How is it that a business can be really great at sales but not at marketing, or vice versa? Don’t these two skills go hand in hand? The reality is if you are not closing enough new sales it is either a sales or marketing problem and in rare cases both. The solution? Implementation of a “Smarketing” process in your business.
The two statements I hear a lot are:
“If I get in front of a qualified prospect, I will do business with them. The problem is that I’m not getting in front of enough qualified prospects.”
“I have lost new business to my competitors lately, and I’m not sure what I should do differently.”
Smarketing is the process of integrating the sales and marketing processes of a business. Often the two most important business development skills are NOT integrated. I see it in financial services practices, with fund companies, and with broker dealers and custodians.
For instance, a fund company wins awards for its innovative marketing, yet the wholesalers in the field are struggling to bring in new business. How could one be so great and the other on the decline? It’s a Smarketing problem.
Listen to the replay of a recent free webinar on Smarketing I conducted with Nancy Bleeke of Sales Pro Insider here.
The three keys to improving the integration of your sales and marketing efforts:
1. Keep it authentic. Marketing shouldn’t be perfect; it should be uniquely and authentically describing the culture and benefits of the firm. People don’t connect with perfection. Authenticity often can be found in the frontline people in a firm – the advisors or people responsible for closing sales. Those responsible for marketing should attend sales meetings, travel in the field, and capture the authenticity of the firm and a deeper understanding of the prospects.
2. Sales and marketing should meet frequently and agree on common messaging (value proposition, etc.) for good prospects that will be carried through in the website, capabilities deck, collateral, sales messaging, elevator statement, and prospect/client conversations.
3. Tracking marketing success (how many prospects are being generated) and sales success (how much new business has closed) should be in lock-step. Review your metrics monthly. If there is an issue, consider if marketing people were responsible for sales and salespeople responsible for marketing, would the results be the same? Would the actions be the same?
Like in any great marriage – listen to one another. That’s really what Smarketing is – a healthy marriage of sales and marketing.