November 5, 2020

3 Tips for Aligning Sales and Marketing to Ensure ABX Success

By Kristin Crosier

Think back to the last sync you’ve had between your sales and marketing teams. If you had to think back more than one month—you’re in trouble. 

While it’s entirely understandable that in the fast-paced worlds of sales and marketing it can be difficult to get a time on the books for everyone to come tougher and align on goals and processes, it’s absolutely crucial for your businesses success. 

In many companies, sales and marketing operate as separate units that perform many of the same tasks: sending email blasts, sharing content assets, and requesting meetings.

Businesses may be aware of the disconnect, yet find it difficult to enact a pragmatic solution. Account-Based Everything, or ABX, rebuilds and reframes your sales and marketing strategies as one holistic approach. But what’s key to a successful ABX strategy is understanding each team’s unique role throughout the customer life cycle.

In this Out of the Box session “Building the Structure”, JB Sales CEO John Barrows shares his tips on how marketing and sales teams can collaborate to create a more targeted and effective ABX strategy. John discusses three areas where marketing and sales can work together more cohesively: personalizing outreach, using sales representatives strategically, and giving context to content.

3 Ways to Align Sales and Marketing for ABX Success

1. Focus on Personalization and Relevance

Consumers have grown accustomed to the personalized experiences and recommendations that companies like Amazon offer. Yet when it comes to the B2B sales experience, businesses are still relying on cookie-cutter marketing and sales activities. 

Marketing teams send template emails that may or may not be segmented by broad industry and persona categories. Meanwhile, sales teams are building out account profiles based on basic information that fails to consider details like a company’s technology stack and their stage of growth.

“The problem with customer profiles from a sales perspective is they’re usually based on very basic demographic information,” according to John. “I think we need to dig a little bit deeper and find out all the nuances before we even start calling.”  

So how do you avoid falling into this trap? By aligning your marketing and sales activities from the very first touchpoint. “There’s a unique opportunity to involve sales reps in this process,” says John. Your marketing team should be working with sales representatives to build out more detailed customer profiles before even attempting to make contact. 

2. Be Strategic About Using Sales Reps

Speaking of personalization, John recommends that sales representatives should be laser-focused on delivering customized messaging. In a successful ABX strategy, sales will offer a more personalized follow-up to marketing’s efforts.

Many businesses mistake bombarding customers with similar emails from marketing, sales development representatives (SDRs), account executives, and even customer success representatives. But you want to use sales representatives in a way that adds value — not to send template email blasts or make generic cold calls. “Let marketing market and let sales sell,” as John says. 

Sales representatives should concentrate on weaving together a personalized story based on the customer’s profile. Speak to that customer’s unique needs and struggles, and show exactly how your solution addresses those needs.

3. Choose Context Over Content

We’ve deemed content as “king”, but the proliferation of marketing and sales content is overwhelming to prospects and customers. What’s more, sales and marketing teams are so disconnected that they often end up sharing the same content in template email blasts. 

John notes that it’s important for sales and marketing to differentiate how each team uses content. “Marketing is content — sales is context,” he says. “If we as sales professionals are not putting any context around our content, then we’re no different than marketing.”

Sales representatives should use the personalized, in-depth customer profiles created in conjunction with marketing to guide their outreach. When sending an email, add personalized details that inform the recipient about why you think this particular case study or other content asset is relevant to them. For example, you might mention that you’ve shared this case study with other customers in the same industry who are dealing with x and y problems.

Register for the on-demand session to hear more from John about how marketing and sales teams can build a better ABX structure.

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