One of the new hit shows on Apple TV+ is the Ben Stiller-produced Severance.
It’s a psy-fi-ish drama about a mysterious company that requires certain employees to “sever” their work life from the home life.
When they go into the office and get on the elevator, they switch into their work identity (called their “innie”). And when they leave the office, switch back to their normal identity (their “outtie”).
So it’s like split personalities. Their work identity doesn’t know anything about their home identity and vice versa. It’s trippy.
One clear theme the characters are forced to address: the act of having your brain severed makes it darn near impossible for individuals to think critically and make good decisions. Severance weakens them, for obvious reasons.
There’s a form of “severance” that commonly weakens practices – and it’s the split between marketing and sales. Marketing = the person/people/agencies advertising for the practice, and sales = the phone team and patient counselors who are booking consults and surgeries.
I asked a marketing director last week, “What are the patient counselors saying about the quality of leads coming from XYZ campaign?” and he didn’t know. Which is an indicator of a severed relationship between sales and marketing.
Marketing and sales work together to fuel your Practice Growth Machine. But too often, these departments are “severed” – they don’t communicate with each other, one doesn’t know what the other is doing.
Depending on the size of your practice, you may have an entire sales department and a marketing department. OR you may have a single patient counselor (sales) and a coordinator who handles your marketing. Either way, this applies.
Let’s look at what needs to happen if you want to maximize your surgery booking opportunities…
There are 2 simple aspects to completing the sales + marketing feedback loop.
1. Sales needs to know what marketing is doing.
Most practices do this to some extent.
Marketing will say, “Hey sales, we just launched this new promo. Here’s the deal, here’s an example of the ads, get ready for leads to come in…” and that’s perfectly fine.
Added bonus is to give the sales team a couple of scripting lines they can use, makes their job easier.
So if you’re doing this, great. If not, start.
Now, here’s where the ball OFTEN gets dropped, even by the most well-meaning practices…
2. Marketing needs to know what sales is experiencing.
Ok, the campaign is launched. Leads are coming in. Here’s what the marketing folks need to to find out from sales (phones and counselors)…
- Are you able to get a hold of the leads?
- Are they converting?
- Is there anything they are confused about?
- Are there any particular questions that keep coming up?
- Is a certain segment of the audience converting better than others?
- What could we do in the ads / marketing / promo to make the salesperson’s job easier?
All of these are feedback points that need to go from sales to marketing.
And this doesn’t have to be hard, long or tedious. A weekly 10-minute meeting between your sales lead and marketing lead is more than enough to answer these questions.
Then marketing takes that feedback and refines the ad / visuals / copy / content based on that input. And the cycle continues as marketing and sales performance gets better.
Added bonus: This actually makes everyone’s job easier and more enjoyable. Marketing isn’t having to guess at what ads work – they can build campaigns based on real-world responses that sales is seeing. And sales ends up getting higher quality leads that are easier to close. Boom boom. Win Win.
REMEMBER: “Severance” in the office makes you susceptible to limited thinking and bad decisions. Avoid this pitfall by taking a few minutes a week to open lines of communication between sales and marketing. Start this week.
– Troy “Never Severed” Cole
PS – The show Severance is worth checking out. You can watch it with an Apple TV+ subscription. (NOTE: if you don’t like the first episode, stop watching. The cadence and vibe is the same throughout the season.)