Wednesday, 26 September 2012

3 ways to Improve your chances of winning Sales

In the Tack Buyers views of salespeople 2012 - Selling in a VUCA world , 89% of Buyers had looked for new suppliers a 10% lift since 2010. 

 Whether prospective new suppliers are able to offer a sufficiently persuasive alternative is more debatable .

What are the chances of winning new business ?

 In a post published on the HBR blog in July 2012 by Steven W Martin , he shared some research he had undertaken on 1,000 bids to analyse at what point of time decisions were made by buyers in the bidding process.

30% had decided the winner before the selection process began

45% had made their mind up by half way through the process

Only 25% decided at the end of the process

Therefore, if you are not clearly in the lead at the half way stage of the sales process, the likelihood is that you are going to lose
In almost every case Martin observes, the decision wasn't even close between the top two choices.

Even though customers had made up their minds, they still demanded all the other salespeople to jump through a series of hoops for nothing, wasting their valuable time, resources, and mental and emotional energy.

The main point from the above  ? There is little point training your sales teams on how and why prospective customers make their buying decision if your training isn't based upon direct rsearch with decision makers about won and lost business and what they feel about salespeople. Hence why the Buyers' Views of Salespeople has been a work in progress the last fourteen years.

Three ways to improve the team to win more.

1. Sharing success stories about key wins especially when explained using examples  will help the entire sales team  understand and learn from them.
Click here for tips on elevator pitches
2. In your sales training include role play exercises on everything from your elevator pitch and cold calls to the corporate presentation and negotiation.

2. Best practise .Consider asking your top salespeople to be interviewed in a panel-type setting about their sales philosophy, client interactive categorisation strategy ( see below), and where they win and lose. This can be  followed by a robust audience question and answer session.

Client interaction Categorisation is a method of segmenting customer interactions based upon prospective customers' roles within the organization, their speciality (technical, financial or operational), their political power,  and how they process information.

Client Interacton Categorisation
The purpose of such categorsation strategy is to produce a predictive framework that helps salespeople anticipate client behaviour.

Since the salesperson has a deeper insight about customer behaviour based upon past interactions, (s)he is able to conduct more persuasive sales calls.

 This strategy also serves as a communication methodology to educate and prepare the support team members (pre-sales engineers, consultants, and sales managers) who may attend the sales call with the salesperson.

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