Sales versus marketing – what is the difference?

Sales and marketing, are the same or different?  Most people I meet think they are the same? But are they? Both disciplines are focused on generating income for your business, they are both vital principals that your business must have to turn a prospect into a sale, so are they the same?

Marketing is everything you do to get leads or prospects to your business.

Sales is what you do to turn those leads or prospect into profit.

You can’t do one without the other but without one or the other you can’t reach your pinnacle conversion point.

So they are different but both are crucial to the success of your practice, neither are indispensable and both are vital. There must be a balance. Many firms draw up a marketing budget but waste their investment and efforts because they simply do not have the right sales techniques and or processes in place to turn the prospect into profit. You can’t do one without the other.

There are two key basic principles I have learnt in sales that are instrumental in turning your prospect into profit. In both these principles I see many firms lagging behind the best.

The first principle is that your firm must be available. That sounds obvious, doesn’t it? In my experience many firms believe themselves to be available but the customer’s perception is very different.

When a potential new customer calls you or walks in to see you, the latter being rare these days, they will have an expectation that they will be able to get what they want. That’s called customer service. They will be expecting to alleviate some of their fears, worries, troubles, issues and concerns at the precise moment of making contact with you. They will be looking for an overview of costs. They will be seeking reassurances that you are experts in this particular area of law. They will expect to leave feeling safe in the knowledge that they have been made to feel welcome, appreciated and thanked. They will be expecting to leave with a step forward in solving their need and to go home feeling good about you and being able to feel they have done something today. Call it an advancement. That may be obvious I hear you say, well it may be, but in practice this is not an outcome most people experience when they first make contact. This is your opportunity to exercise the second basic principle of making an impact.

Customers are normally in a highly emotional situation when seeking the services of a lawyer and it is essential that you have the right people with suitable knowledge and skills available. The customer will be expecting to get some sound initial advice and an assurance that you have a full and thorough understanding of their needs. You will need to show sympathy and understanding of what they require and how you can help them and be able to move the matter forward to the next steps. If your firm invests in and focuses on what the customer takes away from their very first experience with you – your impact and availability – it will ultimately boost your bottom line.

Your firm may well be available in theory but in the eyes of the consumer, unless they can get to speak to someone with right skills and knowledge then you are not going to make the right impact and you will not achieve greater sales.  Making a prospect attracted to buying from you requires you to be able to make this impact and that is why this is my second key principal in sales and customer service.


Justin’s White

Consultant – Sales Eye

For more information on how we could help you and your team, call Justin White on 07899267316 or email [email protected]

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