Last Friday I had the opportunity to appear on the upstart Web series DisrupTV to discuss a major disruptive trend happening today in sales and marketing. I believe we are seeing a convergence of art and science in sales and marketing, and it’s disrupting the industry and challenging organizations to respond.
What’s causing the disruption? The root cause is the two competing dynamics in play. On one side, we have better access to data (and more of it), better tools and better technologies with which to practice sales and marketing – the science of marketing. On the other, buyers are demanding more transparency and authenticity than ever before. Buyers want to work with vendors who understand their needs and empathize with them. Buyers want to engage on their terms and timeframes, and they expect vendors to understand that. In short, buyers want to be treated like humans first and buyers second. This is the art of marketing.
So, how are we doing? Many organizations are adopting strategies to take advantage of data and technology (bear witness to the rise of “the stack”). Many organizations are shifting to an audience-centric approach to sales and marketing (bear witness to the rise of “the persona”). But very few are doing both and fewer still are doing both well…balancing both the art and science of sales and marketing. By the way, the handful of organizations that are doing this well are creating a real competitive advantage.
While I was running marketing and events at SiriusDecisions, we felt so strongly about this trend that we themed our annual Summit around it: “The Art and Science of Intelligent Growth.” We’re going to bring a similar level of focus to sales and marketing at Octiv. Over the coming weeks and months, we will explore both sides of this dynamic and how organizations can adapt to become more proficient in doing both well.