Yes of course scientific approaches are desirable and essential (such as: “There is no practice without theory”), however their downside is that they cannot define ‘Suggestions’ for most of the different entrepreneurs running this ‘business world’ ‘; This refers especially to SMEs, which represent more than 90% of companies worldwide.
The main reason is that the conditions in individual companies are too specific and cannot be taken into account.
… but of course you have to consider whether it is more advisable to assign or even subordinate the commercial department to the marketing department or vice versa. The “market as such”, however, in most cases cannot be so easily schematized or generalized, but depends on the specific needs of the customers and the producer.
While in a B2C environment specific processes may suggest mapping marketing to sales, this is completely different in a company that produces investment goods.
So what is the end goal … YES, the customer, either in B2C or in B2B.
Comparing the distribution structure in B2C is surely more important than in B2B, since ‘bulk products’ (of any kind) are sold more often. In that case, the competition is mostly quite large and the “customer needs” are less specific, and this can lead to the belief that sales are more important than marketing.
If you look at B2B, especially in the foreground, the competition is less numerous, but possibly more concentrated in a specific target group, globally.
Theory or not:
As marketing professor Kotler also suggests, the sales department should be assigned to the marketing department. Below you will find some reasons, which could also bring interesting aspects / approaches for SMEs who have not yet fully developed marketing / sales activities and who need ways for a successful configuration of their future.
The marketing department has to research the markets to clarify which markets / market segments could / should be supplied with which products (either already existing products, or those that will be developed / produced / adapted due to the core competencies available) – either in the national market or in the international markets.
The marketing department subsequently determines the “wanted / requested” target groups to define the respective forms of distribution (ie sales routes – NOTE: “thereafter”). for example, with or without associated service capabilities, etc. What type of distribution: whether existing, newly defined, the company’s own office, etc. – depends largely on the type of clientele, as well as the financial strength of the company – and / or the products in question.
· … and … it is the marketing department that has to first understand the ‘requests / wishes’ of the customers to decide, together with the other internal departments and based on reliable market data, if said product has to be new production, an existing one to be modified, or even the sales portfolio is supplemented with suitable purchased products.
In any of these cases, the actual sales process begins only after the respective forms and decisions have been found / made. Then the sales department receives the goals / objectives / data from the customer, etc. necessary, such as new strategic advice, from the market department. This could be completed with questionnaires whose evaluation allows a greater “sharpening” of the sales routes later on.
What it means again:
Only close collaboration between both departments will lead to maximum success: animosities, as known in the past, have no value in today’s market environment …