When it comes to gaining market-share, companies are relying on marketing and sales teams more than ever in an effort to drive the success (or lack thereof) of a business. Expanding marketing channels, and waves of sales engineering methods have not only created opportunities for growth, but have also been the downfall of failing operations. Here are 5 Common Sales & Marketing Mistakes that failing businesses make and ways to avoid them:
1) Ignoring your Ideal Customer Profile
Sure, you may have an idea of who to sell your products to, but have you taken the time to fully understand what it is about them that attracts your products to them? Whether you have a new or established business, learning about your ideal customer profile is critical for future business development and to absorb more market share. Always take the time to learn from your revenue sources and to learn about what specifically draws them into your product offering. When thinking about an ideal customer profile, what type of industries are they focused on? If you are in B2C, what is the demographic breakdown? What are the common traits that these customers have that you can utilize to deliver the right messaging and targeting with the right pain points?
2) NOT Creating a Marketing & Sales Strategy
While this should be commonplace, unfortunately many companies simply don’t develop a clear sales & marketing plan nor do they implement using periodic corporate strategy meetings. Much like driving at night with no speedometer and no headlights, it’s often very difficult to see where you’re headed and it can be disastrous to a business if you don’t set a strategy and regularly review 3-, 6- and 12-month targets. Strategy meetings every 3 months can help staff stay aligned, provide transparency across the entire company and helps keep those goals in line with corporate vision.
3) Not embracing technologies
Focusing on the wrong prospect who won’t buy from you is a lot harder to realize if you don’t have an organized way to approach and nurture your audience of potential customers. It seems like for every work-related function there is a software solution for it. Yet when asked, most small businesses still have not yet adopted technologies to help organize and maintain sales cycles which are in essence forward looking indicators of how your business is doing. While it is daunting to have to sift through so many solutions in the marketplace, and some may feel hesitant to put their sales operations into a new system that they fear may be too difficult to use, or that their employees won’t utilize it enough, the real risk of lost opportunities due to a clear and coherent sales process, can be the deciding factor in a businesses’ future.
4) Keeping Sales & Marketing Efforts Separate
A common mistake businesses often make is separating Sales from Marketing Efforts (and visa versa). Having a “wedge” between the two may seem logical on the surface (after all marketing is about branding right?) but now more than ever businesses need to have both departments in lock step to assure that the proper messaging is going to the right audiences, and that marketing campaigns are supported by sales teams who should be ready to engage prospects who have shown an interest in your products or services.
5) Your Website Fails to Convert Visitors
Websites are a must now a days, but its more than just putting content on a few pages with hopes that your visitors take the actions that convert them into (at the very least) potential customers. Traffic should be guided through different areas within your website to draw them towards the early stages of your sales cycle. Content should be structured in a way that is not only easily digestible but encourages moves that visitor along through your site to a sign-up form or demonstration request. Without a clear path for your web traffic, you risk not capitalizing on marketing’s efforts to bring traffic to your site in the first place. Additionally, your site needs to consistently have fresh content which not only helps from a value-added perspective for visitors but can also have a profoundly positive effect on Search Engine Optimization.
While these are just a handful of situations where businesses can be directly negatively impacted, there are many more potential hurdles and obstacles that get in the way of letting the world know about your products or services, let alone get them to purchase from you. But if you are keen on the suggestions above, you best position yourself for success no matter what you are offering.
LionO360 is a cloud-based solution that allows businesses to manage their sales and marketing efforts with real world tools and key integrations that let your business grow and maintain its customer base while giving management and every employee the kind of visibility they need to be as productive as possible. Chat with one of our sales representatives today to see how LionO360 can help your sales and marketing operations.