What do I get for my money in marketing?
The sales marketing approach helps make marketing more tangible with sales metrics
How can you invest and position yourself properly in marketing to stand out from the crowd? Here is an article that helps to understand this.
Entrepreneurs and business managers have always wondered why they should invest in marketing measures. Only recently a customer said to me “Advertising messages don’t get through to me, I automatically tune them out. The product has to be very good, then word gets around.” Do you recognize yourself here? This statement is interesting in many ways:
1. visionary, innovative products, like a light bulb or the iPhone, don’t come along every day. Most products are interchangeable – how will you stand out if your product is not different from the competition from the customer’s point of view ? Your brand makes the difference. Only strong brands increase the value of a product or service, not the products themselves. Why? Because products solve everyday problems. Brands, on the other hand, are our allies in the fight against evil. Brands have the power to shape change. And it’s that change that your customer wants.
2. True, markets are conversations, especially in the digital age. We believe employee and customer reviews more than managers. We’ve grown accustomed to seeing customer magazines at the supermarket or drugstore that say more than items and prices. Before we contact a new service provider, we research all the information available about them. In many places today, advertising messages are no longer recognizable, but come in stories. But that is precisely why they stick.
The question for business managers now is: With so many options, how will I know which path is the right one to my customers, and will I ever be able to measure success? Of course, you’ve read that sales marketing increases revenue, but how exactly does it work? This article transparently shows what sales marketing goal setting looks like and how to find the right partner.
Technical Latin – Where is the customer value?
Content marketing, lead generation tools, inbound campaigns, PR, aren’t they all kind of the same thing? As a CEO or senior executive, you don’t want to be pelted with English-language jargon, you want to see your specific benefit behind an assignment. In sales marketing, that’s exactly what happens. You see your results directly and in numbers. Even more: you base your planning on them. Because sales marketing has the task of closing the difference between sales forecast and sales forecast. Or to put it another way: We close the gap between hard facts and flowery marketing language.
First of all, a marketing measure is good if the customer benefit can be read off in sales-related key figures.
As a sales marketing expert, I have always been frustrated by the lack of clear sales metrics in traditional marketing campaigns. Many entrepreneurs still feel this way today. They wonder what’s in it for them if they get more visitors to their website or have a presence on social channels – social media posts in particular are ephemeral – what’s the sustainable contribution to business growth?
My clients often ask me at the outset what goals they can expect to achieve and what happens if they are missed. “How can performance be measured objectively? What happens if subjectively performance doesn’t fit?” Costing and billing by daily rates in particular often leaves room for discussion and interpretation.
In classic marketing and also in cold calling, the result often remains open or goals are flexibly redefined. You wanted to boost sales of the new product range, but now you have more newsletter subscribers – a positive result, but one that brings you no tangible benefit in the short term.
Measuring marketing measures with sales key figures – this is how it’s done
Each stage in the sales process is stored with conversion rates – this figure expresses how many potential customers make it from the previous stage to the next level.
In the first step of planning, the conversion rates to be assumed per stage are defined. The values are often based on experience – but a comprehensible set of facts is essential for realistic planning. This means that companies of all sizes should be able to understand the following statements in their CRM at a glance:
- How high is the difference between the sales forecast and the sales forecast, i.e. what additional volume must be generated in order to meet the sales forecast?
- Based on the average volume of an order, how many orders (new customers) must then be won. This is the most important metric for sales marketing, because ultimately all campaigns are geared towards enabling sales with qualified opportunities to achieve exactly this goal.
- From how many contacts that you address via mailings, direct marketing or cold calling, opportunities are generated?
- What percentage of them receive an offer
- What percentage of them become customers and in what timeframe?
In this way, you can also track how many contacts need to be addressed in sales marketing in order to acquire the required number of new customers. The stages in the acquisition process and the criteria for reaching them can, of course, be further refined and vary depending on the industry and product.
For sales marketing, the conversion rates between the stages are important KPIs because they can be measured qualitatively and quantitatively. Especially the process steps up to the handover of a qualified lead to the sales department can be controlled to a certain degree, e.g. identifying suitable contacts, qualifying contact persons and verifying demand.
If the conversion rates between the individual stages are analyzed in more detail, it is possible to quickly identify the points in the process where there are repeated problems, and measures for improvement can be developed and implemented in a targeted manner.
The target for sales marketing is then the continuous improvement of conversion rates at the levels that can be influenced. In this way, interactions in social channels or downloads of white papers also become measurable – provided they are actively integrated into the sales process and the sales campaign.
This is what your future marketing service provider should be able to do
Your perfect sales marketing service provider knows that sales campaigns are based on sales metrics. My philosophy is to combine marketing know-how with sales goals and to bring customers along as much as possible. This approach of involving customers in every step of the sales marketing process works extremely well and should be practiced by every service provider.
To avoid a rude awakening later on, you should consider these points when choosing your service provider:
- At the beginning of the collaboration, it is important to define a clear task
- The agency must clearly explain the steps involved, how it intends to accomplish the task, and what the result will be.
- In sales marketing, the result can usually be set in relation to sales-measurable key figures.
Would you pay a marketer to create different conversion funnels to test which funnel generates more leads – without an explanation of what all those words mean? Sales marketing returns confidence in marketing strategies and speaks plainly, in terms of results that sales people strive for and understand.