I have been trying to lose weight for years as I discussed in my post: Do you need to “Detox “your business before it can hit your goals? If you have struggled with your weight as I have, you know it is very frustrating. I have tried a number of diets and workouts independently .One of the workouts I tried was “Spinning”. If you have not tried it, spinning is a very intense workout on a stationary bike. It was not unusual for my heart rate to exceed 160 beats per minute and the calorie counter would show 600-750 calories burned in each workout
When I first started spinning, I did lose some weight. After a few weeks of spinning my weight loss hit a plateau. So what do we do in situations like this? Well type A’s like me…we work harder! I added more resistance to the stationary bike and after the 50 minute spinning class I would go into the weight room and work out for another hour. Again, I saw some weight loss and again I quickly hit another plateau…very frustrating.
What I lacked was the right formula for weight loss. To have sustainable, repeatable weight loss the formula is 65% your food intake and 35% your activity level, your workouts. One without the other and you will not reach your goals.That explained why working out harder and not significantly changing my diet did not help me achieve my weight loss goals.
This reminded me of how most businesses lack or have the wrong formula for sales and marketing. I have worked with businesses in different industries and varying sized revenues; from under $1 million to $300 million, as well as over a billion and I have seen teams frustrated in each. They keep working harder, spinning faster and faster in sales adding more training but 40% still miss achieving their sales goals. They lack the correct formula to feed (marketing) their sales in relation to their selling activities.
When I worked for Frito-Lay I was fresh out of college. I would say the formula back then was; 30% marketing and 70% sales and service. Marketing did research and generated brochures and sales would pick and choose the tools we thought would work. Frequently we would create our own tools borrowing what we liked from what marketing created. This model may have made the marketing team at Frito-Lay cringe, but it worked in the 1980’s. My Unit of route salesmen realized huge sales gains year over year and our team was recognized in Frito-Lay’s national magazine with yours truly standing in front of a bridge display we sold to Giant Eagle stores that spanned the entire back of their store for July 4th weekend.
That formula; 30% marketing/70% “bare knuckle selling” worked in the 1980’s The problem today that is the 30% marketing/70% sales formula is dated and backwards. The change that caused this formula to flip flop was the internet. The advent of the internet changed how buyers gain information. Salespeople are no longer the” keepers of the product knowledge keys”. Buyers now demand; instant, accurate, authentic information at their finger tips 24/7. Not only must we provide this, but we must provide product information in the voice of the buyer so they quickly can find solutions to the problem(s) they are trying to solve. Fail to clearly state the problems you solve and the buyer “clicks” their way on to the next website.One of marketing’s key roles is now sales enablement.
Today the formula for most businesses should be 70% marketing and 30% sales and service.
Peter Ducker said: “The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.” To achieve this definition a considerable amount of time must be spent in understanding your market.
Buyers like to buy; they do not like being sold. (Truth be told they probably didn’t like being sold a bridge display that spanned 15 isles) Sales today have a responsibility to start conversations and lead buyers throughout their buying process until they are ready to buy. Salespeople must now “serve” their clients as opposed to “sell” them. I discussed the top concerns buyers had with salespeople in my post titled: WARNING: Buyer’s say what salespeople do wrong? PRICE is not on the list! Buyers today want salespeople to listen and understand their problems before presenting what’s in their bag.
When I speak of “sales” and “marketing” I am discussing the roles and not titles and people. In some of the smaller companies I have served my title was “VP of sales” but I performed a marketing role in identifying customer needs and pain points. The smaller companies I have helped did not have marketing departments and we outsourced the development of sales tools to ad agencies. As companies grow they segment and define roles more clearly. I really do not care what you call the person that does it, but someone must understand your market and how your buyer’s buy.
How your buyers buy has changed since the 1980’s and market leaders have already made the sales and marketing flip flop to insure buyers move quickly through their process to a sale.
Stop “Spinning” the wrong sales and marketing formula, working out harder and harder only to miss your goals.
Find out how your buyers buy and create a winning formula for how your buyers buy today…
… or keep spinning with your heart rate racing while your competitors adjust their formulas to the market of today and leave you in their dust.
How about your company…
If you had to guess, what % is your companies’ energies are spent in the roles of sales and marketing?
Are you still “bare knuckle selling” or are you helping buyers find you, and supplying what they need to buy from you?
Do you know how your buyers buy?