9 Tips for Developing Your Sales and Marketing Strategy
Your sales and marketing plan can make or break your business. No pressure, right? Unfortunately, most business owners are feeling lots of stress as paradigms change and new marketing methods are born. Once you’ve come up with a strategy you must make sure it works.
It can all seem like a big struggle, but follow these 9 tips and you’ll get started on the right track.
1. Set up the right budget
How much do you want to spend on marketing? How much can you afford – and can you afford not to spend it? It all depends on the goals you’ve set for your company. There’s a big difference between planning to grow 20% during the next year and just maintaining the customers you have now.
In order to work, your budget needs to match your ambitions. You should allow for enough money and staffing to fill all your needs.
2. Your ideal customer
Take a good look at your best customers and write down what make them so wonderful. Your ideal customer profile is a great tool for designing your marketing strategy. Do some customer research concentrating on your top customers and exactly what makes them such a good fit your company.
A buyer persona is another wonderful tool for marketing research. What does your customer want, think, and feel?
You can’t design an effective sales and marketing plan until you know who you’re talking to. Your approach is going to be different if you’re marketing to a 30-something mother of 3 versus a college student.
Ideal customers can change over time – so make sure you keep abreast of your changing customer base and keep your profiles and personas updated.
3. What’s your buyer’s journey to a sale?
Once you know who your ideal customers are you can “walk with them” as they make the customer’s journey with your company.
Go through every step and write it down.
- How do they hear about you?
- How do they go about purchasing your product or service?
- How do they ask for help if they have a problem?
- What are their motivational hot buttons to buy?
- What are their potential objections and fears?
- How can you build trust and relationship?
- How do you overcome fear of loss and create hope for gain in the sales process?
- How can you create buy confidence?
Once you know the steps they take in the sales process, you can design content to influence them to move from sales resistance to sales uptake.
Plus, you’ll know what “calls to action” to write for each step of the sales process.
4. What makes you different from your competition?
When you’re talking to your ideal customers, ask them why they’re dealing with your company. What’s your differentiator?
Don’t just assume you know. Ask your customers what makes you stand out from the competition and what would make them consider switching to your product or services.
5. Make the best of your marketing materials
All your sales and marketing staffers should be working from one central vision. Check all your written and digital sales materials to make sure they’re using your market research to your best advantage. Highlight your differentiators. Tell your ideal customer all the advantages they would gain by choosing your product or services. Make sure all your copyrights are up to date as well.
6. Your online marketing should work for you
Go over your website and social media channels for maximum appeal. They’re usually your customer’s first point of contact with your company, so put your best foot forward.
Will your ideal customer find them attractive? Is your branding consistent across all channels? How about your message?
7. Look over your sales process
Does your sales process support your goals for the next year?
All your sales staff should know your best practices for finding the best leads and leading them along the road to a sale.
Your customer relationship management (CRM) tools should be set up to record all the necessary information and make use of automation whenever it would be helpful.
Are there any areas where the process breaks down? Look for places where customers can get lost. Are their needs being ignored at any point? Document all the issues you find.
8. Write down your sales and marketing strategy
Now that you’ve gone over all the different sections you can put together a cohesive sales and marketing plan. You’ll have a good idea of your strong points and the places that need improvement.
Plan solutions for each of the issues you have identified. Do you need to improve your social media marketing? How about lead generation and development?
9. Record your progress and adapt to changes
Once you’ve put your plan together, implement it. Describe metrics that will measure your progress, and figure out who will be responsible for each issue.
Communicate with your team to track how well your strategy is working. Change anything that isn’t performing as well as you anticipated.
Creating the best sales and marketing strategy is an ongoing process that needs constant adjustment, but it’s one of the most important parts of business success.
If you feel like you could use some help, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
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