Operating a small or medium-sized firm is not an easy task. Being small doesn’t mean that the challenges they face are small too! There is almost no difference between the large and small scale industries on account of their process and work. Heavy industries have to deal with production, maintenance, marketing, and sales. The same also applies to SME’s.
Recent research by Forrester Consulting, commissioned by Act-On Software asked SME marketing decision-makers what they felt were their biggest challenges.
The list of challenges for SMEs in the manufacturing sector is no short. While the problems related to manufacturing last till eternity, sales and marketing of their products also add up to their woes. Sales and marketing have never been a cakewalk for them and many firms often struggle in this area of business.
Here are some reasons for SMEs ’ struggle in sales and marketing.
1) Finding new clients and increasing sales from existing customers:
Sales and Marketing are always co-related to each other. Both the departments rely on each other for working of the firm and one department can never be said successful if the other isn’t. For an SME, finding new clients is tough or it can be said that their reach to the audiences is restricted. The budget allotted to the marketing department can be a factor, and a low budget for marketing means less revenue from sales. SME’s often get stuck between these two aspects. Most of the SME’s already have strong bonds with existing customers but the major task for them is to maintain visibility with key stakeholders and continue to build credibility whilst keeping an ear to the ground for any new order opportunities. Personal networking is a proven technique here but SME’s may be limited in terms of the number of contacts they can effectively network with.
Solution Buggy here proves to be a golden opportunity for these SME’s to expand their reach and contact a large list of marketing experts who can build the network and take businesses to another level.
2) Greater Conversion Ratio:
It has been mostly seen that even if you are able to generate leads the ratio of conversion is meager or almost nil. With the demand generation tactics, an SME could sift through the list of the leads ‘about to turn hot’. It can be addressed if you make sure that the leads generated are of useful quality right from the outset. Don’t stress on the number of leads instead work towards the quality of leads. Track the information regarding their buying pattern and subsequent behavior. Lead scoring plays a role as can marketing automation in sophisticated environments.
3) Finding enough time for marketing activities:
As said, there is almost no difference between small and big industries in terms of the process and procedures. Owing to these, much less time is spared for the activities of sales and marketing. The time is never enough! The modern sales and marketing managers need to do planning before execution and then also review it. Planning and reviewing is an important aspect of any product or service sales and marketing. Carrying these activities consumes time and money, which is then cornered and hence the struggle. SME’s should have proper management of time for planning, which eliminates the risk of any letdown to a great extent.
4) Experience and Knowledge:
The degrees that people have, are only enough to show the world how far or what you’ve studied and not how good your work is. For that, you need to have some practical knowledge or experience in the field. The same applies to SME’s in sales and marketing. Improper or half knowledge can be very much misleading and it is better to have a support system or experienced guidance. For this, big firms employ advisors or experts from different departments to keep their work in check. It is not always possible for SMEs to employ advisors owing to lack of time, money, and most importantly the struggle to find one.
Solution Buggy solves this problem of the SME’s too. It is a platform where the SME’s can find advisers according to their suitable needs and vice-versa, which is a win-win situation for all.
5) Gaining ground in the market:
It is repeatedly seen that the marketers in SMEs follow the same old guidelines that every other firm follows. For a small enterprise where returns need to be immediate and quantifiable, direct response marketing is the best approach. Most of the firms battle for gaining a share in the market by increasing their brand value and market image. SME’s shouldn’t be cutting time and money for that, instead, they should look upon direct marketing and sales which will automatically gain them the market ground which they would deserve. This is why having experienced personnel or an advisor is very important for SMEs.
There may be many more big or small problems for SMEs in sales and marketing which may come along on their path. SolutionBuggy can be said as the best tool for these SME’s to tackle their problems and help them grow. After all, the intention isn’t to be small forever!
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