A new sales force who never tire of pitching! By Mark Blezard
Updated: Jan 28
Now, my background is in sales, as part of a sales force. So, this article is most definitely not about firing your sales executives. No. This is a drum I frequently bash – packaging.
Packaging is your hidden sales force, an army of sales executives desperate to pitch your products & services. However, it comes in many guises, product wrap messaging & design, your shop frontage, and your physical premises. Yes, you have more ‘packaging executives’ to deploy than you perhaps considered.
Here’s a favourite of mine, Ronseal. In 1994 the popular phrase ‘Does exactly what it says on the tin’ was developed when they employed London-based advertising agency HHCL to create a campaign that positioned their products based on their purpose. Genius, because if you are in sales this is the ‘solution’ you will be using to close a deal – “You said you wanted this, here it is. Let’s shake hands’.
Next up is how you package your store. I’ve always said that too few retailers use their biggest, and most expensive, overhead to the max. If you have premises you will appreciate the cost of rent, rates, heating & lighting. Yet so many start the sales pitch once the customer is inside, and not before.
And if your product falls into the ‘less than sexy’ bracket, use humour. Here’s a brilliant example of a simple, but memorable, sign. Never be afraid to make a prospect smile, they will both appreciate the break from the humdrum and remember you. Just keep it clean and relevant to ‘what’s in your tin’.
And finally, your physical premises. Does it represent what you sell before the customer reads your signage? Remember my article about the population becoming a generation of scanners – looking rather than reading thanks to the internet?
Well, go and stand outside of your shop, store, retail park warehouse, cover up your sign and then ask yourself this question, “What do I sell?”
You might only be able to tick one of these three off, but it will be worth the effort. It is a one-time investment for a new sales force who are never late for work and never tire of pitching your products.