AB323B20 Sales Planning Operations

AB323B20 Sales Planning Operations

Submission Front Sheet AB323B20 Sales Planning Operations

Programme:                            BTEC Higher National Diploma in Business (Marketing)

Unit Title and Number:          Sales Planning and Operations (Unit 20)

QFC Level and Credit value: 5;15 credits

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Table of Contents

 Submission Front Page1
 Table of Contents2
1.1Explain How Personal Selling Supports the Promotional Mix3
1.2Compare Buyer Behaviour and the Decision Making Process in Different Situations10
1.3Analyse the role of sales teams within the marketing strategy15
3.1Explain How Sales Strategies Are Developed in Line with Corporate Objectives20
3.2Explain the importance of recruitment and selection procedures24
3.3Evaluate the role of motivation, remuneration and training in sales management24
3.4Explain how sales management organises sales activity and control sales output28
3.5Explain the Use of Databases in Effective Sales Management32
4.1Developing a Sales Plan for Sports wears38
4.2Investigate Opportunities for Selling Internationally38
4.3Investigate Opportunities For Using Exhibitions Or Trade Fairs43


AB323B20 Sales Planning OperationsPersonal selling is an important tool of any organisational marketing mix. According to Kotler, Armstrong and Wong (2008, p.779), “Nothing happens until someone sells something” One principal way to get this done is through personal selling. According to Buell (1984), personal selling is a face-to-face promotional marketing approach that generally helps in product direct marketing and sales conclusion.

The goals of personal selling are to generate revenue and provide services that enhance customer satisfaction in the process of customers’ purchases. Thus, this often leads to success within the competitive marketplace through established relationship between the salesperson and the customers.

The aims of this section is to explain how personal selling helps in achieving the overall business marketing objectives. Then, the roles and objectives of sales management wouldbe examined using a range of business organisations.

1.1 Explain How Personal Selling Supports the Promotion Mix

Promotion is used to communicate products to existing and potential customers. It is one of the basic elements of marketing mix (shown in figure 1.1 below) used by business marketers to raise customer awareness of a product or brand, generate sales, create brand loyalty (McCarthy and Brogowicz, 1981). The various tools used for promotion process is called promotional mix, also shown in figure 1.1 below. Promotional mix is one the four marketing tools that often helps an organisation to achieve its overall marketing objectives.


Figure 1.1: Marketing/Promotional Mix

Source: DLS Web (Online) 

In the opinion of Kaser (2012) the purpose of promotional mix is as shown in AIDA model in figure 1.2 below


Figure 1.2: AIDA Model

Source: Adapted from Kaser (2012)

In this marketing promotional mix process model, before a salesperson can stimulate the action of closing a sale on a product, the attention of the customers has to be firstly attracted before any interest can be built, or any desire can be created for the product.

The Promotional Mix

The variety of promotional methods used to communicate the existence of a product to customers is referred to as the promotional mix. According to Kotler and Armstrong (2012), promotional mix is made up of the elements shown in figure 1.3 below


Figure 1.3: Promotional Mix

Source: Kotler and Armstrong (2012) 

Personal Selling Mix

The principal aim of personal selling is to improve the interaction between the customers and sales salespersons. Some of the tactics used for persona selling are as shown in figure 1.3 above.

According to Kotler, et al. (2008, p.789), personal selling is “transaction oriented” with the aim to help salespeople to close sales with customers. This is helpful as presentations can be customised to customers’ needs, desires, responses and feedbacks, as well as handling objections that other promotional elements cannot handle.

In addition, Personal selling can minimize resources and time spent in creating awareness for a product. Resources are directed towards targeted customers instead of mass messaging that may not yield any sales results, which may in turn create Return-On-Investment (ROI) compared to other promotional mix. Personal selling presents the opportunity to persuade customers to buy more of a product.

Personal selling also has the strengths to achieve more within limited resources. It can help in achieving other multitasks such as payment service, repairs service; return products service, delivery service and marketing information service, in addition to the main role of selling.

One of the disadvantages of personal selling is high cost arising from increased competition, high salaries and incentives, travel and lodging costs and other selling costs. In an attempt to reduce costs per sale, developing customer base may be jeopardized. Examples are using fresh graduates instead of the experienced salespeople, and placing salespersons on commission only.  A salesperson placed on commission only will only be after maximizing sales earnings at the expense of sales territory and customer development.

AB323B20 Sales Planning Operations

Again, marketing tools such as telemarking, direct mail and online marketing can be used to achieve cost effective sales compared to personal selling. Telemarketing and online communication can also deliver sales message, respond to questions, take payments and follow up the sales activities (Boundless, 2015)

Another disadvantage is the difficulty to control the number of salespersons. It is much easier to turn on or off adverts but alteringthe level of sales forceis more difficult due to some legal factors.

