Apr 4, 2016

SALES & MARKETING FUNCTION


A Salesperson must be an all-rounder. He must know the real facts of the company and company’s activities regularly. He must understand the functions of the Marketing Department which is closely related to his department. He must also know the marketing strategy of the company and try to implement the same in his sales career. For this he will have to gain basic knowledge of this department. Therefore, I would like to suggest few ideas on marketing shortly.

SELLING

Selling is the direct confrontation between the company and its customer.

Management is fundamentally about direction and control. Selling is no different.

All Sales People, particularly those in large companies, present a basic problem: they enjoy spending their time doing what they know best with the products that are easiest to sell, and selling to those customers who are easiest to sell to, direction, management and control are needed to ensure that selling time and cost is spent where it is more effective.

THE SALES FUNCTION

The direct sales effort should ensure that staffs cover the territory where the customers are located. The number of sales staff depends on the number of calls needed to service the existing customers, regain the lost customers and sale to the potential customers.

Any management has a responsibility to promote the use of sales techniques and ensure that a disciplined approach produces value for money.

THE MARKETING FUNCTION

The effort of marketing should be geared to rigorous examination, investigation and promotion of the market for company’s goods/services. It should ensure that the company has sound, verifiable data on how its customers and the rest of market are changing and should be aware of competitors.

Marketing activity should support sales with research and promotion and ensure that sales resources spend much time with the customer. Through research, marketing can also help product development.

Marketing finance means the funds required for the performance of the marketing functions. Thus finance required for marketing is meant for holding the stocks of goods and for meeting the costs of buying and selling. It is said that money on credit is the lubricant that facilitates the marketing machine. Financing of marketing may be broadly discussed under two heads:

1) Financing the business enterprises and

2) Financing the consumer or consumer credit.

Business enterprises requires two types of capital viz, permanent or fixed capital and current or working capital. Fixed capital is required for purchasing capital equipment. Such as land, building, plant, machinery etc. while working capital is required to meet the recurring expenses during production and marketing activities such as purchases of goods required in production or for resale, payment of wages and salaries, other operating expenses and the extension of credit to customers. The producing enterprise requires relatively a huge amount of fixed capital while the marketing enterprises such as wholesalers, retailers, commission agents, brokers, cooperative societies or sales department of a factory or mill require relatively a large amount of working capital. Of course the marketing activities also require some fixed capital but the amount is relatively small. It is very common to find that land and buildings are mostly rented and not owned by the marketing concerns. Therefore it is necessary to discuss here the various aspects of the current finance or working capital which forms the major portion of the total capital of the marketing enterprises.

There is also another type of finance known as consumer credit. It refers to the financing of consumers or granting credit to the consumers.

MARKETING FUNCTION

Selling is the most important function of marketing. Its main object is to dispose to the goods at fair prices, nowadays production is carried on a large scale in anticipation of demand and markets for several goods have become complex and competitive. Therefore, modern selling requires selling efforts such as finding out prospective buyers, informing them about the availability of the different products for sale and persuading them to going for these products and satisfying their needs. Thus, selling in modern times has attained much importance.

FUNCTIONS OF MODERN SELLING

Modern selling usually involves for the following functions:

1)Product planning and development.

2)The contractual demand creation.

3)Negotiation and,

4)The contractual.

A sales person can easily convince the potential buyers by adjusting himself with the needs and types of buyers.

A sales person can contact a large number of prospective buyers and directly appeal to them and explain all the good qualities of his products and convince them as to how his products are able to satisfy his needs.

He can also give any technical advice as may be required by the users.

He gathers information about the market conditions. The attitude of the consumer towards his products, the feeling of the consumers about the firm which he represents and about their requirements which have not yet been met by his products. When the salesperson sends this information to his management, this information will be very useful that company to produce goods as required by the consumers. When the salesperson sends this information to his firm, this information will be very useful to that company to produce the goods as required by the consumers.

He can show samples and make demonstrations which are quiet essential in the selling. He can also deliver the goods to the buyers and make collections of bills from them and thus establish goodwill of the seller.

He can also render after sale services such as installation, repairing, adjustments etc. However, there are certain limitations in this method:

It is very expensive, personal calls are expensive and unless the unit cost is large, the cost maybe prohibitive.

It is often difficult to get expert and trained salesman.

Demand creation, operation and effective management become very difficult and costly. Therefore personal salesmanship is recommended in the following areas: In the case of a new product, In case the market for the product is concentrated, when the price per unit is higher, when the demonstration is necessary and when purchases are made in frequently.

ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN

Advertising campaign should be regular and effective. They rely on the correct message, choosing the best medium and good timing. The message must relate to what the customer wants and what the company needs.

The medium must relate to the ‘public’ in question. A costly material campaign to two customers in particular localities may be far less effective than direct mail or local advertising.

Finally, research and analysis of previous sales – peaks can assist in choice of timing a campaign.

CREATING A STRUCTURE

An organization must be sufficiently structured to ensure that it satisfies the needs of its customers at a profit which satisfy its own needs.

The sales and marketing function in any company should be as structured as the other functions but should not stop the development of ‘products champions’ and ‘super sales people’

GOOD CUSTOMER RELATIONS

Good customer relations are essential for the success of a business. They are achieved by:-

Good customer service.

Product margins which meet the company objectives and give the customer value for money.

Relevant product development and innovation to meet customers’ future needs.

Regular sales calls and entertainment proportional to sales potential.

BAD CUSTOMER RELATIONS ARE DUE TO:

Poor Customer Service.

Product seem as poor value for money.

No interest in customers’ future needs.

Insensitive credit control procedures.

Infrequent sales calls.

Low entertainment costs.

If the balance swings too heavily on either direction, the result is loss of profit.

CARING FOR CUSTOMER’S NEEDS

In preparing marketing strategy/sales planning for products and services, you will succeed if you concentrate on one thing – the customer. It may seem obvious to say that without customers, all other aspects of a business are superfluous.

Any business which does not satisfy its customer’s needs now and in the future, will cut itself from its customers and its essential life – support line. It should ask its customers (directly or indirectly).

What they think of the existing products.

What improvements/additions they would like to see.

What about value their money.?

Marketing nurtures are essential relationship between the company and its customers. Marketing functions define the methods by which a company selects the approximate mix of products and markets with which to achieve its objectives.









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