Before Adele Revella became the CEO of Buyer Persona Institute, she worked in a bank, and spent 5 years in sales. It was after these experiences that she found herself in marketing. Although she now sees herself as a marketer, her time in sales taught her a great deal and changed her perception on sales and marketing as being two completely separate roles. She realized that the way in which we differentiate the two roles can be illogical and costly.
Adele Revella shares 4 of her revelations about sales and marketing that could help improve your marketing strategy:
1. It used to be that the marketing department got the buyer to notice the product and the salesperson sold the product. Today, most buyers do more of their own research into a product before reaching out to a salesperson. Therefore, companies need to shift to more persuasive marketing, instead of only focusing on persuasive salespersons, as they risk losing the buyer before the salespeople have a chance to do their job.
2. Salespeople are trained to listen to buyers and then build a strategy to persuade them by describing the company’s solution in a way that establishes a perfect fit between that buyer’s needs and our product. Marketers do not get this training or in some cases the permission to operate this way but everyone expects them to do just that.
3. Any company needs to make sure they are meeting their monthly targets as well as focusing on the next quarter. Revella agrees that it is difficult to balance short and long term priorities. However, you can not let long-term investments suffer because you are focused on meeting this month’s numbers. Therefore, salespeople should be focused on today’s buyers, while marketers are focused on building for the future.
4. It is not always the company that has the best price that wins over a buyer, but the company that can win the buyer’s trust that will have their business. As mentioned above, salespeople who were the best listeners and persuaded buyers that the product they were selling was the best match, got the sale. Now that buyers can easily avoid sales contact, a lot of the responsibility of listening and persuading belongs to the marketing team.
Since buyers have free access to information about many different companies and products, it’s time for marketers to gain deeper buyer insights to convince buyer’s their company is the right choice for them and their needs.