6 Drivers in Relationship Selling and Sales Management of the Coca-Cola Company

Study the critical 1. Introduction Accompanying with the increasing of global economy, the enterprise has created many new opportunities in the new economic situation. Market is developing and changing rapidly. As the competition increases, products and services become more indistinguishable, and markets become established, it is becoming increasingly tougher for companies in retailing industries to distinguish themselves from other stores. Simply offering customers with technical solutions to problems do not be sufficient anymore to be competitive and obtain and retain market share (Omar et. l 2009). As the expansion of the new product’s brand, the new form of marketing is emerging. Customer’s standard of demands to the products and service also increase to higher levels. The traditional strategy of selling and sales management of many companies faces increasing challenge to meet the high demand customers, therefore, cannot continue the success. The Coca-Cola Company, although with a long history company, can still occupy the first position in the soft drink companies around the world. Coca-cola has 125 years long term history. This is an iconic brand and the company that bears its name.

From humble beginnings 125 years ago, the Company has evolved from one product of Coca-Cola to more than 500 brands in 2011. They have grown from selling a modest 9 drinks a day in 1886 to 1. 7 billion a day. And the brand has expanded from one city in one country to availability in more than 200 countries around the world. With the above fascinating phenomenon, the questions emerged: how can the company achieve and keep so huge success and what is the selling and sales management that Coca-Cola Company applied to support such kind of success?

To answer these questions, in this essay, we are going to explore the six critical drivers of the selling and sales management that the company adopt to achieve the success. The drivers are shown as follows and will be described orderly and specifically. (1) building long-term relationships with customers; (2) creating sales organizational forms that are more nimble and adaptable to the needs of direct customer groups; (3) gaining greater job ownership and commitment from salespeople by removing functional barriers within the organization and leveraging the team experience; (4) shifting sales management style from ommanding to coaching; (5) leveraging available technology for sales success; and (6) better-integrating salesperson performance evaluation to incorporate the full range of activities and outcomes relevant within sales jobs today. 2. Content 2. 1 Building long-term relationships with customers Building long-term relationship with customer plays a very important role in marketing. It includes assessing customer value and focusing on high-priority customers, it bring customers and their brands closer together and give customers a direct engagement with the company, it helps company going more and more better in long-term future[1].

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Achieving brand reinvention considered The success of Coca-Cola is much attributed to its branding. Since 1866, the companied applied all kinds of strategies to advertise the brand. After achieving impressive brand loyalty by the constant reinvention of the brand and focus on improving the brand, Coca-Cola is no doubt one of the most famous soft drinks in the world [2]. Focus on consumer sophistication The Coca-Cola’s brand strategy requires focus on changing market conditions and realities of consumer sophistication to reshape the brand.

In the early years, the company hoped the brand available, affordable and acceptable to build that is instantly recognizable and popular in the minds of customer. Over the years, it reinforced their strategies to accommodate the new demand of consumers, focused Coca-Cola on building the brand identity by providing a value for the price differentiation in order to meet preferences of consumers and ubiquitous penetration. Nowadays, Coca-Cola grows to a company with strong brand identity and brand image among testing at least 20 brands n a monthly basis with a sample of 4000 consumers. Evaluation of consumer response Also, the company insistently evaluates the response of consumers to its brands in order to assess the perception of customer and the thoughts of consumers towards their products. Consumers relate to brands with specific symbols and promises to be fulfilled. Reaching a strategic consensus Another important factor of branding strategies for Coca-Cola is that strong brands make great sales and increase revenues.

However, Coca-Cola further the strategy by building a brand that has the sales by attracting and retaining the best long term human capital and investment in labor relations and customer relationship management to increase taken. This has to reach the company not only to a strategic consensus and alignment at all organizational levels, but also allows trigger positive feelings in the minds of consumers. Brand loyalty building The strong brand image is closed related to brand loyalty. The more the demand of customers’ are satisfied, the more consumers accept the brand.

