One in six organisations (16%) today lack any formal sales and marketing alignment, according to a study from Showpad. Despite increasing pressure on sales and marketing pipelines during the pandemic, a separate poll found that 25% listed alignment as their main challenge and focus area for 2020. However, many sales and marketing leaders said that their coordination was either ad hoc or completely non-existent.
“It’s a tough state of affairs,” admitted Jim Preston, VP EMEA, Showpad. “In our study, almost a third [27%] of sales staff admitted that although they have content available from the marketing team, they don’t make use of it. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, with over a quarter [26%] regularly using marketing content, and over a fifth [22%] commenting that marketing content drives revenue.”
The research combines a poll of 367 sales and marketing staff at Showpad’s virtual summit and a study of 1,100 sales leaders, both carried out in 2020. The poll found that elevating the customer experience was the next priority area after departmental alignment, with 18.5% of staff listing this as their primary issue and focus area for 2020.
However, sales staff clearly have a great deal on their plates, as the study found that almost a third (31%) were over a year into digital transformation projects, and together with remote selling initiatives and focusing on staying competitive, the final quarter of 2020 looks set to be a challenging time for organisations across the globe.
“It’s crucial to stay focused,” concluded Preston. “Enabling good customer experiences is the real brand differentiator, often valued over and above product quality or brand appeal. It’s important that organisations make this a priority, elevating enablement to all departments that interact with customers, because giving customers a coherent, compelling, enjoyable experience is key to standing out from the crowd, sealing the deal, and staying successful during this pandemic.”