top of page

8 Things Sales People Need to Know About Marketing

Vicki O'Neill Cincinnati Marketing and Sales

I'm going to go out on a limb here and make a blanket statement that I believe to be true:

People don't trust without earning the right to be trusted. ~ Vicki O'Neill

And the way to trusting people is to spend time with them. Think of your spouse, your best friend, your kids....there was and continues to be a lot of time mutually invested in building, earning and keeping the trust that earned them that title.

The same is true in business.

Your prospects need to know you - the brand and you the person in which they will trust their money if they choose you as their solutions provider.

If you're purely transactional - too busy to talk to someone because of tasks:1) you're missing out on critical communication opportunities and 2) you're a short term thinker. Yes, there are times when you have a quickly approaching deadline BUT that may be your only chance to create, build, foster that relationship. So quick decisions need to be made.

With that said, salespeople - who tend to be more "transaction focused" since they have a goal to hit each month and need to know how marketing does it behind the scenes. So, here are 8 things salespeople need to know about marketing:

  1. Everyone likes to buy, but no one wants to be "sold"

As salespeople, there is increased need to close the sale as soon as possible so you can move on to the next one. Marketing knows you have a goal to hit each month - but is a resource for you to lean on for nurturing that relationship. Planning ahead of time is key!! Successful sales people understand the planning process as well as how they can leverage marketing to add value throughout the process. An idea: On or around the 15th of the current month, run a report for next month's calls, visits and follow-ups. Group by stage of each, i.e. new prospect, follow-up/no response, interested but no commitment, etc. Forward that list by group to the marketing department requesting their help with a compelling and high value email response (that you then save for future use). If you have a lot, ask them to send on your behalf. If you have 1 or 2 HOT prospects but for whatever reason they won't buy, brainstorm with marketing on unique and personalized marketing packages that will certainly get their attention - and more importantly, get them to close!

  1. Buying decisions are emotional but logic secures the decision Think of marketing as the emotional side of selling. Marketing creates the interest and taps into the psychology of a person's needs. We respond to visual messages more often than text so consider in your pre-monthly planning how you want to engage with your prospects regardless of stage in the sales cycle. The ultimate goal is to buy - the process in which that happens may be different for each person so you need to plan and act on that accordingly. Marketing helps create the emotional connection that logic will confirm when the decision is made to buy.

  2. People buy when they can relate to the "why" (great marketing tells a great story) There are too many choices when it comes time to buy....anything really. Creating a story helps separate the products and services and you'll buy the one that stands out to you the most. Think of company taglines: Nike's "Just Do It" or McDonald's "I'm Lovin' It" or M&M's "Melts in Your Mouth, Not In Your Hands" and as soon as you hear or see it, you know the brand. Marketing can incorporate the psychology, emotions and story telling into the "pre" sales process so leverage their expertise to "warm up" your prospects and create a win/win/win for sales, marketing and the business.

  3. Know your analytics - data identifies "ready to buy" customers Companies collect a lot of data on your prospects whether it's through purchased resources like D&B, website visitors, social channels or emails. All that data is being collected for a reason. An idea: Meet with your marketing team and find out what data they have on your customers (that you don't already have access to in your CRM). Then brainstorm ideas on HOW you can use that data to identify when a prospect is ready to buy, i.e. number of pages visited and time spent on each, and how you can use that data for your next communication with them.

  4. Marketing makes your job easier There's a lot of information above that marketing is doing on the sideline. And there's so much more that's not included. And the more communication and relevant information that Marketing shares with your target audience the more your prospects will know about you and your brand. People do business with people, not companies. Help Marketing help you. Collaboration and teamwork will make the prospecting to sale a lot easier for you.

  5. You need each other Marketing is aware that their job and paycheck is secure when sales are happening. So it's in their best interest as well to help you close more deals. With communication comes clarity and understanding. Marketing understands sales role and they respect and appreciate those who continuously deliver results. Leverage each other and become better together.

  6. The science behind the art of selling is marketing There is a skilled savvy-ness that marketing can use to help persuade. With the data available to them the analytics behind the data will also help identify nuances that are more likely to increase the effectiveness of the sales process.

  7. Marketing helps prospective buyers find, know, like and trust you Let's be honest: sales people don't have time nor the interest in spending their time crafting messages, creating blog articles, posting information on the various social platforms to keep your brand's name in front of prospects and customers. That's what marketing is for - to keep the name out there and when a prospect is ready, with the data available, can help reel them in to you. Bottom line: You need each other. Marketing and Sales is a partnership that when cohesive and working together is more effective and generating more results and longer term customer value than working separate.

If you had to rank the cohesiveness of your Marketing and Sales department on a scale of 1 - 10 (1 being "out of whack" and 10 being "in complete sync"), what would you give your teams?


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page