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Sales and Marketing Alignment. It isn’t half as nightmarish as you’ve been led to believe. In this short series of blog posts, we’re showing how easy it can be—by breaking it down into five, simple steps.

We’ve reached the third step to perfect alignment—and it’s (almost) as simple as the first two.

So far, we’ve handled the human side of things—bringing sales and marketing people together, metaphorically and literally (with the aid of biscuits and cake) and asking them to:

Now it’s your systems’ turn to get connected. Bring on step three…

#3 Link Your Marketing Automation System to Your CRM System

Your marketing automation and CRM systems need to be connected. They’re the bones that support your whole demand generation process, and if you allow them to be dislocated, you’ll find you’re not going anywhere fast.

Here are six great reasons—there are plenty more—to link up your systems as soon as you can:

Sales will get to see where leads come from

Once your marketing automation and CRM systems are working as one, you’ll have new power to track your leads—from the moment they appear on Marketing’s radar, right the way down the funnel, to conversion and beyond.

Marketing will get the dues it deserves

Linking your Sales and Marketing systems lets you link opportunities and revenues to the marketing activities that created them—making it much easier for Marketing to demonstrate its contribution to top line revenue.

They’ll be no more arguments about ‘whose’ lead it is

Or about conflicting lead information, for that matter. Whenever Sales or Marketing look at their screens, they’ll find a single source of truth, revealing the full story of any lead’s actions.

Sales will be better-armed to sell

The background data your marketing systems hold can be invaluable to sales people when kick starting that first conversation with a lead. Connect your systems, and Sales gets access to it all, from the e-books they’ve read, and videos they’ve watched, to what they’ve shared on LinkedIn.

Leads won’t drop out of the funnel and into a void

When leads don’t convert to sales, you want to get them back into your marketing automation system ASAP, not wait around, letting them grow cold. Link your marketing automation to your CRM, and sending them back for some further lead nurturing becomes instant and easy.

Buyers will get a consistent, well-informed experience

This is the big one. The positive impact of bridging the gap between your marketing automation and CRM systems won’t just be felt by your people—it’ll be felt by your buyers too. They’ll enjoy a more consistent, more personalised, better-informed experience, across all their dealings with your organisation.

Make no bones about it, linking your systems is worth the effort. It’ll repay you again and again with:

  • Easier lead tracking
  • New power to measure Marketing performance
  • More insightful selling 
  • Simpler, faster processes
  • A better customer experience

And that’s all there is to step three. With your people on the same page, and your systems working together, you’re almost ready to nurture and convert like never before.

All this alignment is well and good, but next up in the series we're looking at the key sales and marketing metrics you need to track to, well, keep track of your alignement. But, if you’re raring to get ahead, you can read our Sales & Marketing Alignment Made Easy e-book right now.