Four steps to creating a vision for both sales and marketing.
A good place to start any activity is to know where you want to end. In the 1994 hit movie, Forrest Gump, Forrest started running without a plan, and ran clear across America more than two and a half times. The first step to implementing a sales enablement strategy
at your company is figuring out what you want to achieve. Obviously we know the purpose of the strategy is to increase sales, but that is not a goal that all departments can get on board with. The marketing department may care more about an increase leads. To have properly aligned goals between the sales and marketing departments takes vision.
The vision is what is going to motivate your teams over the long term. A vision can be lofty, and audacious.
"To make a contribution to the world by making tools for the mind that advance humankind." - Steve Jobs, Apple Computers.
A goal on the other hand should be SMART, specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timely. Goals are the things we want our company to achieve monthly, quarterly, and annually. Your vision should be much farther reaching.
The best way to align your sales and marketing goals is to break it down to most common denominator, which in most cases is revenue. For marketing more leads = more revenue for the company, and a larger budget to work with next year. For sales more deals = more revenue for the company which could result in higher commissions/bonus or longer term job security.
Steps to aligning your sales and marketing revenue goals.
- Start with a vision both sales and marketing can buy into
- Figure out the cost of that vision
- Translate the cost to an achievable revenue goal
- Evaluate how achievable those goals are
Here is an example:
Bob wants to be the biggest landscaping company in his county within 10 years. In order to be the largest company he will need 20 more employees. He knows each employee acquisition will cost him $50,000/year. Bob needs to increase revenue $1,000,000 to achieve his vision. Bob tells his sales and marketing team that the goal is to increase revenue $100,000/year.
Audacious goals can be inspiring
The final step in the process is the most important, if the goals to achieve this vision are unrealistic your teams will not buy into them. You want your team members to "own the goal" and make it theirs. The best way to make this happen is to include them in the process whenever possible. Ask for feedback, and ideas on ways to achieve this company revenue goal. And once in a while offering an incentive to achieve this goal doesn't hurt either, it could be an event or activity.
Sales enablement can help your teams accomplish things the impossible, but you need to make sure they’re fully bought into the goals. In the early days of your sales enablement efforts, you will need a benchmark know what is possible. As you get your processes and content in place, and as you add technology to the mix, you’ll be able to use to set future goals — and to ultimately realize that big vision.