All business starts with a sale. Over time, and to compete effectively, winning a sale takes more than a handshake. Marketing delivers the support a sales team needs. Integrated Marketing has the advantage of program scale to deliver a greater impact and ROI:
- Sales leads
- Collateral sales support – Prospect “softening” branding material before, during and after a sales call:
- Follow-up customer communications in between sales calls and for customer service
Salesforce lone wolf superheroes and workaday team players alike acknowledge their debt to a company’s marketing efforts for good reason. Done right, marketing will multiply sales. Botched, it could drain resources, add overhead, create customer confusion, and cost sales.
Marketing is in play before, during and after a sale. Integrated Marketing is the orchestration of many tools over time to help develop and maintain company brand and customer dialog. Effective Marketing is NOT one-shot-wonder, on-again, off-again promotions and advertising.
Integrated Marketing comprised of strategy, tactics, and creative implementation of a plan:
- Gathers market intelligence to focus effort
- Primes sales targets
- Generates sales leads
- Knocks down sales barriers
- Aligns customer & company expectations
- Delivers regular, consistent, high quality branding messages
Takeaway: All business starts with a sale. Behind every sale is a marketing effort – for better or worse. Organizations frequently get along fine without a formal marketing function – for a time. Many view the sometimes complex functions of marketing as a cost-of-sales, rather than a driver of sales and a return on investment. Marketing is best implemented before the appearance of dark clouds on the sales horizon. With a solid integrated marketing plan in place, a business in in a stronger position to weather economic ups and downs.
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