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Smarta Marketing Ideas for Smarta Marketers

Category: Sales

Is Marketing the Same as Selling? Are Marketing and Sales Different?

Dr. Brian Monger

Is Marketing the Same as Selling?

Only is a broad, somewhat simplistic concept, where “selling” is thought of as the exchange activity. Marketing is an overall Organisational activity (the planning, pricing, promotion, packaging, advertising and selling of any Value Offer (Product. Selling is therefore only a part of the overall Marketing of any Product and therein lies the difference.

Are Marketing and Sales Different?

This is a perenial topic in forums and will get lots of responses – particularly I have found from sales folk.  Their basic message is that Sales and Marketing are different.  Marketers don’t understand Selling.  Sales people are important and underappreciated.

The basic problem with the topic and discussion is that very few participants understand or use the terms correctly.  They only think of “sales” and “marketing” as organisational departments, not as functions.

 

It is difficult to have a useful discussion if the key terms are not understood and agreed

So here are a few useful definitions to help (I hope) the discussions

Marketing

The process of exchange of value between Provider (Seller) and Customer (Buyer).  Involves creating and providing what customers want in return for something they are willing to give (money, time, or membership)

The systematic planning, implementation and control of a mix (see Marketing Mix Strategy) of business activities intended to bring together buyers and sellers for the mutually advantageous exchange or transfer of products (Sale, Hire, Acquisition) for some form of Payment. The process of planning and executing the conception, Product Pricing, Promotion and Place (Distribution) of offers (ideas, goods and services) to create exchanges that satisfy individual and organisational objectives.

(1) The management process responsible for identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements while achieving organisational objectives (including profitably).

(2) Fundamental policy-forming activity devoted to selecting and developing suitable products for sale – promoting and distributing these products in a manner providing the optimum return on capital employed. (Teach Yourself Marketing, John Stapleton, 1975.)

(3) Marketing starts in the market place with the identification of the customers’ needs and wants. It then moves on to determining a means of satisfying these needs and of promoting, selling and supplying a satisfaction. The principal marketing functions might be defined as Marketing Information and Research, Product Planning, Advertising and Promotion, and Distribution.

Marketing is generally thought of as one of the three or four basic activities of all organisations.  Thus – Marketing; Finance and Operations (or Production and HR)

Marketing Department

A division within a company with responsibility for the planning and coordination of all marketing activities

Marketing department marketing/Marketing department orientation
A term used to refer to the orientation of an organisation which has established a separate department to look after its marketing activities, but which is not totally imbued with the marketing philosophy. An orientation in which all marketing activities are brought under the control of one department to improve short-run policy planning and to try to integrate the firm’s activities.

Sale

A sale relates to someone or some organisation buying something. Sales are often confused with the process of Selling. Result – or pinnacle activity involved in selling products (goods and services) in return for payment (money or some other compensation of value to the seller).

The amount of Products (both goods and services) sold in a given period of time. Sales are operating revenues earned by a company when it sells its products.

Sales

The amount of Products(all forms) sold in a given period of time

The simplistic term to mean the “Sales Department.  This is OK except where it confuses the overall activity of the organisation in the Marketing function

Sales department

Sales department is the division of a business or an organization accountable for selling services or products. The department responsible for planning, organising, controlling and evaluating the activities of the sales force.

Selling

Process of persuasion leading to an exchange or trading arrangement.

Personal Selling

One of the possible activities of the Promotional Mix\

The process of making oral commercial representations during a buyer/seller interview situation. Direct, face-to-face communication between buyer and seller. Personal selling is a basic activity and is old as marketing itself . Colloquially referred to as face-to-face selling. Sometimes known as buyer/seller interface.

 

Dr Brian Monger is Executive Director of MAANZ International and an internationally known business consultant with over 45 years of experience assisting both large and small companies with their projects.  He is also a highly effective and experienced trainer and educator

Did you find this article useful?  Please let us know

These articles are usually taken from notes from a MAANZ course.  If you are interested in obtaining the full set of notes (and a PowerPoint presentation) please contact us – info@marketing.org.au

Also check out other articles on http://smartamarketing.wordpress.com

MAANZ International website http://www.marketing.org.au

Smartamarketing Slideshare (http://www.slideshare.net/bmonger)

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Basic Strategy And Psychology For Handling Objections

Dr Brian Monger

During an average sales interview you may have to handle from two to five objections.  Your first problem is to determine whether they are real objections or mere excuses or stalls.  Your second problem is to decide on the strategy and tactics of handling them in order to retain control of the interview.

