Event vs. Relationship Marketing (Part III of IV)

From last week…

“Yep,” Marka said. “With the event sale, we can’t overstate the importance of the sales ‘close.’ The catapult generates awareness for your product, but once the consumer’s at the chariot store, the close is crucial because there are multiple options in any product category. It’s up to the salesperson to close the deal when he or she has an opportunity.”

Now, continuing with part three of our four-part series. Remember, fire = print.

“Now let’s consider the other type of sale: the relationship sale. Relationship sales, such as health club memberships, lawn and household services and commercial printing services, depend on convenience and continued good experiences. Unlike the event purchase, the initial close here can represent just the first step in a long selling relationship.”

“Won’t a catapult work here as well?” Zoot asked innocently.

“Say you and your friends are hunting a wild boar in the Olympian forest,” Marka said, fully aware that Zoot, Org and their buddies loved hunting and fishing. “How would a catapult work?”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” Zoot snorted. “Arrows are the only way.”

“Right!” Marka said. When you see the boar, you’d only use an arrow. Because it’s a single animal, you need to use an accurate, targeted tool to hunt it, right?”

“Sure. But what does this have to do with marketing?”

“In a relationship sale, the marketer should rely on arrows, not catapults.”

“Why?” Zoot was confused.

“Because once the prospect is considering a purchase, communications need to be tailored to address his or her specific needs. In other words, the nimble, quick and highly targeted arrow is…”

“Perfect for the relationship sale!” Zoot slammed his fist on the table.

“To kick start the relationship, however, we have to get our marketing and branding work done right,” Marka said.

“Fire is a relationship sale then,” Zoot said, perplexed at how Marka could be so disheveled in her appearance yet so organized in her business thinking.

T.J. Tedesco is a sales growth, business strategy, marketing and PR consultant operating at the intersection of clear vision, compelling content and effective outreach practices. For nearly two decades, T.J. has been an independent consultant and sales growth team leader. Previously, he sold commercial printing, graphic arts machinery and supplies, and finishing and bindery services. T.J. helps North American companies with content development, Web and print design leadership, nurture marketing programs, sales coaching, sales team alignment and business strategy. Since 1996, T.J. has worked with more than 100 clients on retainer, 80 percent in the graphic arts industry. T.J. is author of "Win Top-of-Mind Positioning," "Playbook for Selling Success in the Graphic Arts Industry," "Fire! How Marketing Got Hot," "Direct Mail Pal" and four more books published by PIA. He can be reached at (301) 404-2244 or tj@tjtedesco.com.
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