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Sales and Marketing
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Sales (the function that directly generates revenue through the sale of products or services) and marketing (the function that addresses customer needs and wants through communication) are two indispensible pillars of today’s businesses. Due to the affinity between sales and marketing, the two are commonly considered to be in the same category of business area. A few trends in this business area:
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  • Due to more product standards, increasing globalization, and fiercer competition, products are more and more alike in terms of physical characteristics. This product convergence is forcing companies to seek product differentiation more aggressively through their sales and marketing operations.
  • The marketing orientation adopted by many organizations requires tighter connections between marketing and other functions within a company. In other words, marketing professionals have to work with other departments more closely than ever before.
  • The average life cycle of products and services is shrinking, requiring sales and marketing to be able to address both specific customer demands and overall market needs and wants more efficiently.
  • Web 2.0 technologies are reshaping the communication landscape both internally (within the organization) and externally (between a company and its customers), whether for marketing campaigns or potential sales deals.
In short, sales and marketing operations must be simultaneously collaborative and efficient. The following business software solutions are designated to help (or include major functionality for) sales and marketing operations: business intelligence (BI) and business performance management (BPM) systems, customer care and billing (CC&B) systems, customer relationship management (CRM) systems, demand management systems (DMSs), enterprise incentive management (EIM) systems, enterprise marketing management (EMM) systems, merchandising systems (MSs), point of sale (POS) systems, quote-to-order (Q2O) systems, and sales force automation (SFA) systems.

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