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Introduction to Sales &

Distribution Management

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Learning Objectives

To understand evolution, nature and importance of

sales management
To know role and skills of modern sales managers
To understand types of sales managers
To learn objectives, strategies and tactics of sales
To know emerging trends in sales management
To understand linkage between sales and distribution

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Evolution, Nature and Importance of Sales
Evolution of Sales Management
Situation before industrial revolution in U.K.
Situation after industrial revolutions in U.K., and
Marketing function splits into sales and other
functions like market research, advertising, physical

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What is Sales Management?

One definition: The management of the personal

selling part of a companys marketing function.

Another definition: The process of planning,

directing, and controlling of personal selling,
including recruiting, selecting, equipping, assigning,
supervising, paying, and motivating the personal
sales force.

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Nature of Sales Management
Its integration with marketing management

Manager- Manager Manager Manager Manager

Promotion Market Sales Market Customer
Research Logistics Service

Relationship Selling

Transactional Value added Collaborative /

Relationship / Relationship / Partnering
Selling Selling Relationship /

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Relationship Selling
Salespeople concentrate their team selling
efforts on building trust and service on a few
carefully selected customers over a long
period with a aim of becoming a preferred or
sole supplier

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Transactional Relationship / Selling:- one type of relationship
marketing in which salespeople make one-time sales to price-
oriented customers ,who are not contacted again

Value added Relationship / Selling:- understanding current

and future needs of customers and meeting those needs
better than competitors with value added solution to their

Collaborative relationship :- a type of relationship marketing

in which a selling organization works continuously with its
large customers to improve the customer performance in
terms of operations , sales and profit

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Varying Sales Responsibilities / Positions / Jobs
Sales Position Brief Description Examples
Delivery salesperson Delivery of products to business Milk, newspapers to households
customers or households.
Also takes orders. Soft drinks, bread to retail stores.

Order taker (Response selling) Inside order taker Behind counter in a garment
Telemarketing salesperson takes Pharma products orders from
orders over telephone nursing homes
Food, clothing products orders
Outside order taker. Also from retailers
performs other tasks
Sales support Provide information, build Medical reps. in pharma industry
Missionary selling goodwill, introduce new products
Technical selling Technical information, assistance Steel, Chemical industries

Order-getter (Creative, Problem- Getting orders from existing and Automobiles, refrigerators,
solving, Consultative selling) new household consumers insurance policies
Getting orders from business Software and business solutions
customers, by solving their
business and technology problems
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Importance of Personal Selling and Sales
The only function / department in a company that
generates revenue / income

The financial results of a firm depend on the

performance of the sales department / management

Many salespeople are among the best paid people in


It is one of the fastest and surest routes to the top

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Roles and Skills of a Modern Sales Manager

Some of the important roles of the modern sales manager

A member of the strategic management team
A member of the corporate team to achieve objectives
A team leader, working with salespeople
Managing multiple sales / marketing channels
Using latest technologies (like CRM) to build superior
buyer-seller relationships
Continually updating information on changes in marketing

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Skills of a Successful Sales Manager
People skills include abilities to motivate, lead,
communicate,coordinate,team-oriented relationship,
and mentoring

Managing skills consist of planning, organizing,

controlling and decision making

Technical skills include training, selling, negotiating,

problem-solving, and use of computers

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Types of Sales Managers / Levels of Sales
Management Positions

V. P. Sales / Top-Level Sales Managers /

V. P. Marketing Leaders

National Sales Manager

Regional / Zonal / Divisional

Middle-Level Sales Managers
Sales Managers

District / Branch / Area Sales Managers First / Lower Level Sales Managers

Sales Trainee / Sales Person / Sales Representative

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Sales Objectives, Strategies and Tactics
The main components of planning in a company are
objectives, strategies and tactics. Their relationship is
shown below

Decide / Set Evolve Tactics /

Develop Strategies Action Plans

E.G. A company wants to increase sales of electric

motors by 15 percent, as one of the sales

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To illustrate the relationship between sales objectives,
strategies and tactics, consider:
Sales Goals / Marketing Sales and Distribution Strategy Tactics /
Objectives Strategy Action plans

Increase Enter export Identify the countries Marketing / sales head to get
sales volume markets relevant information
by 15 Decide distribution channels Negotiate and sign
percent agreements in 3-5 months
with intermediaries

Penetrate Review and improve Add channels and members

existing salesforce training, motivation Train salespeople in
domestic and compensation deficient areas
markets Use effective and efficient Train field salesmanagers in
channels effective supervision
Link sales volume quotas to
the incentive scheme of the
compensation plan
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Emerging Trends in Sales Management

Global perspective
Revolution in technology
Customer relationship management (CRM)
Salesforce diversity
Team selling approach
Managing multi-channels
Ethical and social issues
Sales professionalism

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Linking Sales and Distribution Management
Either sales management or distribution
management cannot exist, operate or perform
without each other
To achieve the sales goals of sales revenue and
growth, the sales management plans the strategy
and action plans (tactics), and the distribution
management has the role to execute these plans

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Role of Distribution Management for some of the
Sales Management Actions / Tasks
Sales Management Actions / Distribution Management Role

Strategy for effective coverage Follow call plan / beat plan

of markets and outlets Make customer call productive
Use multi-channel approach

Strategy for handling customer Prompt action at the customer interface level
complaints If the problem persists, involve senior sales and
service people

Planning of local advertising Co-ordination with distribution channels

and sales promotion Responsibility of execution with distribution
Expenses are shared between the company and
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