As a SaaS company, you probably have both a sales and a marketing function. The marketing team must generate leads and interest in your business, while the sales side must be in direct contact with the leads through the sales process to close deals.
While they fulfill very different roles, sales and marketing teams need to work towards the same overarching goal: to help your company grow. How they achieve this goal differs significantly, but collaboration is essential. For the best results, marketing and sales should work in tandem.
Let’s find out how sales and marketing differ and how they can work together to achieve the best results for your SaaS business.
Sales vs. Marketing: What makes them different?
Your marketing and sales departments likely have different goals and targets, but the two functions are intertwined. Depending on the size of your company, the two departments could work independently or, in the case of a small business, be the same person.
For example, in a smaller company, your sales and marketing teams may have the same reporting structure and share responsibilities. You may only have one marketer that also works on business development and sales, even closing deals themselves. Other small companies may require their sales staff to manage social media promotions and marketing events.
As your company grows, your marketing and sales become more differentiated. The overall aim of marketing and sales is to grow the company, but how you achieve that goal will depend on your department’s structure and strategy.
What is SaaS marketing?
Marketing informs people about your business and educates them about your product. In a B2B SaaS business, your marketing team will help compile your unique selling proposition and marketing messages that communicate the ways that your product meets prospective clients’ needs and wants.
Marketing departments not only need to build awareness of your business, but they also need to grow trust with your target audience. Testimonials, educational content, and case studies are examples of how marketing teams can help you generate trust.
Marketing is also responsible for executing your promotional strategies through:
- Content marketing
- SMM (Social media marketing)
- SEO (Search engine optimization)
- PPC (Pay-per-click) / direct advertising
- Email marketing
- Online and offline media buying
- Printed or online collateral for your sales teams to use in the field
- PR (Public relations)
Marketing activities generate leads and attract new customers but rarely close deals or liaise with customers directly.
What is SaaS sales?
The sales team is responsible for converting leads into customers. These may be leads generated by your marketing department’s efforts (e.g., website or social media) or business development efforts.
Lead qualification involves determining whether the solution on offer meets the prospect’s needs in terms of functionality, budget, and timelines. Sales teams will:
- Approach and contact leads
- Qualify leads based on criteria like budget, size, and requirements
- Develop proposals, pitches, demos, and quotes for clients
Whereas marketing contact is generally anonymous and broad, salespeople build one-on-one relationships with prospects and clients.
Comparing SaaS marketing and sales
Marketing and sales are different disciplines with different functions, but many areas overlap. Marketing sets the stage and gathers the prospects for sales to push the finish line and close the deal.
How do sales departments and marketing departments work together in the B2B SaaS industry?
Without marketing, sales teams would pitch to customers that have never heard about your company, never read testimonials, and have no reason to trust your solution. Without a sales department, your company will close much fewer deals.
Let’s understand how the two functions need to work together:
- B2B marketers should create the right messages to pique the customers’ interest and provide background information to the solution.
- B2B marketers should create trust by encouraging user ratings, gathering testimonials, compiling white papers, collaterals, finding speaking engagements for company leaders to attend, and other tactics.
- Sales teams should provide the marketing team with customer feedback so that they can continually improve their messaging.
- Sales teams should provide insights into which marketing methods deliver the best leads.
When there is more collaboration and better communication between the two teams, sales and marketing teams become more effective at their jobs.
Our solution for marketing and sales
Sales and marketing both play equally important roles in growing your SaaS. As mentioned earlier, for the best results, sales and marketing need to work together to attract your target audience, nurture leads, and close deals.
With Walnut, your marketing team can embed an interactive product demo straight on your website. Your visitors will be able to experience your product from the very first moment and understand if it fits their needs. Not only you’d save time for your sales team by avoiding them to contact leads that are not relevant, but you can also share the insights you’ve collected on your embed demo to improve your lead scoring. If someone played with your demo for a few minutes, it means they have higher intent to adopt your SaaS solution.
Once you generate a (high-intent) lead, your sales teams can use Walnut to create and present demos customized to each potential customer. And they can create product walk-throughs and tours to improve your customer’s onboarding experience once they’ve closed the deal.