Your standard reaction to all objections should involve these principles:

Welcome the Objection.  Do not resent it or attempt to argue.  The prospect may be offering you a point around which the sale can be rapidly closed.

Listen Carefully to It.  Keep quiet, smile, and concentrate on what your prospect is saying.  You may think the matter is trivial, but to him or her it may be very important.  Allow the prospect adequate time for full expression – to finish speaking.  Do not make the mistake of cutting him or her off in mid-thought even if you do recognise the objection and are eager to acknowledge it.

Rephrase and Repeat the Objection.  By taking the time to rephrase and repeat the objection, you accomplish three major goals:

1.         You demonstrate that you have understood and respect the objection and thus please him or her with your interest.

2.         You gain time to think for a moment how best to handle it.

3.         You can soften the objection by rephrasing it into a question, which is easier to handle than an objection, and you put yourself in the position of helping answer it.

For example, if the complaint is that your product is too expensive, he or she may really be wondering if a cheaper one would not be just as practical.  You can test this objection by rephrasing it into a question, such as, “Mr. King, aren’t you really wondering whether the expense for this item can be justified?”

Do not guess at the reasons behind objections.  Your aim is to try rapidly to pin down the real issue.  Sometimes the problem bothering the prospect is not clear even in his or her own mind.  You have to find the right question if you expect to handle the objection.  You then have to give facts that will influence him or her to answer the question favourably rather than unfavourably.  Rephrasing and repeating the objection help clarify the issue for both of you.

Agree at Least in Part.  By agreeing with the prospect’s right to object and by agreeing that he or she has raised an important point, you avoid contradiction and take him or her off the defensive.  You lose nothing by agreeing that the complaint is reasonable, logical, and worth thinking about.  You can then supply additional facts that may help to show the situation differently and may turn the objection to your own advantage by making it a positive sales point.

Uncover Hidden Objections  The Process of rephrasing and restating objections into questions helps determine whether the objections are valid ones or mere excuses or stalls.  If your prospect offers more than five objections during the interview, you can assume that he or she is probably stalling.  Most likely he or she is hiding the real objection, and your problem is to bring it out into the open.

How can you uncover hidden doubts or objections?  The best technique is to ask questions that bring them into the open.  You have to watch as well as listen for clues, since some prospects mask their real emotions or feelings.  Keep searching for the real reason.

 

Dr Brian Monger is Executive Director of MAANZ International and an internationally known consultant with over 45 years of experience assisting both large and small companies with their projects.  He is also a highly effective and experienced trainer and educator

Did you find this article useful?  Please let us know

These articles are usually taken from notes from a MAANZ course.  If you are interested in obtaining the full set of notes (and a PowerPoint presentation) please contact us – info@marketing.org.au

Also check out other articles on http://smartamarketing.wordpress.com

MAANZ International website http://www.marketing.org.au

Smartamarketing Slideshare (http://www.slideshare.net/bmonger)

Why Buyers Buy – Or Not

What motivates a buyer to buy?

When you approach a prospective customer, he wonders what you have and what you want of his busy working day.  He is more interested in what you can do for him, at first, and, if this is interesting enough, your name and company assume importance because it tells him who is going to do it for him.

Selling is not a battle of wits and those who approach it as such usually are the losers.  The true salesman recognises basic fundamentals and buying motives and uses them logically to give his presentation all the power he can muster.  When selling to a retailer your appeals to buying motives must be directed through him to his customers.  A retailer wants what his customers wants plus a fair measure of profit.  Thus your approach will be aimed in a slightly different manner to show him what it will do for his business and how and why it will appeal to his customers.  Selling to retailers is on a more personal basis, as you call on the same man with some regularity and know his habits, his preferences.  But if you want to increase your share of his business, or approach a new customer, sell to him, do not just tell him, and hope for the best.  The hardest distance for your goods to travel is from his shelf to the other side of the counter.  Constantly give him help and guidance in appealing to his customers’ buying motives.

