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Career Guide: How to Begin your Career in Sales/Marketing?

Published: August 25, 2014 In: Interview Tips

Carrier Guide to Sales and Marketing

When one begins a career, there are a lot of hopes and aspirations. We look forward to a vibrant career where we will meet many people and get involved in a lot of action. However, in the initial stages of our career, most of us face many problems which dispirit us, degrade our enthusiasm and sometimes even force us to question our career choice. In this post, I try to discuss some of the challenges we face as beginners in this field.

Lack of respect/acknowledgment from the people you interact.

Many times the people with whom you interact will be much more experienced than you, especially when you go out of your company. Not all of them will be good spirited enough to give you recognition after learning the fact that you are a fresher, especially if the product you are handling is a bit complicated or expensive.

Learn to talk confidently; don’t hesitate to get your doubts cleared. At the same time share your knowledge also. That way you will learn things quickly. Don’t forget that not only beginners but all the people in the industry are also wary of the lack of acknowledgment.

The dearth of contacts in the industry

To improve your network in the industry find a mentor who is having good contacts and who is willing to help you. Sometimes your relatives will be there well established in the industry. Whenever you meet, people strike a meaningful conversation with them so that they will remember you. Have a clear networking plan for yourself. Use your existing contacts to widen your network. Join online groups, attend functions/seminars of the industry. Make a career guide.Work out how all you can improve your connections.

Whenever you go for a seminar or party where people from this industry is the majority you will feel dejected as all others seem to know each other, and you are only one who is all alone. In such situations do not panic. Regain your composure and look around. You will find many others who are facing the same problem. You just have to wear a confident smile and go to any of those people and introduce yourself. Soon you will find yourself meeting new people and moving around.

Lack of proper training

Sometimes when you meet a customer or when are in a gathering of people from your industry, you face situations where you will not able to answer all the questions tossed towards you. Sometimes such situation can embarrass you also. Try to avoid such incidents as in the industry the first impression always counts. Learn in detail about what you are going to sell. Prepare a list of questions you may face and get answers for all of them. Take help from your immediate seniors. Ask them to share their experiences.

Learning how to talk to people

Some people find it tough to start a conversation with prospects, customers, industry peers and sometimes your seniors also. Make it a practice to meet and have a talk with minimum 10 strangers in any social gathering. Keep in mind the typical ‘small talk’ guidelines like listening, not forcing your ideas.

How to implement new ideas/procedures

It must have happened with many of you. You joined an established company, and you are trying to implement a new method of marketing or sales of which you are confident. However, the people in your office either don’t approve of it, or they ignore it. Here you forget one important fact. The idea/method is your child, and you have to market it the way you market your product.

These people in your office at the beginning of their career must have taken many initiatives but have miserably failed to get results. Now it is your duty to create a need for a change in the minds of these people as only you have hundred percent faith in your initiative. Instead of directly promoting your idea it is always better to indirectly make people understand the benefits of such a change.

When your initiatives do not give results

Many of us want our career to be perfect and are not ready to accept any setbacks in any of our ventures. If something goes wrong, they will become depressed and desperate. This is a hurdle all of us have to surpass at the beginning of a sales and marketing career. It will occur to you that no matter how much effort you are putting, the end results are always negative. The prospects with whom you spend a lot of time turns you down at the last moment.

However, you must recognize the fact that the initial disappointments are a part of any career and especially if you are into sales career you have to deal with it. Once in a while you should sit back and analyze what you have done, find out what your mistakes were and formulate a better plan learning from your mistakes.

When you are intimidated by sales target for you

First and foremost believe in yourself. If your senior believes that you can achieve your objective then why don’t you? Instead of getting intimidated by the targets, congratulate yourself for gaining your senior’s confidence. From plans for achieving your goal. List down the leads and opportunities you have and work out how to convert them into orders. You are at the beginning of your career. You are expected to give your maximum rather than achieving the targets.

How to get it going

Whatever we have discussed above give you an idea how things are and what are the options you have. Now how to get it going. Read good literature; books, web pages and blogs in which people share their experiences. Get help from your seniors and colleagues. Each of us a different set of capabilities. Understand and analyze what you want to achieve and create a master plan of how you are going to achieve it.

I will recommend some books, blogs and websites for your reading.

  • Marketing Management - Philip Kotler
  • The Guru Guide to Marketing - Joseph H Boyett
  • Harvard Business Reviews 
Does Body Language Matter During Video Interviews?

Interviews are stressful. No kidding. From the moment you enter the room till the moment you leave, you will be scrutinized. However, if you let your body speak right, you have won half the battle! This goes for video interviews as well where body language plays a crucial role. Here are some simple, yet powerful, tips to get you going in the right direction in an interview!

To check out how video interviews work, check out our Candidate Guide

Always sit all the way back in your seat. Sitting on the edge of the seat shows nervousness and low confidence. Pretend as though there’s a string tying you to the chair to avoid slouching.

At all times maintain face contact during the interview. It is an effective way to ensure that you look interested and to keep the interviewer engaged. Looking elsewhere will give the interviewer the notion that you are either lying, not confident or uninterested, and you do not want them thinking that.

Another important thing you need to keep under check is where your feet and fingers are. This includes shaking your legs or tapping your feet or even fingertips. Make sure your feet are planted firmly on the floor, and your hands are either busy gesturing or are calmly placed on your lap to avoid that.

Last but not the least, refrain from touching your face or playing with your hair. People who do so project themselves as dishonest and untrustworthy. To not give the impression of being bored or disinterested, try to avoid rubbing your head or neck. Moreover, as for sitting with your arms crossed, don’t do it! It just makes you look defensive and unapproachable.

Changing tracks to etiquette, always remember to acknowledge everyone in the interview room with a greeting. Also, do not forget to carry a pen along with your certificates and other necessary documents. Now that you know the basics of the language go ahead and flaunt your confidence with your body language skills in your next interview!

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Tags: Interview Tips, Recruitment Best Practices

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