What do marketing and proposal teams have in common? They both want to demonstrate their company’s strengths in a way that is compelling and impactful. Despite this, proposal and marketing teams tend to manage their respective content in silos, with little collaboration between the two.
When you break content along team lines, messaging becomes inconsistent—or worse, inaccurate. That’s why the proposal team needs a champion who can bridge marketing and proposal teams to keep people aligned and content up-to-date. Who is that person at your organization? Maybe it’s you.
The good news is that aligning proposal and marketing teams isn’t as complicated as you might think. And I’ve already outlined a few simple strategies to get you started.
Replace walls with bridges
When teams become too focused on their tasks and deadlines, they inadvertently build walls around themselves. The higher these walls grow, the more difficult it is to stay aligned. As the self-appointed bridge between your organization’s marketing and proposal teams, it’s your responsibility to tear those walls down.
Kick off the collaboration by gathering the right brains in the same room, and setting up recurring cross-team meetings. Make sure everyone, on both sides, is clear about their responsibilities.
Next, make cross-team communication as easy as possible by setting up a designated channel in your communication platform of choice—be in Slack, Microsoft Teams, or Google Hangouts—where team members can go when they’re stuck or have a question.
Once you’ve established regular contact between marketing and proposal teams, they’ll be able to stay aligned on content guidelines and be ready for any changes coming down the line.
Your challenge is maintaining communication between the two sides. Keep collaboration simple. Ensure regular meetings keep happening. The more often the two sides are in contact, the easier it will be to communicate important deadlines, updates, or changes in content strategy.
Set regular review cycles
I like to think of brands as people. When you’re interacting with someone, it goes without saying that we expect them to sound and look the same throughout the conversation.
When customers are interacting with your brand, they expect a similarly uniform experience. Your company should look and sound the same, whenever your prospects are interacting with you, be it on your website, advertisements—or, yes, even proposals.
Proposals inconsistent with the rest of your organization’s content leaves customers with a tangled idea of what your company represents. And when you’re trying to demonstrate your value proposition, the last thing you want is to confuse your customers.
Luckily, we can fix this problem in just three words: Regular review cycles.
Beyond establishing an extended content plan, there is absolutely nothing more important to the long-term success of your content library than setting review cycles, content audits, and careful moderation practices.
Unsurprisingly, both of these elements also play a critical role in bridging the gap between marketing and the proposal management team.
Establishing a healthy review cadence allows your content experts to take a look at volatile or brand-centric content regularly, and creates the space to make any necessary edits before you submit your proposal.
Working Tip: If you’ve already set up review cycles in RFPIO, consider creating a separate cycle for marketing content, and add users from your team who will be plugged into the organization’s brand copy guidelines and priorities.
Stay aligned on content strategy
The cherry on top of excellent content is bringing everyone on the same page. Making sure both proposal and marketing teams are tuned-in to the overarching content strategy reduces miscommunication, misunderstandings, and inconsistencies.
Is there a rebrand on the horizon? Do taglines or other key pieces of brand copy change on a rolling basis? Are new products going to be released that will require additional content?
Understand your organization’s long-term content plan and be aware of any forthcoming copy and branding updates, so you can align proposal content with any changes coming down the pike.
Keeping a pulse on changes will ensure proposals are always aligned with your company’s mission and voice.
“Great things in business are never done by one person”. I’ll have to agree with Steve Jobs on this one. When proposal and marketing teams collaborate on content, messaging is consistent across channels. Proposals are more compelling. And everyone wins.
If you want to learn how RFPIO can help you keep your content organized, up-to-date, and on-brand, schedule a demo today.