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Like most sales leaders, HubSpot’s Mark Roberge can’t remember a time when Sales and Marketing weren’t at cross purposes. Facing aggressive lead-generation goals and trying to help Sales bring in revenue, Marketing cranks up their efforts and produces a ton of new leads, sometimes sacrificing lead quality in the process. Meanwhile, Sales gets those leads and complains that they’re not good enough and reverts to cold calling instead. Marketing says that Sales isn’t effectively working the marketing leads and that all their hard work drumming up those leads was for nought.

Rinse and repeat.

This back and forth hurts productivity, burns bridges and — guess what — doesn’t do anything for the bottom line. Mark decided that he needed to end this ongoing feud and create a system that aligns Sales and Marketing with the sames goals, the same strategies and the same language.

What he came up with is a service level agreement (SLA) that prioritizes cohesion, properly values Marketing leads and helps Sales turn them into revenue.

How did he do it?

“The SLA is essentially a contract between the two departments that defines the terms and aligns the goals,” Mark told InsightSquared during an extensive interview recently.

“For Marketing, this means defining how a lead needs to be qualified before it is ready to be handed to Sales, and the number of such qualified leads Marketing needs to generate each month,” he said.

“For Sales, the SLA describes how quickly sales reps must attempt to contact a new lead from Marketing, and how many times each sales rep must contact that lead,” he said.

But that’s just the beginning. Effective SLAs must also properly quantify the value of leads from Marketing so that different sources — eBooks, webinars, free trial requests, etc. — are counted differently.

“To craft a great SLA, you should measure the conversion rates for different lead sources and multiply it by the average revenue per customer so that you can create a lead value that properly weights different lead sources,” he added.

Want to learn more about how Mark Roberge created his renowned SLA? Read the full FREE interview here:

Mike Baker
Mike Baker is the Content Strategy Manager at InsightSquared, where he helps distribute original eBooks, articles and guides about data-driven sales and marketing. He has a BA in English and Journalism from Oberlin College.
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