Value – Profit or Economy

To most of us these means much the same thing.  We can profit by making economies or we can improve economy through greater profits.  Depending upon your product you must decide which aspect will appeal more to your type of customer.  A retailer is more likely to be interested in profit through greater discount, or he could profit through more economical or balanced stocks.  An accountant may be more motivated by the word economy, as usually it is his task to save money.  He saves money to ensure increased profit but thinks more of saving money than making it.

Design or Appearance

The value of design or appearance is far more important than we tend to think.  People who buy houses, cars, furniture and appliances on appearance or design are buying with their eyes.  Whenever possible appeal to the eye with a visual presentation or paint the picture in your customer’s mind with words.

Comfort or Convenience

Does a furniture salesman sell just the wood, springs and covering? No!  He sells comfort.  All of us gather about us those things that make life more comfortable or convenient.  Look around your home and ask yourself how many things have to do just this for you.  Refrigerators are more convenient than ice chests, radiators more than log fires.  The list is endless.

Comfort and convenience apply to a man’s business life too.  What you offer may give him convenience by removing a process or clerical problem that recurs at regular intervals.  He has the mental comfort of dismissing the problem from his mind.  Insurance has security, such as knowing money will be available at the time of retirement.  You see many instances of comfort or convenience being the primary buying motive.  Think about what you sell and weave this aspect of buying appeal into your story.

Performance

Take two rival cars, both of similar size, finish and price.  One does twenty miles to the gallon, the other thirty.  Which would you buy under these conditions?  Performance can be the manner in which your product does its work; it can be the extra production it gives in a given time.  Where practical, stress the value of performance in easily understood and demonstrable terms.  For many products, performance is the feature above all else.

Safety or Security

Unit trusts, shares in large public companies are attractive because they offer gain and security.  The risk is minimised and this appeals to all of us.  Seat belts are sold for safety or security, so would you really be concerned with what their materials look like, if you were assured they would stand up to the stress of an accident?  When your item has a safety or security factor highlight it, whether it be physical safety or mental security.

Dependability

This is an important buying motive but its value is somewhat different.  Your name or your company name can spell dependability.  You business history with a client can give him this feeling about you or the lack of it.  You have always done all you said you would, your company has unfailingly backed its products.  So much of the value of dependability as a buying motive rests on you and your selling behaviour.

Those qualities you may feel are important in your proposition, may not necessarily be as important to the prospective customer.  Your job is to dig out what is important to him and be able to convince him that what you offer has those qualities for which he is looking.  How can you do this?  Let him tell you why he will buy.  Find out by careful questioning and listening.  He could well call it turnover, where you think of the benefit as profit.  They amount to the same things, so sell him increased turnover.  Whatever he calls it, however he states his/her buying motive, sell it to him in his terms Perhaps Mr. Brown says: “I’ve heard this system gives trouble!”  Sell him reliability, sell him service; quote other installations to verify your statements, but sell what he asked for, reliability.

No salesman achieves anything for himself or his company until a sale is made.  You influence these decisions that lead to success or failure, so always remember that people buy for six basic reasons.  This will become part of your selling strength.

Like these ideas?  Please comment

And visit our other blogs/articles http://smartamarkeketing.wordpress

Common Sales Mistakes.

Many salespeople make a number of common mistakes.  This article highlights these and makes some suggestions to fix them.

Ignoring your presentation and selling skills weaknesses.

Make an effort to notice what you do and perhaps get training to fill the gaps.

Not keeping the supply system pipeline primed.

Make time for prospecting and asking for referrals

Sufficient lack of knowledge about your prospect

Insufficiently researching a prospect.

Failure to follow-up on prospects

Plan and schedule follow-up activities after the customer contact.

Calling on prospects that have little current need and/or no budget

Qualify your prospects early.

Talking at the prospect in a non-stop sales pitch.

Ask questions and listen eight times more than you flap your mouth.

Not focusing enough on the customer.

Focus on everything about the customer: words, gestures, tonality and context.

Continuing to sell after you’ve closed.

When you get a “yes,” stop talking, smile, and take the order..

Forgetting to ask for a referral.

At closing, obtain a promise of a referral; request one after you’re sure the customer is delighted.

How to present an offer that can boost your response and increase your sales

There are many ways to present an offer that can boost your response and increase your sales

There are hundreds of offers and thousands, perhaps millions, of offer variations. Some offers are proven winners. Here are 60 of them to get you started

1. Free Trial. This may be the best offer ever devised. People can try your product for free and without obligation for 10 days, 15 days, 30 days, or more. The time frame should fit the product. This offer removes risk for the prospect and overcomes buying inertia.

