How can you sell more with less sales people to demanding clients that want more for less? This article will give you 6 key ideas that will motivate sales people and help them to grow their sales dramatically.
The only way to change sales results is to give your people training and coaching in 3 vital areas; Sales Skills, Winning Attitudes and Flexible Behaviors. Teaching a sales person the skill of how to close sales more effectively will only work if they have the burning desire and attitude to make the sale happen now, along with the behavioral flexibility to adapt their approach to their clientâ??s unique buying style. The key to making training work is to do more practice and role playing and less teaching. Coaching these skills, attitudes and behaviors in the field until they become habits will double the effectiveness of your sales training investment.
The 6 keys to Greater Sales
At your next sales meeting review these 6 keys and your sales will grow.
Work on each reps winning edge. They do not have to be a lot better they only have to be a little better (3%) than their competition to win the sale. Sales are won or lost by little things like building more trust, uncovering the clients real needs, presenting unique value and solutions and having the confidence to ask for the business, and persist until they get the deal. Winning second place by one stroke at the Masters golf tournament gives you a lot of money but no green jacket. Winning second place in the sales world will give you nothing. Use sales assessments to identify each reps sales strengths and weaknesses so they can leverage their winning edge.
Adapt to your clients unique buying style. Once each rep knows what their selling style is, you can teach them how to adapt more effectively to their clients buying style. If the client needs more proof and data to make a choice and your rep tends to talk too much and overlook the details, you may loose a sale that you should win. Reps can be themselves while learning to adapt in order to give the clients what they need to make a logical decision. Your extraverted and dynamic rep can learn to patiently review the data with his clients proving each claim with testimonials and in depth information. The opposite may also happen in that an overly detailed rep may bore and put his more dynamic client to sleep with all his data and information.
Understand your clients buying process. What process does your client normally follow when choosing a solution like yours? Who is involved in the decision, how do they evaluate suppliers, how long does it take for them to make a decision? You also want to determine their buying criteria. A good client of ours was convinced that having the best price was the key to winning more sales when we discovered that their clients valued on-time delivery and superior quality over price every time. They could not understand why they kept loosing sales. We discovered their clients buying criteria by doing a very simple thing; we asked them and they told us. It seems obvious but their sales force had never asked their clients this question. Make sure you have a competitive advantage and value proposition that the client cares about.
Ask better questions. Most sales people need to talk less, ask better questions and listen more. Many of the sales people that we train and coach think they already ask great questions and listen well and in our view this is a big blind spot. The questions most reps ask are designed to give them information to make the sale which does nothing for their client. Asking their clients tough questions that make them think about their challenges and opportunities to improve their business are the questions that move sales forward. Identifying real gaps that reps can fill, saving their clients time and money, will make sales calls more effective and consultative.
Meet the right people. Many sales reps are selling and promoting solutions and services that the client really doesn’t care about. Selling value to a buyer that only cares about low price will get you nowhere fast. Who cares about the value that you offer? Selling effectively to the wrong person is one of the main reasons for lost sales. Identify all the people that you need to meet and figure out who influences who. Purchasing people are trained to negotiate lower prices yet production people need quality products delivered on time with excellent service, support and training. Which one of your client contacts can influence the purchasing people to consider your value proposition? Your price may not be the lowest but your solution could meet their real needs. You need to identify a champion or client friend that can help you to navigate the politics and point you in the right direction.
Manage your time effectively. Spend more time with better clients that need what you are selling now. Reps waste way too much time visiting low value clients because they are friends and they enjoy selling to them. Identify your A1 clients, the ones that have the biggest potential for your firm. These are your ideal clients. They care about your value proposition and are willing to pay for it. They are also ready to buy now. Most sales people only spend 1.5 hours on average per day actively engaged with clients face to face or in a meeting of some type. Getting this number up to 3 hours a day with clients will double sales. Too many low priority things take sales reps away from quality sales time. You may have to ask your reps for less paper work and let them fire a couple of bad clients to make more time for their ideal prospects.
We have less sales people that have to sell more to clients that want more for less. Review some or all of these ideas at your next sales meeting, get your sales people to practice and role play and then make a commitment to coach these skills in the field until they become habits.
For more information on how motivating, training and coaching sales teams will grow your sales, contact Paul Fergus at [email protected], 1-877-633-9555
Peak Performance2 has been helping sales teams all over North America and internationally to exceed expectations for over 20 years. Paul Fergus is the CEO of Peak Performance2 and is the co-author of the DYNAMIX® Sales Assessment and the Sales Performance program.