BLOG

NORTH AMERICA’S PREMIER SALES RECRUITMENT AGENCY


02_ebooklargecta_blog
ebook-cta1

Sign In to SalesForce Search

Email Address

Password

Forgot your password? Click Here

Join SalesForce Search Today!

First name
Last name
Email

Password
Confirm Password

Already Have An Account ? Sign In

Follow Us

Subscribe via E-mail

Your email:

Posts by category

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

The Top 5 Sales People You Should Be Following on Twitter

  
  
  

the top 5 sales people you should be following on twitterSales people paying the slightest bit of attention in the past decade know the value of Twitter. Top sales agents and gurus around the world congregate on the service, offering bite-sized tips and links to the important news, blog posts, and other information sales people want to see. Following the best and brightest in the industry serves as a powerful glimpse into greatness, useful whether you're a beginner or on that same playing level. The only problem lay in identifying the best sales people to follow on Twitter, but have no fear--we've compiled a list of five key players and gurus you'll want popping up on your feed.

@jillkonrath - Jill Konrath.

One of sales' best-known thinkers, speakers, and innovators, Jill Konrath turned from unknown consultant to international sales strategy juggernaut after losing her business and rebuilding herself from the ground up in 2000. She tweets throughout the day, posting original content, links to her other online material, and links to other worthwhile videos, blog posts, and news articles related to sales. 

@ArtSobczak - Art Sobczak.

For 30 years, Business By Phone President Art Sobczak has taught sales people the art of phone sales. Best known for his cold calling and inside sales advice, Sobczak's Smart Calling blog and various books have been repeatedly recognized as top-notch resources for any sales person looking to develop their trade. His Twitter account updates several times throughout the day, with links to Sobczak's other work online and other guru's work that's caught his eye.

@gerhard20 - Gerhard Gschwandtner.

The Founder and CEO of Selling Power, Inc., producer of Selling Power magazine, SellingPower.com, and other sales resources, Gschwandtner offers powerful advice for anyone in the sales game, from beginning front-liners to executives. Subscribing to his Twitter account is probably the best way to keep track of all the things he and his company have going, with updates throughout the day every day.   

@bridgegroupinc - Trish Bertuzzi.

The President and Chief Strategist of The Bridge Group, Inc., Trish Bertuzzi offers unique insight into phone, web, and social media aspects of inside sales. Trish updates throughout the day, offering a mix of original Twitter content, blog referrals, and links to anything else she finds that might catch a sales person's interest.

@iannarino - Anthony Iannarino.

Writer for sales and sales management blog TheSalesBlog.com, Anthony Iannarino offers insight with a more personal edge than some of the others on this list. If you're looking for a guru you can chat with on Twitter, one that offers organic sales advice with personal examples and a natural voice, Iannarino's the guy you want to follow. He's very active on Twitter, posting links and original content throughout the day.

There are many other sales people worth following on Twitter, but these five work as an excellent jumping-off point. If you want a longer list, look through whose work your favorites have linked to, who they, in turn, follow, and who they mention by name. You'll quickly assemble a list of people worth listening to on all things sales--as long as list as you could possibly want.

Job Search Readiness Assessment

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

7 Steps to Effective Sales Delegation

  
  
  

7 steps to effective sales delegationSales delegation doesn't always come naturally to those it can most benefit. There's an element of self-reliant, goal-oriented focus in the top workers that doesn't always leave room in a salesperson or team leader's mind for proper sales delegation. But ensuring that the best man or woman for a job is the one doing it and spending your own time on the things only you can do will benefit everyone's bottom line, handled properly. Of course, doing sales delegation right means more than tossing a to-do list on a co-worker’s desk. In this article, we'll discuss seven key steps in making sure your sales delegation is done right and your delegated tasks are done and ready when they need to be.

Step #1: Identify the task.

That means specifics, not vagaries. You can't very well delegate a task unless you can clearly define that task. Don't try to hand off something when you don't really know the full extent of what you're handing off. That said, knowing the task is only half the battle--far more important for sales delegation is your ability to...  

Step #2: Identify the result you want.

