Marketing is not always the answer (you might have a people problem)
You walk from the conference room back to your office after just having a meeting with your managers regarding the marketing and advertising spend and ROI from last month and what's coming up for next month for new Marketing initiatives, along with what you continue to invest in month over month, year over year.
As you sit down at your desk, thinking to yourself that, for the amount of marketing dollars you're spending for what you seem to be getting back just does not match up. One of your senior people, in the meeting suggested that you simply are not tracking the metrics close enough... As you ponder all of these things you don't realize it but you've been watching your sales and admin teams (the ones you can see) from the open door in your office and there seems to be a lot of talking going on.
Granted, there are not a lot of customer foot traffic going on (which is why you just came from a marketing budget meeting in the first place!)
You have talked to your people over and over that if it's not busy they should be actively trying to find new business or resell previous clients (or even upsell them on a second sale) but your people just don't want to do the calls, the chats or anything that looks like active prospecting... No matter how you try and incentivise them.
I talk to a lot of managers and business owners and they all seem to have this problem when it comes to sales and marketing and they struggle with what to do, it keeps them up at night because in today's economy a lot of these businesses, have to pay more and more to acquire customers (customer acquisition cost) in the form of marketing and advertising, retention programs, loyalty programs and the list goes on... When meanwhile they have sales and customer service staff that are more and more doing the bare minimum.
So what can you do?
There a few key things that you can look at to get productive people and potentially lower your marketing and advertising spend and hopefully reducing your cost to acquire a new customer and retain an existing one.
What can you do:
- make tweaks to your compensation package
- You and your teams don't have the right tools to be successful
- make your place a great place to work
- hold people accountable (not just for front line staff)
- Track and measure
Make tweaks to your compensation package
A lot of you may roll your eyes at this BUT structuring your compensation in the right way can make all the difference. We all know that there are more ways to compensate then just money like being able to work from wherever you are or gym memberships however i really want to talk money...
It's my personal belief that majority of the positions inside a business should be incentive's in some way to bring more business in. (whether it's repeat business or new business) Commission and bonuses ARE NOT and SHOULD NOT be only for your sales teams.
Having a compensation model that really gets your people pumped to bring in new business or continue getting repeat business will also help you to get the right people to work for you and on top of that a model like this will help you measure quite quickly who's working on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis... And who's not.
You and your teams don't have the right tools to be successful
A lot of businesses, owners, managers may not ever share this out loud but a lot of them figure because they've always done things a certain way and it's brought them success that it's the best way to do things. And the fact of the matter is small tweaks to your processes or the addition of new tools that are inexpensive and easy to learn and implement could make a world of difference. A couple of simple but hugely beneficial tools that you could add to your arsenal are...
- A CRM system (customer relationship management)
- Call software What are you using?
- Lead scoring
- Deal forcasting (deals don't have to be just sales)
A lot of CRM solutions out there can do all of these things, depending on your needs will depend on which tools are right for you. And if you have any questions don't hesitate to contact us we would love to answer your questions.
Make your place a great place to work
What happens as you grow your business is that you can get caught up in day to day operations, growing the business, bottom line and saving money that you forget to foster a good culture, people and if you have a fun place to work. Having good relations with your people, having an open and fun place to work can boost productivity and creativity. Now having said that I want to make something VERY clear. Just because I use the word fun does not mean that you can't run a serious operation. All I mean is remember your people are just that, people, not office furniture!
Hold People Accountable (not just front line staff)
I don't have much to say here but you really need to hold your people accountable. Owners hold senior people accountable, senior people hold your teams accountable and do it on a daily and weekly basis not just at 6 month reviews!
Track and Measure
I used to think that tracking and measuring was a way for middle managers to keep jobs but that was A LONG time ago. Now I know tracking and measuring is everything and you should do it with everything... If you can't track and measure you can't hold people accountable.
The best part of this is, it does not have to be hard if you have the right tools in place.
Tracking and measuring key pieces of your business will allow you to make personnel decisions, investment decisions, growth decisions and where to tweak pieces of your day to day operations, just wait you'll see!
I'd love to hear from you, what tools are you using, what's working for you and what's not? Or feel free to Contact Us for what we use!
Brenden Valks - The Gentleman
Brenden Valks "The Gentleman" is a passionate content creator and salesman that has helped companies he's worked for and with, increase sales by coming up with new products, alternative revenue streams, ways to get the 2nd sale build websites, articles and advertising, along with sales scripts and sales management. Passionate about helping you and your business - increasing sales!
Brenden firmly believes in hard work and word is bond, these two things are what drives Brenden to always do his best for his business, your business and in life in general.
Brenden currently resides in Steinbach Manitoba with his growing family.