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Thinking with Cleriti

We're always thinking, discovering and sharing our knowledge of how to connect with customers in the digital age. Here we share some of those thoughts.

Difference Between Marketing and Sales: Insider's Guide to Smarketing

Difference Between Marketing and Sales: Insider's Guide to Smarketing

sales marketingSales and marketing work closely together, but, can often feel that they are at odds. People in the sales department will complain that marketing isn't providing enough leads. Marketing might complain that sales is mishandling leads and failing to get sales.

But with Smarketing, the battle can be over.

These departments can work together to make the most of your company's marketing and sales budget and generate the most highly qualified leads.

Fostering Two-Way Communication

What's going on in marketing can sometimes look perplexing from the point of view of sales. For instance, it can be difficult to help the people who are tasked with closing the deal understand how non-promotional content aligns with their goals. At the same time, the marketing department can be frustrated with the sales’ focus on converting leads to customers without promoting customer delight and brand awareness. 

Taking the time to explain the power of inbound marketing content can bridge this gap. Content helps build trust, drive traffic, and even make customers advocate on your behalf. In the end, your company winds up with higher quality leads that are easier for your sales staff to work.

At the same time, take the time to listen to sales and what they want. Make an agreement that satisfies their needs. For instance, they may desire a certain number of leads per month. Or, they may want to be in the loop on new features and product promotions so that they have the best talking points possible when speaking with prospects.


Make an agreement that both sides can live with. Marketing will deliver an agreed upon number of quality leads every month. Sales will agree to follow up on these leads and close a certain number of sales.

Track everyone's progress and check in regularly. When both teams feel that the other is putting in the best effort, it leads to higher levels of job satisfaction and motivation.

Keeping It Up

Have the teams meet regularly to increase one another's familiarity and comfort with one another and with the processes of each department. A few important things that need to be covered regularly:

  • Celebrate wins. When marketing or sales has success in the form of creative upsells, repeat business, customers won from competitors or coverage in important media, make it known. Recognition is a huge motivator.
  • Seek input. Marketing and sales has a great deal of overlap, but also unique perspectives. Sometimes, people from each department will have an idea that can enhance the work of the other.
  • Share news. Sales can't talk up a new feature or promotion if they don't know about it. Don't assume that they'll read every marketing piece that is generated. Like marketing, sales has plenty on their plate. A simple list of updates can keep them in the loop.
  • Talk up the lead flow and the sales waterfall. By emphasizing how marketing and sales work together, you can make them feel more like allies and less like competition.
  • Always end on a positive note. Keep the teams motivated and inspired.

Your sales and marketing teams, in the end, want the same thing: your company's success. By taking an approach that makes these departments allies instead of competitors, you can make each happier and more efficient. Make the most of your marketing and sales budget by helping these complementary departments align and work together for the best possible outcomes.


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