A new infographic by LinkedIn in collaboration with the Content Marketing Institute looks at how marketing and sales teams can come together and be more effective.
Titled “The Content Power Play,” the infographic uses the data from the survey and report, “Content Marketing: Unlocking Sales & Marketing Performance” to point out the problems along with solutions for the misalignment that exists between these teams in organizations.
Challenges Aligning Marketing and Sales Content
A revealing data point from the survey says 80% of content created by marketing goes unused by sales. With content marketing now a big driver in digital engagement, there is a lot of wasted opportunities because the teams are not on the same page.
Marketing and sales teams should have a symbiotic relationship because they depend on each other. But for some reason, they are not as well aligned as they should be. And the problem is not limited to large organizations.
Small businesses with sales and marketing teams face similar challenges when it comes to breaking free from the siloed systems companies have in place while working together.
Sean Callahan, Senior Manager of Content Marketing at LinkedIn, who wrote the post on the LinkedIn Sales Blog explains the problem. Callahan says, “In the field of business, sales and marketing may sometimes feel like opposing squads. However, when both are working toward the same goal, they become far more effective by operating in unison.”
The survey was carried out by LinkedIn and the Content Marketing Institute with the participation of a global pool of 1,246 participants across a wide range of industries and company sizes in 95 countries. In North America, micro organizations of fewer than 10 employees made up 18% of the total and those identified as small with 10 to 99 employees made up 26%.
Key Results From the Survey
Although 60% of sales and marketing professionals believe the misalignment between the departments hurts their financial performance, they still operate the same way.
According to Content Marketing Institute Chief Strategy Advisor, Robert Rose, “Moving forward, content marketing and sales alignment might just be what enables true marketing success and revenue growth.” Because as the survey revealed, currently only 50% of the responding companies reported high alignment.
So how are companies going to bridge this divide and come together?
Regarding content marketing, sales teams have to collaborate on how to use the content. While highly aligned companies do this 81% of the time, the number plummets to 25% for low aligned companies.
Solutions to these problems include: maintaining a documented content strategy, deploying sophisticated content marketing targeted to specific accounts, and having a centralized content repository.
You can look at the infographic below for the rest of the data and download the full report here.
It happens if the content is hardly targeted. If it is creating content for the sake of having content, then it is wasteful effort.
In my experience the misalignment is almost always caused by money. The sales team doesn’t want to give up any “credit” for a sale because it hurts their commissions. Marketing wants to grow as well, but usually gets 2nd class status because sales actually closes the deals. It’s a tough situation to get alignment in.