Unless you are a large public company who needs to “protect their brand” and produce appropriate messaging for Wall Street (otherwise known as corporate marketing), the primary role of marketing in your organization should be lead generation.

Give your marketing department a lead generation quota. How many leads are they generating each month? Is your lead generation process growing month over month? If there is growth month over month, marketing is getting better at producing more quality leads.

Are you tracking the number and quality of leads marketing produces today? You must measure to learn and improve.

Are you spending marketing time and effort on stuff that doesn’t generate leads? Or generates poor quality leads? Do you have a method for assessing lead quality?

Most companies ask their sales teams to do everything; prospect, nurture, and close the sales cycle. Most good sales closers are horrible prospectors. One of the best ways to grow your sales is to dedicate someone to lead generation and let the closers close.

In his book, Predictable Revenue, Arron Ross states, “lead generation drives growth; salespeople fulfill it.” Your marketing hire should be all about lead generation not about logo colors, branding, new promotional products, and all the other traditional “corporate marketing” activities.

Your online presence has to be an integral part of your lead generation strategy. Everything online starts with getting found. Search engine optimization (getting found) leads to a website with a clear call to action, that leads to a capture of a lead, pours into a system (CRM) that lands with an assigned sales representative for nurturing and closing.

If you think hiring more sales people is the only way to grow your sales, think about how much better your existing sales team would be doing if they were consistently getting fed qualified leads.