A SALES AND MARKETING LOVE STORY IN FOUR ACTS
Welcome back to the second act of our sales and marketing integration saga. We will center this month’s chat on the Prospect and Lead phases to express the following thesis: your marketing team can better tailor their content and messaging campaigns if they understand the nuances and details of the sales team’s target demographic and the corresponding value position. Perpetual collaboration between both teams anchors them upon a common goal. With that said, let us explain a method to optimize a customer’s journey while at the same time establishing more peace and harmony between your sales and marketing teams than one would find at a Tai Chi conference.
Now, let us travel to a theoretical white board session at which your marketing and sales teams are defining the target demographic for a particular campaign. Your marketing team’s inclusion in these discussions is important because this is the time during which they begin to understand the nuts and bolts of what constitutes the target audience. Everything from education level to projected hobbies helps the marketing team craft a better message that speaks directly to a specific group of people as opposed to a broad audience. For example, if your sales team wants to target your dealership’s customers who drive luxury cars for an upcoming snow tire campaign and your marketing team delivers a message about the importance of preparing one’s vehicle for winter, both of your teams are out of sync and will fail to maximize the outputs of their efforts. This scenario ultimately costs the dealership potential revenue and wastes your staff’s time and effort. In different terms, your sales team is trying to sell apples while your marketing team is telling everyone that eating fruit is a good idea. You might sell some apples, but not as many as you should.
Now that our marketing team understands the target demographic and the sales team is confident that a relevant message will support their efforts, we can begin our journey. For our purposes, we will call our target demographic “prospects.” The sales team begins to connect with current luxury cars owners who purchased their vehicle from your dealership, but have yet to buy snow tires for the upcoming winter. At the same time, the marketing team begins to work content on social media and other platforms that engages luxury car owners who are not current dealership customers. Just because these people did not buy their car from your dealership does not mean you cannot sell them snow tires.
While your sales team works the phones, your marketing team monitors the effectiveness of their multimedia campaign and adjusts their content using predetermined metrics. Both teams are anchored on the same goal: sell some dang snow tires for luxury vehicles. Eventually, prospects who own luxury cars and are in need of snow tires will respond to either your sales team’s calls or your marketing team’s multimedia campaign. We can now push those prospects to the next phase.
Do not be discouraged with a low initial response rate. This process takes time to establish and refine. Think of this effort as mining for gold: you need to process tons of dirt for a few measly ounces of gold. You are not selling dangerous fireworks to a bunch of kids from the 1990s (man, those were the days); recall the reason why we chose an inverted pyramid (see last blog). Many will enter…few will buy the dang the luxury snow tires. If you know how to change our inverted pyramid into a rectangle through some geometric osmosis/ sales & marketing magic, please let us know (we have polo shirts and key chains that have your name on them).
Prospect Phase Objective: Your potential customer is interested in learning more about purchasing snow tires for their luxury vehicle and responds with a request for more information.
Now that the prospects have become leads, your sales and marketing team can better focus their time and efforts on a smaller group of potential customers. Note this is a central theme of our aggregate process: the further the customer moves down our pyramid, the more time and effort your marketing and sales team dedicate to them. In other terms, a Prospect might receive five seconds or less of your team’s effort while they review a social media post, but a customer in the Spin phase (we’ll talk about that phase next month) could enjoy an entire hour of your team’s time while they peruse snow tires at your dealership.
After combining the responses to the marketing team’s multimedia efforts with the responses collected from their own outreach efforts, the sales team now influences the lead by explaining why your dealership’s luxury snow tires create a shared value position for your potential customers. At the same time, your marketing team is working with the leads by sharing blogs and website updates that inform them as why buying luxury snow tires from your dealership is in their best interest. Also, now is the time to present them with additional opportunities and information that is relevant to their priorities and interests. Enter the ever-so-coveted “up sell.”
So the leads need luxury snow tires? They might also need to replace their summer oil with a weight optimized for cold weather. It just so happens that your dealership has amazing customer reviews from people who recently purchased oil changes. Your team’s background research concludes that luxury car owners often work 60-70 hours each week, so they have limited time to address maintenance issues. Your marketing team uses this information to explain that a single visit can address multiple winter preparation issues. While your sales team influences the leads with a shared value position for snow tires, your marketing team informs the leads of additional opportunities that will save them another trip to your dealership and minimize turbulence to their busy work schedule. The leads who determine that your dealership offers them the best potential for service and value then move to the Spin Phase and transition from leads to committed customers.
Lead Phase Objective: The potential customer understands why purchasing snow tires from your dealership is in their best interest and is aware of additional opportunities and services.
So that wraps things up for this chapter in our epic journey to sell luxury snow tires to both current and new customers. Bringing things back to our core message, you can accelerate and optimize your customer’s journey if your sales and marketing teams integrate into a cohesive effort that maximizes the talents and capabilities of both groups during each phase of the customer’s journey. We understand this is not a new concept; however, we believe that people often overlook the steps and structure required to arrive at a harmonious sales and marketing drum circle. Hopefully, our integration concept is generating ideas as to how you can employ a similar construct in your dealership. Also, you probably noticed that we failed to copyright this process, so you can implement it for the low price of Free-Fifty. We make it rain here at Auto Labs, because that is how we party. That said, we will not turn down a gift of dangerous fireworks from the 1990s if you have some laying around. A Friday night packed full of Goldeneye, Pizza Hut, and Mountain Dew is also an acceptable means of expressing gratitude.
So tune in next month as we move the next two phases of our process. Eventually, our theoretical dealership is going to sell some luxury snow tires, and hopefully, they sell a lot of them without the sales and marketing team demanding trials by combat to resolve allegations of using all the French Vanilla creamer in the break room
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