It also means the image of Coca-Cola, which is stimulated by advertising campaigns and strategies for effective marketing. And the customer loyalty will be consolidated by increasing the needs of customers and the customer satisfaction. 2. 2. Creating sales organizational structures that are more nimble and adaptable to the needs of different customer groups Coca-cola is the famous and big company. So the product and the sales organization structure are strongly responding the needs of different customer groups. Each part of structure have mission of the boss set out, the mission is take care of groups which be in charged.

And the different customers groups want to mention are reseller and whole seller. | Pros| Cons| Whole seller| -The price is the reasonable -The quantity is enormous -Long term stock | -Inconvenient to use immediately -Hard to bring along -Have few promotion| Reseller| -Can find product every where -Convenient to enjoy immediately-Can choose state of product. It’s mean you can choose cold or not. -Easy to bring along-A lot of promotion| -The price is higher than whole seller so cannot buy enormous-Do not market competition so compete in regional( it’s mean standards of living that region) |

Coca-cola on each day has more and more product to reduce their cons. So coca-cola always know how to flexible with different customers groups by creating product suitable for customer. Supports to different customers groups, coca-cola have kind of product help for sale. For example in Singapore, coca-cola have a lot of kind of product, coca-cola know the people who live in Singapore like tea, fruit and soft drink … So coca-cola have the product suitable for this. Soft drink: can service for everyone, with especially for teenager, with the special formula and perennial brand coca-cola can persuade people use their product.

Beside coca-cola– the main product they have Sprite, Fanta, coca-cola light … Tea: for people who don’t want to drink soft drink because soft drink can make their fat … and some people who live in Singapore like to drink tea, especially is elderly. So coca-cola knows it and they create this product with a lot of flavor to choose. The product is Heaven and Earth Fruit: For people, who care about their health, especially is woman . The product is Minute Maid Pulpy. With each product coca-cola have many designs with many service size.

They have can, small bottle, big bottle, glass bottle, paper box, big steel container (it has just serve for restaurant, cinema, especially for fast-food restaurant). This serves for everywhere, every customer with different hobbies. Base on it. Coca-cola can create big sales. With each customer, coca-cola organization explores how to get satisfied of them 2. 3. Gaining greater job ownership and commitment from salespeople The big company like Coca-Cola always know how to treat the employees, especially is salespeople. Because the salespeople are important part of company, they help company to sell all of product.

And Coca-Cola-the big company always treat their properly. Company always has the award for good sales to motivate their employees. Examples are they have a value award for best seller or they have the award for all of employees who get the limit of selling will have the award. Along with it, Coca-Cola empowers their staff. Coca-Cola equip staff with knowledge, skills and tools necessary so they cannot just do his job well, but can also handle tasks outside their scope, especially issues related to customer requirements.

When employees are empowered, they do not find people with high authority in the company, that they will actively address the issues arising. They will have the freedom to act and take responsibility for results. When they have mistake, they also actively seek ways to overcome. Coca-Cola cut down procedures to prevent employees think and act like an owner. Often, when not satisfied, customers are requested to meet with business owners and top managers. But in the end customer would not achieve better than what the staff had explained earlier. Why it takes time for this?

And Coca-Cola has told employees that they must address the job as being a business owner. When trust in the staff, Coca-Cola will give them the confidence and that will significantly improve the results of their work. But to the employees actually work proactively solve, Coca-Cola has improved processes and procedures and facilitate the subordinates can make decisions more and more important work their daily… The staff needs to be updated in time to the things going on in the company. There is nothing worse than an employee about to hear a client say that their company is surprised.

Remember that the lower-level employees are the ones who directly meet most customers. They need to have all the information needed to communicate with customers… Employees who know best what customers like and what’s not happy. When the power advantage of the wisdom of employees, Company business can operate and give customers what they really want. This process itself will make employees feel respected, appreciated and is an important member in the organization. So employees must commit with company. They must introduce about product of Coca-Cola and do the job with their best ability.

