As a Product Marketer, I Never Planned to Be a Salesperson, But Here I Am!
You know the saying that every B2B marketer should spend time as a salesperson? Well, nothing will give you more empathy for sales teams than selling your own services.
I confess that when I was an in-house marketing director, I would get frustrated with the sales team at times. No matter what I did, they always wanted more: More information about the product roadmap, more customized materials, more sell sheets, more scripts, more videos, more, More, MORE!
Back then, I understood that selling was hard and I liked working with sales people, but I was often on a lean marketing team and pulled in 93 different directions. (Hi to all the one-man bands out there!). We all know the Marketing-Sales relationship can have some built-in tension.
Then, I became a marketing consultant and found myself “in Sales.” 😳
It gave me a whole new perspective on the psychological and emotional challenges of selling. It can be rough to put yourself out there every day!
Here’s the cool part: Selling my own services made me a much better marketer for my clients. Not only do I “get it,” but I’m not pulled in 93 different directions. I’m there to solve a problem, take something off your to-do list, and make your job easier. In other words, I can “provide more.”
And while I’m not necessarily there to offer empathy to clients, I often do. Everyone needs to vent from time to time. And even in that scenario, I try to figure out how we can get closer to a solution. I frequently get done with client calls and think about what’s *really* going on and how I can help fix it.
It’s amazing how a little empathy can change your perspective and make your work more interesting.