A successful business runs and operates like a functional machine – a vast number of smaller parts working hard beneath the surface to produce results. When trying to understand the relationship between sales and marketing, it is imperative to view them as two separate units within that machine that must work together for the overall machine to remain functional. How, then, can you effectively improve this working relationship to grow your business in the most efficient way possible?
Different Departments, Different Targets, Common Goal
How do sales and marketing differ? As referenced above, these departments operate as two separate units within the “machine” of any business. However, it is imperative that they both maintain the common goal of driving traffic, converting visitors into paying customers and increasing revenue for the business. Even with a common goal, though, these two departments have different targets that they must hit to achieve that milestone.
- Sales: Sell products and/or services
- Marketing: Identify and connect with your target customer & key demographic
It is understandable why many consumers and inexperienced professionals simply blend these two units together – especially due to the common grounds shared between the two worlds. Nonetheless, it is imperative to highlight the noticeable differences that clearly distinguish one side from the other.
Timing is Essential, Market Before You Sell
Another key reason correlates with the art of timing. Many business owners and brand marketers wait until after they have perfected their inventory or lines of service before they initiate marketing campaigns and publish advertisements. However, studies have shown that waiting until after the product has been released is one of the worst decisions that you can make from a marketing standpoint. Studying the relationship between sales and marketing helps you to appreciate the need to market before the product or service is made available to your target market.
According to Entrepreneur, initiating a marketing campaign after the product or service launch require your business to develop a brand awareness campaign with the goal of driving traffic. A more efficient approach from a marketing standpoint would be to build interest and generate buzz before the projected launch date. Basically, you would be selling the benefit to your customers before the arrival of the product which would allow you to capitalize on pre-orders (if applicable) and high anticipation for the release date.
Getting to Know Your Customers Will Boost Revenue
Customers and clients are the lifeblood of your business. The key to building and expanding your business over time is to find efficient ways to captivate their interest and convert their visits and interactions with your brand into confirmed sales and repeat business. By focusing on the relationship between sales and marketing, you will position your brand to use both elements to effectively understand your target customers in a way that you never imagined.
Think about the information that the typical salesperson gathers during a direct customer interaction. He or she basically could learn everything that they need to know – what the customer needs, wants, likes, dislikes as well as which options will serve as the best option for them. his pertinent data can then be used by the marketing team to customize all advertising campaigns, upcoming promotions and even the merchandising strategies to appeal to a broader audience within the same market.
Study Results by Focusing on Measurable Goals
When analyzing the success and structure of sales and marketing strategies, it is also important to study the measurable milestones and accomplishments to gauge a product’s success (or failure). You can accurately measure results and finalized numbers of your sales and marketing campaigns by analyzing conversion rates, traffic figures and other revenue-related projections. Doing so will also make it possible to maintain proper balance and realistic expectations as you work through the various stages of your marketing campaign.
At times, it can become easy to shift the weight of your expectations to one side or the other – sales or marketing – but avoid blending the two together to draw an accurate conclusion. If you focus too much on sales, then you will not know how to connect with your customers to get those sales. Conversely, if you focus too much on marketing, you will effectively captivate the attention of your ideal customers but have nothing ready to reel them in after you hook them.
Cast a Big Net Instead of a Single Line
Most professional anglers know that the most efficient and effective way to catch a vast number of fishes is to use a wide net instead of an individual fishing pole. When establishing the bond between sales and marketing, it is vital to take note of how the two worlds combine to create a “net” that you can use to search for and find a vast number of customers instead of pulling them in one by one.
How do you cast a big net? Advertise from a variety of different angles; do not put all your eggs in the same basket. For instance, studies have shown that content marketing is a solid way to generate buzz and increase organic exposure for your online presence. According to Forbes, you can accomplish this by anchoring content within your own site and marketing it effectively. In addition to a solid social media strategy and other efficient advertising campaigns to promote your brand and its products/services, you can boost exposure to your business by leaps and bounds compared to traditional advertising methods. Once again, though, it is vital to analyze measurable results and accurate data to ensure that your chosen paths of building your business are not breaking your business.
The Bottom Line: Sales and Marketing are a Dynamic Duo
It is true that there are substantial differences that distinguish sales from marketing – differences that you should clearly understand if you are serious about growing your business. However, it is more important to make sure that you pay attention to how you can build the relationship between sales and marketing successfully to assist you in achieving that coveted goal.
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