Too often we find that businesses throw good money after bad running after short term marketing objectives (or chaotic sales) and then spend a lot of time designing a lovely piece of collateral, which although it looks great, doesn’t do the job it is intended to do.
Often this is because too little information has passed through the business to create a cohesive plan of action that has all stakeholders backing the structure, process and reason.
How do you change that? How can you get to that information?
Here are 30 questions for your Sales & Marketing department that may open up a lot of discussion. Some of these you will be able to answer easily, some maybe less so. The questions are a guide to help open the conversation around what you are saying within your sales and marketing processes.
- What is our one, three and five year sales plan?
- How does our marketing and branding build toward those business objectives?
- What is our year one, three and five brand directive to support our marketing and brand building?
- What does our perfect client look like and why would they work with us?
- What size of clients do we need to win to hit our targets?
- How many of each size client do we need to win to hit our targets?
- What is our clearly defined ‘why us?’ message that differentiates us from the competition?
- How does our message disempower the competition?
- How does our message complement our company ethic and culture?
- How much of our marketing collateral is written from a features rather than benefits perspective?
- How can we explain clearly and simply our key messaging and benefits to the market?
- How many of our sales people understand our key message?
- Which internal processes do we need that could support the key message?
- How much has our marketing structure changed from last year?
- Where can we improve?
- How many wasted meetings/tenders/briefs did we attend last year?
- What is our current new business win ratio?
- How many different ways of marketing are we using?
- What are our strategies behind every marketing and sales process?
- How regularly do we review their success and failure rates?
- When did we last review our competitors?
- When was the last time we looked at new competitors in the market?
- When was the last time we reviewed their messaging?
- How big is our pipeline?
- How much of that is over a year old?
- What sales process are the sales department implementing and using and how much of it have they shared with the marketing department to ensure both are working together effectively and supporting each other?
- When was the last time we asked our clients for referrals?
- When was the last time we went back to our existing clients to see if we can offer them more services or products?
- When was the last time we went back to our existing clients to ask how we can create a better service?
- How much of this have we broken down into a list of weekly targets and actions that are achievable?
So, what do you think? How many of these key questions for your Sales & Marketing department are you and your senior team asking yourselves and how often do you discuss the themes in them? If you are doing so regularly – and have great clarity about the answers – AND the processes that follow from those answers – well done!
If they are new to you, then maybe now would be a good time to start thinking about and debating these key questions for your Sales & Marketing department. Let us know if you would like help with doing so.