The biggest challenge business partners face is sharing sales and marketing roles especially if you are a small business with a small number of employees or no employees at all.
Sales and marketing are closely intertwined and most people don’t know the difference between the two. Diffen does a good job of explaining the difference between sales and marketing.
Marketing is the systematic planning, implementation and control of business activities to bring together buyers and sellers. The overall focus of marketing is to promote, distribute, price products/services; fulfill customer’s wants and needs through products and/or services the company can offer.
Sales is a transaction between two parties where the buyer receives goods (tangible or intangible), services and/or assets in exchange for money and it can also be an agreement between a buyer and seller on the price of a security. The overall focus of sales is to fulfill sales volume objectives.
The first step is to identify each other’s strength and weaknesses. Here is an example, Lade and Ngozi decided to form a partnership for their Pedicure and Makeup business. Lade is very good at spreading the word about her products and services while Ngozi knows how to clinch a sale.
How do they both share marketing and sales of the business? Obviously, Lade will stick to her niche which is marketing and Ngozi will also stick to her niche which is sales.
As long as both partners understand how to strengthen the marketing and sales function, their partnership is well on its way to financial excellence.
Here are four strategies for strengthening marketing and sales partnership.
Always put the customer first
The most important part of your business is your customer, and after all the rat race of marketing and sales, everything still boils down to your customer, so ensure that understand who your customer is, how he or she interacts with your product and services, when they love to interact with your product and services and why they interact with your product and services. Once you understand every single stage, you can appropriately map out how to share sales and marketing.
The ingredient for any form of partnership is trust, once two or more people can learn to trust each other, they are well on their way to success. Just like relationships, ensure that you can keep each other’s best interests in your heart all the time even when the other person is absent. Trust will help you build a profitable business.
Both partners should have shared goals, there should be no one sided agendas, budget or execution plans. Come up with plans and achieve them together. If there are no shared goals, there will be a disconnect and this will only harm the business.
Embrace a Service Mentality
The bridge between sales and marketing is the service mentality. Your willingness to serve your customer at all times. Your customer needs your product and it is your duty to serve him or her. So always ensure that at the service mentality is at the core of your sales and marketing function.
Communicate Openly and Regularly
Communicate, talk, tell each other everything. Share experiences which marketing, share experiences while sharing. Create an environment that promotes feedback and shared ideas. Don’t hold anything back. Be open!