If you aspire to work in sales, marketing or management as you pursue your business degree online, it’s important to understand the importance of a strong relationship between these two departments and business functions. Often kept separate, these two functions can be extraordinarily powerful when used together.
Research co-authored by Dr. Mike Wittmann, chair of the Department of Marketing, Industrial Distribution and Economics at University of Alabama at Birmingham Collat School of Business, and Dr. Dennis B. Arnett, explores why marketing and sales are often siloed in an organization and how that should change.
How Sales and Marketing Typically Work
Marketers tend to deliver diverse content to engage customers, while also conducting market research to better understand customer needs. On the other hand, sales people typically:
- Provide unique product insight to demonstrate tailored value to customers.
- Leverage organizational resources to develop customer relationships.
- Develop and maintain long-term partnerships with key customers.
Tacit Knowledge Transfer
Effective communication, both among team members and between companies and their customers, relies on tacit knowledge transfer. This kind of knowledge is complex, developed over time and can’t be written or codified.
Tacit knowledge allows organizations to improve efficiencies, be more effective and think innovatively. It requires developed social networks, coworker trust and support from managers.
Wittmann and Arnett surveyed 200 salespeople, focusing on what improves tacit knowledge transfer and how knowledge sharing can improve performance. They found that the exchange of tacit knowledge offers tangible benefits for both sales and marketing teams. To see in what specific ways this exchange can help both, view the below infographic by UAB Collat School of Business: