Ventarketing: aligning Marketing and Sales with exceptional results
The term Ventarketing (which, as you may have noticed, is a combination of the words sale + marketing), represents a union of these two departments through an alignment of objectives, metrics and processes to dramatically increase the efficiency of customer acquisition. .
This term comes from the English Smarketing (Sales + Marketing ).
The good news is that companies really dedicated to content marketing are already one step ahead in the implementation of Ventarketing, as a good content strategy goes beyond just getting the public’s attention.
Through the mapping of content in the funnel, it is possible to accompany it to the purchase decision (or almost), which naturally brings marketing and sales departments closer together.
And you don’t need to just believe what I say: According to a study by the Aberdeen Group, organizations with aligned marketing and sales teams “achieve 20% annual growth in their billing while the others saw their billing drop 4% year-over-year ”
But, what really is really needed to implement a Ventarketing strategy?
1. Everyone speaking the same language
In “traditional” companies, the gulf that sometimes exists between the marketing and sales department is incredible.
One department simply does not know how the other works and they basically speak “different languages” within the company.
In the end: Who is the ideal customer? What is the objective of the other department? What marketing actions impact sales the most? What is the length of the sales cycle?
When both departments fail to answer questions like these, there is a loss of information , alignment, and efficiency in the process.
A marketing team that focuses only on producing content – for an audience it deems to be ideal – does little to help the sales team.
At the same time, a sales team that takes marketing as a subordinate department, which only serves to make pretty flyers to help with the sale, is not helping at all in the acquisition process.
For this reason it is important that the two departments are aligned in relation to basic definitions, terms and processes, such as:
- What is the person that the company wants to reach?
- What is a lead ?
- What is the ultimate goal of the acquisition process?
- How is the client’s process in marketing?
- What are the stages of the sales process?
Basically, the whole process must be the same in the head of all the professionals involved.
This creates a conceptual unit that avoids interpretation errors in the communication between the two teams.
2. Communication between teams
It is useless for a department head to create a glossary, deliver it to everyone, and say that departments now speak the same language.
The day-to-day of the marketing and sales departments is extremely dynamic and the exchange of information must be constant, so that there is always learning.
For Ventarketing to be well implemented, it is necessary for there to be structured and constant communication between the two teams to exchange information.
Finally, how is the marketing team going to know that the leads sent are good or if the campaigns are working? Or on the other hand, how can the sales team prepare for some specific action by the maketing team?
Create frequent meetings between the teams (I suggest they be at least weekly) to share the information, use some communication software – such as Slack , for example – and always encourage members of both departments to get out of the chair and go to clarify their doubts with other work colleagues.
This exchange of information will naturally lead to more efficient processes, decisions made with more bases, and incidentally it will reduce isolated groups at the company’s year-end party.
3. A formal work agreement (SLA)
So far all the points shown for the implementation of Ventarketing are focused on improving communication between teams, which is essential for the company to achieve its objectives.
Now is the time to determine, within the customer acquisition process, what each department must do to make all of this work efficiently.
And for that to happen it is essential that there is an agreement between the departments, known as SLA ( Service Level Agreement ).
In practice, an SLA is the set of rules that determine the actions and related documents at each point of contact between the departments, avoiding that subjective factors make one team blame the other in case the objectives are not achieved (if You already worked in a more traditional company, you know that happens all the time and it is extremely stressful).
Here are some examples of SLA’s that can be implemented in a Ventarketing process:
- Deliver 100 MQLs ( Marketing Qualified Leads ) per month to the sales team.
- An MQL is a company with more than 100 staff, who interacted with some company content in the last month and with a marketing budget of over $ 30,000 per month.
- Get in contact with each lead in a maximum of 1 hour after it was passed by marketing.
- Try at least 4 connections before giving up on a lead.
When such rules are well defined, the roles of each department are clear and measurable .
From there, no seller can claim more that the leads are bad and the marketing department will have no more argument to say that they are the sellers who are not knowing how to work with the leads.
As long as everyone follows the agreement, subjective perceptions are out of the process.
Ah! And it also helps a lot to bring peace and harmony to the work environment.
Finally, don’t forget to evaluate the SLA’s to see if it is possible to improve them so that each time they bring even better results.
4. Metrics, metrics and more metrics
This is my favorite part of all Ventarketing, but that some professionals have a hard time understanding (marketers tend to be more used to it): everyone involved in the process should have specific, numerical goals.
Furthermore, the performance of each department at each stage of the process must be measured so that it is possible to understand the points of failure and opportunities, and it is possible to financially measure the impact of each of these stages.
There is a lot to analyze and improve in that funnel, such as conversion rates, cost per lead, etc; But let’s go for the simplest: the cost of acquisition of each client (CAC) is $ 2,500. Can you tell me if that’s a good number ?
Ok, ok, I admit that the question itself is a joke, since you still lack the essential information to know the answer: what is being sold?
If the product in question is a $ 400 microwave, that acquisition cost is very high, but if it is a $ 80,000 car, the situation is reversed and the cost is very good. As I always say, the important thing is ROI .
In my opinion, the focus on metrics is the best thing that can happen in any marketing team.
Think well, without Ventarketing the marketing department is only a cost center, which is cut when there is a crisis or some cost reduction.
In the end, how would you measure the ROI of an outdoor or flyer, for example, or even that of a Facebook ad, if the leads generated were not tracked to sale?
From the moment that marketing shows that with $ 2,500 of investment it generates 50,000 leads, and for example, sells a car for $ 80,000, the game changes and becomes a source of turnover .
In this way, it is enough to ask your director to increase the budget and with that you will increase sales (ok, I simplified it, but it is almost that).
So marketers and advertisers, it’s time to lose your fear of Excel.