Question: Increased our Sales and Marketing expenditures by 9% and received only a modest return. Why?
Answer: After reviewing your Sales and Marketing materials and discussions with Sales Leader, I believe the situation is:
- Your Sales and Marketing strategy is "Spray and Pray". You sent out thousands of pieces of literature, new web site, and a new Sales Leader. The process needs to measure each Sales and Marketing initiative to determine what is successful and what is not successful. You are most fortunate in that you have the best source available - your present clients. Talk to them. Why are they with you? What are their concerns? Focus like a laser on what works. You will be surprised at the comments from your customers. It is easy to contact the happy clients - what about those clients that nobody looks forward to hearing from?
- "Cash being the King / Queen" - have the sales team own the client process from ordering to the cash collection, because they should know the client better than anybody. The sales team should be getting paid as the cash is collected or at least the commissions linked to cash collected. The business process is not completed until the cash is collected. Good sales team see this as an opportunity to get to know the customer and to have another opportunity to cross-sell.
- In real estate, it is location, location and location. In Sales and Marketing, it is follow-up, follow-up and follow-up.
- Hire professional Marketing Specialist. You utilize an attorney for the legal issues, your CPA for tax matters and logistic support firm for the distribution - at a fraction of these amounts (in 2005, a 9% increase in Sales and Marketing alone) - you could have a proven solution provider who knows the industry and has connections to generate the results. If for nothing else to get an understanding of their processes and how they follow up.