Aligning the marketing and sales departments has always been a major challenge for companies. The collaboration between these two departments is crucial to building an efficient sales strategy, but also to optimizing the sales cycle in the long term.
Yet, according to Outfunnel’s ‘Revenue Marketing Report 2021‘ survey, 46% of marketers believe that the sales department does not understand what is important to marketing. As for sales representatives, 31% consider that the two departments are disconnected from each other.
To reconcile the sales and marketing departments with the help of the BI, it is therefore essential to bring them together around shared objectives and also to improve the use and sharing of data between these two departments.
BI to achieve common objectives
Active collaboration between the sales and marketing departments is an essential first step in reconciling these two departments. Business Intelligence is an effective tool to help them achieve their common goals — to help the company’s sales grow.
For example, it is possible to set up and manage shared KPIs by using marketing and sales dashboards. Some of these key performance indicators include:
The sales conversion rate: it measures the ability of sales representatives to close a deal. It therefore reflects the efficiency of the sales department, but also the quality of the leads generated by marketing.
The average revenue per customer: the conversion rate does not measure the real value of a customer. It is therefore relevant to calculate the average revenue generated by each account to have a better idea of the quality of the leads acquired.
The sales cycle: the time it takes to achieve a sales cycle is a good indicator of the effectiveness of the sales and marketing teams. The shorter it is, the better the alignment between the two departments and the better the performance. A fast sales cycle also reflects the ability of the marketing department to provide good leads to the sales department.
In addition to the sales and marketing dashboards, a Business Intelligence tool helps the company to create detailed reports on the performance of marketing and sales campaigns. It is also possible to create a scorecard to translate the organization’s strategic objectives into operational objectives for both departments, while prioritizing their efforts.
Nowadays, companies manage and collect a wide variety of data:
On the one hand, nominative customer data, often stored in a customer relationship management (CRM) software: name, e-mail, date of birth, physical address, etc.
On the other hand, browsing data from their website or app. This includes cookies, which are frequently the only information available to target these customers.
It is very important to create bridges between these two types of data in order to launch more relevant marketing campaigns, but also to help sales representatives gain a better understanding of their customers.
To reconcile this online data, we must first reconcile cookies from web browsers and information related to apps. In fact, these devices are sources of separate data that need to be centralized by cross-referencing several pieces of information: browser characteristics, IP address, plugins, geolocation data… Business Intelligence allows cross-referencing this data and to analyse it based on solid statistical models.
Additionally, it is interesting to match each customer’s cookies with their personal data. This is a delicate operation, since it is necessary to be on the lookout for opportunities that arise: for example, when an Internet user creates an account on an e-commerce website in order to make a purchase, or when they log in to leave a comment on a blog post.
Business Intelligence also integrates analytical features that help exploit the full potential of marketing and sales content. Thanks to artificial intelligence and machine learning, it is possible to perform predictive analyses to offer the most appropriate content according to the customer profile, but also according to the stage of the sales cycle.
The company is thus guaranteed to deliver the right message at the right time, throughout the customer journey. The sales and marketing departments can better share the tasks to meet the needs of the prospect and move them along the sales cycle.
Marketing and sales content can also be analysed in terms of engagement, i.e., how prospects interact with it. This valuable information can help the marketing department make better decisions and create more effective content. Moreover, the most effective content can be automatically delivered to sales teams, saving them valuable time.
Companies have various levers at their disposal to reconcile the marketing and sales departments, but Business Intelligence appears to be the most effective solution for centralizing the data and processes of both departments. This considerably improves collaboration and establishes a real partnership by bringing them together around common tools: marketing and sales dashboards, reports, scorecards, etc.
Centralizing data within an analytical dashboard, implementing personalized promotional offers, increasing sales, monitoring complex KPIs… There are many benefits to marketing intelligence! It is therefore essential for companies to integrate BI solutions to effectively manage their marketing strategies and sales performance.