Marketing & Sales ... What's the difference?

- Keith Brown

Surprisingly SMEs often consider marketing and sales to be the same thing and therefore those responsible for each fail to communicate effectively. Marketing alone doesn’t normally generate sales it generates interest, store traffic, phone enquiries, web hits and so on. If someone subsequently contacts a business then they are a prospect and the selling process is necessary. It is therefore imperative that marketing and sales work together to ensure that promotional strategies make sense to all concerned and that systems and procedures are in place to deal with all resultant enquiries.

What’s the point of distributing a catalogue if employees are not familiar with the content or the stock advertised is not available? Why advertise your phone number if it goes unanswered or is answered unprofessionally? And don’t include a “contact us” on your website if you don’t have a system in place to deal with such enquiries.

Of course different businesses supply different products and/or services and go about their marketing and sales in different ways. But in one form or another, the marketing/sales process is common to us all. Marketing objectives, strategies & goals are essential to every business. All enquiries are potential sales. They should be dealt with quickly, professionally & efficiently and followed up until a definitive result is achieved.

Do you have a marketing plan in place for the coming year?