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 customers 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.
Therefore without proper sales a company will not be able to sustain itself in the market. A customer’s confidence is boosted only through the service that is rendered by the company. Therefore customer service and sales are directly linked to each other. But put together in any business function, the three areas prove to be very crucial as they are directly linked with revenue generation of the business.
The marketing and sales fields are perpetually changing so fast that the changes can’t be enlisted. Being more consumer friendly, they are more resourceful. Products today are becoming more quality and price conscious and are developing at a greater pace. This is creating more employment opportunities for promising professionals.
There have been dramatic changes in the customer care sector as well. Recruitment drives have increased manifold and companies have been recruiting on a large scale basis. India is now on the Global map for its out sourcing business. There are many reasons for the changes. Indian businesses are far more self-confident today, so there’s the ability to experiment and move up the value chain. And they are willing to make large investments globally. The change in government regulations has also played a major role. But the biggest change has been the supply of talented manpower.
There is a darker side to it too. Vicious competition, blind imitation of the western techniques of marketing, misleading advertisements, artificial monopolies and the growing tendency of enforcing choices on the customers, are some of the injurious consequences which are clearly apparent.
Event management is an area that is growing today. Event management graduates and post graduates can do well in cultural events, corporate events, and also as event consultants. They can even start their own event management company. Production, event costing, sponsorship, event administration, advertising are fields that offer lucrative growth opportunities.
Marketing communication today has become very personalized with the advent of tele-marketing in the shape of all call centers and BPOs. With cell phones and email customers are easily approachable today. Internet and website also play their role. It’s good in the sense that customers get readymade information. But the reliability of data made available to them and promises made to persuade the buyer to buy, are sometimes under the cloud of uncertainty and doubt. The upcoming and specialized fields within marketing sales that a student can opt for are market research, product presentation, product penetration, identification of customers’ needs, advertisement, salesmanship, data analysis and more. Since there is no scarcity of identical products in the market and service industries are coming up fast, all the above fields of marketing management will grow to the fullest. Promising marketing personnel can surely develop their career here.
The career paths available in customer care are usually front office executives, counseling, customer care associates and customer care managers. The specialized fields within customer care that a student can opt for are technical support associates, customer care associates, technical consultants, training and more. Training has a bright future and more and more trainers will be required over the next few years. As the requirement for CSR trainees increase, the demand for trainers will also increase.
There is also an ever increasing demand for technical associates as more and more BPO companies are recruiting people with sound technical knowledge.
Working is not just about a qualification and acquiring a job. It’s a lot more than that. A mere MBA degree will not help the students. They need to have self-motivation and drive. They should follow the track which will not lead them to any kind of disillusionment. Besides, having a degree or diploma does not necessarily guarantee the coveted job unless the prospective marketing professional is assertive, dynamic and aggressive. Marketing professionals must always try to upgrade their knowledge. Positive attitude and an ability to drive goods home are two essential psychological components. Expertise in communication skills, knowledge of regional and if possible, foreign languages can go a long way. Salary will never be a problem for such young professionals in India or abroad.
For a career in customer care it’s important to have good communication skills. Usually, when you come into a BPO company (call centre) at the agent level, the salary ranges from 10,000 to 15,000 rupees per month (not including incentives). To prepare yourself, just make sure your verbal skills are powerful and you seem motivated to stay within the industry- because many HR managers are facing issues with attrition. As a fresher, remember to hone yourself on English language skills, communication skills, interpersonal skills and a positive attitude. Also remember to be flexible with all kinds of shifts, including night shifts.