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Marketing, Advertising and Sales
There appears to be a lot of confusion amongst small business owners about the blurry lines that separate (or infact join) these three areas of business. They all share the common end goal of increasing the sales of products and services.
What is Marketing?
When you delve deeper into what Marketing involves you’ll discover (as we did in an interview with Michael Locke) that marketing is usually where products are invented. It’s the marketing department that knows that statistics of what is selling well, what people are looking for, trends in the industry and what they should sell next. If you think about companies like Kellogs who started out with the now commonplace corn flake you’ll see that they now have many many more products, some based on the original, but all with a unique “spin” on why you should buy and consume the product.
Marketing is about the message you want your potential and actual customers to hear about your company or brand. They are the messages that make prospects want to know more about your company and participate in what you offer.
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Content marketing is also referred to sometimes as blog marketing because it involves the regular creation of new content about your product, service or industry that is designed to demonstrate a good reputation, good knowledge and good customer service.
Email marketing is often connected to Content Marketing, but is a more active way of ensuring you remain in front of the eyes of potential customers. It often involves the collection of an email address in response to an advertising offer and then permission to keep sending information to that person.
Social Media Marketing
With great content to work with and an audience to connect with you can create and maintain a buzz around your business and services and create a community of people who like you and can recommend you to their friends. Stay front of mind by leveraging your other marketing materials in a social media environment.
Read more about the Digital & Social Media Marketing Training Courses..
What is Advertising?
Advertising is about how you get the message of your product out there. How do you package the product with your service and what special offers do you offer to entice would be customers to buy your product. This can include:
The most common, popular and well known form of advertising is Google Adwords and it enables you to combine the keywords and phrases that most of your customers use to discover your company and products. Once they discover you they usually want to get to know you a bit better before they buy from you and that can be achieved by a phone call, asking around to see what their friends think, reading testimonials or getting demonstration.
Print advertising, like all advertising is often combined with the sales process – for example a telephone sales person might call some “Suspects” (people who have never heard of you), to let them know what you do and then follow that up with an email or letter in the mail. That letter may include a flyer or company brochure.
Print advertising might also include display ads or classifieds ads in the newspaper or a DL type flier that is mailed to all of the business in a select suburb.
What is Sales?
Sales is usually associated with the process of converting a prospect into a customer. Traditionally (and still the case in some industries), this happens by hiring a sales person whose job is to make constant and regular contact with prospects to take them through the sales funnel process. This sales person can be office based (or home-based as a Virtual Assistant) and do their work over the phone, or and on-the-road sales rep who organises meetings all day long and physically sees customers and prospects face to face to get them over the line.
The Sales Funnel
A sales person typically works with the sales funnel process where suspects are identified and their details collated into a spreadsheet. They are then usually called on the telephone to identify their level of interest and sent advertising information to support the call. If they are interested it is up to the sales person to progress that person through the sales funnel process to reach the decision stage where a prospect becomes a customer.
Sales Funnel Stages
With each step of the sales funnel process their is an increasing probability that that person will become a customer and it is commonly defined by CRM software like Zoho, Salesforce etc into these categories and probabilities:
|ID Decision Makers||60%|
|Closed Lost to Competitor||0%|
Sales managers often use Sales Funnel (or Sales Pipeline) figures to estimate their revenue in the next quarter or for the next year and can also be used to provide an indicative value of your business.
Interested in Sales and Marketing Courses?
These courses are an evolution of our Small Business Management course as we delve deeper and deeper into all aspects of starting, managing, growing and selling a small business.
Digital Marketing Courses
Read more about the courses we have in development and register your interest.