5 Skills to Succeed in Sales and Marketing

By Julailah Wahid

It’s no secret that salespeople are go-getters, but there are fundamental skills you need to become the cream of the crop. On the other hand, it is essential for marketers to be versatile and resilient to keep up with the fast-changing demands. Here are five prerequisites that can help to elevate your career in sales and marketing.

1. Be a Consultant

While sales involves selling a product or service, the best salespeople don’t necessarily “sell”. Many salespeople are too focused on hitting quotas or making sales that they forget the customers’ needs. Instead of diving into proposals right off the bat, put the needs of your clients first and consider a consultative approach.

Similarly, marketers should be aware of who their target audiences are and their needs. By knowing what your audiences want and understanding their needs, you can make the most suitable marketing decisions to support the business objectives.

Think of yourselves as consultants or advisers whom customers can turn to when seeking advice.

2. Be personable

It goes without saying that salespeople need to be articulate and socially adept. Being clear about what you offer can eliminate any doubts that potential clients might have. People are also naturally drawn to those who make them feel comfortable, welcomed and appreciated. Additionally, good salespeople strive to build rapport with their clients. A simple phone call or email asking how they are doing can go a long way in maintaining relationships, which ultimately translates to customer loyalty.

A key function of marketing is conveying messages. Hence, marketers should also be articulate in their communication. As marketers usually collaborate with various departments, having strong interpersonal skills is important. A good marketer also interacts with people in the industry to keep abreast of latest trends and happenings.

3. Be tech-savvy

In today’s digital age, salespeople and marketers can utilise a variety of social networks to communicate and present themselves. Establish a presence on sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to build credibility and connect with others. You can also make use of SlideShare and Google+ to create and share content. Apps like Evernote allow you to write, collect and present information seamlessly. Invest in a good tablet so you can create slides, edit documents and connect with clients on-the-go.

4. Be self-motivated

Resilience and a never-say-die attitude can help you overcome rejection, which is common in both sales and marketing. Your proposals and campaigns might not always be well-received or accepted. Successful salespeople and marketers are highly-driven and not easily discouraged. Being self-motivated also means taking steps to improve yourself, like signing up for courses and training opportunities throughout your career.

5. In-depth knowledge

Having in-depth knowledge of the market enables you to differentiate yourself in the industry. It takes some research and networking to find out what your competitors offer. After which, you can devise strategies and campaigns that are unique to your brand. Also, take note of current trends to ensure that your products, services and plans stay relevant.

With these skills in hand, you are all geared to embark on a career in Sales or in Marketing!

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