9 Ways to Align Sales and Marketing Teams in 2024

Published 16. 4. 2024

Have you ever experienced tension between your sales and marketing teams? This problem is all too common. The sales guys believe they are pushing for the next big close, but the marketing people are dilly-dallying about with "brand awareness" campaigns.


About author:
Matt Nawrot is a serial entrepreneur and digital marketing aficionado with a passion for helping others run successful online businesses. You can connect with him here at MattNawrot.com or through his LinkedIn.


Or maybe the marketing team thinks they're the ones driving conversions, while the sales team is blowing company money on golf trips with prospects.

Whatever the disagreement is, it is solvable. You just need to know what to do.

My article is all about how to reconcile differences and create alignment between your sales and marketing teams.

If you're tired of spinning your wheels because of misalignment, read on.

Table of Contents
Why Should You Create Alignment Between Marketing and Sales?
1. Establish Common Goals
2. Create Unified Messaging
3. Implement Regular Communication
4. Foster Mutual Understanding
5. Utilize Integrated Tools
6. Align Metrics and KPIs
7. Collaborate on Joint Tasks
8. Streamline Lead Management Processes
9. Celebrate Shared Successes


Why Should You Create Alignment Between Marketing and Sales?

Marketing and sales are like close cousins. They are two essential parts of business development that create opportunities and foster beneficial business relationships.

When these departments are misaligned, productivity and achievement can suffer. It's like two horses pulling a cart in opposite directions.

When these two functions are working together, a constructive collaboration arises, and your business operates more efficiently and achieves better outcomes.

Make sure you create alignment or else you might as well flush your dreams of quarter-over-quarter growth down the toilet.


1. Establish Common Goals

The first way to align your sales and marketing teams is to align your goals. This means that everyone on the team should have a number.

Your number is your target which gives you something to aim at.

These performance targets should be aligned with a common goal that is higher than the individual goals. If everyone does their job, your business will be successful.




2. Create Unified Messaging

Messaging should be the same across departments. If it's not, your prospects and customers will get conflicting messages. If they get conflicting messages, they will not trust your brand.

Instead, give your sales and marketing teams the same script to work off of. Little words and descriptions matter when it comes to external communications.

How do you organize this?

A great place to start is to make a brand standards document. Branding is the baseline that you can then use to design marketing communications.

From all my years in marketing, I have found that companies struggle if they don't take their branding seriously. This is because there is no standard to follow. Decisions about tone and language are made on a whim and often fall to the latest personal feelings of the decision maker.

This leads to poor messaging, irregularity, and confusion.

Don't make this mistake.

Instead, make a brand standards document and propagate it to the sales marketing teams. This way, there is no confusion about the language that should be used and any tension behind resulting decisions.


3. Implement Regular Communication

When your departments don't talk, frustration and resentment can start to build up. Avoid unnecessary disagreements by facilitating regular communication.

This can be done by scheduling regular meetings where everyone shares their problems, and you can have an open discussion about them.

I can remember many jobs where marketing and sales teams bonded and built great relationships just from implementing this small process.

When you work through conflict, it can actually stimulate healthy relationships, morale and commitment.

In fact, regular communication has tons of benefits that can't be overlooked such as:

Facilitate regular communication, address conflict early, and watch your sales and marketing teams become one cohesive unit.


boss and employee


4. Foster Mutual Understanding

Part of effective communication results in mutual understanding. Mutual understanding is when both sides feel heard. You can facilitate this process by asking questions and talking about feelings.

When you have many passionate people working in an organization, it is inevitable to have emotions involved (no matter how logical you try to be).

This is a good thing!

It creates a chance to create a deeper understanding of each other's motivations and to bond.

The trick is to not shy away from hard conversations and give everyone an opportunity to voice concerns. These conversations should happen on a regular basis - all the more reason to implement the process of regular communication!


5. Utilize Integrated Tools

When your teams aren't aligned, there's a good chance that everyone is working in different spaces.

Jim is using Google Docs.

