Review your sales and marketing strategy to boost profits and have an advantage over your competitors. A great way to start is by breaking down the process into discrete, manageable elements. You’ll end up with a checklist that can be reviewed to prioritize those areas needing improvement and serve as the groundwork for an effective marketing strategy.
Effective sales and marketing requires talent, expertise, research, and consistency. If that doesn’t exist within your organization, then it’s important that you find an outside resource that can help you develop and implement your strategy.
11 Ways To Develop Your Sales and Marketing Strategy
1. Market Research
Start by taking an objective look at your target client and the business climate in which you operate. Don’t make the mistake of focusing only on the services you offer. Or what you think your target audience wants. Do the research necessary to understand what your ideal client really wants or needs and position your offerings accordingly.
Done correctly, this research will give you a clear idea of your client’s needs and priorities, their buying process decisions, competitive landscape, how your firm’s brand is perceived, and the benefits clients receive from working with you. This knowledge can dramatically reduce your risk and lead to a much safer strategy.
Know who your competitors are and what they have been up to. What is the overall market trend and how are you holding up in terms of market share and profit outlook? How do you stack up against your competitors? What substitutes are there for your products and are they a threat?
Use competitive intelligence to maintain and enhance your business’s market share. This involves researching what your competitors offer.
3. Take Stock Of Your Resources
The best sales and marketing strategy in the world is useless if you don’t have the discipline to successfully execute it. What sort of talent is already available? What levels of training do they have? Do your sellers have the skills and knowledge they need to succeed.? Does the marketing staff understand all the services you offer?
How about tools? Do you have the marketing foundation you need to pull off an inbound strategy? We’ve found that answering these questions will give you real insight into what is both possible and practical. Without this information, strategies are often under-resourced or simply not feasible because they are not based in reality.
4. Research Suppliers
Research suppliers thoroughly and have multiple options available when needed. To avoid being at the mercy of wholesalers who could increase prices. Manage supplies more effectively by using different wholesalers to keep costs in check. Always be on the lookout for new suppliers who might be willing to make a deal to gain your business.
When shopping around for wholesalers, it’s also worth checking if preassembled items might save you money over doing it yourself.
5. Know Your Competition
It’s important to know where you fit in the current market, and knowing your competition is a big part of this. You might have a larger operation that you think can be all things to all people. But it’s more likely that you’ll be zeroing in on a specific demographic, such as those seeking premium quality products and services.
If you’re an inexpensive pizza parlor struggling in a town full of other inexpensive pizza parlors. You might find that you’ll be able to improve your market share. By targeting customers willing to pay a premium price for higher-quality ingredients or toppings.
6. Implement Your Strategy
After researching your target client and marketplace. Determining what you want your strategy to accomplish. After assessing your resources, it’s time to settle on how you’re going to implement your strategy: If you’re a sole proprietor, then you’ll most likely employ the “seller-doer” model in which you are the brand.
Selling your hands-on expertise and its value, while building a personal rapport and trust with the client.
Does your team have a dedicated sales staff selling services performed by others who are the experts? If so, the “seller-expert” model aligns better with your business to make your team visible experts and thought leaders in the marketplace.
7. Market Promotion
Do a better job of reaching your potential customers by figuring out where they are. If you’re trying to reach an audience through social media marketing, for example, it’s good to know which age group is using which platforms.
When looking only at people aged 18-24, the gap narrows significantly with 71% on Instagram and 80% of people on Facebook. Using that data as an example, it’s wise to make sure you don’t forget about Instagram if you are trying to reach a younger audience.
8. Customer Service
The first step to providing good customer service is understanding the kind of service your customers really want. If you run a convenience store where people don’t shop for long, go in quickly to grab a soft drink or a power bar, they’re simply looking for a friendly cashier to quickly take care of their transaction and without hassle.
However, something like a full-service restaurant or a retail establishment that sells specialty products will draw on people who are looking to be served or have their questions answered.
It’s also important to seek feedback and provide ways for customers to review your business. If you have a customer loyalty program. Regularly contact customers who have not made purchases recently to offer discounts or inquire why they have not visited your business recently.
9. Implement Market Strategy
An effective sales and marketing strategy is a major element of an overall business strategy. It requires a major commitment, which is why, in larger firms, it’s important that senior management fully understand the strategy.
No strategy will be successful without management support. But with a proper investment of time, money, and effort, your carefully developed and implemented sales and marketing strategy can yield big results.
10. Business Expansion
Review your capital structure regularly or have a CPA do it for you to make sure you are handling your assets and liabilities in a cost-effective way. If you’ve achieved some success, and are viewed as a stable business organization, and have a solid reputation. You may be able to attract angel investors or venture capitalists to assist with financing the expansion of your business.
11. Customer Loyalty
Building customer loyalty and increasing sales to existing customers should be a constant focus of your business. Bringing people in the door sometimes requires different business tactics based on your needs at the time. For example, if the spring months of March, April, and May typically are slow for your business.It would be ideal to schedule events during those months designed to bring potential customers in the door.
Don’t limit yourself to strategies built around just sales. Consider holding workshops or training centered around the products or services you provide, to draw attention to your overall brand. The sales will naturally follow.