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The key to a successful ABM program is the collaboration between marketing and sales. Unfortunately, it’s not such an easy relationship to uphold. Often times sales doesn’t recognize the value that marketing provides, and isn’t willing to work together. This problem is more widespread in larger organizations, where teams and departments are bigger.

So what can we do about it?

Dana Poleg, VP Marketing at Kaltura, says that you must gain the trust of the sales team. In order to do that, show them that you’re willing to listen to them. Be more active and present in their work – join their meetings and calls, and try to understand their challenges, which will ultimately help you to create better content and campaigns for their target accounts.

Whether or not you are able to build a relationship with sales, Mike Telem, VP Product Marketing at Marketo, says that the key to getting sales to collaborate with marketing is to prove your value. Pique their interest by showing the sales team that there are visitors to the website from key accounts that they aren’t speaking with.

Once the sales team is interested, do a proof of concept. Ask for a short list of accounts the sales team hasn’t been able to penetrate and run a trial. Don’t over promise, as these may be difficult accounts to reach, but try to engage with them using ads, web, emails, focused content, etc., to show your value to sales.

Rafi Kretchmer, VP Marketing at Panaya, echoes the importance of showing value to sales. He recommends updating sales on a constant basis with value-driven information, such as visits to the site from specific accounts, or accounts that have had a spike in engagement. Sales can then reach out to these accounts with a specific content, such as a webinar tailored to their needs.

At the end of the day, gaining the trust of the sales team is crucial for ABM success. While it may be difficult, the key is in proving the marketing team’s value. To learn more tips from our ABM experts, watch our video.

To learn if Account Based Marketing is right for your organization, take our ABM Assessment.