INTRODUCTION TO SALES MANAGEMENT
Originally, the term ‘sales management’ referred to the direction of sales force personnel. But, it has gained a significant position in the today’s world. Now, the sales management meant management of all marketing activities, including advertising, sales promotion, marketing research, physical distribution, pricing, and product merchandising.
The American marketers association (AMA’s) definition, takes into consideration a number of these viewpoints. Its definitions runs like: the planning, direction, and control of the personnel, selling activities of a business unit including recruiting, selecting, training, assigning, rating, supervising, paying, motivating, as all these tasks apply to the personnel sales-force. Further, it may be quoted: it is a socio-scientific process, involving’ group-effort’ in the pursuit of common goals or objectives, which are predetermined. Co-ordination is its key, though, no doubt, it is a system of authority, but the emphasis is on harmony and not conflict.
Sales-management differs from other fields of management, mainly in different aspects: the selling operation of a business firm does not exist in isolation. Thus, simultaneous with the changes taking place in the business, as well as marketing-orientation, a new concept of sales management has evolved. The business, is now society-oriented, on human-welfare aspects. So, sales-management has to work in a broader and newer environment, in co-existence with the traditional lines. The present emphasis is now on total development of human resources.
RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SALES MANAGEMENT AND MARKETING MANAGEMENT
Sales and marketing always have had a close relationship, so close that many people have confused the two being the same.
- Marketing is a method of bringing customers to a business as well as making others aware of the business product and brand. Sales is selling the product the company offers.it can be achieved through phone, interaction as well as web page.
- Marketing sells the idea of product and services to everyone whereas sales sells the actual product one on one through personal interaction.
- Marketing generates interest but sales brings in money.
- Marketing does everything it can to reach and persuade prospective buyers while sales does everything it can to close the sale and get assigned an agreement/contract.
- Marketing responsibility is selling the idea while selling has a responsibility of selling the product and can be achieved through sales making.
- Selling is only a part of firm marketing activities and refers to personal communication of information to persuade a prospective buyer to buy something.
- Marketing refers to the process of planning, exchanging, the process, concept/idea, pricing, promotion and distribution of goods and services and ideas to satisfy companies or individuals. Sales excludes all this.
- Marketing has led to the emergence of marketing concepts (philosophies that aim at satisfying customer needs) while selling has led to the emergence of selling concepts (a philosophy that encourage organizations to undertake a large scale selling promotion effect.
- Sales people usually sells to customers the products while the marketing meets the organization with customers. The major objectives of sales department is responsible for activities like promotion. Marketing ignores all this.
IMPORTANCE OF SALES MANAGEMENT TO AN ORGANIZATION
To enable the top-management, to devote to more time in policy making for the growth and expansion of business.
(ii) To divide and fix authority among the sub-ordinates so that they may shirk work.
(iii) To avoid repetition of duties and functions so that there may not be any confusion among them.
(iv) To locate responsibility of each and every employee so that they can complete the whole work in stipulated time; if not then the particular person must be responsible.
(v) To establish the sales-routine in the business unit.
(vi) To stimulate sales-effort.
(vii) To enforce proper supervision of sales-force.
(viii) To integrate the individual in the organization.
A sales organization performs the following functions:
- Analysis of markets thoroughly, including products and market research.
- Adoption of sound and defensible sales-policy.
- Accurate market or sales forecasting and planning the salescampaign, based on relevant data or information supplied by the marketing research staff.
(iv) Deciding about prices of the goods and services; terms of sales and pricing policies to be implemented in the potential and existing markets.
- Labelling, Packaging and packing, for the consumer, who wants a container, which will satisfy his desire for attractive appearance; keeping qualities, utility, quantity, and correct price and many other factors in view.
- Branding or naming the product(s) and/or services to differentiate them from the competitors and to recognise easily by the customer.
- Deciding the channels of distribution for easy accessibility and timely delivery of the products and services.
- Selection, training and control of salesmen, and fixing their remuneration to run the business operations efficiently and effectively.
- Allocation of territory, and quota setting for effective Selling and to fix the responsibility to the concern person.
- Sales-programmes and sales-promotion-activities prepared so that every sales activity may be completed in a planned manner
- Arranging for advertising and publicity to inform the customer about the new products and services and their multiple uses.
- Order-preparation and office-recording to know the profitability of the business and to evaluate the performance of the employees.
- Preparation of customer s record-card to the customer loyalty about the products.
- Scrutiny and recording of reports to compare the other competitors and to compare with the past period.
- Study of statistical-records and reports for comparative analyses in terms of sales, etc.
- Maintenance of salesman’s records to know their efficiency and to develop them.