Marketing, sales and customer care have always been essentials in any business or company. There is always a very thin line between the marketing and sales function in any business. Sales are a part of the marketing field which has a broader scope. And today, both these fields are becoming more customer oriented. Consecutively, the line between the sales and the customer care function is also thinning. Customers are considered as revenue generators and keep a company in business.
With companies experiencing an up rise, a career in sales and marketing is hands on dynamic experience and requires good persuasion skills.
With companies increasing leveling, their focus towards the customer sales and marketing has become an increasingly important corporate function. These are times of competition, the consumer is spoilt for choice. Winning new customers and maintaining profitable relationships with existing ones is hence the need of the hour. What would happen to a company which has the best product developed packaged well but has no customers? It is bound to fail. This is where the sales and marketing team enter.
Sales and marketing is practical on the ball function. There are different challenges on daily basis and the only thing constant is change. As a sales person you will either be based internally or on the field as a sales representative. They usually work within a specific area, calling in person or by telephone to make appointments to show products or services negotiating sales and after sales services.
Not everyone is suited for a career in sales and marketing. The core skills every sales professional needs are persuasiveness, commercial awareness, a pleasing personality and self motivation. Communication skills are of utmost importance. Further the individual must be able to perform well under pressure. Sales targets are very difficult, but these must be achieved, hence organizations look for individuals who are strongly goal driven, think out of the box and show strong leadership skills.
Sale and marketing representatives should also love meeting and interacting with people. An insight into how people think and behave goes a long way in winning over new customers. The ability to network is also helpful.
Despite the importance given to personal skills and characteristics the value of education and non field experience should not be discounted.
Though graduation is not mandatory for entering a Sales Career many employers prefer to hire candidates who have earned a bachelor’s degree.
An MBA degree after a couple of years of work experience will also benefit the candidate.
Specialized courses offered in the field of sales and marketing will help the individual hone his skills. Short Certificate courses in Sales management, customer service management are also offered. Internships or training opportunities can give the individual a real and practical experience of life in the sales and marketing function.
The salary package is dependent on experience, qualifications and the organization one works with. However salaries usually start at Rs 8,000 per month upwards. Those joining after relevant qualifications can get a starting salary of Rs 20,000 upwards. Apart from the basic salary a large component of the monetary comes in the form of performance incentives based on whether the individuals has met or even exceeded sales targets.
The future holds some good news for the sales function. Considering the growth of Indian economy sales and marketing would be a high career growth sector. International companies are setting up operations and Indian companies are growing bigger and bigger. This would result in good hiring along with good remuneration for professionals in this field. To retain talent companies would pamper their employees with good perks and benefits.
Excerpts from Education Times