Corporate Visions Survey Finds Only 10 Percent of Companies are Completely Coordinated in Their Demand Generation and Sales Training Initiatives

January 21, 2015

40 Percent Believe Such Programs Contribute to Stronger Lead Conversion Rates and More Closed Deals, Yet Companies Continue to Allow Their Marketing and Sales Content Teams to Operate in Silos

LARKSPUR, Calif. – October 28, 2014 – Corporate Visions, Inc., the leading marketing and sales messaging, tools and training company, today announced the results of a survey that polled more than 420 business-to-business (B2B) marketing and sales professionals worldwide regarding the level of B2B demand generation and sales enablement/training alignment within their organizations. Interestingly, the data revealed that only 10 percent of companies are completely coordinated in these efforts, despite the fact that 40 percent of respondents believe optimal alignment does contribute to stronger lead conversion rates.

In the survey, respondents were first asked to describe the level of coordination between their demand generation and sales training teams. The results were as follows:

  • Uncoordinated – 15.4 percent
  • Somewhat coordinated – 43 percent
  • Coordinated – 31.1 percent
  • Completely coordinated – 10.5 percent

They were then asked about the impact that this coordination – or lack thereof – had on their organizations as a whole:

  • Our alignment leads to better lead conversion and closed deals – 40.2 percent
  • Our alignment has no significant impact on lead conversion and closed deals – 10.9 percent
  • Our lack of alignment leads to lost lead conversion and closed deals – 24.7 percent
  • Our lack of alignment has no significant impact on lead conversion and closed deals – 2.6 percent
  • Not sure about the impact – 21.6 percent

Perhaps just as striking as the number of respondents believing their lack of alignment negatively impacts deals is that more than 20 percent are unsure about the impact either way. This data point suggests that many companies may not even measure this critical information at all.

In order to understand whether respondents with optimally aligned sales and marketing teams feel their efforts are paying off, Corporate Visions then cross-referenced the data in these two aforementioned questions. The results identified that 68 percent of respondents with “coordinated” and “completely coordinated” demand generation and sales training teams believe this has a positive impact on their lead conversion efforts. Similarly, 38.8 percent of respondents reporting “uncoordinated” or only “somewhat coordinated” teams admit this disconnect has impeded their ability to close deals.

When it comes to the areas of greatest coordination, companies generally seem to be most aligned on sales and marketing messaging, go-to-market plans and training initiatives, but fall short in the categories of content development and analytics:

  • Conversation strategy (sales, marketing and training messaging) – 55.8 percent coordination
  • Go-to-market plans – 47 percent coordination
  • Internal communication of roll-outs to sales – 43.7 percent coordination
  • Training – 42.7 percent coordination
  • Asset/content development (both customer-facing and sales coaching) – 34.6 percent coordination
  • Analytics/metrics – 31.8 percent coordination

The lack of coordination on content development supports recent Corporate Visions survey findings from earlier this year. The survey revealed that although nearly 40 percent of sales and marketing professionals identify “opportunity creation” conversations as having the highest impact on helping salespeople achieve quota, only half feel adequately prepared to do this with the content and training provided by their companies.

“These survey results support our contention that there’s a potential ‘conversion gap’ in companies between demand generation and sales follow-up conversations,” said Tim Riesterer, chief strategy and marketing officer for Corporate Visions. “Marketing and sales teams must work together to create a more integrated, customer-centric approach to message development and sales conversation delivery, because only those companies that can effectively tell an engaging and unique story across the buying cycle will be successful in creating and closing the opportunities needed to meet their revenue goals.”