2. Money-Back Guarantee. This is perhaps the second-best offer. A customer pays up front—but if dissatisfied can return the item for a full refund. Like the free trial, this offer removes risk but allows you to use customer inertia because only a small percentage of people will take the trouble to return something.

3. Free Gift. When you offer a freebie that your customer wants, your offer will usually outpull a discount offer of similar value. That’s because a gift is a more tangible benefit.

4. Limited-Time. An offer with a time limit gets more response than an offer without one, especially when you give a specific deadline. It forces a decision, and the faster a decision the more likely it will be in your favor.

5. Yes/No. You ask your prospect to respond positively or negatively, usually by affixing a Yes or No stamp, checking one of two boxes, returning one of two reply forms, etc. This offer creates involvement and usually pulls more response than an offer without a No option.

6. Negative Option. This option is generally used with a free trial. You allow your prospect to try your product for free and then you bill (or begin repeated automatic shipments) unless the prospect specifically refuses the order within a certain timeframe. Often the result is higher returns and a few more irate phone calls, but the negative option pulls better up front and can produce higher overall sales.

7. Credit-Card Payment. Nothing is easier than paying with plastic. These days, there’s no reason not to accept credit cards, whether by phone, mail, fax, or the Internet.

8. Sweepstakes. You can dramatically increase your order volume. Just remember that running a sweepstakes can be a pain, sweepstakes customers are seldom loyal, and many marketers find that once they start using sweepstakes it’s hard to go back to more-traditional offers.

9. Double-Your-Money-Back Guarantee. Since most people never make a return, this is a simple way to dramatize both your offer and your guarantee for low-priced items.

10. Long-Term Guarantee. This is another way to dramatize your offer and guarantee. Instead of a 30- or 60-day guarantee, you offer a one-year, multiyear, or lifetime guarantee. If you can reasonably expect your product to last, this puts inertia and forgetfulness on your side because few people will take advantage of, or even remember, your guarantee later on.

11. Guaranteed Buy-Back. This is just another way of offering a standard money-back guarantee. You offer to “buy back” the item if your customer is not satisfied. It is often used with collectibles and durable goods.

12. Guaranteed Acceptance. If people usually go through an application process to use your product, access your service, or join your club, you can provide a guarantee to accept them. You’ll often see this offer with credit-card or financial products.

13. Limited-Time Introduction. This lets prospects try something with little risk before making a greater commitment. “Try 13 weeks of The Wall Street Journal for only $34.00.” You must track responses, though, and be sure your conversions justify the lower price.

14. Yes/Maybe. This is another way of making a low-commitment or no-obligation offer. You’re happy to get the maybe response, which could be for a free trial, product information, an introductory offer, etc. And if you get some yes responses, that’s gravy.

15. Dollars Off. You offer a certificate or coupon with a dollar value that may be redeemed toward a purchase. Or you simply show the original price, cross it out, and offer a lower price. However, test carefully, because a free gift of equal value often works better.

16. Refunds and Rebates. With a refund, you may ask $3 for your catalog and send a $3 discount certificate to be used on a first order. With a rebate, you offer a delayed discount, which encourages a purchase, and then you send a check or coupon with a particular value.

17. Sales. A seasonal sale is a trusty standby to raise volume. A “reason why” sale is similar but gives some explanation for lowering the price, such as going out of business, inventory reduction, or overstock.

18. Introductory Price. This allows people to try something at a reduced cost for a short period. You can use this to get new customers, though it may annoy loyal customers who might feel they should get the best price.

19. Relationship Discount. This is the opposite of the introductory price. For example, new customers pay $30, while regular customers pay just $25. The goal is to reward current customers, not get new customers.

20. Group Discount. To target certain markets, you can offer a special discount exclusive to a type of profession, industry, club, etc. For example, an investment magazine can offer a “professional discount” for accountants.

21. Quantity Discount. The larger the order, the better the deal. For example, if your customer orders five books, you provide a 5% discount, or you offer a lower per-issue price for a two-year subscription than for a one-year subscription.

22. Step-Up Discount. This resembles the quantity discount but is based on the incremental dollar amount. For example, a 5% discount for orders over $50, a 10% discount for orders over $100, and a 15% discount for orders over $250.

