Aligned to Achieve by Tracy Eiler and Andrea Austin is subtitled How to Unite Your Sales and Marketing Teams into a Single Force for Growth and is from two people who have done impressive work. Eiler and Auston are founding members of the non-profit organization Women in Revenue, with its website noting focus on (A) education and awareness of diversity and inclusion in the workplace, (B) giving back to women through mentorship programs, opportunities and access to resources, and (C) moving members careers forward.
It's noted in the book that Eiler and Austin met when working together at a San Francisco-based SaaS company, with Eiler CMO and Austin Sales VP, and they they wrote of how customers don’t see sales and marketing, they see a brand and customers are getting much of their information on their own, not from a sales rep. Additionally, the purchasing process is no longer a simple funnel, it’s now a series of touchpoints and handoffs across the customer journey. For these reasons and others, it’s so important that sales and marketing be aligned in their goals, approach, and actions. Some of the specific areas to align on include lead scoring, internal systems, pipeline measurement alignment, win rates, and SLAs for both teams.
Eiler and Austin detail that probably the most impactful thing to bring about alignment is communication, sales and marketing talking to each other, getting to know as people those in the other group within the company. On a more tactical level, part of bringing about alignment is a focus on the data. It’s detailed in the book how data can easily become siloed, and if it not paid sufficient attention to and kept current in one system, data can drive a wedge between sales and marketing. They also note how in terms of systems utilized, it’s good to have IT involved because that can help head off data silos with sales and marketing using their own systems.
Also is the book is the results of a survey Eiler and Austin ran, revealing the biggest obstacles to sales and marketing were, in order: communication shortfalls, processes are broken/flawed, measurement done by different metrics, and a lack of accurate data on target accounts. It’s certainly not an easy endeavor to reach sales and marketing alignment, but Eiler and Austin provide some good content to help.