Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a salesperson and a marketer? Don’t they have the same goal? Well yes.
By the way, just so you don’t get confused, every business has salespeople. They just sometimes happen to be in disguise. For example, a restaurant has salespeople in the form of servers. A grocery store has salespeople in the form of the cashiers (have you every been asked if you want one of the specials from the “bin” at the checkout?). If you’re an entrepreneur, you’re a salesperson yourself.
Every business also has a marketing department. Sometimes, they happen to be disguised as customers (think about referrals and word-of-mouth marketing), but they’re there.
What’s the Difference?
Sales and marketing are just at different points in the sales process. Marketing brings in the leads, and sales converts them. It’s really quite simple.
Generally speaking, marketing is focused on creating interest in the brand, and bringing traffic through the door. They then hand off the lead to salesperson whose goal it is to convert that prospect into a buyer. Sales is a part of marketing (like so many things that business owners neglect).
It’s important for both departments to work in harmony. If you have a kick-ass marketing department, but no leads are converted, you’re in trouble. Similarly, an awesome salesperson with no leads to work with is ineffective.
How Much to Invest in Sales vs. Marketing?
It’s also important for you to realize that sales is an important part of marketing. Possibly the most important. An awesome salesperson will provide such good service, that they’ll create their own walking, talking marketing tools in their customers. How often have you heard a friend talking about the great service they got at a local restaurant?
Shameless, but unsolicited plug: If you’re looking for someone to coach your staff at sales, contact the folks at 3:17 Consulting. They are the best in the business, and help MCG with our sales processes all the time.
Usually, you spend money on marketing so that the salespeople can bring money in. Salespeople are normally on some sort of incentivized pay scale (such as tips for a server).
Obviously, there are definitely overlaps in the sales/marketing departments, but it’s important to embrace those overlaps and recognize that most people aren’t good at both. Provide adequate support to both roles within your organization, and you’ll flourish. Neglect either, and you’ll struggle.