Marketing & Sales Pyramid

A common sense approach to marketing & sales

Marketing and Sales are processes. To be successful in these disciplines – even a little – you can’t rely on luck and serendipity. You can’t make things up on the fly. To be successful, you must think about what you want to accomplish, create a plan to achieve those goals and then execute on that plan.

Most professionals in the market research industry, however, don’t come from a business development background and don’t really know what the steps of those processes should be. To help, we’ve developed an easy way to understand them… the Marketing & Sales Pyramid™. The Pyramid is a step-by-step, logical approach to business development that guides our work with our clients.


Step 1: Do your homework

Before you can decide where you want to go, you need to understand where you’ve been and where you are right now. To lay the foundation for your marketing and sales program, take some time to do a little homework on your company, clients and competitors.

Step 2: Set your goals

Now, think about where you’d like to go… what’s the end game for the coming year (or other time period, if you prefer)? Most firms will set some sort of revenue goal… which is a great start. But also think about other types of goals… for example, a higher profit margin, the launch of a new product or expansion into a new market.

Step 3: Make strategic decisions

To help you achieve your goals, spend some time looking through the information gathered during Step 1. What trends did you see? What opportunities bubbled to the surface? Use what you learned in Step 1 to establish your go-to-market strategies (clients, products, messaging, etc.), your positioning and your points of differentiation.

Step 4: Build awareness

Now, based on your strategic direction, decide how and where you will build awareness for your firm and services. Spend your time and money in places where your target audience can be found. Remember, awareness-building is not only to capture the attention of new prospects, but to stay top-of-mind with existing clients as well.

Step 5: Generate leads

Your awareness-building activities will help to generate a certain number of inquiries and call-ins, but to go beyond that, additional action is required. Building on Step 4, you need to implement activities that capture data from prospective clients (e.g., name, company, e-mail, phone number, etc.) for later follow-up.

Step 6: Nurture your leads

Just because you’ve generated a new sales lead doesn’t mean they’re ready to buy right now. It might take some time for them to get to know you/like you/trust you.  Lead nurturing means implementing a series of on-going activities to help you stay top-of-mind, so they think of you when they are ready.

Step 7: Create first-time clients

At this point, you’ve walked a prospect through the buying process and now it’s time to ask for the business. What can you do to help them to “take a chance” with you for the first time… to convince them that you are the right alternative (over every other firm)… to mitigate whatever apprehension they have about choosing you?

Step 8: Ensure repeat clients

New clients are great!  But the key to the long-term success of your business is to develop repeat clientele. To do that, first and foremost, you must do good work. Beyond that, you need to implement tactics that reinforce your firm as the provider of choice.

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