It’s an old, classic issue. Yet we’re still not over the “Sales vs. Marketing” argument.
And this early ad is a subtle “direct revenue generation versus tapping into customers' emotions.”
The traditional playbook favors sales over marketing. But SaaS marketers argue that marketing is the first touchpoint, so sales should get the sideline.
But really, which demands more investment: marketing or sales?
So to fully explore this question, we need to take a deeper look at marketing and sales plus their impact on your SaaS business. 😊
Can a SaaS business grow without sales or marketing?
Honestly—yes, it's theoretically possible.
HOWEVER, it’s highly unlikely and challenging to achieve significant growth under such conditions. Let me explain why.
- Without marketing efforts, it becomes difficult for people to discover your product, understand its value—and consider using it.
- Without marketing activities like web copywriting, content marketing, email marketing, or SEO, you won’t have organic leads. And no leads equals no pipeline of potential customers to convert into paying users.
- Without sales, leads are just leads—with no one following up or pushing them to convert ultimately.
- Without sales, there’s no focus on upselling and cross-selling to existing customers. So it will be hard to scale.
- Without marketing or sales, you may struggle to differentiate your product from competitors, which can hinder growth potential.
So both are important, right? But let’s meet them deeper and go over the function of both marketing and sales.
Overview of sales and marketing within a SaaS business
- First, their primary objective—while marketing—is to get people to know about your SaaS product, generate leads, and build brand awareness. It’s sales that aim to convert leads into paying customers, negotiate and close deals, and drive revenue growth.
- Marketers focus on understanding the target audience, while sales work on pinpointing their individualized needs through product demos and then addressing their objections
- Marketing activities typically precede sales efforts. Sales activities come into play once leads are generated by marketing.
- Marketing is responsible for the initial touchpoints (awareness stage) with potential customers. It focuses on reaching a wider audience and nurturing leads. Sales build direct relationships with leads and customers during the conversion stage by engaging in one-on-one interactions and leading prospects through the buying process.
- Marketing activities include
- market research
- lead generation
- content creation (blogs, ebooks, whitepapers)
Sales activities include
- lead qualification
- product demonstrations
- closing deals
- account management
- Lastly, marketing metrics are often used to measure
- lead generation
- website traffic
- customer acquisition cost
On the other hand, sales metrics typically include
- the number of leads qualified
- conversion rates
- average deal size
- revenue generated
👉7. An important concept that every SaaS founder should know—the varying emphasis on sales and marketing also impacts whether your SaaS is sales-led or product-led.
Here’s a brief differentiation of the two approaches:
- In a sales-led approach, the primary driver is the sales team. And this approach is commonly found in B2B (business-to-business) SaaS companies where the sales cycle tends to be complex—so personalized interactions are critical.
- In a product-led approach, the product itself dominates. The product is designed to be self-serve and user-friendly so customers discover, sign up, and experience the product without heavy reliance on direct sales interactions. Often, this approach is used in B2C SaaS models.
But there's a bias towards sales over marketing in the early hiring decisions, right?
Short answer is actually yes. Note that this is inspired by a LinkedIn post, and it couldn't be more accurate.
Here are the possible reasons:
- Sales professionals have a direct impact on revenue generation through their ability to close deals and bring in paying customers. It’s easier to see if you hit your revenue and growth goals.
- With the direct impact on revenue, it also has a significant implication on your return on investment (ROI).
- Sales hiring tends to be simpler. The roles you’ll need are classified as SDRs, AEs, and Sales Managers. Also, hiring salespeople is often more about personality fit, interpersonal skills, and the ability to persuade people to buy your product.
But while there may be a bias toward having salespeople on board early, it's important to note that your marketing team shouldn’t be overlooked. And that’s even marketing roles are far more diverse—Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), VP of marketing, Marketing operations manager, Growth marketer, and more!
Because marketing is an accelerant to introduce your product or service to a wider audience. All in all, it impacts the growth of your SaaS (including the efficiency of your sales team 😁).
Through a solid marketing foundation, you communicate your value proposition, build your authority, and differentiate yourself from competitors. And this not only helps sales in closing deals but also contributes to the overall scalability and sustainability of the business.
So your best option: invest in a marketing team that works with sales
Yes, it’s time that you call it quits with the timeless debate. Stop arguing if you should invest more in marketing or sales. Go for a collaborative approach—a marketing team that works with the sales team.
When the marketing and sales teams work together, there is a better alignment of goals, strategies, and product messaging. This alignment ensures a consistent and cohesive customer experience throughout the entire buyer's journey—from initial awareness to closing the sale. 😉
Also, a marketing team that supports the sales process produces valuable sales materials. They develop case studies, product guides, presentations, and sales decks to help sales reps explain the product's value in detail.
And that’s what CaaSocio SaaS copywriting agency does exactly! We can be the extension of your SaaS marketing team that can work with sales—content-wise! Here are some steps we take to foster collaboration with your in-house marketing and sales teams:
- Set up regular communication channels (like Trello or Slack) where we can openly discuss your further marketing strategies (after the live consultations).
- Encourage clients to share revenue targets, customer acquisition goals, or lead conversion metrics. This sensibility ensures that we’re working towards a common objective.
- Involve the sales teams in the creation of content, and resources that address your market’s pain points, highlight key product benefits, and overcome objections.
- Celebrate joint successes and achievements. It builds a culture of teamwork and reinforces the importance of collaboration.
Sample outputs from the CaaSocio team plus your sales team
Email campaign copy
First, CaaSocio gathered input from the sales team to understand the actual feedback of the target audience and their pain points. Yes, the sales team has a wealth of knowledge about your customers. This will work in tandem with our market research.
During our chats, the sales team can provide valuable insights into customer objections and frequently asked questions. This input helped us craft compelling email copy to show off the product or service. The sales team's feedback is also crucial in refining the email copy to make it more impactful and persuasive.
In support of the sales outbound strategy, CaaSocio helped by writing the outreach messages for those vetted by the sales team as the best customers. The goal is to reach out to unaware prospects or reconnect with leads that have gone cold.
Through sharing knowledge, the sales team helped our marketing team develop outreach messages that position the product or service as a unique solution. And this joint effort ensured that the messages felt personalized and relevant to the recipients.
Email campaigns set up
Here, the sales team advises on the timing and frequency of email campaigns based on their understanding of prospect behavior and engagement patterns. We (CaaSocio) take care of implementing the targeted email messages that have specific objectives.
This involved setting up automation for time-based (to be sent at specific times) or behavior-based emails (triggers based on predefined actions).
Marketing decks copy polish
Before finalizing the marketing deck/sales pitch, CaaSocio was hired to improve the written content's clarity, persuasiveness, and impact so it could convey the intended message and engage the audience—and that also meant tapping into the insights of the sales team.
And the whole process involved assessing the current content within the marketing deck to identify areas that need improvement and strengthening the value proposition to ensure that the written content aligns well with the visual elements of the marketing deck.
Go for a marketing team working in tandem with sales
Investing more in marketing or sales should no longer be a debate. Hiring a sales team alone won’t do the trick. But without a marketing team, you also have much less chance of succeeding.
The key is finding a marketing team (like CaaSocio!😎) that works hand in hand with your sales team. Because the significance of marketing goes beyond selling. Marketing actually touches every part of the funnel—from building awareness and onboarding to nurturing leads and even extending to customer support.
If you're looking for a marketing team that can seamlessly work with your sales—we're here to help. CaaSocio understands the importance of collaboration in crafting content that can help in achieving your business objectives.