When you take on a task personally, you have a result you're aiming for, a goal you set yourself and pursue. Effective sales delegation means having someone else get you that same result--it's not enough to hand a task off and get back an inferior result, or something you can't work with because it's not right for your methods. The task and how it's performed in many ways matters less than the outcome. That's something to keep in mind for the next step.

Step #3: Find someone who can get you that result.

If you don't understand what the people around you are capable of, what their strengths, weaknesses, and schedules look like, any sales delegation you do is doomed to failure. Your goal is to set the task to someone who can achieve the same or better results with as much or less time put in--if you can do that consistently, everyone involved comes out ahead. 

Step #4: Explain the reasoning behind the sales delegation.

Whether your sales delegation is to a subordinate or a peer, explaining the reasoning behind selecting that person will go a long way toward better outcomes. With a subordinate, you can better impress upon them their value to the company and achieve better worker morale. With a peer, your ability to 'sell' the sales delegation as being in everyone's best interest can determine whether it even gets done.

Step #5: Explain how doing the task benefits the person you're delegating to.

Again, this is important regardless of whether you're talking to a subordinate or peer. Benefits can include any range of tangibles or intangibles--a favor owed, financial reward, networking opportunities, the chance to stand out come promotion time. More than anything, this will determine how often and how effectively you can delegate to people who aren't obligated to do things for you. 

Step #6: Make sure the task and deadlines associated are understood.

Poor communication ruins sales delegation like nothing else. Leave nothing vague, leave nothing unsaid, ask questions and make sure you've been understood. A fuller understanding of the task leads to faster turnarounds and superior results, so don't rush off and leave questions in the air--you'll pay that time back with interest.

Step #7: Follow up.

Check in when you expect milestones to have been met; don't harass the person you've delegated to, but keep yourself in the loop and the task in their mind. When the task is complete, recognize it any way you can. Whether you're dealing with a subordinate or peer, making it clear how much you appreciate the work done will boost morale and give you better results in future cases of sales delegation.

5 Traits of a Great Sales Manager

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

How to Use Social Media for Sales Prospecting

  
  
  

how to use social media for sales prospectingThe old methods of sales prospecting are not as effective as they once were. People aren't always home or at their places of business, and when they are, they don't always pick up the phone. Where are people today? They're on social media, so figuring out how to use social media for sales prospecting can give you a real edge.

Before we talk about how to use social media for sales prospecting, let's talk about how not to use social media for prospecting.

As a Closing Tool

Generally speaking, social media is not the best venue for closing a sale. It's too open, too informal, and too easy to get off track. However, social media is a great opening tool. It's a way to create warm leads with people you may or may not know in person.

How do you create a warm lead via social media?

Get involved. Create social media profiles that look professional, and then behave professionally as you interact with other people online. Be helpful and generous with your expertise, and people will come to you when they need your advice.

As a Platform for Pestering

Want to buy my products? You really should buy my products. Do you want to? Huh? Huh?

How likely is it that you'll make friends with this sort of tactic? Put yourself in your contacts' shoes and think about what they would like to hear from their colleagues each day. Nobody wants to be pestered into a business relationship, so avoid these kinds of posts at all cost.

As a Personal Social Outlet

Crossing business and personal life can be very tricky, especially on social media. If you've spent any time at all on social media, you've seen this happen. You get a Facebook friend request from your dentist, and suddenly you know all about his downer-of-a-vacation to his sister Sandy's house and his bad reactions to seafood. Suddenly, things feel a little strange at your dental check-ups. Don't put other people in uncomfortable situations.

There are a couple of ways to avoid this problem. One way is to have separate profiles for your professional and personal lives. Another way is to avoid using social media for personal reasons altogether. Whatever you decide, keep your professional life professional.

Now that you know what not to do, let's look at a few things you can do to get started sales prospecting on social media.

Become a Thought Leader

If you can become known as "the one with all the answers," warm openings will be a piece of cake on social media. Answer contacts' questions when you know the answer, and add great content to your social media profiles on a regular basis.

Join Some Groups

Social media groups, like LinkedIn groups and Hashtag Chats, are a great way to meet people in your industry and make new contacts. Get involved with the discussions you find on these groups. As mentioned before, be kind and helpful as you interact with others, and give others credit where credit is due.

