Stage 4 Modern Marketing Department

Although the sales and marketing vice presidents should work together, their relationship is often strained and marked by distrust. The sales vice president resents efforts to make the sales force less important in the marketing mix, and the marketing vice president seeks a larger budget for non-sales force activities.

The marketing manager's task is to identify opportunities and prepare marketing strategies and programs. Salespeople are responsible for implementing these programs. Marketers rely on marketing research, try to identify and understand market segments, spend time in planning, think long term, and aim to produce profits and gains in market share. Salespeople, in contrast, rely on street experience, try to understand each individual buyer, spend time in face-to-face selling, think short term, and try to meet their sales quotas.

If there is too much friction between sales and marketing, the company president might place marketing activities back under the sales vice president, instruct the executive vice president to handle conflicts, or place the marketing vice president in charge of everything, including the sales force. This last solution is the basis of the modern marketing department, a department headed by a marketing and sales executive vice president with managers reporting from every marketing function, including sales management (Figure 6-5[d]).

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