Jill is using Microsoft Word.

Bob is still writing things on a notepad.

If you want to achieve alignment, you must create a standard procedure for engagement and stick to it.

Make a standard operating procedure for the tools that you use to communicate. These tools should include:

  1. Customer relationship management systems:
  2. Internal communication platforms:
    • Slack
    • Microsoft teams.
  3. Project management software:
    • Asana
  4. File sharing:
    • Google Drive
    • OneDrive

I have found in my years of marketing that this one tactic alone will dramatically cut down on your miscommunication and massively boost your cross-department collaboration.


Try to consolidate and integrate as many tools as possible so you don't have to manage more subscriptions than necessary. This becomes particularly important when you start outsourcing work to multiple teams and locations.


6. Align Metrics and KPIs

Metrics and KPIs are always a point of contention in sales and marketing environments.

What numbers are most important?

Who is responsible for achieving what?

In my experience, it's always best to tie all metrics back to the only metric that matters - profit.

Then, you can work backward to find any bottlenecks in the sales pipeline.

You should be looking at the sales and marketing process as a continuous progression from the top of the funnel to the bottom of the funnel. From there, you can benchmark and assign metrics to each team.

All parts of the sales funnel from brand awareness to lead acquisition metrics should be marketing's responsibility.

Brand awareness metrics:

  • share of voice
  • branded search terms
  • web traffic
  • social shares

Lead acquisition metrics:

  • cost per acquisition
  • cost per impression
  • click-through-rate
  • bounce rate
  • return on ads spend.

Conversion and retention should be the sales team's responsibility.

Conversion metrics:

  • conversion rate
  • cost per conversion
  • total conversions
  • average deal size.

Retention metrics:

  • customer lifetime value
  • adoption rates
  • churn
  • monthly recurring revenue.

You want to make sure that the most important metrics are clearly defined and linked back to the main goal - to increase revenue and make profits.

If everyone does their jobs, you should see an increase in revenue generated which should increase profit!




7. Collaborate on Joint Tasks

Joint tasks create a sense of teamwork and comradery. Your sales and marketing teams fight because they don't understand each other's roles.

If you want to get everyone working together, get them to help each other out.

That means a marketing person takes some sales calls. Or maybe that means a sales guy cleans up a lead list.

Whatever it is, going through each other's tasks is the best way to gain some perspective. Once you understand the other team's struggle, you will get a whole new perspective on their tasks.

Empathy will increase.

People will appreciate each other.

And your company culture will flourish.


8. Streamline Lead Management Processes

Lead management must be streamlined if you want any hope of aligning sales and marketing.

Fortunately, it's pretty easy to set up.

First, make sure you have a unified customer relationship management system (CRM) that everyone uses.

Second, make sure that all leads are entered into the system. There should be no stray Excel docs or email threads hiding on someone's personal computer - everything (and I mean everything) should go into the system.

Third, make sure that you know where each lead came from - phone, email, social media, trade show, etc.

Tracking all the leads will give you a good base point for managing them moving forward. This way, your sales and marketing teams can easily update each other through the CRM - which removes inefficient and unnecessary communication.


9. Celebrate Shared Successes

Celebrating wins together is a sure way to stimulate alignment between departments. When people get together to celebrate, they feel like they're part of the team.

Milestones like big sales, hitting revenue targets, or just getting through another successful quarter are all great excuses to get everyone together.

Here are a few ways that you can celebrate shared successes:

  • going for lunch
  • throwing a potluck
  • giving gift cards
  • making public recognitions
  • giving bonuses.

Get creative and try to acknowledge team efforts as much as possible for maximum team camaraderie.



Salespeople and marketers are close neighbors. However, if you don't manage their relationships, unchecked tension will lead to misalignment.

Instead of letting this misalignment fester, be proactive and align your sales and marketing teams as soon as possible.

I believe that you can work towards harmonizing your sales and marketing efforts by following my piece. I hope you achieve enhanced efficiency, better customer experiences, and increase your revenue.