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The 80/20 rule in Sales and Marketing needs a make over

December 12, 2012


Can’t we just get along? Especially now, when we are planning for the new year, our goals should always be in alignment.  But are they?

Sales and marketing have been tasked to work together to accomplish the growth expectations of the company for years.  However, sales and marketing have traditionally had separate agendas and therefore separate goals for their departments.  In the spirit of the holiday, or just the right thing for the business, its critical for a company’s growth expectations to get these two areas on the same page.  Marketing is funded to support the revenue growth and therefore should have a key partnership with the sales teams.  And in the same breath, the sales team should be invested in the programs that marketing creates and deploys.  These two areas have to be tied at the hip so to speak.

I know, you are sitting there, and saying, “I have heard this before”, however nothing seems to change.  There was a recent IDC study, citing the 80/20 rule, that stated “up to 80% of the content [that] marketing generates is not used by sales, even though a lot of it is specifically created for sales and channel enablement.”  Every marketer and sales person should be stunned.  These are your dollars that are not being used efficiently.  80% of your marketing budget is not being used by the sales team.   We should have an 80/20 rule… but it should be 80% is used by sales and 20% is the corporate, investor pieces that are needed from a corporate perspective.  As we plan for 2013 budgets, knowing that 80% of the content developed is NOT used by sales, is problematic.  This is the number one reason why I scream from the mountain tops that the plans for sales and marketing should be the same.   This isn’t about communication, this is about tactically deploying programs that make sense for sales and for marketing goals.  This is about effective use of our budgets and capitalization of our marketing spend.  This is about fundamentally getting on the same page with our teams, and ensuring everyone understands where we are headed. If something isn’t working… let’s switch it up and maximize those dollars.  Let’s communicate effectively with each other.  Let’s work together and ensure we are spending and planning new programs that work.


About Sondra Boroff , Insight One

Sondra Boroff  is a marketing consultant with more than 15 years of experience. She works closely with companies to develop comprehensive marketing strategies. Sondra also has extensive expertise working with global sales teams and provides value to organizations by helping marketing teams maximize their investments, while creating materials that will benefit sellers. Contact Sondra today for a complementary content assessment and analysis for 2013 planning.



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