Pivot to the NEW NORMAL – Accelerate Revenue with Tech-savvy Sales Talent and Tools

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Do you have a focused SALES business recovery plan?  Does it allow for current year goal achievement post-crisis? 

Most businesses have a business continuity and resiliency plan that allows for continued operation in the event of an unforeseen circumstance, but most businesses do not have a revenue recovery plan!  The pandemic crisis has forced new ways of working and impaired business performance, but companies must anticipate coming out of the crisis and being  prepared for the new environment. This is the time to take advantage of the crisis by examining and addressing ineffective and unproductive elements of your revenue architecture including systems and talent.

An informal survey of CXO’s conducted by Revenue Architects over the last 6 weeks indicates that sales and marketing organizations are functioning differently through the uncharted waters of the COVID-19 pandemic.  The results confirmed that 90% have been materially impacted. 

  • 60% of participants stated that they have or plan to layoff/furlough part or all of their sales and marketing teams
  • 50% stated they do not have a formal recovery plan to return to Pre Covid-19 performance.
  • 100% stated that working remotely had a positive impact on their productivity while also representing new management challenges
  • 80% indicated that it was harder to bring some staff given the reverse incentives of government programs.

Conducting business under current constraints with social distancing, remote working and the reduction of capital expenditures is a new challenge. It can be harder to sell if you are not in front of the client. Yet even before the pandemic the skills and profile of sales superstars were changing. And the B2B buyer, already digital savvy, was becoming more educated and self-sufficient using online resources to self-sell. 

“If you give me a techno-savvy, Internet-friendly, google ranked, instant responding, collaborating, differentiated, social media savvy, value-driven, a value-based messaging, salesperson who uses the voice of the customer testimonials and is interested in how the customer profits…then, I will give you sales results”.  

 

But how do we infuse these talents and skills along with sales best practices into our selling team and drive sales, take market share, and position for the upcoming market expansion?

Now is the time to pivot to the new normal – and accelerate revenue with tech-savvy sales talent and tools.

 

Here are three steps you can take now.

  1. Build Talent for the New Environment

    • The post-COVID profile for an effective sales rep is different.
      • More credentials
      • More responsive
    • Profile your high performing “tech-savvy” business developer 
      • Attributes: social-seller, value-driven, analytical, process-oriented, emotional intelligence, customer-centric, adaptable to changing sales environment, agility with tech enablement systems, devices, and tools)
    • Focus on talent acquisition (and manage non-performing resources)
      • Discover, acquire, and retain talent with the AI-powered talent intelligence platforms
  1. Go all-in on Digital Sales Enablement

    • Digitally-enable your sales and marketing teams, build resources and applications to enable marketing and sales each stage of the funnel
    • Audit current technology and architect/deploy a modern tech stack including:
      • CRM / Sales Automation
      • Marketing Automation
      • Customer Data Platform
      • Responsive communications platforms including video, email, social, chat, and 1-1 ‘SmartMail’
      • Collaboration tools
      • Calendar scheduling with automatic reminders
      • AI tools and data insights (e.g., predictive analytics, intent data)
      • Data append/enhancement solution

Don’t let your business suffer long term due to pandemic. In fact, use this time to position for breakout performance. 

>>Schedule a complimentary consultation with me to discuss ways you can pivot to the new normal and position for accelerated, predictable and sustainable revenue growth. 

Professional Selling with LinkedIn

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Professional selling is senior selling. It may be a seller-doer model, as in consulting, or an expert-driven sales model for high value products and services. Professional selling is not about directing a junior team of salespeople, it is about senior people doing the selling – establishing their personal brand, actively building a network and engaging both existing relationships and new prospects with thought leadership and insights.

Clearly, LinkedIn is an established resource for professional sales. It helps senior professionals find and engage with specific prospective clients or buyers with personal 1:1 interaction, establish professional credibility and share content and resources to nurture and develop prospects. It also offers paid options to build awareness and encourage lead conversions.

So how can senior professionals take advantage of LinkedIn? You can simplify it with three steps (and a few sub-steps). 1. Develop a strategy, 2. Establish the systems you need, 3. Execute your program(s).

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Three Reasons to Audit Your Sales Messaging

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Improving the quality and completeness of sales messages delivers hard ROI. Here are three reasons you should review the content your sales teams are using and take a diagnostic approach to assess the effectiveness of your sales messaging:

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Three Reasons to Audit Your Sales Messaging:

1) Reduce the time required for achieving channel effectiveness: 

  • Channel effectiveness occurs when the average salesperson can cost effectively close the sale. Eventually the sales channels [and customers] will learn the value of the differential being offered, but while the market is still learning these values, the effectiveness of the sales channels is reduced. It is difficult to close the sale when the customer doesn’t know the value of the differential being offered, and the sales channels has not been provided with the values, calibration, and evidence needed to convince them.

2) Increase sales capacity

  • Sales capacity is the number of salespeople [or outlets] that are effectively selling your products and solutions. Retail uses a term “self ware” to refer to products that are sitting on the shelf but aren’t being bought. Having salespeople that are expected to sell the product but can’t/don’t is the channel equivalent of shelfware. Frequently this occurs when the skill required to sell the product exceeds the skill available in the channel. So the top 10% of the salespeople can sell the product, but the average salesperson can’t. Poor quality sales messaging is frequently the cause of product shelfware.

3) Reduces the cost of sales

  • Improved messaging increases the close rate and reduces the number of sales calls required to do so because the customer value being offered is clear and with evidence.

Use a diagnostic process for more consistent implementation

  1. Review the “top 10” sales messaging deficiencies to see if the issues are identified.
  2. Check the material being sent to sales people –  before it is sent!
  3. Use a checklist to ensure the quality and completeness of the information being provided.

Make certain your content and messaging is sufficient for the average salesperson to cost effectively close the sale. Would you like a copy of the checklist? Check out the 9 Sales Enablement Content Imperatives.

Here is another article by Bud: 10 Message Deficiencies.  Contact us to schedule a discussion.

This is a guest post by Bud Hyler – a member of the Revenue Architects’ expert network.

Better Salespeople Need Less Sales Enablement Content

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Generating revenue and winning customers requires a balance of good content and confident sales. Design your sales enablement content around what your medium-skilled salespeople need.

Bad Sales Guy

Your top salespeople have sufficient confidence and sales skill that they don’t need a lot of content to be successful in their sales efforts. However an average salesperson with less confidence and less sales skill will require much more content.  Top sales people usually need less content because they are able to develop a greater level of customer relationship and trust.

One of the responsibilities of sales management is to specify the content requirements that sufficiently augments the sales skills of the average salesperson so that revenue is successfully generated.

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