Sales and Marketing Advice for Florida business
Six core sales and marketing rules to guide business success
Using these core marketing principles as a strategic foundation will help your business prosper.
We all live by rules. Many are imposed on us, usually for good reason such as which side of the road to drive on. Certain policies are a burden, even antiquated, and don’t make much sense in today’s world -- yet, government regulators somehow think they’re good for us and pile more on.
Then there are rules that are at the core of what drives our companies or us as individuals. Some are common sense and keep your family together and safe. No doubt your company has directives too that improve workforce safety and encourage customer satisfaction.
Yet, there’s a tendency to focus on the tactical. The result; rules, rules, and more rules that micromanage people’s lives.
The more rules a business has in place, the lower the team’s passion. That affects the team's performance, which in turn results in less profit. How about a handful of strategic rules that offers solid guidance and freedom of actions instead.
In my first sales job I had an incredibly smart boss and mentor. John made me open my eyes wide and helped me to see the big picture. He also encouraged me to overcome obstacles thrown at me by my own company by taking matters into my own hands. I learned hard lessons quickly. Because of John I enjoyed working there and thrived
I absorbed John’s “rules” and eventually added a few of my own. They have served me very well while at the companies I’ve been part of and now the clients I’m fortunate enough to work with. Here are the six core marketing principles that form my strategic foundation.
Ron’s Rule #1. Always be guided by the idea that if you focus on your prospects and customers, all else will follow. All successful marketing and sales begins with the audience, so you need to know a lot about your target market and the people who make it up. The more you know about the people you serve, the better you’ll be able to know what they expect from you and how to help them.
Ron’s Rule #2. An education-based marketing approach opens doors faster and closes more sales. But, you’ll need to take the long view. When people feel that you are more concerned about closing a deal and taking their money than helping them, you’ll lose the sale -- as well as respect and credibility. Instead, give to get. Information educates, has value, and builds relationships. The best part is there’s virtually no selling involved! Educational content helps you become a trusted expert and establishes your company as a trusted authority.
Ron’s Rule #3. Stop thinking about sales and marketing as separate functions. There is only one team: the revenue generation department. It’s often been said that the difference between sales and marketing is that marketing owns the message and sales owns the relationship. That’s nonsense! In a world that desperately tries to balance personal connections and online marketing, the only thing that makes sense is marketing and sales working together to carry out the process of creating and maintaining a relationship with a client. That is the definition of a team sport -- marketing and sales thinking and acting as a single unit.
Ron’s Rule #4. Your marketing message is as important to your business as it is for engaging prospects and customers. It’s the foundation for everything your company does. Your guiding light. Your "Why." And, it helps you keep your brand’s promise to add value to everything you do. When a message is sincere and well-crafted, it’s the conversation starter -- It gets the attention of your audience and builds rapport. A great marketing message is like a recipe that has great ingredients -- it describes who your company serves, what your business does, and how you help people in ways that they will clearly recognize. Stay true to your message and the value proposition it represents.
Ron’s Rule #5. Have fun. Make the job enjoyable and engaging for team members, strategic partners, and customers too. It’ll reduce stress and create an organization that’s more trusting and less fearful. But, that doesn’t mean just foosball, ping-pong tables, and espresso machines on every floor. A great company culture creates a positive atmosphere and rewards excellence. The values advocated in the marketing message are embraced everyday by everyone. Employees will enjoy coming to work and customers will love doing business with you. This results in motivated people, increased productivity, better marketing, and more sales. It’s that simple!
Ron’s Rule #6. Create a practical plan and system to implement the rules. This is more than a rule about rules. Without a practical way to put any rules you have into action they are just smoke -- poof! You have systems and processes for every area of your business, so why should marketing be any different? Marketing is one of the most important functions in any company and the right system will deliver results. Customers don’t move from initial contact to revenue by themselves. You need to help them and that’s where your processes come in handy, keeping your team on track while saving time and money. This is not permission to add dumb, performance-degrading rules -- that’s only for companies that have revenue prevention departments!
The payoff to following these strategic rules is huge. More revenue and greater profits with less effort.
What are your strategic rules?
Ron Stein is President of FastPath Marketing (www.marketing-strategies-guide.com) and the author of the Rapid Impact Marketing & Selling Playbook. As a speaker, coach, and consultant he works with small business owners helping them to accelerate the path between their vision and the actions needed to reach, win, and keep customers. Ron is the creator of the FastPath to More Customers Now! 7-step marketing system based on more than twenty years as a successful business owner, corporate CEO, business development executive, and salesman. He is also a mentor at two nationally recognized business accelerators. Ron offers one-on-one and small group mentoring, conducts seminars, and consults. He can be reached at 727-398-1855 or Ron@FastPathMarketing.com.