With 800 million internet users and cultural behavior in development, China is getting more focus on the Digital world than ever. Trust, credibility, and reputation are common factors for companies to be studied by Chinese consumers and future partners.
Also, from now on the modern customer can get access to thousands of online information. Chinese consumers have the possibility to check reviews, comments, forums, articles, official pages, and group discussions to get all the information they need about a brand or a product. And thanks to all that, they have enough information to make up their own idea before buying something.
It’s getting cultural, almost ritual.
80% of customers make their purchasing decisions without needing any advice from a brand representative. A changing behavior that is forcing our approach toward sales and marketing function to evolve.
The marketing team used to focus on strategy development while sales were more focused on the operational part. But the purchasing decision transformation pushed marketers to take care more and more about prospect conversions, therefore encroaching on commercials’ function.
And it led us to the following question:
How to optimize sales and marketing in the context of performance requirements and position evolution?
At GMA, we are a performance marketing agency comprehensive toward both Chinese customers’ and foreign organizations’ needs. We are result-oriented and sure that success is closely linked to the adaptability of a company toward the market’s trends and evolution.
We have a multicultural team and therefore a deep understanding of both western and Chinese cultures. Moreover, flexible, we managed to adapt our services and corporate organization to get as a result: outstanding efficiency, and ROI in our services.
Of course, as a marketing agency, we provide our clients with the latest marketing tools, trends in China, etc. But more than that, we provide our clients with an effective team of 80 people working hand in hand toward success.
The right place, the right price, the right promotion, and the right people.
That is the fundamentals of our business model.
Making people work together, in the best environment with the best ambiance possible. A new type of management and modern organization could be resumed as the “Smarketing” model.
What is “Smarketing”?
Smarketing could resume as a new trend gaining in popularity, especially among companies practicing inbound marketing.
As discussed, the commercial role is evolving. They used to advise consumers and guide them during their purchasing decision process. However, consumers tend to be more and more independent while having the possibility to get access to any information they want on the Internet.
And think about it. Usually, if you take both sales and marketing departments separately you get:
- The commercial: must achieve its objectives in a short-term period. And his income strongly depends on his success. The more sales he makes, the more money he gets.
- The marketer: he needs to achieve mostly mid-term or long-term goals while developing strategies to get new leads and convert prospects.
One side focus on operation and the other one on strategy. Roles tend to be more and more mismatched which could lead to frustration and management issues.
Also, we decided to change this situation, adapt ourselves, and reconcile these two main functions of a company. For a couple of years, many companies practice Inbound marketing. It corresponds to a company attracting new customers while giving them targeted information through different online channels. Meaning that companies don’t need to drag new clients, but they build a system where the client come by themselves.
A good way to get quality leads and strengthen the relationship between sales and marketing.
Appreciating this model, we decided to emphasize the mix between “sales” and “marketing”. Filling the cultural gap between these two activities, breaking barriers, and joining forces. Taking part in a world where marketer and salesman, two closely related positions, are just one.
That’s the main definition of Smarketing: a sales team and a marketing team joining their strengths and skills to serve the company’s collective intelligence.
As a result, using this model will help you to optimize your corporate organization and speed up your results.
How to put your team together?
As you may imagine, communication between both teams will be essentials. Also, 3 requirements will need to be fulfilled.
Determined common “SMART” objectives.
If you want to make two different teams act like one, you’ll need to show them common interest and therefore common goals. Building a team spirit that will, later on, be translated by “more cash”.
Usually, the marketer’s bonus depends on the global turnover compared to actions performed on a given duration. As for commercials, they only get a bonus based on the contract they signed. A revenue differentiation, that could lead to frustration and tensions.
If commercials don’t manage to get their bonus, they used to put the responsibility on Marketers suggesting they’re not giving quality leads. And Marketers see their bonus decreasing if Commercials don’t reach their goals. They, therefore, accuse them of not converting leads properly.
And honestly, it sounds like a terrible situation that the management team should not handle anymore.
So, how to do?
- Set up a common objective for both teams based on the company’s turnover
- Determined the number of qualified leads to be reached every month.
- The marketing team will work upfront by getting new leads
- The sales team will convert these leads and sign contracts downstream
By working on a common goal, you get rid of all competition between both teams and push them instead to work on a global company’s success.
As a reminder, here’s the SMART model to set up your goals correctly. Your objective should be:
Also, we advise you to set up a contract for your objective, establishing both teams’ engagement and missions toward the final goal.
Determine the ideal customer profile (in China)
To reach your goals, setting up a common objective is important but you’ll also have to work on a common target. By establishing the ideal target for your company, a buyer persona, you’re giving your teams the opportunity to give their best to the ideal customer. A suitable target for your marketing team (in terms of needs, research, analysis…) and for your sales team (Barriers, motivation, budget, etc.).
“Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success” H. Ford
The risk of having two teams not working exactly on the same target profile is that you may end up with two teams going in opposite directions…
While the salesman gets information from the field, and marketers perform research and analysis, you can develop the optimal target which will lead your company to prospect more clients and increase your conversion rate.
Set up a new strategy adapted to the customer’s purchasing behavior.
It sounds extremely logical but to attract more visitors to your website and convert more of them into prospects, you’ll have to deliver a good message, to a good person, at a good time.
Try to set up the “buyer journey” based on:
A model constantly used in Inbound Marketing to attract new visitors and convert them into clients.
Also, to offer your visitors quality content adapted to the buyer journey, you’ll need to take into consideration three main steps.
- Work on your content. Your prospect should consider your content as a guideline to help him to go through his purchasing decision. Content is the new “salesman”. It gives the advice needed for a buyer to go through his purchasing decision.
- Keep in touch with your sales team regularly. They know clients and their needs. They’re constantly in contact with them and can, therefore, collect great information directly from the field. Your sales team can help you to determine new content to improve your buyer journey.
- Put in contact with the salesman and potential client at the right time. When the prospect is mature enough, get in touch with him. Don’t go too early or you may be seen as too intrusive.
- Smarketing is now part of GMA. Our marketing and sales team joined their forces to outperform the market. Leading us with over 500 leads every month, thousands of satisfied clients, and 80 happy employees.
- Smarketing is a great tool to leverage your turnover and improve your company’s environment. Don’t forget that there is no great company without great people. And taking care of your employees, it’s taking care of your future.
If you need any further advice about developing your sales in China, feel free to contact us.
We are GMA, the Leading Performance Marketing Agency in China
Our services for you:
- Lead generation
- Smart Advertisement
- Chinese Social Media Strategy
- PR + KOL & Micro-influencers
- E-commerce online platform management ( Tmall, JD, etc)
Check our Business strategy guide in China here