In every market set up, consumers are the most crucial elements which should be considered before and after every single step, may it be managerial or operational. A market is defined as an association of potential or the actual/real customers who are willing to purchase certain goods and services (Arasa and Githinji, 2014, p. 10). There are two different groups of markets which apply different approaches to satisfy their consumers and business purchasing demands. The first one being business to business (B2B) and secondly, we have business to consumer (B2C) markets. These markets are almost similar, but they differ in three main groups which include the market structure and demand, nature of the purchasing unit and lastly they differ in their types of decisions and also in the decision making process.
Consumers and business purchasing demands are two different customer groups, which have a great impact in the market thus entrepreneurs should put much emphasis on analyzing such, to attract more buyers hence being in a position to yield maximum profits. In business markets, purchasers are of distinct classifications in such that they can be classified into commercial enterprises, government and public organizations, and institutional organizations (Abrar et al., 2016, p. 1194). In the other side of consumer markets, consumers are the individuals and households who involve themselves in buying various goods and services. For the business to thrive smoothly, the management should ensure that there is maximum customer satisfaction thus there is need to apply the different approaches to making this a reality. There are six methods which best suit and help business entrepreneurs measure the levels of customers' satisfaction (Ross, 2013, p 44). They include customer satisfaction surveys, customer satisfaction score CSAT, net promoter score NPS, customer effort score CES, social media monitoring and finally the ‘Things Gone Wrong’ approach.
Consumers are the determinant factors behind the success or failure of every business enterprise. To attract various customers from the different groups to a business venture, we need to utilize a range of marketing and sales techniques. These techniques are very vital when it comes to improving the overall performance of sales (Bickhoff, Hollensen, and Opresnik, 2014, p. 100). Sales management, in this case, will help in developing a sales force, synchronizing sales activities, and putting into action the sales techniques which allow a business to flourish consistently as well as being in a position to future predict the actual performance thus developing a sense of control.
Within the sales techniques applied, there are three sales management techniques which include sales operations, sales strategy, and sales analysis.
Below is a diagram to illustrate the same.
To make the customer groups buy business goods and services, through marketing techniques and strategies need to be put into practice. Marketing analysis includes researching what the customer segments/market expect, their needs, the target markets and also the products and services you need to avail of them to meet your prospective customer needs. In marketing, it’s of great importance to find out what the competitors are doing to come up with unique products which will enable the business to compete favorably in the market (Cheserem, 2016, p. 66). Marketing activities commonly used to capture potential customers’ attention include advertising, promotions, direct sales, and public relations. Marketing strategies influence consumers and business buyer behaviors in that the marketers get a good knowledge of the customer needs and wants and thus avail what best suits their clients.
In the application of appropriate marketing and sales strategies, the consumers get attracted to enter the market; there are maximum customer retention and loyalty. There are situational factors which influence the buyer behaviors after thorough marketing by business enterprises, for example, marketing professionals may apply physical attributes such as displaying the design and layout of their premises when creating the facilities (Christopher, Payne, and Ballantyne, 2013, p. 21). Perhaps, the social situation a consumer is can have a significant impact on their purchase behavior. Marketing strategies such as public displays and sales promotions enable potential customers to get into the market since they enjoy the chances of making the first purchase with discounts attached. Marketers also consider the time of the day to engage their customers in sales promotions, whether a consumer is a ‘morning or evening person' always have a high impact which should be well put into account by the promoters (Christopher, Payne, and Ballantine, 2013 p.22).
Factors such as personality and self- concept, gender, age, motivation, stage of life and lifestyle of the consumer mean a lot when it comes to customer analysis. They should be highly considered by the marketers to know which products and services will best satisfy their clients, for example, some products may be needed by males and younger people but not females or older people respectively (Cooley, 2016, p. 33). Markets make strategies which consider each and every target consumer, and this enables them to win the hearts of the consumers without much struggle.
There is a need for proper sales management by business enterprises to meet the demands of their customers and to gain a competitive advantage over other competitors in the market. Designing a sales plan helps businesses to grow vibrantly by managing the various sales processes as well as enhancing long-term customer relationships (Johnston and Marshall, 2016, p. 20). A sales plan is only defined as a set of intended actions which consists of an assessment of present sales of a commodity in a given market, a declaration of sales objectives and the available resources to achieve the goals and objectives. It helps in overviewing the projected sales hence being in a position to predict the future markets. Below is an example of a sales plan.
