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Your sales team is a significant contributor to the overall success of your company. Aside from being the ones to get your products or services sold in the first place, sales also have a responsibility to help propagate your brand identity and maintain a high level of trust with your customers. Often, they’re also privy to product or service complaints that might never make it to your official customer service department.
With so many balls in the air, it’s easy to understand why a sales team that fails to do its job well is going to have a major effect on a company’s morale and bottom line. There’s a lot of value in ensuring that your sales team is running as optimally as possible — even if you’re on the marketing end.
Is your sales team doing everything that they can to contribute to the overall success of your company and the product you (and especially they) are selling? For most companies, the answer is probably no. With that in mind, here are four sales tips that your team should be following if they’re not already.
Clearing up the misconception that marketing and sales are two wildly different departments is a necessary step in maximizing the utility of both teams. It’s marketing’s job to help boost sales, so essentially, the two departments need to enable one another and strive to reach the same goals. Cracks in the relationship between the two are also usually quite apparent to clients and suggest that the company as a whole might not have its stuff together.
Bring in the sales team as active participants in your marketing efforts, opening the lines of communication for the free trade of ideas. This approach makes a ton of sense, considering that marketing creates the content that the sales team uses in their conversations, and thus benefits greatly from knowing exactly what kind of content sales needs.
To align sales and marketing, schedule regular meetings between sales and marketing, and talk about the questions your sales team gets and the obstacles that they’re facing when they talk to leads. Then use those conversations to drive your content strategy.
Your entire company is a team of thought leaders, including sales. So why not tap into that wealth of wisdom by encouraging your sales team to contribute original content of their own? Be it for your company blog or an outside publication, content is the fuel needed to showcase expertise and credibility.
When a sales team creates content that is then shared with their prospects, they’re building trust, as well as their pool of potentially useful content resources. This gives them a ton of email marketing fuel and can make their sales emails far more engaging.
Just like their marketing counterparts, sales reps are busy, busy, busy. They don’t always have time to manually touch base with all of their leads, or to check-in via email at just the right moment. That’s where automation comes in — a no brainer for more effective emailing.
Just as in marketing, automating your sales teams’ emails helps maintain a high level of connection with your customers, keeps your brand name top of mind, and ensures you’re optimizing your entire funnel. If your sales team automates their email outreach, they can stay in better touch with them, and send them personalized content that addresses their unique needs. This helps sales focus more on all of the other things their job demands while still ensuring their prospects receive the nurture needed based on where they are in the buyer journey.
To be effective with your sales tactics in today’s modern landscape, you need to be creative. You also need to consider where your audience is the most active, and that’s social media.
While it’s an obvious necessity for marketing, social media often gets downplayed when it comes to sales. Since many of your customers are looking to social media platforms to ascertain the credibility of your brand and the people who work for it, maintaining a social presence is key for sales.
Any employee who is front-facing with clients should have a strong presence on social, and this includes sharing content regularly and posting industry data and compelling articles. This shows prospects and existing customers alike that you’re on top of your game, with your fingers on the pulse of what’s going on in the industry. You can achieve this all through one platform like LinkedIn, or diversify and encourage sales professionals to hop onto other networks too, like Twitter and Facebook.
Just like all of the departments that make up a company, sales are in it to win it. And while you might not have any direct authority coming from the marketing angle, you can (and should!) make suggestions that help you both work better and faster. Start with the four ideas above and, together, plan where you go from there.
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