23. Early-Bird Discount. This encourages more and faster orders. Make sure the discount is a real discount. Don’t just raise prices for those who order later.

24. Price-Matching. If you compete on price, you offer to match any competitor’s price. The idea is to assure prospects that you offer low prices.

25. Trade-In. You offer dollars off when a customer trades in a previous model or version and buys a new one. The trade-in can be your own brand or a competitor’s.

26. Last Chance. This is usually a reminder that you’ve previously made an offer and time is running out. If you say “Last Chance,” mean it.

27. Limited Edition. This works well for art, plates, coins, special book printings, and other collectibles. The item is special in some way, and there is only a limited number available or there’s a time limit on the item’s availability.

28. Enrollment Period. You establish a “window of opportunity” when prospects may enroll for insurance, home study, business services, etc.

29. Pre-Publication Offer. This is a popular offer used by book publishers, especially for expensive reference works. You need to plan your print run, so you offer a special deal to reserve copies. Readers are guaranteed a copy and save money, usually 10% or 15% off what others will pay. Actually, you could use this for anything that is “published,” such as software, but you’ll need a different explanation.

30. Price-Increase Announcement. Announce price increases ahead of time so people can take advantage of the old prices one last time or can stock up.

31. Charter Membership. You offer the chance to be one of the first to subscribe to a publication or join a club or an organization. A special introductory price, gift, or other incentive is usually included.

32. Payment With Order. This is not a motivating offer by itself, but it is simple, straightforward, and easy to understand. It’s often used with a money-back guarantee and sometimes with other incentives, such as a credit-card-payment option or a premium.

33. Bill Me Later. You get some of the promotional power of a free trial offer but with a stronger sense of obligation. This appeals to the modern consumer who has been trained to postpone payment until the last possible moment. It can double response over a straight cash-up-front offer.

34. Installments. This offer takes a larger price and divides it into a set number of smaller monthly payments, usually with no interest. This makes a high price less painful. It’s most effective when you highlight the installment amount and de-emphasize the total price. You can come up with your own name for it, such as “Value Pay.”

35. Positive Option. This is the reverse of a negative option: The customer must take some action for an item to be billed or shipped. Response to this offer is lower than it is to a negative option, but overall customer quality is often better.

36. Reservation Option. You offer to reserve or set aside an item that will soon be announced to the general public and which may sell out. You may also give a special price or a premium as a reward for responding by a certain date. It’s similar to the pre-publication offer but has more urgency.

37. Free Shipping. People are used to paying extra for shipping and consider it a necessary evil. But you can offer it free as an unexpected and inexpensive incentive.

38. Gift-Shipping Service. A customer sends you a gift list, and you send the gifts directly to everyone on the list for free or for a nominal charge. It’s convenient and generates a lot of orders simultaneously.

39. Rush-Shipping Service. You promise to ship an item overnight or within a shorter time period than normal shipping. As with gift shipping, you can offer this for free or for a small additional charge to cover the extra cost of FedEx, UPS, or other service.

40. Free Keeper Gift. This encourages prospects to make the decision to try your product or service. You offer a gift, and they can keep it even if they change their minds later on.

41. Free Gift With Payment. This encourages prompt payment, increases cash flow, and helps reduce instances of no payment. You can give a gift for every paid order or for orders of a minimum value. You can offer one gift or multiple gifts.

42. Choice of Free Gifts. You offer a choice between two or more gifts. Though this seems very appealing, it’s less effective than offering a single gift, since the choice may create indecision and inertia.

43. Stepped Free Gifts. You reward customers based on order size. The more they order, the more gifts they get or the higher the gift quality.

44. Two-Step Gift. The customer gets a small gift for taking a first step and a bigger gift for taking the next step. For example, you can offer a freebie for trying your product and then another freebie for buying the product.

45. Cumulative Incentives. This is a reward for customer loyalty, such as points for buying books, frequent-flier miles, or every 13th rental free. This approach works best when the customer can see the value increasing. For example, you can provide a running total of points earned on each billing statement or order form.

46. Deluxe Version. You offer a second version of the same item, but with enhanced features, for a little more money.

47. Good-Better-Best. This gives your prospect a choice of quality. It also subtly urges people to spend more than they might if you can demonstrate that the “best” choice is the best value. Ideally, you should show more features for higher-quality items.

