4.  Field sales is NOT the most cost-effective means of getting and keeping customers/clients.

Direct sales is the most expensive method of getting and keeping customers.  On average - and this figure constantly changing - it costs $250 - 300 for a single "body-call."  But that is not where it ends.  If it takes on average 4 calls to make a sale, that means the cost of that sale is already $1,200.  And if only 1 in 4 prospects actually turn into a customer, the cost of that sale is now $4,800.

Maintaining a productive sales force is becoming more and more difficult and expensive.  However, there are some types of businesses where it is the only way to build relationships.  Much depends on the type of business and, more important, the type of prospect.  A prospect, whose job is to buy, will often judge a company's quality and service by their sales force.  However, field sales where the prospect's primary job is not listening to sales pitches, can often be counterproductive as they are perceived as an interruption and/or an irritation.

That is one reason why it is so important to understand your target market.  It is the only way to know what the best methods of finding and building relationships and getting business might be.

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