Planning Marketing Budgets: Fire my worst salesman and re-invest in online marketing for leads?

Jereme Wong

*The following content is taken from our weekly newsletter sent by our CEO. If you are keen to subscribe to our mailing list, click on the bottom right corner of the page.*

First and foremost, I will like to wish you and all Singaporeans an early Happy SG52 National Day. Wishing for peace, harmony and prosperity for Singapore.

Grateful to have received quite a bit of happy comments from the community in my last email. Hope you have also enjoyed the story of the Onsen Egg versus the Hard Boiled Egg. If you haven’t, you can still catch up on it here.

Here is another story from a business owner whom I met over the weekend for sharing.

Let’s just call him – Max.


SME Boss Max: Hey, Jackie. You last email was well written. Very persuasive yet subtle. Kept me reading till the end. Well done.

Jackie: Thanks Boss. I am glad you are still a subscriber and an active reader of my stories too. I love sharing them nonetheless. How’s business?

Max: Business is somewhat slow. Feeling a bit lousy.

Jackie: Sorry to hear that. What’s making you feel lousy? Economy or business?

Max: I think it is more me than the economy. I basically have to do everything from sales, marketing, finance, HR, legal, admin but I want to spend more time to improve my product, enhance the service delivery and better my customer service. I can’t seem to get enough time to focus on these more important areas.

Jackie: It is great that you are aware. There are a lot of folks out there who can’t seem to pinpoint where to begin or what are their more important areas. Should you solve it now?

Max: If I continue to ignore these areas and my competitors somehow managed to find time to focus on them, my business will surely be affected. My business will probably slow further and I will not be able to pay my staff and probably I will then blame the economy for my business closure. #sucks

Jackie: Which areas do you think you can outsource or hire more to grow your business? Where are your lowest hanging fruit?

Max: Finance and Admin are ok. Marketing takes up a significant portion of my time. The range of activities are just too wide. Even just on digital marketing alone, one needs to get very much involved especially when I have to DIY everything. However, hiring a team is very costly and how do I know if they are capable enough, well kept up-to-date with online tactics, trustworthy, professional and dependable. Furthermore, I need someone who can spar with me on the branding marketing strategy. Someone who understands my firm’s purpose and mission; helps me thereafter to execute the campaigns towards my near term objectives which may change in the next few months. I am also mindful about the HR management of hiring my own team. What if I don’t have the training environment to keep them updated and motivated? And worst what if they leave halfway?

Jackie: Yes, it is costly to own and run a full fledged digital marketing team. But more importantly, do you know exactly what to do with your freed-up time once you’ve outsourced your marketing?

Max: With marketing activities and day to day campaign duties out of my list, I will be able to train up more sales folks, improve my customer service, reduce refunds, develop a better product offering. Working on any of these core areas which I cannot/should not outsource because those are MY OWN BUSINESS, can create a positive impact to growing my business. Tell me more about your firm’s solution, Jackie.

I then spoke for a short 15 mins on how we have assisted thousands of firms. The same way we embrace our solution fully for ourselves as well.

Max: I like your proposition, your transparent platform and your one headcount pricing. I fully understand that I need to conserve my most precious resource – my time. You’re right to say that I may be good at what I do, but I am definitely not the best or better at managing marketing activities as compared to your team. Because my team is not constructed to do that, I don’t have time to keep up to date with the latest marketing channels and tactics and keep up to date on that is not my core business. One last question: Should I fire my worst performing salesman to hire your marketing services? Sounds like a good idea to manage cost budget and risk.

Jackie: This is the 3rd time I have to answer this question in the last few weeks. I will like to answer it with a question instead. Is it Sales AND Marketing or is it Sales OR Marketing? Firstly, you trust that whoever that is currently in your firm is there because there is work to do and he/she is proficiently doing it. Secondly, your precious time should be invested into Sales Training to ensure your sales people are equipped with the Right pitch and Right tools to help you to sell better and win more in the marketplace. Living Things need Air, Food and Water to live. Should you give more Air and then reduce the Water?

Max: Ok, I get it. Thanks. I should fine tune my sales pitch and train up more sales. Concurrently, I should generate more leads for them to meet more prospects during the investment period.

Jackie: Indeed you are wise, Max. Let’s recap our meeting. You wish to:

  • Spar with a good partner on marketing strategy and set a clear direction
  • Not get involved in the daily marketing campaign duties
  • Get more information and insights from your customers and sales than you ever did
  • Understand more about their desires, wants and needs
  • Be able to sell more products more quickly at higher prices
  • Increase your income and lower your refund rates and improve your business

Well, Max, we would be honoured to be your partner. We can begin immediately. Can I have your okay on starting your Leads Generation campaign ?

Max: Bring it on.

Hope you enjoy the story and learn some new things this week. If you wish to know what I spoke about to Max for 15 minutes, please hit reply or book an appointment with us here.

Not ready? Check our one of our guides to help businesses like yours.

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