Start Conversations

Your social media conversations don't have to always be about your company, services, or products. In fact, if you only talk about what you have to offer, you might to start like that pest we mentioned above. Try to strike a balance with your topics, but be sociable no matter what you're talking about. Introduce people you know to each other, and you'll find introductions coming your way, too. The more people you know, the more likely it is that you'll be successful at sales prospecting on social media.

You don't have anything to lose. Social media is free, and it could lead you to an increase in sales, contacts, and networking possibilities.

A CEO's Guide to The Future of Selling

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

5 Sales Training Tips for Novices

  
  
  

5 sales training tips for sales peopleSales novices have a much better chance of succeeding if they're trained well right from the start. Those who enter sales jobs without any guidance or training may find themselves frustrated and disheartened before they've really given the field a fighting chance. That's why the following sales tips are so important. They're a guide to helping novices gain a solid footing in their chosen careers. With a solid foundation, novices can attain their goals. Begin with incorporating one sales training tip into your week, and go from there.

Sales Training Tip #1: Commit

Novices who go into a sales job with a "we'll give it a try and see how it goes" attitude find that they never make much headway. If you want to do well, it's important to commit today to a concrete goal. For example, you could decide that you want to join the top 10% of salespeople in your organization within a year. This measurable, schedule-driven goal will give you the motivation you need to succeed.

Sales Training Tip #2: Identify Your Weaknesses

What? Isn't sales training supposed to be motivational? Yes, but if you really want to meet that top 10% goal, you're going to have to quickly figure out how to be the best salesperson you can possibly be. If you're not sure what your weaknesses are, ask your boss or another person you trust what you can work on to be a better salesperson. When you discover your weaknesses, write them down and make goals to work on those issues every single day. Although this can be difficult, it will help you to reap great rewards in your career.

Sales Training Tip #3: Find Your Mentors

When you surround yourself with positive, successful people, you will be invigorated by energy, good ideas, and motivation. On the other hand, if you hang out with critical, pessimistic people, you'll adopt their attitudes, which will not help you at all in sales. In your new sales position, look for the members of your sales team who appear to be happy with their jobs and always work hard. They're the ones who can help you.

Sales Training Tip #4: Get in Shape

If you're carrying around a spare tire and don't have any energy first thing in the morning, it's going to be tough to give your new sales job 100%. You can start having more energy today by eating better, getting more sleep, and spending a little more time exercising. You'll be surprised by how much your physical state can affect your sales success. When you feel good, you can work harder and longer.

Sales Training Tip #5: Review, Review, Review

Get into the habit of reviewing your performance after every single sales call, even the successful ones. There is something to learn from every experience, and if you take the time to review your performance and think about what to do better next time, you'll find yourself on a winning trajectory. If you have another sales rep with you, talk over the experience together. This can be an especially useful sales training tip for those who are naturally shy and nervous about speaking with new people. By consciously thinking about your conversations and presentations before and after the sales calls, you'll gain confidence in your ability to sell.

Start by incorporating just one sales training tip into your day if you feel overwhelmed. Slowly add another sales training tip and then another one. If you're truly committed to finding success in your field, you will do it.

Find Sales Jobs

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

The Top 5 Sales Blogs You Should Be Reading

  
  
  

the top 5 sales blogs you should be readingIn recent years, sales blogs have matured into a reliable, arguably superior alternative to the columns in your favorite business publications. Of course, without a 'gatekeeper', separating the wheat from the chaff can become such an endeavor that the time invested costs more than any nuggets of wisdom you might prospect from the good sales blogs. Fortunately, this article will do some of that work for you, with five must-read sales blogs to keep you on top of thought-provoking musings from sales gurus, hot tips related to new game-changers, and advice for developing your sales game suitable to any level of expertise.

#1 Salesforce.

As one of the biggest providers of CRM software and related sales platforms on the market, you're probably familiar with the company. But hidden behind the powerful software company is an equally potent contender that stands out from the mass of afterthought sales blogs every company seems to run. Stop by every few days for the latest tips from well-known industry leaders.

Check out their blog here.

#2 Predictable Revenue.

Aaron Ross, author of the bestselling award-winner "Predictable Revenue", offers unique insight into sales news, original case studies, and of course fresh sales tips on an infrequent basis. While updates only show up every few weeks, Aaron Ross offers a lot you won't find on other sales blogs--definitely worth reading the backlog then subscribing via email or RSS feed, so you won't miss anything.