48. Load Up. In a continuity series, you send all the items in a series after the first few are paid for, allowing your customer to continue paying month to month. Or you might offer a certain number of items for a low price with a commitment to buy a certain number at the regular price within a certain time frame.

49. Membership Fee. You ask your prospect to pay a onetime fee to become an exclusive member of your club or organization in return for reduced prices and other benefits not available to the general public. The fee can be assessed yearly, or it can be a larger, onetime, lifetime fee.

50. Ship Till Forbid. This is often used with continuity programs, business services, or perishable products. Your customer gets the convenience of regular shipments and the option of canceling those shipments at any time while you get regular orders.

51. Free Information. This is the ideal offer for identifying interested prospects for a sales staff, making two-step sales, creating a list, and initiating a first contact for a long-term relationship or sales cycle.

52. Free Samples. If you have a good product, it can sell itself if you can get a sample into a prospect’s hands. You can offer a free sample or charge a nominal fee (which may encourage the prospect to try it).

53. Free Gift for Inquiry. You offer a gift as a reward for requesting information about your product or service. As you might expect, this can boost the number of prospects who inquire but lower their quality.

54. Sales Call. Your prospect asks for a salesperson to call and set up an appointment. This produces high-quality leads, but a much lower overall response. Generally, those who want to talk to a salesperson are ready to buy.

55. Free Survey of Your Needs. You offer to analyze your prospect’s requirements with no obligation. When the prospect responds, you show how your product or service can fulfill those requirements.

56. Free Demonstration. This is especially good for new or complex equipment. You offer to bring the item to the prospect or invite the prospect to a particular location for a demonstration. You can also send a free CD demo or offer a demo version of the product.

57. Free Estimate. For businesses that get bids or analyze costs carefully, this a good first step for getting a foot in the door.

58. Free Subscription. You offer a subscription to a newsletter, journal, or other company publication to educate prospects and build your database. It should include valuable editorial material, not just promotional puffery.

59. Member-Get-a-Member. You give your customer a free gift for providing the name of someone else who may be interested in your wares. This is a good way to build your customer base.

60.  Free Happiness with every order.  Try a little humour/whimsey

Is Marketing Dead?

In todays changing world we now see articles that state something like “Marketing is Dead” or Traditional Marketing is Dead”

Nothing could be further from the truth.  Such articles are usually written by self serving attention getters – or the truly (marketing) ignorant

Marketing has always been and will remain central to all business success. (including NFP business activities).  It is the key factor in Traditional businesses as well as in modern Relational marketing as seen more and more on the internet – in Social Media

 Marketing really is the most practical, useful business skill for all types of organisations.  It certainly covers ‘selling’ a product, but, more importantly, it is about the achievement of business goals through meeting (and probably exceeding) a customer’s needs better than any other competitor

Marketing plays a vital role in all successful business ventures. How well an organisation manages its marketing, along with good operational and financial management aspects, will ultimately determine its degree of success or failure.

Marketing focuses attention on where the main income is going to come from, that is, your customers and prospective.  The most important activities you can better understand and undertake are marketing activities.

All good management is focused on where, when and how to best apply skills and resources.  The key element of a successful business activity is to focus on where the income is coming from – it is from customers.  This is therefore the (marketing) focus.

What are your views?  Please share

What is “Marketing” – Really?

Whilst there are many definitions of marketing, all definitions focus primarily on customer orientation and satisfaction of customer needs.  

…the marketing concept is a philosophy of business which states that the customer’s  want of satisfaction is the economic and social justification of a firm’s existence.  Consequently, all firm activities in production, engineering and finance, as well as in marketing, must be devoted first to determining what the customer’s wants are and then to satisfying those wants. (Stanton 1975).

