25 Apr Do you make best use of the easiest way to sell?
Do you make best use of the easiest way to sell?
Dan thought Ronald was much more than a boss. He was a mentor. Reveiws with Ronald were learning experiences. This one was no different. Leafing through Dan’s monthly sales report, Ronald complimented – “I like the new data points, you have brought in Dan. The booking trend graph, activity hours, opportunity pipeline, quota barometer and lead vintage all offer insights into the quantity, quality and direction of your team’s sales performance. The pipeline has a healthy length and the freshness of the leads is encouraging. Can I assume 3/4ths of your incremental numbers are from new Customers?” “Yes Ronald” agreed Dan, “Conversions are not easy but it’s a challenge my team and I love”. “You are doing great” Ronald said “But may be you are missing just one trick, an easy one at that”
Dan leaned forward, intrigued “What would that be Ronald?” Ronald smiled “I don’t want to give you the answer upfront. I can provide you a clue nevertheless. Your reports analyse the aging of leads. But do they go into the vintage of the Customers? Think about it and see if you can crack what I am getting at” [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
What was Ronald trying to tell Dan?
If you are looking for new Customers, first dig through your meticulously collected universe of prospects. That’s sales basics. But if it is new sales you want, where do you look? In case you are a seasoned salesperson, the contacts tab on your smart phone would be your favorite starting point. Selling more to existing Customers and getting more of them to come back to you is the easiest route to better top and bottom lines. Growing your share of the Customers wallet can be a smart strategy to grow your market share. Veteran salespersons always turn to their existing Customer base to bridge gaps in their sales quotas
Will a Customer be inclined to buy from you again? That of course, would depend upon the quality of your – (a) sales and (b) service. Of these, getting a higher share of rebuying through the sales route requires greater strategizing and preparation
To get your existing Customers to keep coming back to you, ask yourself these 3 key questions
- Where are we in this account?
This involves knowing and analyzing
- Our present status with the Customer
To appreciate our present standing with the Customer, you should assess the relative importance of various factors that determine the status we enjoy with the Customer. Such factors, for example, can include:
- Value of our products to the Customer
- Our share in Customer’s total purchases
- Factors behind Customer’s buying frequency
- Customer’s overall evaluation about us taking into account – Product + Service + Price
- Strength of our relationship with decision makers and influencers in the buyer company
More factors can be introduced relevant to specific Customers. You can then assess each of these factors in terms of degree of importance and classify them as (E) – Essential to know | (D) – Desirable to know | (U) Useful to know
- Our present way of working with the Customer
You can get a fair idea of the way you work with the Customer by classifying the methods and approach that your company uses with the Customer. These elements can also be grouped under (E), (D) and (U) will give you a sense of our present way of working with that Customer. These can include:
- List of contacts, hierarchy level wise
- Depth and quality of contacts
- System for maintaining information bank about the Customer
- Involvement in Customer’s training initiatives
- Management of information about Customer’s competition
- Customer’s involvement in our product development efforts
- Where do we want to be in this account?
Understanding this will require knowing your strategic result objectives with the concerned Customer over a time horizon of say, 3 to 6 months. Simply put, you lay down the milestones you wish to reach with the Customer. Some examples:
- Get the Customer to consider buying a new product from you
- Make Customer consider your company for a new requirement
- Make Customer accept a new quality standard
- Influence Customer’s attitude towards your company/technology/competition
- What will we do to get there?
Ask yourself two more questions and you can draw up a road map to get to where you want. Here are those questions:
- What are our strategic effort objectives?
These objectives too will be strategic in nature, except that they are focused on the efforts you would take. For instance –
- Change the way we make our offer
- Open up contacts with new people/departments in Customer’s company
- Try a new contact/promotional technique – say a seminar, product fair or reference visit
- Deploy fresh resources (Managers from other functions, test facilities, external specialists)
- What competitive tactics will we use?
Competitive tactics are unique and individual. You must pick and adapt what will work for you. Examples:
- Focus on products that are easiest to offer
- Offer a total concept technically or organizationally
- Education and training
- Joint technical development with Customer
- Special mailers
- Quality centric special offers – Like free testing, extended guarantees
Make the best use of the easiest way to sell. Access the Mercuri Insight document on Are your existing Customers coming back to you in enough numbers for a detailed discussion and a bank of action points to choose from
Now can you guess which trick, was Dan missing?
Sales Performance Improvement
Share of wallet
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