Our series on the major tenets of Sales 2.0 continues along, in this post we’ll be focusing on alignment.  Over the past few weeks we’ve talked about acceleration, collaboration, professionalization and accountability, which leads perfectly into the final tenet:  Alignment.  We are basing much of our content on the recent article “Sales 2.0:  How soon will it improve your business?” by Pelin Wood Thorogood and Gerhard Gschwandtner.  You can read the piece in its entirety at SellingPower.com, or in this recent article at InsideCRM.

As the power of the social Web rapidly increases communication and connectivity, selling and marketing are joining their separate silos into a seamless and completely aligned organization.  In fact, the core character of the Sales 2.0 world is that it relies on sales and marketing alignment, with shared goals and new responsibilities throughout the sales cycle.  Driven by acceleration and collaboration – from lead generation and qualification all the way to closed deals – Sales 2.0 is melding what once were isolated pipelines into one powerful tube.  In some companies, marketing is held accountable (and rewarded) for transactional business and sales for consultative business. Now, new sales technologies allow salespeople to launch their own marketing campaigns, read a prospect’s “digital body language” and instantly see which prospect opened their emails. New customer engagement technologies help customers recognize and define their own problems and discover how to remove the barriers to the sale.

For example, Genius.com allows marketing to send out personalized emails on behalf of sales and instantly alerts reps of prospect activity. Sales can record the entire experience and contact those who have visited a Web page.

The world of Sales 2.0 is a rapidly expanding universe that institutionalizes a collaborative and repeatable sales and marketing process, enabling the adoption of best practices across the entire company. The result: dramatic improvements in performance. Today’s smarter and far better informed prospects demand more of companies.  Sales 2.0 is a game-changing approach that will result in higher-volume sales, higher-value sales, and higher-velocity sales with significant improvements in overall profitability. The big question is not why should a company move up to Sales 2.0, but why not now?