And along with it they will help company to get their aim. 2. 4. Shifting sales management style from commanding to coaching In the development of the world, the market trading gave some new demands for business who want to succeed. In any organization, sale manager plays a crucial role. So what is sale manager? – That means “you’re a manager of people” [3]. In facts, each leader will choose one management style for them to adapt many factors and achieve the goals of the business. The first thing, we will analyze two main sale management styles: commanding and coaching.

What is commanding style? It means the imposition leader’s ideas on the collective. They often take themselves as a measure of the value. In this style, the sale management tells many employees what he wants them to do and how they must do it without getting any advice. It often makes employees feel managers don’t understand their innermost feelings and aspiration. The staffs aren’t interested in giving their ideas to improve business and the result is that the company was missed profuse opinions from the employees.

But in the current market, sale managers need to create an environment that it allows salespeople to use their talents and their abilities to successfully secure, or put another way is build and maintain consumers relationship. So for selling to change, management of salespeople must also change accordingly. And one of the most important and often most neglected, a half of responsibility of the sale management is coaching reps. Here we need to understand what coaching is. It is the working process between sale manager and salespeople on a day-to-day basis to improve their performance.

If a perfect manager, he will constantly coach and give feedback to the people who report to them directly and indirectly to help them improve, grow up strategies…Moreover, he must try to find out how to motivate their salespeople and direct their employees that which one is right or wrong. Katherine Twells who is a vice president of the Coca-Cola company, said that “Leadership is an art that you work on daily” [4]. Coca Cola affirms that “Organization is a great place to work where people are inspired to be the best they can be” [5].

With this vision, they always create opportunities to encourage their staffs to develop themselves and increase their knowledge and competencies. Moreover, CCL (Coca – Cola Icecek A. S) provides fundamental training programs based on a staff’s position. It includes internal training, external training and online training, or E-learning [6]. Sales coaching can receive better results in the business. It supplies achievement, fulfillment and joy from which both the individual and organization benefit. In a study by the Sales Executive Council recognizes the importance of coaching; sales organizations achieve 107% of target.

You can see on the chart: [7] 2. 5. Leveraging for sales success Nowadays, salespeople use a lot of technological tools at their disposal than ever before. Clearly, technology systems bear a viral importance for management of the business. Actually, Coca Cola is a big company. So they always found on information technology networks and systems, including the Internet, to process, transmit and store electronic information, and to manage or support a variety of business processes and activities, including procurement and supply chain, manufacturing, distribution and invoicing and collection of payments.

Thanks to the Distribution System Software implemented in 2007, organization could cover the sales of 97% of the sales of the sales of 260,000 CCL customers through BASIS with 250 of distributors [8]. Customers can order by portable handheld devices. These devices will show update records for sales staff such as: on the visited sales out lets, equipment, accounts, and the shipment for the sales outlets…After analyze consumer behavior of customers; Coca Cola will revise their products, pricing, packaging, and distribution strategies to bring better quality.

It helps them know how salespeople plan their days, how they contact customers, how they manage all of the information they must know, and so on. In facts, if information technology systems suffer demand such as shutdown or disruption without resolve immediately, the organization will have a big lose about revenue and profit as a result of distribute, invoice, or create slowly in reporting financial. 2. 6. Evaluating salesperson performance more accurately Basically, salesperson evaluation is the comparison of salesperson’s objectives with the results they achieved.

The evaluation process begins with the settings of the objectives which may be: * financial such as sales revenue, profit and expenses, * market-oriented such as market share, or * customer oriented such as customer satisfaction and service levels. Then, the sales strategy must be decided to show how the objectives are to be achieved. Also performance standards should be set for the company, regions, products, salespeople and accounts. Results are then measured and compared with performance standards.

