How can you come up with the most successful and efficient sales strategy? There’s a lot of advice out there that says you’re ready if you have a defined plan, a good process, and a bullpen full of reps who know your solution inside and out.
That’s not entirely true.
The problem is that most sales tactics are too focused on the internal market. They chronicle internal procedures, but they overlook the messages and abilities that salespeople need to demonstrate value to prospects and customers.
In other words, your sales strategy won’t help you make more sales if your sales staff can’t explain value—why your solution is different, better, and worth more.
So, what are your options?
You’ll learn certain tips for creating a successful sales planning strategy in this post. Each one is backed by behavioral science and has been thoroughly tested for use in B2B sales settings.
But first, take a step back and define exactly what it means to develop a successful sales plan.
What is the definition of a sales strategy?
A sales planning strategy is a written plan for positioning and selling your product or service to qualified consumers in a way that sets it apart from the competition.
Sales plans are intended to equip your sales team with defined goals and direction. Growth goals, KPIs, buyer profiles, sales procedures, team structure, competitive analysis, product positioning, and particular selling strategies are generally included.
The majority of these rules can assist you to communicate goals and keeping your salespeople on the same page. Most sales plans, on the other hand, fall short because they are excessively focused on your company’s internal operations. The actual abilities required to have effective conversations with customers, as well as the messages agents must deliver, are essentially an afterthought.
When it comes down to it, every sales strategy’s purpose is to ensure that your salespeople meet their quota, right? And the message element—what salespeople say, do, and write to create perceived value—determines whether the business is won or lost.
The focus of your company’s sales planning strategy should be on client conversations if it is to be truly effective. These well-conducted dialogues are what distinguish your firm from the competition by creating a unique buying experience, demonstrating value to your customers, and setting you apart from the competition. An effective sales plan will also help in revenue acceleration.
With that in mind, here are some considerations to make while developing a sales strategy.
1. In your communications, provide a compelling value proposition.
The majority of prospects are either unaware of or unable to describe the core issues they face on a daily basis. As a result, even if you sell a truly exceptional product, your customers are unlikely to understand the true value you bring to their company. That is why you must craft an effective and convincing message.
In fact, compared to vendors within a group of commodity suppliers, 74 percent of senior buyers will offer their business to a company that demonstrates a buying vision, according to Forrester’s research.
This isn’t just about extolling the virtues of your goods in the hopes that your buyer would choose you over your competitors. That method only puts you on par with similar solutions in terms of value, and it forces a bake-off.
Create a buying vision that identifies a new set of challenges that connect with your specific strengths, rather than talking about what you do and why you think you can do it better. Using tales and insights, this strong value proposition will discover previously Unconsidered Needs for your target, create contrast, and push the pressure to change.
2. Instill a sense of urgency for change
The majority of businesses unwittingly set themselves up for a feature and benefit bake-off. They respond to the question, “Why should I select you?” for their prospects. However, they are skipping a crucial first stage in the process.
The truth is that most purchasers would rather do nothing than make a change. In fact, rather than competitors, 60 percent of opportunities in the pipeline are lost due to “no decision.”
Change is associated with threat and risk, but staying the same is safe and comforting. To overcome Status Quo Bias and persuade prospects to leave their current circumstances, you must create a compelling tale about why they should change, and why they should change now.
Understanding your true competitor—the status quo—is essential for a successful sales approach. Before you try to persuade your prospects to pick you, assist them in making the decision to change. Answering these questions sets the tone for your buyer’s whole Deciding Journey and differentiates your solution.
3. Tell a story that is both fascinating and unforgettable.
When salespeople prepare for meetings with prospects, they normally concentrate on getting all of the facts about their products and services straight. However, even the most accurate data will fall flat if you can’t make a lasting connection with your clients.
Personal stories, metaphors, and analogies can help bring your message to life in a more captivating way than merely reciting statistics and figures. Storytelling creates a vivid picture for your customers, highlighting the difference between their current condition and what’s conceivable, and relating what you have to offer to their specific scenario.
Your customer interactions will become deeper and more fulfilling once you start sharing stories in your sales conversations.
4. Focus on the customer’s decision-making process rather than your sales procedure.
A sales process is a series of stages that a salesman does to persuade a prospect to buy something. Prospecting, qualifying, discovering needs, negotiating, and closing are all common processes in the sales process. This would be an ideal checklist to follow if all your buyers were robots being taken through an assembly line. But it is simply not the case.
Selling today isn’t a predictable progression that you’ve decided is how your prospects and customers should buy. What you’re really up against today is a Customer Deciding Journey—a series of key questions your buyers are asking as they look to address specific business goals.
Instead of being “program-centric” with a one-size-fits-all sales strategy, you need to be problem-centric, addressing the specific needs of your buyers as they arise with situationally relevant messages, content, and the skills to deliver them.