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In the offline world, the difference between sales and marketing is very clearly defined.
Sales generally involves short term selling strategies with binary answers for whether a lead is converted or not.
On the other hand, marketing is a process function that is usually metricized to tangible conversion rates for a set period.
But when you take your business online, the line gets blurry – especially if you are a focussed B2B company with a streamlined B2C channel. To concretize the fuzzy lines, Pardot solution Salesforce Engage aims to bridge the gap between sales and marketing.
It is often noticed that when a business is taken online, the sales team feels like it falls prey to the marketing team’s efficiencies. This is because the strategies to bring in cash flow by the two teams never coincide but coexist.
Salesforce Engage aims to help Sales personnel sell better by giving them opportunities to use marketing techniques at strategic times in their path towards conversion. Salesforce Engage gives marketing control to the hands of the seller.
How can companies benefit from aligning sales and marketing? Is this move justified?
Well, it depends on the perspective you look at it from. On one hand, the sales team is working its rounds through individual personalized experiences.
The marketing team works on collective inputs of the entire sales team and portrays a brand image that buyers wish to perceive.
But what works for one client, might not work for another. Moreover, what it takes to hit the high notes in terms of profit margin very vastly matters.
Giving the sales team the option to market-based on personalization, allows you to take control of the Venn diagram of sales and marketing; essentially unionizing the conversion strategy – by building several universal sets with maximum overlap, rather than one large universe with optimal overlap.
What are the main aims to set when using Salesforce Engage?
- Maximize ROI
- Harmonize Sales & Marketing
- Shorten Sales Cycles
- Lengthen/Broaden Marketing Funnels
What does it take to Engage?
Salesforce Engage essentially acts as a semi-permeable membrane between the sales and marketing teams.
- Sales teams can build customized templates that suit their requirements for optimizing one-on-one.
- The marketing team can approve/upgrade the content based on company standards.
- The sales team can access the approved content and use it to nurture deals better and close deals faster.
The Pardot + Salesforce formula
Pardot helps marketing teams of B2B firms to create, deploy and manage online campaigns through a central platform.
Salesforce is a leading Customer Relationship Management tool that helps sales teams to live and breathe with ease.
Salesforce allows the sales team to represent the company, by essentially allowing them to present the company features on a neatly arranged fruit platter.
Engage is the lovechild of Salesforce, the top CRM platform and Pardot, the top B2B Marketing Automation Platform.
Engage brings in the best of both worlds to the hands of your sales reps.
Features of Salesforce Engage – All you can do
The 4 components that Salesforce Engage is built on are:
- Engage Campaigns:
With this tool, Sales teams can quickly send marketing approved content to their leads and contacts directly via Salesforce in the form of Emails.
These mails are maybe 1:1 or 1:Many i.e. sales can send a targeted mail to an individual prospect or a group of leads. Of course, since the content is marketing approved, parts of the mail are locked down to meet brand standards and legal disclaimers.
You can choose the Pardot folder hierarchy or search for templates to quickly compose emails. Sales teams who want to send a 1:many like an email to only one sector, expecting/knowing even just one lead at the right time can benefit from Campaigns.
- Engage Alerts:
Engage Alert is a handy real-time service that displays lead and contact activities using a card-based system. The cards can be sorted and filtered according to criteria set by the salesperson.
Filters can be set based on the leads and contacts themselves (i.e. segmentation), activity criteria and geography criteria. Some filters do come predefined.
The cards display information such as pardot score, contact information and engagement history over a set period (sorted in descending order of latest to earliest activity).
- Engage Reports:
Aiming to make the most of the power of analytics that comes with email in general (whether in sales or marketing),
Engage Reports allows the sales team to take a glance and find out what’s working and what’s not. With Reports, sales personnel can filter emails by All, Templated or Non-Templated and track the effectiveness of each type of mail. The reports can be set for a particular date range. This tool is crucial in figuring out the correct sales: marketing formula within a particular period.
To go one step further, Engage Team Reports to give team leads a dashboard view of the performance of the whole team. You can view aggregated stats on emails. You can also pinpoint, check and compare individual sales reps’ metrics.
With this, you not only identify the teams’ top players but also the top-performing templates through open and click data. Seeing the performance of individual players is crucial in determining the timings for shooting out campaign emails from Engage Campaigns.
- Engage for Gmail and Outlook:
As a platform-independent service, Salesforce gives you the ability to settle into your comfort zone, while using all the above tools. You can track templated and non-templated 1:1 emails directly from Gmail and Outlook. You can tap potential prospects and move them to the next stage of campaigning by clicking on the “Add to Nurture” button in the Gmail panel.
To take a gist of what Salesforce Engage can do for your company’s sales team,
- Be the first to reach out and stay ahead of the competition.
- Catch prospects at the right time and address their pain points
- Be relevant in every interaction you have with a prospect. Give them exactly what they want; nothing more, nothing less.
- Be productive by making the most of not just company time, but also customer time.
- Stay connected on every platform including Salesforce, Gmail and Outlook.
- Track email data that is relevant to sales, not just marketing.
- Improve personalisation strategies through informed manual engagement
- Provide data to marketing teams on what templates work and what doesn’t
- Close deals faster and earn the customer’s trust by providing the right information at the right time
Salesforce Engage Best Practices
While it can be overwhelming to look at data-driven sales, there is always a modicum of gut feelings and instincts, when the final papers are being signed.
Use these best practices to make the most of Salesforce Engage:
- Leverage information outside Campaigns:
Alerts and Reports can indeed pinpoint to a lot of data and give you insight on timings; but if something seems amiss, look for clues outside the engage universe.
Add filters like pageviews, form submissions and file downloads to see what piques the interest of the buyer and what doesn’t.
As a sales rep, you must have a good idea of the entire lifecycle of every particular prospect you deal with. Don’t confuse individual biases to generalise; a rotten apple spoils the whole basket.
- Have an end goal:
Even though Alerts can give you very valuable information, it can also lead to a case of TMI unbeknownst to you.
Use Alerts to take charge of the game and devise a plan of attack; don’t let the over-pouring data leave you to be defenceless. Alerts is the tool you use to observe from the watchtower; not the tool to use to sharpen the steel at the end moment.
- Filter if Needed:
Again, realise that not all information is necessary. Trust your guts and use data to back your decision. Worry about outliers, and make sure the graph is pointing up – you’ll know you on the right path. Know that the small tweaks you make to marketing tools will give you results at a later date if not immediately.
- Create Targeted Outreach:
Segmenting your data well is key to carrying out well-structured 1:many campaigns. Targeted outreach is likely to have much better click-through rates than having some minorly relevant data being sent out to several prospects at once.
While this goes without saying, the power of Engage is in driving personalisation. Use your language skills well and write the way you would engage with another person professionally.
You can also engage to create actionable steps for your leads. For example, if your starting sales pitch always includes the line “let’s get acquainted better and see what works for your company and ours. A company profile and a gist of all our products can help you out at this juncture” – you can automate and personalise sending out relevant data to your prospect, and have it look like you’re super-organised and right on time with your customer service.
In the game of company to company poker, engage allows your team to place their bets at the right time and in the right amounts. It’s up to your firm to use it wisely. You can contact us to implement Salesforce Padot to your organization.