I’m BAAAACCCKKKK!!! I had such a fine time reading your responses to my “note to two sales reps” (“How to Land an Appointment with a Marketing Manager”
) post a few weeks ago, I thought you might enjoy some more of my marketing perspective. Just to demonstrate that I can do more than write “trite,” which was probably supposed to be “tripe” (thank you very much), here’s a list of great ways that printers’ marketing departments and sales reps can work together to grow their print business.1) Marketing Directors
: You need to keep the sales force in the loop on the promotions and campaigns you’re planning. There is hardly anything more annoying to a sales rep than walking into a customer’s office and having the person flap some kind of discount flyer around that YOUR marketing department sent out without bothering to tell the sales reps about it. FAIL!!2) Sales Reps
: Schmooze your marketing director with an apple martini and a fistful of prospects that you’d like to get in to see. Marketing types LOVE names and addresses—it’s like giving them candy. Pass along as much information as you can on what kind of prospects you like and what they like to buy, then wait for the marketing magic to happen.3) Marketing Directors
: Say THANK YOU to the sales reps. They bring in the revenue that pays your salaries. When they buy you an apple martini and give you you tons of prospects, SMILE at them—no...GRIN real big, and ask them how you can help them find the right customers. This is a GREAT conversation to have.4) Sales Reps
: Be aware that it takes time to create meaningful, effective marketing materials. Your marketing director doesn’t start fresh every Monday morning. Marketing projects are threaded through weeks, if not months, of planning and strategizing. If you’re not getting the materials you need to help you effectively present solutions to your prospects and customers, invite the marketing people to join you in the field occasionally so they can get a feel for what you do.5) Marketing Directors
: When the sales reps ask you to join them in the field, DO IT!!! You’ll be amazed at how much work and effort goes into sitting down with buyers who range from young to old, green to seasoned, stable to, well, quirky, and being able to talk to ANY of them and not come off looking like a robot or an idiot. When you’re creating your campaigns and sales collateral, think about what buyers are really like—not just about how artistic you can make a brochure or a mailer look.
OK, that’s enough of my tripe for now. Sales and Marketing teams can and should work together to find the best ways to find prospects, communicate with buyers, and increase company revenues. Start by spending some time together and participating in each other’s activities, and that will benefit everyone!