Often, as a marketer, we (marketers) struggle to get new content ideas. Though, we know that it’s very important to collaborate with other teams in the organization to polish your content strategy we are very reluctant in working with the sales team (we will discuss those reason in the last paragraph of this article). Sales team is the most underutilized team when it comes to content strategy.
Why do you want to involve your sales team in your content strategy? Why is it important?
Well, the reason is simple; they are the guys who talk to your customers/leads/prospects very often and they know your market very well. Have you noticed that most of the content created by the marketing is not used by the sales and most of the time sales end up with creating their own content? Why? What have we missed here? The reason is, both the teams don’t collaborate well and both the teams end up running behind different goals. Too bad, isn’t it?
Here, let’s discuss about the 4 ways your sales team can help with content strategy and how they can mutually benefit from each other’s expertise.
1. Understand the personas
There is no doubt that your sale team understands both sides; your product and your prospects to an extent. Involve your sales team in your content mapping discussions. They can give you good pointers in mapping different customer life cycle. Also, you can get more information on the each segment like, what are the existing software’s used by your segment? What are their pain points? Etc. Once you understand your target audience very well it’s will be very easy to plan your content strategy.
2. Content Sourcing
The discussions between your sales and the prospects are an excellent source of information to generate new content ideas. Your will get enough information on about your prospects and the segments you’re targeting. You can base your content one these discussions.
Once you have identified your topic make sure to involve your sales person in your discussions with your content writers. Sales can help with very good pointers while developing the content.
3. Researching the CRM tools
This is one of the hidden gems. If your sales team has the habit of creating a note after every conversation then you are very lucky. You don’t have to look for information anywhere for content ideas. It’s right there in your CRM. Scan through the notes section of your leads and you can find very important pointers to help in your content strategy. When you see important notes make sure to get in touch with the sales person and get more detailed information on their discussion with that lead. Instead of creating an article from an assumption it good to base your article on a real discussion.
4. Promoting the content
Once you’re done with your content, what’s happen next? You send a note to your sales and wait for the magic to happen assuming that they will promote it to their network. Well, chances are that the email/note won’t be read. It’s very important for the marketers to guide the sales in promoting the content very effectively. Don’t assume that sales team knows how to promote the content. Guide them on distribution, channels available and uniformity of the message. Let them be aware of the target audience you’re targeting with this content so that they know whom to send this content from their list of contacts/leads. Make sure the accompanying message has an uniform messaging and proper call to action is used when it’s distributed through different sale persons. The education is going to be tough but the results will be amazing.
Explain them that developing the right content is equally important for the sales as it will help them to use the content at the right time
The challenging task here is that to make sales and marketing work together. Both the teams has a different set of goals and both teams will be chasing their own targets. Sales spent more time in closing the incoming leads and they will be happy to run behind that task instead of talking to the marketing person to help marketing achieve their goals. So it’s important to set common goals for both the teams to work together or the marketer need to make the sales understand the benefit of working together and how this content will help the to close more leads efficiently. Marketing teams need to be very persistent to make it work because some sales teams want to see the marketing team screw up so that they can blame marketing for not proving enough leads.
Share the credits of the success of your content with the sales team as well. Highlight the effort by the sales team and next time they will be very glad to help you.
Let me know if it’s all love between your sales and marketing or is it just war.