Another suitable model to the management of marketing strategies is the analysis of sales. Mainly it is geared towards resting upon the prerequisites and motives of the consumers from the target markets. It’s very vital as it focusses on the overall profits made by the business after all necessary deductions such as license fee and government taxes (Mier, 2016, p. 99). Sales analysis depends heavily on constructing the business goods and services regarding the target markets’ wants and applying suitable value, communication and distribution to instruct, encourage and service the market as well as showing the trends in a company's amount of sales within a given period.
Benefits of using sales analysis models include improvement in the supplier profits and a better understanding of the agency of the cause of the products. It also helps in improving customer profitability without raising prices (Le, 2016., p. 8). Among the functions of sales, the analysis and sales research, planning, the creation of demand, price fixations and establishment of sales territories.
In preparation of market strategies, sales presentations need to be created and performed by the customers to fully convince and attract them to even make greater purchases from the business enterprise. It gives the first visual and audible facts of a product in the market (Arasa and Githinji, 2014 p.1-15). A sales presentation is made with the primary aim of the very first introduction of a commodity to the market and to the customers who have never heard or seen the products earlier before. It may also be suitable where the marketer needs to expand and improve the quality of goods regardless of whether it's the first time for the consumers to see it or not. A well- prepared sales presentation should consider the audience needs and specifically major on the quality and quantity of goods and services to be availed.
The elements of sales presentation include opening statement and the goal of presentation. Marketers get a chance to talk one on one with the consumers, collect their views and get to know which products to provide for them as per their expectations and wants. Persuasive technology is applied by the marketers to make sure that the customers are fully convinced and focused towards the purchase of various commodities at all costs (Lai, 2014, p. 70). There are seven compelling sales presentation steps, and they are as follows; make the presentation relevant to your prospect, create a connection between your product/service and the opportunity, get to the point, be animated, use showmanship, use a physical demonstration and finally believe in your product/service.
Marketing and sales techniques are the most important instruments for any business enterprise that wishes to achieve its set goals and objectives, as well as making extraordinary profits thus getting a competitive advantage to pull smaller and upcoming companies out of the market. Emphasizing on the market strategies is among the techniques which impact significantly on the performance and attainment of the set goals of the enterprise as it enables a firm to eliminate the expected disturbances/losses thus maximizing the profits (Joshi, 2016, p. 27). With this in mind, marketers aim at slightly reducing the prices of the commodities to realize large amounts of sales which automatically reflects huge profits. This also helps the firms to be in a position to gain enough capital to expand their business operations.
List of References
Abrar, M., Safeer, A.A., Baig, S.A., and Ghafoor, A., 2016. E-Marketing and Its Implementation on Developing Social Perceptions of Customers through Effective Marketing Mix of Organic Textile Products. American Journal of Industrial and Business Management, 6(12), p.1194. Arasa, R. and Githinji, L., 2014. The relationship between competitive strategies and firm performance: A case of mobile telecommunication companies in Kenya. International Journal of Economics, Commerce, and Management, 2(9), pp.1-15
Bickhoff, N., Hollensen, S. and Opresnik, M., 2014. Step 2: Strategic and Operative Marketing Planning—Segmenting, Targeting, Positioning. In The Quintessence of Marketing (pp. 47-110). Springer Berlin Heidelberg.
Cheserem, E., 2016. The Influence of Marketing Mix Strategies on Customer Loyalty in Fast Food Restaurants in Nairobi, Kenya (Doctoral dissertation, University of Nairobi).
Christopher, M., Payne, A., and Ballantyne, D., 2013. Relationship marketing. Taylor & Francis.
Cooley, J., 2016. Marketing Channel Attitudes of Chinese Business-to-Business Companies: An Empirical Buyer Behavior Study for US Companies Marketing to Chinese B2B Customers. Pp 31-33
Johnston, M.W., and Marshall, G.W., 2016. Sales force management: Leadership, innovation, technology. Routledge, p.12-23
Joshi, P., 2016. Tactics to enrich customer data for a higher return on e-mail marketing investment. Journal of Digital & Social Media Marketing, 4(1), pp.25-34.
Lai, P., 2014. Utilizing the access value of customers. Business Horizons, 57(1), pp.61-71.
Le, M.N., 2016. The popularity of Wolt food-ordering application in the Helsinki areas: recommendations for a marketing strategy.
Mier, J.P., 2016. Business" Buyers" Are People Too: Do Personal Characteristics Help to Explain the Effectiveness of Selected Marketing Activities in a B2B Setting?.
Ross, D.F., 2013. Competing through supply chain management: creating market-winning strategies through supply chain partnerships.4 (1) p 60-62 Springer Science & Business Media.