You Have Sales Resources – Use Them!

October 8th, 2018

Everyone knows that closing sales is the lifeblood for any organization but many businesses fail to implement the tools and resources that will generate positive results. Let’s start from the beginning with hiring the right person. Why is it so difficult for Business Owners/Managers to recruit and retain highly productive, professional salespeople if sales is such an attractive proposition?  Whenever Leaders get together at company meetings, increasing the effectiveness of the sales team is a key topic of discussion. While examining their sales forces they seem to accept that:

  • 1. 80% of all sales are made by only 20% of the sales force.
  • 2. 55 % of people engaged in selling are in the wrong profession.
  • 3. Another 20-25% have the essential attributes to sell, but they should be selling something other than what they are currently selling.

By the very nature of the work itself, successful salespeople possess a unique set of personality attributes that enable them to succeed. It takes a special kind of individual to succeed in sales. Below are key resources that every business should invest in to ensure sales success:

Sales Talent Assessment – Increase your odds of finding a great salesperson by up to 25 times over traditional methods of resume review, interviews, and reference checking by deploying a sales assessment tool. Use a validated personality profile to decrease hiring mistakes and expenses relating to hiring the wrong person. Quickly determine if a person naturally possesses the personality to perform the activities necessary to produce sales. In other words, does the salesperson have the genetic makeup and personality to handle these selling skills in a competent manner? And, at what ‘power level’ can they do them? We have administered hundreds of Sales Talent Assessments over the years and the predictability of the success of the sales person is remarkable. Not only does this resource streamline and enhance the hiring process but it give the sales manager an individual coaching guide for each sales person.  

Marketing – The objective of marketing is to increase awareness and sales for your product or service. Pretty simple, right? Well the problem is that marketing without a clear cut strategy is like fishing without bait. To effectively market your products or services, you need to clearly define a strategy. This includes answering questions like who is your “target market”? What are their pain points or problems that need to be solved and how can your product or service meet their needs?For any strategy to be effective, you need to align marketing and sales. As you develop your marketing strategy, it’s important to keep several elements of your approach in mind.

  1. 1. Why is your product or service better for you customers than your competitor’s? It can be price, customer service, repetition, delivery or ease of use. Clearly define your competitive advantage and market to it. This is a major part of your messaging.
  2. 2. What are the specific benefits, results or outcomes that a potential customer will receive by purchasing your product or service that they would not receive from your competitor. Focus on the benefits!
  3. 3. Today you have more delivery channels than ever before. While newspaper and radio advertising are in decline, they may still be viable options for delivering your message. But more likely, content or digital marketing will be a more powerful option. By understanding your customer and where they seek information you can target your message and deliver it through the channels where they are most likely to see it and act on it.
  4. 4. Customer purchases today begin online. To increase sales today is less about the hard sell, and more about building trust and relationships through social engagement and information sharing. Nurturing a client from discovery through a sale requires a process. Content & digital marketing gives you better access to qualified leads, more channels to sell your product and a lower cost to acquire customers.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management)– “Why do I need to document my sales calls?” “But, I don’t have time!” “I need to get back on the phone and set up more meetings.”As a leader, how many times have you heard your salespeople provide those reasons to you? If you are in sales, and you find yourself using those reasons for not documenting your activity, I am here to tell you that you’re wrong. After nearly 35 years of working with sales people, I can tell you that without the use of a customer relationship management (CRM) platform, the top salespeople would not have been as successful!

Documenting your activity all comes down to a choice. It’s a habit that can help you work more efficiently and, if used correctly, will help you show your clients you listen. For example, when you talk to a customer and they ask you to follow up in two weeks, you have a simple choice. You could document the phone call and schedule a follow-up, or you could write that note down on a sticky note on your desk and convince yourself that you will remember to call him or her. So many sales professionals choose option two and then wonder why they struggle to build long-lasting relationships. I am convinced that, for any salesperson to have success, they must document her activity when speaking with current or future customers.

If you’re looking to grow your business and win relationships in a genuine and authentic way, this is the most simplistic habit to form. By documenting every call, you will show your future or current customers that you listen and have the ability to follow through. You will show them that you truly care about their business by adding value to each conversation you have with them. In the end, only you have control over this habitual behavior, and I challenge you to make the choice to do things through the use of a CRM.

Sales Manager – Hiring a talented Sales Manager is definitely a great sales resource for any organization. The problem is finding the right person is very difficult and even if you do, it’s an expensive investment. For this reason, many business owners and and executives have chosen to go with a Fractional Sales Manager program. Many great salespeople by nature are independent and challenging to conrol. You don’t want to over-control them but you do want to instill a degree of importance and discipline into the environment. Fractional sales managers can instill an appropriate level of execution and discipline by doing the following:

       1. Weekly sales meetings with a consistent agenda that is valued by the salespeople

       2. Consistent one-on-one meetings to discuss performance on lead and lag metrics

       3. Timely discussions for constructive coaching and recognition of good performance

In addition to these elements, the right fractional sales manager can also develop prospecting strategies, incentive compensation plans, and marketing and lead nurturing plans. Fractional sales management can have a major impact on the performance of a sales team and the business as long as there’s a process for implementation. That process should include evaluation of the team members, ongoing coaching and sales skill development, analysis and evolution of the processes that support the sales organization, the right reports and data, and instilling organization and discipline into the environment. This program is considered by many business owners and executives as the best value in sales management.

So, if you are serious about improving the performance of your team, try implementing these sales resources…you will LOVE the results!










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