Early Fall Interview 2008 with The Business Doctor
We spoke just a few weeks ago.
I have only two questions for you and promise to keep this short.
Let’s hear your questions.
What can you tell me about the current trend for the outsourcing of sales, marketing and business development?
I am happy to share information with you.
Outsourcing numerous business tasks and services has been happening to some degree over many years but it is increasing considerably over the last couple years.
For many years advertising agencies have been hired to develop and coordinate advertising and branding.
For many years, independent sales representatives and agencies have been utilized for outside sales efforts.
For many years, tradeshow firms have been utilized to build tradeshow exhibits and booths and coordinate the tradeshow events.
For many years, tele-marketing firms were utilized to make outbound cold calls looking for new business and sales.
What is increasing is the outsourcing of;
– developing marketing communications
– developing and managing websites
– utilizing the internet and websites to network for business development and marketing, sometimes referred to as web 2.0
– inbound customer service
– outbound customer service and customer support
– outbound calls to existing customers to seek out sales
– retail store marketing promoting products and services
– design and product development
Many outsourcing businesses and firms are starting up to meet this increasing demand.
In our previous interview, we discussed the job ads for marketing, sales and business development management positions with “entry level”, “in training” and “coordinators” attached to the position title
Such position titles are often from these outsourcing firms who may be utilizing lower wage earners either hourly or salary.
Staff in these firms may not have the highest level of education, skills and experience.
There tends to be high employee turnover in many of these firms.
Let’s stay politically sensitive.
I am not saying every firm have these issues and let’s leave it at this.
Organizations and companies are seeing that outsourcing has some advantages:
– relieves them of the burden of managing and supporting these efforts
– relieves them of the burdens on HR and Human Resources
– saves them of the cost of employee health and other benefits
– allows them flexibility during busy times, slow times and seasonal cycles
– allows them to focus more resources on other things
– saves them the costs of new technology possibly needed to run such departments
– saves them capital expenditures that could be needed to internally expand operations
Companies are also outsourcing many other things including:
– payroll services
– HR human resources
– delivery of products
– field maintenance and repair services
Can this trend of outsourcing these types of jobs and occupations contribute to people losing their jobs and being forced into lower wage jobs at these outsourcing firms?
Maybe this is something you should ask the staff and employees of the outsourcing firms.
I would think to some extent that can be true but I would not dare to make a general statement that applies to all firms.
Are many of these outbound and inbound sales and customer service-outsourcing firms offshore and not even in this country causing more loss of jobs?
Some are but I do not know how many or what percentage of them.
After all, we are in a global economy.
With the Internet and new technology in telecommunications, distance is no longer a large factor or obstacle for doing business.
Number two question:
I have heard of marketing managers, sales managers and product managers.
What can you tell me about the new positions called ‘Product Marketing Manager’ that I am starting to hear more about and seeing more demand for?
This position title refers to a position that combines product management, marketing and sales.
The main focus normally is to be responsible for a specific product or service and find other applications, markets and market segments and new customers that can utilize the product or service.
Basically, find other customers in other markets with other applications that can utilize and purchase the product or service.
This responsibility includes uncovering customer needs to their specific application and any modification to the product and service that is needed.
Some account development and account management can be part of the responsibilities.
Many companies have found that traditional sales, marketing or product management staff are not the most effective in doing this but this effort is very important for business development and business growth.
This new position is an effort to improve on this.
If I remember right, in the videos on your website that talks about “Business Development In Today’s Business World”, didn’t you discuss something like this.
Let me explain.
In the videos we listed a long list of skills and important tasks and efforts that must happen for business development and business growth to happen.
Sales, account management, marketing, niche marketing, expanding into new markets with new customers and applications, product development, adapting products to new applications were part of this long list.
The issue being that it is a challenge to find staff that are skilled enough, trained and educated enough, experienced enough and focused enough, to do an effective job in business development, keeping all of this in mind.
Staff get easily side tracked in routine things of their job that takes them away from the business development focus that is needed.
This ‘Product Marketing’ position is a hybrid position keeping all of this in mind but focuses an individual on a specific product or service.
Seeing this advancement and progress in business attitudes and business practice that supports what you have been talking about and promoting for so many years must be gratifying to you.
It shows that your ideas, thoughts and insights are accurate and business is moving this way.
What do you say about this, now?
I admit that it does make me feel good.
I have been promoting these basic concepts for about 30 years during times when most disagreed.
It is gratifying to see that I am being proved right and business is changing.
Thanks for the information.
We will get back together again sometime soon.