Alignment is more than a buzzword. It’s a critical goal that can make all the difference for your organization. Highly aligned companies with teams that share common goals, collaborate, and intermesh well can see their profits and growth skyrocket by 15% and 19%, respectively. Those numbers should make alignment your company’s key priority for the rest of 2023, but implementing a successful alignment plan and igniting that spirit of collaboration is tricky.
Every organization has a unique ecosystem and company culture, with specific hurdles and strengths that no one-size-fits-all strategy can fully optimize. However, the fundamental tenets of revenue team alignment are the same for every organization: create common goals, streamline data integration so teams have the same insights and don’t work against each other, and make alignment part of the job instead of empty lip service.
Before your organization can compete at this high level of alignment and collaboration, you must set the groundwork. We’ll start by exploring the value each arm of your revenue department brings to the collective whole. Next, we’ll discuss how messy and unaligned data is likely at the core of collaboration and teamwork issues— and then we’ll go over five steps for removing that obstacle for good.
Every Revenue Team Plays a Key Role in Overall Revenue Operations
Revenue team structures are a departure from the conventional organization chart, but they’re becoming more and more commonplace. Why? Because they work: shifting your company’s mindset to stop thinking about marketing | sales | customer success and start thinking about market-sales-customer-success results in more sales productivity and productivity, among other benefits. But before you transform your teams’ structure, see how each one feeds into the greater revenue team ecosystem:
Sales teams are the primary revenue engine of your revenue teams and your whole organization. But the evolving trends regarding lifetime customer value (LCV), customer retention, and customer experience interweave sales teams with marketing and customer success. Salespeople need to know about existing customers’ experiences with your products and services before reaching out about renewals and upsell opportunities. They need to know what marketing tells existing customers so they’re all on the same page.
At its most basic, marketing is the difference between hot and cold leads purchased from a third party. But marketing teams play a vital role in the entire revenue structure by:
- Uncovering pain points and opportunities within the post-sale customer lifecycle
- Crafting new messages based on analytics from sales and customer success teams
- Keeping customer relationships alive between sales cycles
A strong customer success team is indispensable for companies that want recurring customer sales and long-term customer relationships (as well as referrals and brand ambassadors). Unfortunately, without good alignment, they can be left with overpromises they don’t know about or frustrated customers who have had a spotty, disconnected experience.
But the Teams Must Have Aligned Data and Behaviors to Work Toward the Same Goal
The core challenges and opportunities these teams have when it comes to higher revenue and more customer retention is communication: communication about what prospects want, what they were promised, their experiences, and what your company needs to do to optimize all those facets. In growing organizations, those communications take the form of data. CRMs, contact profiles, and detailed records of outreach, campaigns, and opportunities tell every member of the different teams what they need to know.
Historically, this level of communication was only possible if everyone used the same tools. Each employee would enter in details, update records, and attach documents to a central platform, and other teammates would consult or update those records. Cloud-based platforms with integration APIs or a layer of data integration and automation software floating through the tech stack allow for far more versatility.
Marketers can create new prospect records in their preferred tool, the details will be transmitted to sales enablement tools, and the information will flow through customer success platforms. Everyone sees the revised opportunity and account details in real time, all through their preferred lens, and the information is continually corrected and updated across the entire system. This data environment can power your organization most of the way to complete alignment.
How to Create Alignment Across Revenue Teams Through Accurate Data
Of course, creating ideal data alignment takes more than flipping a switch. These five steps ensure more collaboration and accurate data sharing across your revenue teams.
1. Set Common Goals Across All Teams
When teams share goals and see the role others share in achieving their goals, alignment is much more attainable. Customer success teams and marketers may share common goals of identifying and resolving customer pain points, while marketers and salespeople can share conversion goals. While some initiatives and goals may be team-specific or even employee-specific, cross-departmental goals can help ensure teams work with each other rather than against each other.
2. Encourage Collaboration
You can only have good alignment with good company culture. Employees across your revenue teams should be familiar with each other, know fundamental actors in different roles or workflows, and have rapport. This makes it easier to reach out and discuss specific clients or be more cooperative during strategic projects. It also reduces finger-pointing and unwillingness to share information, two significant challenges for revenue team alignment.
3. Provide Ongoing Training and Development
Each team must know the other’s ongoing projects, responsibilities, and priorities. Providing regular training and robust internal communication channels allows everyone to keep tabs on different facets of the company’s mission.
Also, regular training sessions are essential. Train everyone on operating within the primary CRM or upload information vital to other teams. For example, salespeople may not care about the source of a lead or the campaign that triggered a new interaction. But those details can feed marketers’ attribution models and provide insights that lead to more clients in the future.
Train different teams on the fields and information that make a big difference to other employees, and they’ll be more likely to provide those details. You can also train them on automation built into your tech stack, incentivizing more participation with more effortless productivity.
4. Define Roles and Responsibilities for Data Management
Collaboration and alignment initiatives only provide short-term boosts in cooperative behaviors. Instead, start adding data-related responsibilities to roles and new job descriptions. For example, managers may become responsible for auditing data. Salespeople may have job requirements regarding filling in account details. Customer success AMs may have a new duty to prepare reports that assist marketing. When alignment is part of the job, it’s much more lasting.
5. Use the Right Platform for Clean Data, Continuous Syncing, and Data-Backed Insights
Using the right tools is one of the easiest and most impactful ways to drive more alignment. Inadequate tools simply get in the way of shareable data and collaborative communications. But suppose your tech stack makes it easy to update client records, upload documents or communication trails, and make information accessible to everyone. In that case, there are fewer barriers between your organization and the benefits of complete alignment.
Start Creating More Alignment Across Your Revenue Teams With a Data Integration and Automation Solution
Improve alignment across revenue teams with data automation and integration that fits your business’s unique needs. At Vertify, our versatile platform allows you to orchestrate data integration in a way that makes sense for each of your revenue teams. Your teams can share more data, be more confident that their insights are comprehensive, and be more unified. Contact us today to see how better data alignment feeds into better team alignment.