Reasons for differences are assessed, than action will be taken to improve the performance. The results of performance review can be used to answer a number of important problems such as: * Performance review have important role for developing the motivation. * Performance review of salesperson is the foundation for improvement quality of sales process. * Performance review of salesperson is the condition for the training of the organization. * System of performance evaluation is very necessary to creating the system of compensation. Planning and improvement the human resources depend on system that measures performances. * Performance review of salesperson support the implementation of strategic approach of organization. That’s why evaluation of salespersons becomes one of the key activities of sales management in a company. In coca – cola, every salesperson’s evaluation is done on quarterly basis. And based on the evaluation, the company will consider whether or not to promote the people to the higher levels of the organization is the best decision to make.

So this evaluation also motivates salespeople to work hard and get the promotion or at least the monetary rewards, which are given not only to the best salesman but the best market developer and the best sales manager of the year. Their performance is evaluated on the basis of performance development plan. Performance is measured on the basis of achievement of the targets, which are set and communicated at the very beginning of the year to each sales manager, each quarter to every market developer and every month to each salesperson.

This performance development plan evaluates the sales people on the basis of call slips, Route call, Call completion, Effective and productive call, attendance, growth in sales, market development and the punctuality of the salesman. 3. Conclusion The Coca-Cola Company, although with a long history company, can still occupy the first position in the soft drink companies around the world because the company adopts to achieve the success. The drivers are shown as follows: Building long-term relationships with customers; they go all out to achieve brand loyalty, they focus on consumer sophistication (by accommodating their consumer’s new demands), evaluate the response of their consumer, reaching a strategic consensus, and building a strong positive brand image. * Creating sales organizational forms that are more nimble and adaptable to the needs of direct customer groups; they create a more flexible organizational forms. Gaining greater job ownership and commitment from salespeople by removing functional barriers within the organization and leveraging the team experience; they treat their employees well, keep them happy so they can do things right. * Shifting sales management style from commanding to coaching; so their employee can do the right thing (not just do things right). * Leveraging available technology for sales success; they adapt with technology development and use those things for the sake of their company. Better-integrating salesperson performance evaluation to incorporate the full range of activities and outcomes relevant within sales jobs today; they evaluate their salesperson more accurately so they can keep (or promote) the good salesperson and kick (or demote) the bad ones, which makes every penny they spend on their salesperson gives a far greater gain for the company. 4. References 1. Omar MW, Jusoff K, Ali MNM. 2009. Salesperson Professional Selling and the Effect on Buyer and Salesperson Relationship. International Journal of Business and Management. 4:43-45. 2. http://www. wildwestprisons. om/the-key-to-the-success-of-coca-cola/ (Accessed: 21 November 2011) 3. John F. Tanner JK, Earl D. Honeycutt JR and Robert C. Erffmeyer (2009, p. 4) Introduction to sales management. 4. John F. Tanner JR, Earl D. Honeycutt JR and Robert C. Erffmeyer (2009, p. 220) Supervising, managing, and leading salespeople individually and in teams. 5. Mission, Vision ; Values http://www. thecoca-colacompany. com/ourcompany/mission_vision_values. html (Accessed:22 November 2011) 6. Coca-Cola Jcecek Corporate Social Responsibility Report (March 2008-Marchi 2009) Available at: http://www. hecoca-colacompany. com/citizenship/pdf/sustainability_reports/2008-2009_icecek. pdf (Accessed: 22 November 2011). 7. Sales Force Effectiveness Blog – Sales Process: How Managers become Coaches (Posted by John Kenney on Sat, Sep17, 2011) http://www. salesbenchmarkindex. com/bid/66659/Sales-Process-How-Managers-Become-Coaches (Accessed: 22 November 2011). 8. (Coca-Cola Icecek Corporate Social Responsibility Report (Turkey January 2007 – March 2008)http://www. thecocacolacompany. com/citizenship/pdf/cci_csr2007. pdf (Accessed: 22 November 2011).

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