Sales is anything but simple. It takes strategy and tactical thinking to be a successful sales person and a member of a Winning Sales Team. However, when selling is done right, it looks effortless. The following ten sales tools seem basic at first glance, but when properly utilized, they will become the most powerful arsenal in your sales toolbox.
SRi firmly believes in the power of customized sales tools, and applies a Your Culture, Your Clients, Your Way™ methodology when creating each of the following deliverables. Many consulting firms will provide similar tools by taking a canned approach; this isn’t a long-term solution because inevitably they won’t mesh with your company’s unique culture.
By customizing the following ten tools to your company type, size, unique offering, and customer demographic, you will see increased sales, improved structure within your sales organization, happier sales people, less turnover, and improved communication between all involved, which results in sustainable revenue growth.
- Well-Documented Sales Process
- Territory Planning Skills
- A sales person may go on 3-4 sales calls a week, but what’s happening the rest of the time? By pre-defining target markets and prospects, you can develop strategies customized for each prospect and identify the best possible customers, instead of wasting time pursuing dead-end leads.
- Value Proposition
- To sell, you need to have a compelling offer that prompts the prospect to want to learn more. Many sales people treat all prospects the same and reuse the same value statements on each person. To relay the value effectively, you must weave a story about your offer that resounds with the person you are selling to.
- Elevator Pitch
- We all know what an elevator pitch is, but is yours as effective as it could be? Similar to value propositions, many sales people assume that once they have an elevator pitch, they can just reuse it on everyone. You should constantly be reworking your elevator pitch, keeping it fresh and ensuring that it is valuable to the person listening.
- Objection Handling Skills
- Objections are a standard part of any sale. Your prospect will have reasons not to buy your product, and your job is to figure out why the question is being asked, and the implications of it. Then respond in a way appropriate to the objection being given.
- Competitive Information
- “Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer” is a popular expression because of its relevancy. Knowing as much as you can about the competitive landscape of your marketplace allows you to better position and ultimately win against your competitors.
- Discovery Questions
- Your prospect is experiencing a pain that requires resolution, although they may not even realize it. By understanding their pain and its causes, you can make statements about your offer that provide value. Create strategic questions that will uncover high-level and hidden business pains, allowing you to better understand your unique prospect’s needs.
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System
- Using CRM can help you actively predict and forecast your sales pipeline. Unfortunately, many companies we’ve worked with have spent thousands on CRM systems that haven’t been adopted within their organization. To reap the value of CRM, everyone must be trained on it and implement it into their daily routine, from administrative assistants to sales people and leadership.
- Meeting Agenda
- We’ve all been in bad meetings, and know they can be pointless and even disastrous if not properly planned. At SRi, we love the meeting agenda, which is prepared and reviewed prior to each meeting with the client and defines participants and roles, meeting goals, hot topics to discuss and avoid, etc. This allows every person on your sales team to be well-prepared when communicating with the client.
- Close Plan
- Sales often get stuck in the pipeline because there is not enough, or the right kind of, follow-up. Use a close plan to identify what you know about the account so far, and key steps that need to be made before the sale can close.
The next installment of the Prepare for Supercharges Sales in 2013 blog series will cover the topic of Tools for Success: Sales Coverage Model. We will take an in-depth look at the sales coverage model and explain our approach to this valuable sales tool. The blog will be posted on Thursday, November 29, 2012.