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How to Balance Marketing and Sales When Running A Small Business

Maria Waida
October 24, 2019

75% of small business owners know that marketing is an effective method for attracting new business. More than 40% of salespeople say prospecting is the most challenging part of the sales process. With limited time and budget, it can be hard to strike a balance between marketing and sales when running a small business.

The truth is, it’s not about choosing marketing over sales. It’s about marketing and sales, working together hand in hand. Let’s dig into how to balance marketing and sales when running a small business.

Chasing Leads and One-Time Deals

The truth is that having leads, or opportunities, is crucial to business success. In fact, the more opportunities a company has, the more likely they are to achieve revenue goals. 72% of companies with fewer than 50 new opportunities a month didn’t achieve their revenue goals, according to HubSpot. This is illustrated in the graph below by HubSpot.

balance marketing and sales

While cold calling, finding leads, and sending cold emails will generate revenue, it neglects a long-term strategy. Once your initial list of potential leads or clients runs out, where will you find new ones? And how? What will it cost? It’s not an efficient sales cycle if all of your time is spent costly prospecting.

There is another way to steadily grow your business in consistent and reliable ways: marketing.

Short Term vs. Long Term Business Planning

Marketing is a long term investment in the success of your business. Getting your name out, building a loyal customer base, and reaching new audiences is crucial to sustaining a business in the long run. While you’re not guaranteed sales right away, building a marketing plan will help attract new business and improve customer retention every step of the way.

Here’s another way to think about these two functions of short term vs long term. Consider sales as a microwave and marketing as a crockpot. When you need something done quickly in the short term, press your sales buttons. When you want to improve retention and need to focus on long term relationships, set your marketing plan in motion.

Therefore, your goal should be to create a seamless integration of marketing and sales. These two business strategies are more powerful together than they are separate. Your small business needs both marketing and sales, whether you’re just starting out or have been in business for years.

Small Business Marketing and Sales Tips

Marketing supports sales and sales support your business. Here are some ways to balance marketing and sales:

1. Build a foundation.

Include these components in your marketing and sales checklist:

Email Marketing
Search Engine Marketing
Social Media Marketing
Social Media Advertising
Content Marketing
Referral Marketing

Each of these elements has its own set of rules, best practices, and an abundance of resources online to help you get started.

Bonus: Download our free guide on email marketing below.


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2. Prioritize tasks.

As we previously mentioned, it isn’t about prioritizing sales over marketing. It’s about understanding that they’re both important for short and long term success. Make sure you prioritize at least one sales and marketing task every day. If this becomes unmanageable, consider outsourcing or automating marketing.

3. Automate marketing.

In short, marketing automation is setting up repetitive or time-consuming tasks so that they’re done for you without any extra time or effort. 75% of businesses use automation tools according to a Social Media Today survey. Starting and sustaining a small business can benefit greatly from marketing automation tools.

The same Social Media Today survey found social media post scheduling, email marketing, and social media advertising are the top three processes to automate without losing audience connection.

balance marketing and sales

Chart courtesy of Social Media Today

If you don’t have time to do it all by yourself, team up with OutboundEngine to establish or run your much-needed marketing and sales foundation. We help you automate important marketing work with super simple software and a team of professionals behind it. We design, write and share content across the digital channels, making sure the right people see the right message. Schedule a free demo and see how it can work for you.

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