2019 Sales Planning and Budgeting: Quality Over Quantity & Marketing Alignment
Sales Performance International surveyed nearly 800 sales managers and reps to better understand what they need in order to succeed in the coming year. One of the top needs for creating more demand is better lead quality.
Quality Over Quantity
When it comes to leads, Marketers are conditioned to believe that more is better. However, this is not productive if leads don’t result in opportunities that are worthwhile for your salespeople to pursue.
As you begin planning for 2019, take a look back at your “Total Addressable Market” (TAM) and “Ideal Customer Profile” (ICP), and ask yourself if and how these are changing. Examine your most significant successes and missed opportunities to determine who really is an ideal customer and who is not, and identify the factors that make them ideal. Use this insight to re-calibrate what you really need from your marketing team. This will help them to focus their time and resources more effectively.
Additionally, look at your revenue mix, average deal size and successful opportunity rates to determine more precisely how many of them you may need marketing contribution on, and the size of those opportunities to achieve your goals. This will help everyone get better aligned, and more realistically identify the budget and resources necessary for your marketing team to execute on the plan.
Improving Marketing Alignment
The top needs identified to create more demand were account-based marketing, increased brand awareness and better qualified marketing-generated opportunities. All of which require considerable marketing resources and alignment to execute.
As you begin your sales planning process for 2019, be sure to involve marketing. Traditionally, sales and marketing alignment focused on process issues, such as when to hand-off a lead from one function to the next.
As buyer behavior has shifted, the need for alignment in additional areas such as messaging, integrated goals, support roles and responsibilities have become even more essential for success. This is especially true for activities such as account-based marketing. Strategic planning is the perfect opportunity to initiate this higher level of interdependence and alignment.