Sales and client servicing are both roles that fall under the marketing umbrella. However, they differ in the way they work and what their goals are. That's why it's important to understand the differences between them before deciding which career path is best for you.
What does working in Sales mean?
Sales is a profession in which a person takes on the role of selling products or services to potential clients. The salesperson's job revolves around finding new leads, assessing needs and closing deals. Here are some things you should know about it:
Sales is a process that involves a lot of communication between the seller and the buyer. Both sides need to have an understanding of what they're looking for in order to make their respective purchases; this means that there are many opportunities for miscommunication or missed expectations on either side.
The most successful sellers often spend time getting to know their customers before attempting any kind of sale; this helps them understand what kind of product would work best for their lifestyle, as well as whether or not they're willing to pay top dollar for said item(s).
What does working in Client Servicing mean?
Client servicing is a term that denotes how you conduct business with your clients. An effective approach to servicing customers will enable you to build long-term relationships with them.
Building relationships entails being a trusted advisor, partner, and problem-solver. You can do this by helping them solve challenges related to their business or organization so that they feel more confident about their situation going forward.
What are the similarities between Sales and Client Servicing?
Both Sales and Client Servicing require you to work in a fast-paced environment. As such, you may be required to liaise with stakeholders to have a better understanding of their pain points, at times anticipating and coming up with solutions before the other party is even aware of their issues. Both Sales and Client Servicing require working in a team and meeting with team members often to discuss news, ideas, and creative initiatives.
Both Sales and Client Servicing impact repeat revenue and smooth business continuity. In both fields, it’s important for staff members to be adept at creating and maintaining relationships, often by learning to communicate through various mediums the value proposition or solution effectively.
Both roles will develop a high level of emotional intelligence, transferrable skills in communication/marketing/product, and collaboration with people both inside and outside your organisation to build an interesting and diverse network tied to YOU.
What are the challenges for both roles?
One of the biggest challenges for both roles is that, unless you are in a senior position or have a knack for it, you will have to deal with frequent rejection. This can be quite demotivating and might make you question your career choice.
Sometimes, sales targets are met individually and not by the company as a whole. If this is the case, then your income may be dependent on how well you perform on a day-to-day basis.
What are the career paths for either role?
In Singapore, the career path for Sales often begins with an Account Executive, Senior Account Executive, Account Manager or Business Development Manager, before more senior roles of Sales Lead or Head of Business Development.
The career path for Client Servicing starts as a Customer Success Associate/Executive, Customer Success Manager, and then moves up to become a Director of Client Services to Head of Client Services.
Career progression in either Sales or Client Servicing can interleaf with one another or move into other departments that involve communicating value-add to clients or services in Product or Marketing.
How much can I expect to earn in Sales in Singapore?
The current range (2022) for individuals working in Sales or Business Development in Singapore is $3.5k-$5.5k/month in an entry-level position to $12k-$16k/month for the most senior level.
Click here to see more detailed ranges, including mid-level positions for sales in Tech or within an agency.
How much can I expect to earn in Client Servicing in Singapore?
The current range (2022) for individuals working in Client Servicing or Customer Success in Singapore is $3.3k-$5.5k/month in an entry-level position to $12k-$18k/month for the most senior level.
For more detailed ranges, including mid-level roles, download our free 2022 Salary Guide Asia.
In short, sales is about acquiring new customers, while client servicing is about strengthening and retaining existing customers.
As Sales and Client Servicing roles are at the heart of every business, it's important that you do your research to understand more about how to succeed in these roles, such as reading relevant job ads or reaching out to one of our specialist recruiters with your specs.