Tech Marketers: Content Will Align Your Sales Teams

Well the first quarter has moved quickly in the technology sector and business has shown signs of renewal. But technology marketers still have many challenges ahead of them. The marketing budgets at technology companies still have not been fully restored and probably will not be for some time. The true challenge for tech marketers will be to transform your department to better serve and support your sales teams with strategies and tactics to nurture the tech buyers.

I have been meaning to share a quick summary of  ITSMA’s 2010 State of the Marketing Profession Address authored by President Dave Munn and Senior Vice President Julie Schwartz. Together these two share some great insight that identifies areas for improvement with tech marketers. Once again, it comes down to creating relevant content, a theme  I have been harping on for quite some time.

With tech marketers still strapped for budgets, all of us in the industry need to “do more with less”. I know it sounds cliché, but the CIO’s and tech buyers out there have provided the two authors with some actionable insights for all of us tech marketing folks to consider as we think through marketing strategies. For starters, below is a quick chart that summarizes top priorities of CIO’s in the 2010 year.

http://www.itsma.com/images/research/1003_strategistgraph.gif

It no surprise that enabling the sales force is in the top position. The discussion around aligning marketing and sales teams are becoming real corporate efforts at this point. Sales enablement allows the marketing teams to step towards this objective by supporting the sales departments with relevant marketing messages and tools so the sales force can generate and close leads. Isn’t this what the marketing team is supposed to be doing? In fact all three of the top priorities identified in this report can move an organization towards more sales and marketing alignment as these three focus areas tend to be shared goals of both departments.

Getting there will require marketing teams to alter their approach as tech buyers have become more savvy:

The Itsma report suggests that Tech Buyer behavior is changing .

The buyers have become, More powerful and knowledgeable, More selective, More Value conscious and seek insight and ideas
–Only 50% of buyers think the content and vehicles providers use to bring them new ideas are effective

For tech marketers to succeed, they will need to transform their approach by creating a content generation engine that:
–Integrate sales and marketing via the marriage of CRM and marketing automation

–Invest in marketing analytics to predict and improve results

By generating relevant content and integrated campaigns to generate leads you can support and enable your sales team to move your prospects towards the close. Reaching the shared goals of both departments and moving closer to alignment.

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