It's always easier when someone comes to you rather than you trying to convince them that they need to do business with you. Like a lot of things that have changed, everything has changed. Everything has changed especially in the last five years. If you tell me I'm doing something and I've been doing it the same way I'm doing it for 10 years, it's gotta be wrong. In today's world, with how quickly things are moving, companies need to reinvent themselves every six months. And what that means, it doesn't mean total reinvention, it doesn't mean, you know, change your name, change your product. Reinvention, it just means take a hard look at where the market's going and what you're doing to keep up. Hey, it's Kyle from HubSpot Academy. I don't know if you've noticed, but the internet has completely revolutionized the way sales works. Before the internet, if you were looking to buy something, your main source of information was the person selling it. Will the thing you're buying work the way you want it to? Is it worth the money? Can you get a better price elsewhere? Regardless of whether you were buying thumbtacks at a hardware store or an apartment building from a commercial realtor, the only person you could get answers from was the salesperson you were working with. Those days are long gone. Now, everything you could ever want to know about paper clips or apartment buildings or anything else is on the internet. And buyers in every industry are using this to their advantage. This has two big implications for modern businesses. If you've taken any other HubSpot Academy courses, you probably already know one of them: you've got to get your marketing and sales teams practicing inbound techniques. Inbound is all about creating marketing and sales that people love by providing helpful content and resources that attract people to you. These days, regardless of what industry you're in, attracting people to you is far more effective than chasing down prospects and trying to convince them to buy from you. Here's Steve Bookbinder, CEO and lead trainer at DM Training: I'll talk to a sales person. I'll go, "Tell me about that first meeting. They'll go, "Oh, I talked to the customer. They were very interested." "Okay, did you call them, or did they call you?" "No, I called them." "Oh." "But they were very interested." "Yeah, but you called them?" "Uh-huh (affirmative)-" "They were so interested that they what? What was the dialogue of their company?" "I really hope the guy calls me today. I really hope he cold calls me today. Even though I have a phone and could call him, I'm not. I'm gonna wait to be cold-called." And that's kinda what we do and as nutty as that is, if you look at the actual behavior, that's what people are doing. Does it ever work? Yeah, everything eventually works. The stupidest thing'll work. I could open up the window and say "Does anybody want to buy from me?" And in theory eventually somebody will buy. And a typical sales person will say "See, it worked." Well everything works once. What I need is something that's gonna work a lot. And what's gonna work a lot is always working with people who are more likely to buy. Who are as interested in talking to me as I am in talking to them. You don't want your sales team feeling like they're shouting out a window. Instead, you've got to teach them to provide value to people before they try to extract any value from them. But that alone isn't enough, and that's the other big implication of the modern change in buying behavior: Regardless of how inboundy your marketing and sales efforts are, you've got to get your sales and marketing teams working together. Most researchers agree that the average buyer does 70% of their buying research before they ever talk to sales, and 59% would prefer not to talk to sales at all. If your customers are required to talk to sales at any point in their journey, you can bet they'll come to that meeting well prepared. If the sales rep says anything that's inconsistent with what the buyer has learned online, that's going to cause problems. Here's Andrea Austin, a sales VP and co-author of Aligned to Achieve: If those messages are different, that's gonna create risk. Risk causes people to pause. We all know that when there's a pause in a sales cycle, time kills deals. The fact is, our buyer's behavior has changed and that is completely making them say, "I don't want to work with people that aren't synchronized." That's the reason that we have to do things differently now. So sales and marketing have to be perfectly aligned or you're going to lose potential customers. The trouble is, marketing and sales don't often get along very well. Here's Doug Davidoff, Founder and CEO of Imagine Business Development: marketing is an awesome field. You got people who love rules, they think long term, and they want things to work. Then you go to the bottom of the funnel, and you think about sales, and sales are awesome people. They're opportunistic. They're short term. They don't believe in rules because every situation is different. You have these two disciplines. They're not built to communicate. They're not built to align. They're very different disciplines. They're different mindsets. They're different processes. They're not built to work together, but they have to work together. One excellent way to get sales and marketing working together is to implement a sales enablement strategy. Sales enablement is the processes, content, and technology that empower sales teams to sell efficiently at a higher velocity - and that's a task marketing is well equipped to execute. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the time, sales enablement lives within the sales organization. It's a marketing function less than 8% of the time. And that's a tragedy - not just because marketing has the skillset for the job but also because marketing owns your company's relationship with prospects presale. And remember, most buyers are doing more and more of their research before they talk to sales, so marketing's influence over the sale is ever increasing. Here's Marcus Sheridan of The Sales Lion: 70% of the buying decision is made before someone talks to a salesperson, before they talk to the company. So, if this is true what does it mean? If this number is true, which department of your organization has a greater impact on the actual sale? and this is why we're seeing a shift of more and more organizations saying, "Okay, let's just stop calling it sales and marketing, let's call it revenue teams," because fundamentally, that's really what we're talking about. Let's make sure that the sales team now gets involved way earlier in that buying process, during the digital side of the vetting experience, so that they can be that much further ahead and reclaim that influence in the sales process that they've lost over time. That's what sales enablement is all about: Bringing marketing and sales together to keep up with today's empowered buyers. Your sales team needs robust processes and excellent content if they're going to thrive in the modern landscape, and marketing is the department that can give it to them.