The Blue Collar Success Group
The marriage of a successful sales system and a phenomenal marketing system are critical when it comes to the strategy of service business success. However, most companies we work with have a tough time keeping that marriage functional and happy. Part of the reason for this weakness is that the roles of sales and marketing are not clearly defined and how they work together is not fully understood.
First, let’s talk about the role of marketing and how it effects sales. We know we are in a somewhat seasonal business, and it’s very important to always have a good flow of new leads coming in the door. Obviously if there aren’t many leads, you probably aren’t having a record-breaking sales month. So it’s crucial to have a marketing plan in place during the shoulder seasons to drive those leads.
The problem is, many leaders are so focused on the marketing aspect of keeping leads coming in the door that they tend to lose sight of what those leads mean. They mean sales opportunities. So, what is being done to ensure that each lead is being maximized? What sales training is being facilitated with your team regarding sales conversions, enhancements, and upgrades? Your precious marketing dollars are being wasted if the sales process is ineffective. This is an example of how the sales and marketing union can be imperfect.
I’ve seen this in my own service companies over the years as well. Several years ago, we purchased a small two-truck HVAC service business. They wanted to sell the business because, “they just couldn’t get enough calls.” This is something we hear all the time in our industry, right? I’m not saying this isn’t a real issue; however, it’s just as important to investigate how effectively each call is being executed from a sales and service perspective. In this case, we saw very low customer service and sales results and we knew they could get higher average tickets with some focus and training.
Once we got the company’s team members on board with our training system, communication skills, and value delivery, results began to soar overnight. In fact, we more than tripled their sales in a twelve-month period. This gives you an idea of what can happen when an imperfect sales and marketing union evolves into a happy marriage.
Sometimes the pendulum swings the other way, too. Sometimes a company is so focused on the sales, service, and what’s in the pipeline right now that they fail to keep consistent marketing messaging and advertising in front of their target clients. I’ve also seen this firsthand in my own companies.
Witnessing what occurs when sales and marketing are treated as independent aspects of the business led us (in my service businesses and The Blue Collar Success Group) to become laser-focused on the alliance between the two. Splitting sales and marketing focus is completely ineffective. Paying close attention to one and not the other will always create problems, so we developed a strategy that helps our clients focus on the interactions between them.
When your sales and marketing processes are working as a cohesive unit, they are serving your company in a productive way. When one of them is off, there will be an imbalance that you might not even realize immediately.
Stop trying to figure out the best marketing techniques or the best sales strategies independent of one another. Focusing solely on marketing and new client acquisition is an ineffective approach if you don’t have well-trained salespeople and sales systems in place to make the most of new (and existing) opportunities. Take an in-depth look at how well your sales training is supporting your efforts to make sure your marketing dollars aren’t being wasted.