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Healing your growing painsWhen your business has growing pains, you have three types of lotion to rub into its various parts

  1. Your bright ideas
  2. Your management attention & organisational skills
  3. Your hard cash

So if you know which bit of your business is hurting, you just apply a liberal dose of the above three ingredients to the affected area and its all good, right!

Well maybe, but is it ever that simple?...

Where's the problem - marketing or sales?

Other bits of the business process could be the source of your pain but let’s assume you have narrowed it down to Marketing & Sales. Let’s over simplify it to “Hey we need to generate more sales”. If Sales are down, or just not rising fast enough, the trick is to know where to rub your limited lotion.

Do I do a whole re-brand? Do I give someone the flick? Hire a consultant? Train and hire more sales staff? A new marketing campaign? Decisions decisions…

If you focus your attention and your investment on the sales team because you consider your sales process is the weakness, there are still insufficient leads coming in, so your pain continues. But on the other hand if you invest heavily in marketing and generate an abundance of qualified leads while your sales team promptly wastes them all, again you’re reaching for the pain killers!

But here’s my take on this: If your sales are down or just not high enough, I’d firstly narrow it down a bit further to one of the following areas

  1. Customer acquisition
  2. The sales process itself
  3. Customer retention & repeat sales

OK again I’m over simplifying both the problem and the solution to stress the point. But I do believe this is the best approach; hone in on the area of greatest weakness, apply whatever resources you can in order to make some improvement, then look again for the weakest spot, apply the resources, rinse and repeat! 

The thing is, you might be able to get leads but if you don’t make sales then what’s the point?

Conversely the best sales people in world will be a waste if you aren't getting them leads. When the leads are flowing it’s easier to refine the sales process – so always keep the leads flowing.

The wrong thing to do is always NOTHING.

It’s vital to cost every stage and constantly do the math.

  1. Cost of lead generation
  2. Conversion rates and cost of sales process
  3. Retention rates and lifetime spend of customer

When I review campaign results with clients, an often over-looked reason for a marketing campaign failing to achieve its required ROI, is failure to track and convert the leads in to a sale. In short, and putting it bluntly, it can come down to an inadequate lead handling process.

I can get you the leads with fax marketing – but they need to become customers to make you money.

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