Thursday, September 08, 2005

Can Sales Circumvent the Buying Process

I received some feedback on my RFP post of a few days ago that I'd like to discuss. Two separate people stated that RFP's are proof that marketing is not really needed in law firms.

Here's the argument in a nutshell; We don't do any marketing (or very little) and we still receive RFPs. That means to me (the writers) that we are well known enough that companies include us when considering their choices. Why would we need marketing if we are already known?

I asked the writers how many of the RFPs they were winning. "Well... not that many..... But we are always invited to the party. Isn't that the point? People know who we are!"

If the definition of "knowing who you are" is that people know you are a law firm... then you (the firms of the writers) have achieved everything you could ever hope for.

Here is my response; Marketing is not the things you do; It is the emotional process you evoke. If an RFP is received from a company that has not been brought along an emotional and relationship building curve, and the curve is not honored, you will not get the business.

NO ONE buys cold. No bonding process; No sale.

There are natural human processes that have to be served for anyone to arrive at trust. "Marketing" accomplishes that task. Look at the chart above. If you don't do any marketing the prospect is still at the "Know of You" stage. You cannot start selling with any hope of success unless you take the time to bring the prospect around the curve.

Marketing is an emotion evoking process to gently bring a target audience to a desired state of readiness. Embrace the importance of emotional evolution and you will find success every time you go to bat.
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