Another very important weakness of personal selling is its transaction orientation that aims at selling at the expense of long-term relationship. Relationship marketing, which emphasises maintaining profitable long-term relationships with customers by creating superior customer value and satisfaction,is being embraced by most organisations due to high competitive market environment. According to Kotler, et al. (2008), it costs more to wrest new customers from competitors than maintaining the existing ones.

Personal Selling and Advertising

Advertising is an impersonal communication of a product to customers through paid media (Jobber, 2012). One of the supports advertising offers personal selling is that it creates awareness for a product and creates demand for salespeople. It creates attention, builds interest, arouses desires and helps consumers to purchase’s action. Generally, fewer effortsare needed by salespeople to sell an advertised product.

Similarly, a well-advertised product often attracts customers and lessens the impact of competitive products. Thus, salesperson stands on competitive advantage to sell the advertised product. Sellers of Coca-Cola generally enjoy this promotional tool as the product enjoys mainly non-personal promotions.

Advertising helps salespeople to have steady selling such as umbrellas that is advertised as not only useful during the raining seasons but also during the summer for protection against sunshine. Hence, salespeople still have some degree of sales during off-seasons

However, most advertisement is pufferies: deceptive, exaggerated and misleading. Salespeople often have difficulty in convincing consumers to demand such product. In 2000, Pizza Hut challenged Papa John for claiming that it had better ingredients with better pizza as the claim was found to be puffery (Hearst Newspapers, 2016)

Personal Selling and Sales Promotion

Sales promotion is designed to stimulate consumers’ purchases. It offers reasons to buy now (Kotler, et al., 2008). Some of the tools used are shown in figure 1.4 below:

Figure 1.4: Sales Promotional Tools

Source: Staffordshire University (2012)

The tools in figure 1.4 above can be classified as shown in figure 1.5 below

Figure 1.5: Classes of Sales Promotion

Source: Kotler, et al (2008) 

Sales Promotion

The main objectives of sales promotion are to increase the demand of the consumers, stimulate market demand, convert prospects to actual consumers, and product availability improvement (Boundless, 2016).

Sellers can use consumer promotion to increase short-term sales, get consumers to try a new product, woo off consumers from competitors, reward loyal customers and stimulate consumers to load-up matured products. For instance, discounts can be given to sellers and resellers for them to stock more of a product. A product can be more shelf space in a retail outlet in order to attract consumers’ attention for an increased purchase.

In addition, Dibbs et al (2016) presented that Buy-One-Get-One-Free (BOGOF) incentives are used to induce consumers to purchase more by offering additional value to the offered product. In addition, sales staff can be offered incentives in order to sell more to customers

Most of the main retailers such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer’s promote their products through the offers of loyalty cards. Some other businesses also promote their products by offering complimentary goods free to their customers. Examples are a free cup of tea or coffee for shopping at Waitrose (Waitrose, 2016) and free one-year broadband and fibre for one year for signing up with Sky (Sky UK, 2016).

Salesforce promotion helps to motivate salespeople to sell more and sign up new customers

The objectives of sales promotional tools are to help personal selling process. However, some of the negative sides of sales promotions include:

  • They often attract ‘brand switcher’ because non-users and competitors product’s users do not generally act on the promotions.
  • Constant promotion on a product may carry negative impression about the product itself. It may be assumed the product can only sell only if it is under offers
  • Researches show that adverts help personal selling than sales promotions (Kotler, et al, 2008). Marketers really use sales promotions for dominant and selling brands

Personal Selling and Public Relations

Public relations (PR) promotional tool seeks to build good relationships with customers and other stakeholders of an organisation. It helps to obtain favourable publicity building up a good corporate image and handling unfavourable image.

PR such as press releases, public service activities, and consumer surveys publications and special conferences are unpaid communication that aims to build log-term positive image for a product or company.

The costs of this tool are generally low when compared to other tools. PR that promotes good image of a product or company can help personal selling. However, since organisations pay little or nothing for PR, they have less control over the publications of bad news, which can a negative resultant impact on personal selling.

Personal Selling and Direct Marketing

Direct marketing is a promotional tool that allows organisations to directly communicate with customers using methods such as email, direct mail, telephone direct marketing, text messaging and kisok marketing, telemarketing. It involves a specific call-to-action (Kuester, 2012). A great deal of many people can be reached with minima costs such as a local grocery or restaurant, reaching people with coupon mailer. This can help personal selling.

However, the downside is that people are becoming non-responsive to this method. Mailed ads are tossed in trash without being read. Spam filters can prevent messages being delivered impacting salespeople and business inflows.


All elements of promotional mix may be effective in the areas of their employment, such as advertising creating awareness to a wider range of customers, and PR having a force to create good image for a product, but personal selling, though relatively expensive, is a good compliment to other elements to drive home business marketing objectives

David Marks

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