 2 years working as a sales manager to some of the largest FORD dealrships. Why that made me successful? Cause by the end of my sales experience I knew the full customer profile, the way they think, the blogs and web sites they visit, their demands, their financial status, the importance of a strong and solid CRM (especially in the car industry where profits come from after sales and not from car sales) etc. I wouldn;t even be close to my personal records and awards if I didn;t have that experience.

    Posted by Yiannis Gedeon (@akronsound) | September 26, 2011, 9:51 am
    • I fully agree with Yiannis having worked in both sales and marketing at various times over the years. I also had my own manufacturers rep where you always wore both hats. From a marketing side I knew what how sales people are driven and what they need for support. Sales personnel are looking for orders now, marketing has two think how they will help sales write orders new year and beyond.

      Posted by Jim Daniels | October 14, 2011, 8:05 pm
  7. Wonderful Blog you have!. I’ve just started one of my own on making money through forex currency trading. But it is also about learning price and what moves our planet’s economy. Take the time to skim it if you get a chance.

    Posted by Hong Rusboldt | September 27, 2011, 10:26 am
  8. It is quite old fashionned for a company to have Sales represented on director level and marketing lower down, yet is still the norm. In many cases, marketing is ran by a Sales Director or Business Development Manager. However I do believe that marketing as a business function is and has done for many years, gaining the respect and acknowledgement that it truly deserves. It still doesn’t stop the fact that many internal departments don’t quite understand what marketing is all about, and that it is much more than producing a leaflet or booking adverts. Therefore, marketeers will always have an internal ‘sales’ job in selling the benefits of marketing and educating fellow departments (especially Finance!) on what the ethos of marketing is really about.

    I believe sales and marketing are very different, and require a different skill set, yet must work in synergy (there’s a buzz word!) to achieve targets and results.

    Posted by Danny Wan | September 28, 2011, 6:38 pm
  9. Years ago when I was still in college I asked my marketing professor (who was a former CEO of a major corporation) what he would advise me to do if my dream job was in marketing. His response was to get in the trenches and work in sales. I’ve never regretted going into sales first to get that bite of the apple to really understand what people do during the sales process. I understood how they “think”, where they hang out, etc. Now as a marketing consultant, the first question I’m asked is “how can I make more sales?” And when I ask them “who is your audience or target buyer?” I’m met with a deer in the headlights response. There’s a lot of fumbling around.

    Whether in sales or in marketing you have to know your audience…and know them well. That’s where you’ll uncover what it is that keeps them up at night, where to find them, understand the best way to reach them, and define what it is that they really want to know.

    You’re exactly correct that sales and marketing departments, even if headed by the same person, often work in silos. That’s a tragic mistake. Sales people can learn a lot about how to “sell” without telling and marketing people can get a better grip on what keeps the customer up at night to leverage marketing programs and strategy. The tragedy is, however, that working in silos is often the norm.

    It doesn’t help when CxO types demand ROI on marketing. Too many marketing programs are put into place without measurements that make sense and ultimately DO impact ROI in a tangible way. Even with all the technology available with web-based marketing, there are too many marketing people focused on the “wrong” numbers. It’s not about SEO ranking. It’s not about web traffic. It’s not about visibility. It’s not about engagement or the size of your network. It’s about how that network, how that web traffic, how that visibility converts into sales and sales leads. That’s what the CxO wants to know…how does the marketing effort impact the bottom-line. So yes, while the CxO has to “buy in” to the marketing strategy, he/she also needs to understand how marketing and sales need to work together, and the process that will take them from where they are now to where they want to be. It’s actually a shift in the CxO mentality that needs to take place where they invite conversations to understand what both departments have to offer each other and why they must work together. You can’t have two different departments competing to reach goals that counter each other. Both need to have the same goals and work together as a team to reach them.

    Posted by CaptureHits (@capturehits) | October 11, 2011, 5:10 pm
  10. In one of the replies I read “both sides”. Sales and Marketing sit in the same boat and this boat is only successfully driven, if they participate commonly in bringing it forward.

    The responsible is the captain. That is the one in the organigramm with responsibility for Marketing and Sales.

    If she or he is average, the team is working skillful and target-oriented together. If not this needs to be changed.

    Best wishes to achieve and exceed your marketing and sales targets


    Posted by Emil Heinrich | October 31, 2011, 8:56 am
  11. This is a very important case. I had first hand experience when sales don’t value the support that marketing provides them and vice versa. Indeed, I agree that sales and marketing should work hand in hand, in fact should be interconnected as both lead to one goal. Thanks for the article, very emphatic towards to what we do.

    Posted by irafilomeno | November 4, 2011, 4:55 am


  1. Pingback: Is Marketing the driving force behind your business? - November 4, 2011

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