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Six Sigma projects identification in Marketing and Sales

In Marketing and Sales, the following Six Sigma projects are carried out.

  • Improving customer feedback and response processes
  • Improving advertisement effectiveness
  • Creating better media mix (for advertising and sales promotion)
  • Reducing response or shipment delays.
  • Reducing or eliminating invoicing errors
  • Reducing or eliminating damaged product
  • Eliminating the possibility of wrong shipping
  • Eliminating the possibility of incorrect loading or stacking in transport
  • Reducing or eliminating out of stocks situations
  • Ensuring perfect shelf arrangements
  • Addressing warranties calls appropriately
  • Reducing Customer complaints
  • Reducing complaint resolution time
  • Improving coordination and communication between sales, delivery, merchandising, and support personnel
  • Improving Customer Satisfaction Index
  • Improving the efficiency (conversions) in sales processes.
  • Improve the forecast accuracy
  • Control spending over time
  • Improve Days Sales Outstanding (DSO) - the average time taken by a company to collect payment from its customers.
  • Reduce electronic financial transaction costs.
  • Improving specific aspects of client relationship management
  • New market development
  • Improving the pricing process
  • Increasing branding effectiveness
  • Improving channel effectiveness
  • Improving lead management
  • Enhancing service levels

Examples of global leaders who have been implementing Six Sigma in Sales -

  • General Electric uses Six Sigma to improve sales effectiveness by improving forecast reliability, pricing strategies, or pricing variation.
  • DuPont is using Six Sigma in driving research development, product development, and applications.
  • Bombardier has many Six Sigma projects growth projects to increase sales volume and sales margins.

Professionals with business development profiles from following sectors have participated and benefited from our programs.

  • IT Companies
  • Construction Companies
  • Life Insurance
  • Banking sector
  • Computer Hardware and Networking companies
  • Petrol Stations
  • Hotel industry
  • Education Sector

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I have a query over the Green Belt:

If a sales professional is working in a company where, there is no scope of implementing the Six Sigma Application, in that case can that individual go for green belt and if yes then what is the process, fee, duration and scope of the Green Belt in his CV?


Kapil Thukral

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Hi VK,

Hope I can rejuvenate the OP and continue it. I am interested in three of the topics mentioned in your OP and I am not clear about the way we take up those issues in six sigma.

I try to put my thoughts here so that you can help me correct where ever I am missing something.

The first one is improving CSI. I can't think beyond this point that improving customer ratings is a logical process and those points where customer is unsatisfied is clearly visible without having to go through any data analysis. As far as weightages are concerned, it is company's philosophy as to what is more important and what is less.

Improving forecasting efficiency is clear to me, as long as the data is accurate. Even thought the data is accurate, there are always chances for a marketing guy to complain that there could have been more sales if he had more product in their hands. If we only focus on the data that is available to us, we may miss link to the potential possibility.

I am totally blank on using six sigma for improving channel effectiveness beyond conventional means.

I would appreciate if I get any leads in this regard or references to existing projects.



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Hi Ravisankar,

I noticed your response late. Here are my comments.

  1. Measuring customer satisfaction is a challenging subject in some sectors. It is not so challenging in some other sectors.
    • Automotive industry - There is direct and accurate feedback provided to component manufacturers by automotive assembler. Example - automotive sub-assemblies or parts
    • BPOs and similar support services - There is a reasonable method of satisfaction ratings. Example - Any BPO
    • B2C marketing - The CSI is more challenging subject here but signals are always available if we have the antennas in place. Example - Recently tablet PCs have been withdrawn by companies within weeks of launch.
    • Products and services with warranty and guarantee - Customer dissatisfaction directly relates to replacement & repair demands. A product replaced during warranty is not considered great service but a failure by customers.
    • Industries that can track repeat or referral sales data. Example - Apple customers generally tend to buy more than one product from the company and this is tracked through itunes database.
    • Pull vs Push marketing - Companies who are able to rely more on pull have better data generation. On the other hand companies who rely on push have more uncertainty and larger variation in sales.

[*]I would like to keep the number of products and forecast accuracy as two different topics. You need reasonable accuracy for existing products as well as new products. In most industries, you need a new product every six months as a thumb rule anyway.

[*]Channel effectiveness study also depends on reliability of metrics put in place and data associated with them. As an example, in web based marketing, we have clients who are now able to track the number of clicks on their website through various promotional measures and sources (channels). Effectiveness of these channels can be tracked right from lead generation till the sales through conversion ratios. Money is then pumped into the right channels after carrying out experiments

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