Sales and Marketing are so similar, so why do so many companies treat them as two distinct elements? After all, they are actively chasing the same goals. John Rampton’s article Three Keys to Synchronizing Sales and Marketing in 2016 addresses this conundrum. “In order for a business to identify and convert the right prospects, these frequently independent departments must synchronize their strategies to establish cohesiveness and joint purpose.” He provides three ways better to synchronize sales and marketing:
- Using Analytics for a More Complete Buyer Picture. "Both marketing and sales need a comprehensive picture about prospects, including visibility into customer behaviors." Sales needs to know what activities are working and marketing needs to see which messages resonate the most. Marketers will be able to better tailor content based on the responses to salespeoples' emails. Sales reps will know what content drives the best conversions. Combining these insights buying stages creates a fuller picture for both teams. Information is power.
- Adopting Integrated Systems. Sales usually communicates in a direct style, while marketing prefers a more one-to-many approach. "You should make coordinated communications between these two components of your business a key goal," Rampton says. Over time this will improve productivity and keep your teams aligned.
- Leveraging Sales-Centric Marketing Metrics. "Forward thinking marketing departments have the ability to study what happens to leads after they’re sent to sales," Rampton explains. "They can understand how prospects engage with reps, the adjust their own messaging to bring more value to sales." At the end of the day, sales is the final goal.
"In the past, sales and marketing have too often been viewed as independent of one another…synchronization wasn’t necessarily a conscious pursuit. Today, things are different."
When these two teams are not aligned, opportunities are missed and performance suffers.
In Jim Meisenheimer’s article, he discusses the best day of the week: today. "Some salespeople squander time and some people squander money and even more salespeople squander both. That’s just plain stupid. Start treating every day as a gift and you’ll spend your time more productively." Now Meisenheimer’s made us a nice acronym. To MAKE the most of your day:
"M-onitor the critical sales performance elements in your business. Know your numbers. Know your statistics. Identify your selling weaknesses and work diligently to transform them into strengths. Every day ask this question, “How can I do better?” Then do it better."
"A-djust your attitude. Tough people always figure out a way to deal with tough times. Be tough. You can achieve anything you can imagine. The key is to be imagining good things happening to you. To be on the safe side though – make sure you convert your dreams into written goals with specific action steps."
"K-eep learning. Don’t let a single day go by without learning something new about your Selling Profession. The more you study the more you’ll sell. Learn to earn."
"E-njoy the ride. Face it-life’s too short. Customers and sales prospects are people. Enjoy the time you spend with them. Take an active interest in their business and learn about their personal interests. You probably have more in common than you think."
I like what Meisenheimer has to say for many reasons. First, I love a good acronym/play on words. I also love his wisdom. This is life wisdom, he just applied it to sales. And what he says at the end of his article is profound. Remember this.
"Don’t put your family on hold. Don’t hit the mute button when it comes to outside interests and hobbies. Nothing is more dreadful than facing retirement with zero hobbies and no favorite pastimes."
Grant Cardone, in his article, discusses a few mistakes to avoid in sales:
- Using a random approach. Know your gameplan and know exactly what you're going to say.
- Not getting answers. "This is a massive problem for many salespeople. If you can’t get answers from people you can’t close them," Cardone explains.
- Jumping forward to price. First see if the product satisfies the customer’s needs. Don’t jump ahead.
- Being mechanical. Role play scenarios to avoid this- it takes training to make the presentation of a new product fluid.
What would you add?
In Kevin Temple’s article, he states that usually in a presentation you first talk about your company and build up your credibility. Next is to move onto your product, speak about its features, then read case studies and testimonials.
That’s fine, but it’s not great.
Here’s how Temple would do it.
- Describe the situation. Describe a change that would interest them.
- What problems does this situation create? Explore the situation's downstream implications.
- Describe the full impact of these problems on their company.
- How your product can help by telling stories of other companies. Elucidate similarites between your prospect's situation and the situation of the case study you just presented.
Try it and see how it works!
Find Kevin: LinkedIn
Ryan Paugh said he never wanted to be in sales. In fact, in college he only loved his philosophy classes. But now that Paugh has been in sales for years, he’s realizing all the life skills he’s learned. Some of his thoughts:
- You’ll become a better friend, partner, and parent. You learn body language, tone, how to listen, and how to ask good questions.
- You’ll never struggle to find another job in your lifetime. Every business needs money, even if they do not have a product to sell. "They need money to survive and you know how to go get it," Paugh explains.
- You’ll give yourself the opportunity to travel and live all around the world. Sales is a fully transferable skill, a skill that adds value across languages and cultures.
- Every day will be creating and developing human relationships. While money and fame are great, long-term happiness is found in the relationships you cultivate with others.
- From sales, you can go in any career direction you want. "Don't think of going into sales as choosing a career. Think of it as choosing a skill," Paugh says. The high applicability of sales methodology allows for easy transfer across disciplines.
- You’ll learn how to get things done. If you want something, you have to go and get it- and no career path requires "wanting it" more than sales.