The way consumers and businesses interact today is completely different than it was ten years ago. In fact, every year new trends are emerging that drastically change the sales process. Our hyper-connected world is influencing the sales process more and more because millennials, who have adopted technology in their daily lives, are gaining wealth and representing a greater portion of the market each year.
It’s clear that in today’s sales environment, the success will be shared by those who are on top of these emerging trends and adopt the market’s technological trends in their sales and marketing.
…But wait a second, aren’t marketing and sales basically the same thing? It may seem that way given the way that most people talk about them, but the two terms are in fact completely separate (and important) functions.
Let’s answer 3 important questions:
1. What’s the difference between marketing and sales?
2. Why should I care about marketing and sales?
3. What does modern marketing and sales look like?
What Are Marketing and Sales?
Marketing refers to an analytical function of studying clients, creating value, planning, testing, and measuring results. Marketing people are not sales people. Marketers study their clients to determine what matters to them, and produce online and offline materials (content) to provide value to these clients. Some examples of these materials may include videos, advertisements, or eBooks. Marketers create and follow detailed plans, and constantly measure and test to maximize engagement, sales, and ROI.
Sales, on the other hand, refers to a people skill. In today’s world, consumers are constantly bombarded with sales messages. Consumers have access to a world of information, and are much more likely to already know about your product and your competitors before even talking to you. As such, it’s no longer about “selling” people on products and services. Today, consumers want to be genuinely helped and “serviced”. Successful sales teams today go through detailed training, and utilize powerful software to provide the best service to their clients.
Why Should I Care About Marketing and Sales?
Well, quite simply, because it doesn’t matter how good your project is if nobody knows about it or wants to buy it.
…and all your competitors are doing it, helping your prospective clients who will eventually end up purchasing their product instead of yours.
If you have a great product, you want to get the word out there. You want a positive reputation, and you want sales growth. Highly trained marketing and sales teams are the way of accomplishing these objectives.
Name some of the most successful companies you can think of, and ask yourself whether or not they utilize the power of marketing and sales, in whatever form that may be. The answer will probably be the same for each company you can think of.
What Does Modern Marketing and Sales Look Like?
It’s old news that marketing and sales are completed using tools like thoughtfully designed websites, social media, customer relationship management (CRM) software, blogs, and business cards etc. Today, modern marketing and sales combines many of those functions to streamline the entire process.
Modern marketing and sales is managed through a digital platform to allow marketers and sales reps to stay organized in the modern digital world. Modern marketing and sales operations are managed through something called a Sales Engagement Platform (SEP).
SEPs are becoming the new standard of managing both marketing and sales operations because they encompass many areas of the two worlds that were previously separate applications. SEPs help marketers create and manage engaging messages and content. Further, SEPs help marketers track and analyze the performance of their content through smart analytic information.
SEPs help service people engage clients and prospective clients with compelling and engaging digital content, mail (among other physical content), messaging and real time communications. Best of all, the SEPs intelligent information can advise sales reps of steps to take along the sales process to engage prospective clients and convert them into paying customers.
SEPs take a whole host of different jobs, and combine them into one convenient platform. This keeps your sales staff messages consistent with your marketing messages and provides greater productivity. For your customers, SEPs provide better and more consistent service, more value, and ultimately lead to a higher ROI for the company.
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