You’re in sales and it is your responsibility to own the customer. Yes, it’s a tall task but to own the customer means you’re the one that gets things rolling or as many would say, “close the sale.” I prefer to say, “open the sale” but we’ll save that for another day.
If you’re the one responsible for closing the sale, you should be the one responsible for the sales process and for the leads that start the whole process. If you believe this and I hope you do, then why do you allow marketing to control your leads? It’s time to stop relying on marketing and go get your own leads. Your own leads are waiting for you; they exist by way of referrals from existing customers. They already exist by way of those you know that suddenly raise their hand and show interest. They exist because you know your ICP (Ideal Customer Profile) and therefore, you know where others that match that profile are located. You know all of this and are able to get great leads, because you’re good at what you do.
There’s an interesting correlation between a salesperson’s effectiveness and their lead source. The better the salesperson you are, the more you develop your own leads. Gee, that should make marketing feel good about the leads they generate. I’m fine with that. In fact, I’d prefer they didn’t spend any time gathering leads. I’d prefer marketing focus on building brand awareness, educating the marketplace, and in general, building brand/company equity. When marketing does that well, it makes everything else easier because prospects know who you are when you call.
Sales and marketing might be cousins but they’re certainly not siblings. Siblings tend to have a love/hate relationship. To me, that’s not healthy; one quarter they like each other because everything is going great, the next quarter they’re at each other’s throats. If the two are cousins, the relationship is better for two reasons. First, they only see each other a couple of times a year – Thanksgiving and family reunion picnic held every summer. Because they don’t see each other much, they don’t try to play in the other person’s sandbox. This means they are able to get stuff done without interfering one another.
Salespeople make it happen. They never turn down assistance. If marketing wants to send over leads, fine but at the end of the day, the only thing that matters are the great leads you will be able to close tomorrow. My new book A Mind For Sales deals with the issue of sales and marketing and how the two departments should operate. Spoiler alert! I share several controversial things in the book, and sorry I’m not going to say any more, you’ll just have to read it. Pre-order today!
Copyright 2020, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of A Mind for Sales and High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results.