How to prepare your Salesmen for the war: Guide to Sales & Marketing
As a Salesman, we are constantly chasing our customers. All that we do in life is to sell! We sell ideas, we sell products, we sell people and we sell companies. For most of my sales career, the rules of the game had been very simple. It’s amazing to see how things have quickly escalated and changed in last 5 years. Contrary to the past, today there are so many tools available to market the products. This eventually increases the scope to sell the product in the market.
Despite the accessibility to the sales and marketing tools, we still face a plethora of challenges. Firstly, today’s consumer himself is not clear on what he wants. With so many options available in the market for a given product or service with similar features and benefits, the consumer makes his mind to carefully select one specific product. And as a salesman, I wonder why he buys that particular product! What must have influenced him!? Was it the marketing!? But wait, was it digital or offline!? Oh! It must be the reviews. Or was it an advertisement!? It could also be a spur of the moment decision of the consumer. Oh my God!So many factors to be taken into account.
I miss the good old days when sales were simple- create a product and make it available in the market. Just choose a distribution network and create an ad in both TV and Newspaper and Bingo! You are all set to rock! Every salesman used to be a Rockstar. Now look how the world has changed! How complex it is today! The creation of consumer perception, their online and offline presence, the influencers marketing the products, Facebook and Google Campaigns, SEO, SMO, offline promotions in hoardings, etc., etc. And even after all this, there is no guarantee that the product will sell.
What matters today is identifying the target audience and then creating a mix of every available medium in a perfect blend that would strike a chord with consumers. The million dollar problem is-how to get this mix perfectly right? Because if you miss the composition here, the chances are that your campaign is hitting a no-man’s-land and the net result will be a downward sales curve.
I have been helping companies in getting this mix right and believe me, even for the same product, for different brands the combination and composition changes. There is no scope of cheating or copying in sales. Sales is a fair game. The consumer perception of every brand and his ultimate choice of buying or not buying a product depends on multiple factors. It is with years of experience and hands-down knowledge of the consumer behavior that you can choose the solution that suits you best.
But marketing always drives sales. When you think of your sales strategy, your marketing mix has to be perfect. This will backup your sales force tostrike and acquire customers faster. I am a firm believer that marketing is like Air force and your Sales force is the Army; cover them well and you can win any war. After all, sales is nothing but getting a number with optimized marketing resources. But of course, that too is a number.