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Brand Representative Duties and Responsibilities
The duties of a brand representative can range from keeping the sales floor neat to answering general customer inquiries to demonstrating how to use a product or service, and everything in between. Other common tasks typically include:
Maintain Product Knowledge Effective brand representatives use their familiarity with their company's products or services to establish customer relationships and boost sales. Demonstrating how to use a certain product or explaining the benefits of a particular service can persuade customers to make a purchase. Brand representatives also leverage knowledge of competitor offerings to similar effect. For example, they might make product comparisons in their company's favor, which can help secure a sale.
Identify Sales Leads Brand representatives often identify potential customers and establish contact with them. This may involve cold calling individuals in a particular area to try to make a sale.
Attend Industry Events Brand representative stay current on industry trends and advertise their company's products and services by attending trade shows, demonstrations, chamber of commerce events, and community fairs.Savvy representatives also use these events to make connections with potential customers.
Manage Product Displays Brand representatives keep showrooms and sales floors neat and tidy, as attractively organizing shelving and displays encourages sales. Brand representatives also strategize how to best display products or samples to maximize sales. For example, a clothing or cosmetics brand representative may wear the company's products to attract customer attention.
Brand Representative Skills and QualificationsBrand representatives are patient communicators who can easily engage with any customer and quickly establish trust and rapport. Salesmanship is important, and persuasion is key. Additionally, brand representatives must also possess the following skills:
- Product knowledge - the brand representative must do their homework and be fully versed on market behavior, competition, and trends
- Time management - assessing which customers are likely to buy and which are not, and gracefully transitioning to the likely buyer, requires time management skills as well as diplomacy
- Negotiation - in a role where the product's price may not be set (such as car sales), the brand representative will need to understand effective negotiation techniques
- Endurance - standing at events and on sales floors for long periods of time is often part of the job
- Communication skills - communication is vital, and brand representatives must demonstrate that they are verbally articulate and proficient active listeners
- Interpersonal skills - patience, friendliness, and empathy can drive sales and make for more effective representative, as do talents for listening, establishing rapport, making good eye contact
Brand Representative Education and TrainingA college degree may be required for some positions, but not all. A degree in marketing or business can increase a brand representative's changes of landing a job or securing a promotion. However, some employers may value prior sales experience with a proven track record of success, possibly including awards for performance,over formal education. Knowledge of the basic principles of salesmanship is key to any brand representative position and may count for more than either education or experience, depending on the employer.
Brand Representative Salary and OutlookThe median annual salary for sales positions is $26,000, in contrast to the median annual salary for all jobs of $37,000. In addition to an hourly wage or salary, and potentially tips and commissions, a brand representative may be eligible for a number of company benefits including health and life insurance and employee discount programs. A 401(k) and employee stock purchase plan may also be part of the compensation package. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects only 3 percent growth for sales occupations through 2026. As brick-and-mortar stores are replaced by e-commerce, that will likely depress growth in retail jobs. However, as social media brand marketing becomes more popular, brand representative positions requiring social media savvy are likely to increase. Knowledge of applications that measure sales reach, like Google Analytics, will also be helpful in securing a job.
Brand Representative Helpful Resources
There are many resources out there to help brand representatives advance their careers, including the following:
Bloomberg Businessweek - this popular digital magazine regularly discusses trends and new ideas in the industry
"Advice for a Brand-New Sales Rep" - this article from Heinz Marketing offers tips and advice for aspiring brand representatives
New Sales Simplified: The Essential Handbook for Prospecting and New Business Development - Mark Weinberg's guide teaches readers how to reach new customers, build rapport, overcome negativity, and drive sales. It was selected by HubSpot as one of the top 20 sales books of all time
The Challenger Sale: Taking Control of the Customer Conversation - author Matthew Dixon analyzes five common sales representative personalities and explores how one in particular consistently delivers high job performance
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