How to Create a Stronger Partnership Between Marketing and Sales

June 2, 2015

Category: Best Practices

For sales reps, B2B eCommerce seems like a daunting shift that is going to be a game changer for their roles and in their customers’ expectations. Most are so used to their sales process that they’re afraid to adopt new technologies for fear of the unknown. Even Andy Hoar of Forrester Research, Inc. says that B2B eCommerce will be the death of the modern day sales rep.

If customers can just do their ordering online, why would they need the sales rep, right?

Wrong.

As a marketer, you know that keeping up with new technologies means also keeping up with the demands of your customers. This is necessary in order to keep your company relevant in the minds of your customers. Its your job then, to help educate and excite the sales team around how B2B eCommerce will only enhance the customers’ journey, thus enhancing the sales reps’ job as well.

Here are 3 ideas for how you, as a marketer, can create a partnership with sales to amplify your organization’s results:

1.  Create a Digital Voice With Sales: Partner with the sales leaders at your organization to collaborate on a strategy that centers you around engaging customers with insightful messages and powerful content. Make sure that your voice allows the sales team to feel that they will still be seen as a trusted advisor amongst customers, and strong producer amongst their management team.

2.  Develop Training Tools and Scripts: One way to get everyone feeling comfortable with a new process is to make it very easy for them to dive in and try it. Develop training tools and scripts that walk the sales team through the new buyer journey. Point out barriers for your buyers, which will in turn be opportunities for your sales rep. For example, using data and insights from a B2B eCommerce ordering platform, a sales rep can keep track of when a customer expresses interest in buying (adds something to their cart), but gets distracted for whatever reason (and abandons their cart). Provide your sales team with a phone script and follow-up email template to use to engage this distracted customer. Take the opportunity to learn why they didn’t make a purchase, and help answer any questions they might have had during the ordering process.

3.  Develop New Incentives and Commission Opportunities: Since sales reps are concerned with new technology taking away from their ability to make a sale, turn the new sales process into a new kind of opportunity for them to achieve similar incentives or commission along the way. For example, create a contest around getting customers to explore the new B2B eCommerce platform: have each of your sales reps design a webinar educating your customers about the new platform. Whichever sales rep has the highest webinar attendance, is incented in some way shape or form. Creating engaging and peer-pressure driven opportunities will help get everyone on board.