So, the sales focus has today shifted from rigorous marketing efforts to a superior customer service. This comes only with enhancing customer experience, primarily on the digital ecosystem. And, with India fast shifting into the mobile age, the transition from the desktop interface to mobile needs to be seamless.
But the definition of sales today is not what it used to be some years back. Sales has gone digital. Extra efforts need to be taken to promote good salesmanship. The sales staff has to be trained to keep it well equipped in the new digitised world.
Jabong.com for one, does most of its marketing digitally. Every user on the digital platform is different from the next. Hence, it becomes a challenge to target customers based on products and brands they would prefer to buy. Oracle Responsys helps solve this issue for the fashion e-tailer by way of selective targeting.
Responsys helps the company capture user information. It embeds a form on Jabong’s mails to customers which can be filled by them. All responses are then saved into different categories so it becomes easier to target them.
So, Jabong need not send push notifications and e-mails to the entire customer base. Instead, the crowd is segmented based on their behaviour on Jabong.com and by the responses received from users by e-mail.
The segmentation is mainly done to improve customer experience on online retailer’s website, says Soumajit Bhowmik, Head of marketing, Jabong.com. “If a person purchases a T-shirt of a specific brand, we will suggest a pair of jeans they can probably buy,” he says.
Segmentation is also done based on where Jabong gets its revenues from. It could either be through SEO, social media marketing, affiliates or alliances. Then, forecasts are made based on how each area has performed. Efforts are then made to ensure that each area sticks to its targets. There is a shortfall in numbers sometimes, but marketing is not always to blame, says Bhowmik. Sometimes it is the creatives, which are not able to push sales, while other times, it is the discounts which are not enticing enough to convert to a sale.
Sarajit Jha, Chief Corporate Strategy, Tata Steel, is of the opinion that sales have to work very closely with the marketing team. To promote this, he believes in providing them with stretched goals and shared goals. With such goals, the sales team is given a target, which is very difficult to achieve considering their current capabilities.
This would encourage them to approach the marketing team for help and support. If marketing does a good job, it would result in better performance by the sales team too.
All the systems in the machinery called marketing, need to have more integrity to help empower employees work towards a single goal. There must be a single point of accountability and multiple points of responsibility.
Technology has to be the biggest enabler. It has to bring marketing and sales closer to the other departments in the organisation, says Sudip Mazumder, KEC International. This is because today, a company’s offices are spread across the world and not restricted to a building. Integration can only come with better use of technology across the web and mobile.