Marketing + Sales = Growth

I read a great article yesterday titled, Should I Be Focusing More on Marketing or Sales Strategy?  It was a quick and very to the point read that I encourage everyone to click through to as it addresses how a business should address some of the key marketing related questions we all typically ask. The writer gave two choices of how to deal with setting and executing a true marketing & sales aligned strategy.

Option A) “Should you decide to hire a marketing manager, be sure that the individual has the necessary background and skill set to develop and align a marketing and sales strategy and possess the applicable skills to implement the tactics involved.”

Option B) “If you choose to hire a marketing agency to develop a strategy, be aware that the process to provide an approach typically ranges from 6-10 weeks. While you’re left with a strategy, you need to have a plan to implement the tactics involved.”

In my past, I’ve been in the option A category.  The businesses I’ve worked for have had marketing departments that were responsible for helping grow the business through a variety of marketing efforts.  We also teamed up with strategic partners to get some of this work done, but the overall strategy was run by the marketing department, which in a couple of instances I was lucky enough to manage.

There are a variety of tactics I have seen work, and not work, in marketing but the key to all of our efforts was to ensure that what we were doing aligned with sales and their goals.  We were there to support the sales team and they in turn supported us when it came to getting some key customer testimonials or case studies set up.  The KPI’s I created were always aligned with those of the sales team, which aligned with the overall business goals.  It was a cascading, or X matrix, approach that seemed to work well and kept everyone accountable for their work.

How is your business run and will you choose to bring in a seasoned marketing professional who can not only set a strategy and execute it, or will you rely on strategic partnerships to help your business grow?