Activate your workers’ marketing skills to outperform competitors

Do we all need some background training in marketing management? The answer to this question relies heavily on whether you are in a negotiation position or not.

Marketing skills are a requisite ingredient in our everyday lives be it in relationships, marriage, workplace, leadership, management, the pulpit, entrepreneurship. Name it.

We all need to know how to professionally present our agendas to rally relevant stakeholders behind our cause for positive gain.

If a young man needs to convince a lady to give her hand in marriage, he must polish his marketing skills and be as presentable as possible to influence the sale in his favour.

Remember, the lady, if serious enough about the presentation, is also quietly negotiating by being her best both physically and verbally.

A salesperson making a presentation to farmers with the intention of making sales on modern combined harvesters must be well dressed mentally with adequate product feature information and in a good suit to complement the excellent presentation.

For long, the art and science of selling has often been relegated to the marketing department with detrimental effects to the overall performance of an organisation. It is very common to hear your colleagues outside the marketing department say that it is the sole responsibility of marketers to bring in sales into the company.

That is awfully wrong, and I would like to come to the rescue of the marketing department because every official worth his salt in the organisation is a marketer by association.

Marketing is not only about broadcasting your company product/service proposition, but involves a rigorous process that begins right from the product development stage all the way to excellent customer service delivery.

A CEO who offers mentorship training to her junior staff during Friday appraisal meetings is marketing her organisation as the ideal work environment for youngsters to work in. In return, the staff stay motivated and energised to produce.

An accountant who does proper book keeping and on time in an organised fashion is selling his services to his superiors as a reliable gate keeper and number cruncher. That is marketing, but in a passive way.

The cleaner who ensures your offices smell fresh and are dust-free on a daily basis is doing so to score points as an efficient hygiene manager.

The bank teller who ensures that you have a hassle-free time while withdrawing your cash from the bank is in pursuit of increased customer retention through a passive marketing strategy.

Simply put, we are all in contact with consumers of our products, thoughts, services, professional time on a daily basis. It could be your spouse, boss, line manager, supervisor, clerical staff, HRM, colleagues, customers or your potential business partner.

Including writing this article, I must write it in a way that is appealing and engaging so that readers may get value for money.

We cannot deny the fact that marketers ought to manage bulk of the company’s selling tasks, but it is disappointing for non-marketers to sit back and say that it is not in their domain to market their company to the inside and outside world.

Marketing is a tedious and sometimes frustrating journey and it would be best if it were handled in a framework of teamwork, empathy and shared vision.

For marketers to drive home adequate sales, they need support from across the organisation. The sales person needs printed sales quotes on time from the company receptionists and the marketing managers need prompt sales reports from the accounts managers.

The whole team also needs tea in the morning from tea girls and a clean working environment from designated cleaners and so on and so forth.

Though you may not be working in the marketing department, the need for background in sales and marketing training cannot be over-emphasised.

Organisations that outperform their peers in the same industry recognise the fact that everyone in the business entity ought to be a marketer in his/her own capacity.

I always advise my clients to try and activate their marketing skills no matter how challenging that task may be.

The writer is a marketing consultant running training programmes