It is the customer who determines what a business is.  It is the customer alone whose willingness to pay for a good or service converts economic resources into wealth, things into goods.  What the business thinks it produces is not of first importance -– especially not to the future of the business and to its success… What the customer thinks he/she is buying, what he/she considers value, is decisive – it determines what a business is, what it produces and whether it will prosper.” (Peter Drucker 1955)

The core concept of marketing is the transaction.  A transaction is the exchange of values between two parties.  The things – of value need not be limited to goods, services and money; they include other resources such as time, energy and feelings.  Transactions occur not only between buyers and sellers and organisations and clients, but also between any two parties.  Marketing is specifically concerned with how transactions are created, stimulated, facilitated and valued.  This is the generic concept of marketing…” (Kotler P., 1972)

The Marketing Association of Australia and New Zealand says:

The marketing concept is a way a business thinks about doing business – a business philosophy. It makes the customer and the satisfaction of their needs, the focal point of all business activities – in order to not only make a sale, or a quick profit, but to create a customer who will come back and bring people with him (or her)

Marketing is a philosophy and a process involving all the activities designed to generate and facilitate any exchange intended to satisfy human motivation (needs and wants)

Marketing is essentially about effectively managing the resources of an organisation so that they meet the (changing) needs of the target segment (the customer) on whom the organisation depends, in a way that best satisfies the objectives of that organisation.

Marketing consists of individual and organisational activities that facilitate and expedite satisfying value exchange relationships through the creation, delivery, promotion and pricing of value propositions.

In this definition, an exchange is the provision or transfer of Products (goods, services and ideas) in return for something of value (Payment – like money, but there is more to payment).  Any product may be involved in a marketing exchange.  The assumption is only that individuals and organisations expect to gain a reward in excess of the costs incurred.
These ideas apply to all forms of marketing – including marketing using Social Media


 

What Makes a Successful Salesperson?

This is one of the hardest questions on which to reach consensus even among successful salespeople and their sales managers. (If a salesperson is consistently successful, it does not matter whether they know the answer or not!) The answer is probably an amalgam of some, if not all, of the factors listed below.  What would you add?

The broad requirements for success are:

Q         Personal qualities

S          Skill

A         Activity

SM      Sales management

K         Knowledge

Professional approach

Confidence

Ability to create a rapport

Adaptability

Ability to control (not manipulate) calls

Communication skills (questioning, listening, presenting, observing)

Realistic, but tough objectives

A well structured incentive programme

Commitment to succeed

Thinking and Planning

Pre-call preparation

Good time management

Real customer focus

Systematic approach to selling

Product knowledge (based on benefits to the customer)

Knowledge about the customer and his industry

Understanding and having the ability to deal with objections

Here are some comments on those factors.

Confidence

A salesperson must have self-confidence.  Equally, without being able to obtain the confidence of customers (or manager or colleagues), there is no chance of selling products or services.  Secondly, salespeople must have confidence in their own organisation or financial institution.  Finally, the salesperson must have confidence in his organisation’s products and services and in both the organisation’s and their own ability to deliver.  Since many products and services have only limited product differentiation and are effectively sold as commodities, quality of service delivery can often be the decisive factor in who wins the business.

Commitment to Succeed

The commitment or desire to succeed cannot be instilled through training.  It can be arrived at through personal loyalty, the promise of a large bonus for meeting 110 per cent sales targets, fear of failure, or through many other motivations.  In the final analysis, how you gain commitment is irrelevant, but you must be committed to succeed.

 

Creating Better Marketing Messages

How to create and evaluate effective messages

Styles and market needs are always changing, but there are proven principles for messages that work. Too few marketing professionals seem to understand them. As a result, much promotion is based on gut reaction, intuition and personal preferences.

Message and Presentation

The key to successful messages is: Successful messages come in only one language – BENEFITS!

“What’s in it for me?” (W.I.I.F.M.?)

“What do I get out of it?”

“What will it do for me and my family?”

“What will it do for my business?”

Prospects can’t get more sell out of a promotional message than what you put in!

Benefits

People spend their money to get benefits for themselves or those important to them. (derived benefits or derived satisfaction)

A benefit is an advantage or satisfaction the prospect will gain – or the loss avoided – from the item, proposition or service you sell.

Don’t leave it to the prospect to discover the benefits he or she will gain from the offer. Spell it out, as simply as possible.

Features

Promotion must balance stated benefits with component realities (features). They provide the rational reason why the service will work and help create conviction. Benefits must be supportable.

The more key benefits there are in a promotional message – supported by product points – the more selling power there will be.

CREATE INTEREST AND DESIRE by stressing benefits of using your service or owning the resultant thing (good).

DEMONSTRATE THE VALUE of your particular product by detailing benefits and features.

MAKE IT SELL FOR YOU ALONE by stressing reasons for buying from your company, not others.

Make your message fit the character of your business. Put it in line with your strategy of differentiation and positioning

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