The connection between sales and marketing is an important variable for a creative design agency like us here at BrandCraft. For certain clients we help, their revenue potential is only limited by the number of opportunities to sell. In other words, the clients prepare to scale their business. Other clients aren’t this prepared. While they believe what is holding them back is more opportunities. In reality, they aren’t prepared on the sales side.
Product-based vs. service-based company
At BrandCraft we happen to deal with a large number of service-based companies. Service-based companies have different needs than product-based companies.
Product-based companies can rapidly scale production when demand surges. In fact, costs go down, and often their margins increase as demand increases. Further, online product-based companies (depending on the price point) deal with a quick decision-making process and sometimes even impulse purchases. Some don’t even need a sales team. The buying decision goes from marketing to purchasing, no in-between.
The differences between scaling a service-based business and a product-based business are vast. There are different requirements for leadership. The operations are more human-based rather than supply chain based and sales is typically a longer process to name a few. It’s a tough gig. A well-rounded and well-trained team can make a big difference.
Understanding how your sales process fits in with your marketing efforts
In the modern world we live in, time matters. Attention span matters. Whether somebody needs a divorce or their plumbing fixed, both require critical timing and response if you expect to make a sale.
In sales, when it comes to answering the phone, seconds matter, when it comes to closing the deal – minutes matter. It’s not good enough to answer the phone and tell somebody you will get back to them or I can meet in a week. Long wait times will kill your conversion rate. Missed calls will kill your conversion rate. Not having the ability to be contacted at any time of day, via email, contact form, social will affect your conversion rate. Not responding to an incoming email until the next day isn’t good enough. Service-based companies have to take this seriously.
At BrandCraft – we want as much of this sales data as possible. We ask questions like:
- What are the objections our client is hearing?
- How many total new leads came in last month?
- How many leads converted?
- Are the leads unqualified and why?
- Are they the wrong type of leads?
- What is the conversion value?
- What are the total sales for the month?
Not all of our clients share useful data with us. With the data we get from your sales team we can adjust our marketing to improve lead quality. If there is no tracking on the client side of incoming calls or call sources we have a really tough time understanding our success. With no attribution of sales to a lead source, we also have a tough time understanding if we are having success or if we are justwasting money.
The full picture: an example of how sales and marketing work together for a service-based company
Let’s look at an example of why marketing and sales can affect your marketing.
For this example, we’ll use a fictitious Attorney group with 5 attorneys. This firm has had success in the past and has scaled to 5 attorneys. We can make the assumption they are skilled attorneys and know their craft.
During our initial meeting, they discuss the need for more leads. They mention they want to scale and grow. After digging into this firm we realize a couple of things :
- Only a couple of the partners want to grow – the other three would rather keep things as usual.
- Second, their digital presence and digital understanding are critically lacking. For starters their website isn’t set up for lead generation and, critically, they have no real sales process.
- Further, there isn’t a person in this firm in charge of all incoming leads. All the attorneys take meetings as people call in – they might qualify clients on random questions the executive assistant asks. Nobody knows if the phones get answered or what is even said when potential clients call in.
If we needed to find the weakest link in scaling this 5 person firm it would be the sales process.
We would much rather have full buy-in from each partner. We want to know they are ready to make the effort from the top of the organization, down to entry-level employees. All levels need to participate to improve sales and grow the company.
Our best bet would be to discuss the sales process with this client. To ensure they have a process in place to take full advantage of our marketing efforts. We may inquire about a CRM or Case Management software that could help. We want them to understand that the investment in marketing will produce quality leads and continue to help them grow.
Scale your marketing strategy with the right sales processes
While sales and marketing are two separate components of running a business, their functions intertwine. To take full advantage of marketing strategies service-based companies need to nail down their sales processes.
Contact us here to schedule a free consultation. BrandCraft works with you to see how we can best help you to achieve your goal of growing your business.