Jun 17, 2011

Marketing or Sales?

Sales and marketing are two different sides of the same coin.  In both cases it's about providing a quality product, service, or idea, delivering a clear message, and building relationships.

Sales jobs are difficult for one primary reason- people don’t want to be sold.  People want to spend or donate their money in ways that match their personal interests, desires, and values.  As a salesperson, you have to find that connection and convince your target to take action.  One-to-one relationships and face-to-face dealings are very important to people. Building relationships is important in both sales and marketing. 

Marketing is communication that opens the door and starts the connection, often supporting sales efforts. Marketing sets the stage for strong sales, providing information that can strengthen the organization’s reputation, demonstrate its values, and prove its effectiveness.  All aspects of marketing- media campaigns, collateral, events, social media, etc., build those relationships by increasing brand recognition, providing information, and continuing the conversation, allowing potential clients and donors to connect with your company on a personal level. 

A true client relationship must be built in order to attract potential clients or donors, to persuade them to exchange their hard-earned money for goods, services, or goodwill, and encourage them to refer to others.  When the marketing program is designed to reach people and interact with them on a personal level, building one-on-one relationships, the foundation for exponential growth is built.  Customer loyalty and word of mouth is the most inexpensive and effective marketing program.

In order to build these business relationships, customized marketing programs must be created.  The systems and tools a car dealership uses will be different from those that a food bank will use.  Avoid cardboard cut-out marketing plans and work with a marketing person or firm that is willing to create a program that will best serve you and your clientele.  It is important to consider your marketing objectives, whether it is to build brand recognition, increase retention, generate leads or increase sales.  Your sales staff will benefit from a solid marketing program, because it will provide evidence of the company’s reputation and capabilities. 

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