By Alex Fetanat, GemFind
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There are few things more important than your marketing team and sales team being on the same page. Especially in the world of digital.
It’s Not Sales vs. Marketing
We’ve all been in a situation where we see an ad with a great offer and come into a store only to find a clueless staff member. A manager needs to be called in to verify the ad and approve the purchase. You think to yourself, “This could have gone a lot more smoothly.” The chances of you going back to that store without another great offer are very slim. This store failed to use that promotion as a way for the salesperson to make a great impression on customers. Instead, they’re known as a discount retailer with bad customer service. This could all be avoided if your sales and marketing staff are on the same page.
Most businesses struggle to get their sales and marketing teams to work together. Mainly because they each see themselves as a more valuable piece when it comes to revenue. According to a InsideView survey of 1,000 sales and marketing specialist, roughly 2 of every 3 salespeople believe marketers “are wasting time on fancy events and branding activities when they would be better served to focus on tactics that directly impact the sales pipeline.” On the other side, the majority of marketing pros consider salespeople “boastful and showmen.” As a jewelry store owner or manager, you must understand how to get these two important parts of your business to work together.
Why They Should Work Together
Everything your business does should focus on the customer’s experience. The better the experience, the more likely they are going to come back, and remember your store when friends and family are thinking about jewelry. The customer experience starts before they step foot in your store. Your website, radio ad, social media post, direct mail piece, etc. are all part of your brand. Your sales staff should know what the customer saw and heard about your brand, and competitors, before they step into the store. This makes customers feel like buying jewelry from you is easy and your sales staff looks very knowledgeable.
When your sales staff and marketing department know that they are working together and can make each other’s job easier then they are more motivated to succeed and reach your company goals. Motivated employees are one of the best assets you can have for your store, and it’s hard to come by. The key to a having a great sales and marketing team is to have the right training and systems in place. This ensure a smooth running machine.
How They Should Work Together
Your marketing manager must understand that their role is to aid the salesperson who is forming a relationship with the customer. The customer will never meet the marketer who put together the ad that caught the his or her attention. Instead, the customer will come in and meet the salesperson, whose job is to now help the customer find what they’re looking for and cultivate a relationship with them as well. Any time the marketer can help nurture that relationship it is better for the overall business.
Communication between marketing and sales is the key to understanding the customer and what they need throughout the buying process. Your salespeople are on the “front lines” and hear all of the customer’s desires, needs, and objections. Your marketing team can work on creating touch points that address common customer’s concerns.
Managers play an important role in understanding what salespeople need and how they could help marketing with getting better quality leads for them. Training is extremely important and this is where your managers can individually explain the sales process and the specific roles marketing will play in your company. It’s up to owners and managers to determine if sales may be down due to lack of marketing or untrained sales staff.
The Right Systems
Part of setting up your staff for success is making sure they have the right tools in place. While most of your marketing department may have a good understanding of digital technology, some members of your sales staff may not be familiar with all of the technology available to help them sell more. They need easy to use software to communicate with customers. A good Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system will be that tool. A good CRM is a great tool to keep all communication with a specific customer in one place. It also lets you move your customers along different stages of your sales pipeline.
Let’s say a potential customer named Dave is in the market for an engagement ring. He has been meeting with Debra, your top sales rep, for the last couple of weeks. Dave is ready to make a purchase, but he’s on the fence about buying the ring from your store. Debra can move Dave along the pipeline to a consideration stage and marketing will automatically send out pre-written emails about the store guarantee, testimonials, and other marketing pieces that will help Debra close the sale. This can all be done and communicated with the right CRM.
One of the best things you can do for your business is invest in the relationship between your sales and marketing teams. This includes regular meetings where sales and marketing can provide ideas and suggestions to each other. Most good marketers focus on understanding the customer. Marketers should have regular conversations with sales staff about customers. This is the next best thing to speaking with the customer themselves. Sales staff should be encouraged to ask customers questions and opinions on marketing. This information can only help in improving the buying process for the customer and coming up with more content for your marketing.
Your marketing team will often have ideas and the best way to see if they will work is to test them out. Rather than spending money on ads and email campaigns, why not have your salespeople talk to customers and “test” offers on them? If your customers respond well to these offers then this is a good sign to test the these offers on a larger market.
Your sales staff should remember that marketing is only there to better understand the customer in order to bring more customers in and boost sales revenue. While, salespeople just want more customers to talk to and boost sales revenue. They both share a common goal and should not work independently. Working together to improve the customer’s experience.
For the sales team, this means leaving a good impression on a first-time customer and forming a trusted relationship with the customer. Marketing should help by bringing in the customer and nurturing that customer’s relationship with the brand.
Store Owners and managers must lead by example when it comes to making sales and marketing work well together. Ensuring that staff has the proper training is part of the the process. Constant communication about customers should start with managers who should encourage ideas and input from everyone. Finally, you should equip your team with the right tools to make sure all communication with customers is documented and everyone is on the same page. Like all relationships, constant work and communication are the key to making it work.
Do you think your marketing and sales teams are working together as a team or as independent players? You might just need help getting the right tools and systems in order. As digital marketers, we can help bring your sales staff more foot traffic and increase store revenue.
Contact GemFind today to get started. 800-373-4373