Check out their blog here.

#3 Sales Benchmark Index.

The group of executive-level thinkers behind the Sales Benchmark Index sales blogs definitely feels more purposeful and focused than the groups behind other sales blogs. The group offers insight into all aspects of sales effectiveness through daily posts. You're missing a lot if you're missing out on this.

Check out their blog here.

#4 Sales Pro Insider.

Updated every few weeks by Sales Pro Insider, Nancy Bleeke, another unique voice in the sea of sales blogs. The infrequent updates make this an easier follow than some of the other sales blogs on the list, which can risk getting a bit repetitive with their daily updates. When Nancy Bleeke updates, you know she has something different and interesting to say--not just a retread of whatever she said yesterday.

Check out their blog here.

#5 Smart Calling Blog.

In 2010, Art Sobczak's Smart Calling was recognized as the top sales book of the year. It should come as no surprise, then, that his entry in the realm of sales blogs stands equally strong against the competition. Whether you're looking for advice on cold calling, inside sales, PR management, motivating yourself, or anything else directly or tangentially related to sales and marketing, this should be on your list of sales blogs to read. Sobczak updates every few days, just often enough to keep your attention without drowning you.

Check out their blog here.

Of course, you should keep reading the SalesForce Search blog if you're not already a regular visitor. Whether you're a top-level decision maker, the leader of a sales team, or someone just looking to get into sales at the ground floor, you'll find tips tailored to make you better at your job and insight into the sales industry as a whole.

Find Sales Jobs

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

How Great Sales People Learn

  
  
  

how great sales people learnGreat sales people rarely start great. It takes polish and effort to turn talent into greatness: sales is part science, part art, and no amount of genius lets a sales person skip straight to the top tier. That's a fortunate thing for most readers--you, or the people on your team, may not rank in the numbers of the truly great sales people yet, but 'yet' is the key word. With proper teaching and self-guided learning, good sales people can and will become great sales people. The trick is in putting the time in and spending that time wisely. In this article we'll discuss a few of the learning strategies that most consistently lead to great sales people, to give you or those you're teaching their best shot at the big leagues.

Emphasize The Basics

Knowing your process, your industry, your product, your customers...mastery of the basics will always be important, whether you're a beginner or one of the great sales people of your industry. Without a rock solid foundation, you can't comfortably innovate and improvise. Why? Because to measure the effect of a given change, you need to be able to pull off 'standard' perfectly every time. If your basics are imperfect and unstable, you'll never be able to tell what a result of your innovation is and what a result of a fluke is.

Self-Analysis

Accurate self-analysis forms the core of all great sales people. Without an accurate understanding of your own strengths and weaknesses, you can't effectively learn to capitalize on those strengths and overcome those weaknesses. That means always questioning yourself--when a sale falls through, why did it fall through? How was it your fault (even if it wasn't your fault)? When you close a deal, where did the sales process drag?

Soft and hard data both play roles here. Hard data will give you the only unbiased information you can receive about yourself, information with all the perceptual bias stripped away. You'll be very hard-pressed to perfect your learning regimen without hard numbers from some metrics solution. Yes, great sales people existed before such accurate metrics, but with the same amount of talent, the greats of today can exceed the greats of yesteryear.

Learning Broadly, Learning Constantly

There are many moving parts in any sale. Great sales people never find themselves surprised by what a prospect has to say, by a change in the industry, by a bold move by a competitor. We avoid surprises by learning broadly. Knowing absolutely everything there is to know about your product is not enough to excel--you need to know about the competitor's product, about changes in consumer habits. If tomorrow, new legislation or Supreme Court ruling impacted you, would it come as a surprise?

One-on-One With A Coach

It's almost impossible to match the benefits of learning from an expert sales person. One-on-one coaching has been proven repeatedly to be one of the single strongest components for building great sales people. A good sales coach, someone who understands your strengths and weaknesses and can work with you using their own breadth of experience, cannot be replaced with any amount of broad advice or self-study. Without a one-on-one coach acting as a booster, you'll have to gain the benefits of tailored experience the hard way: by doing.

Practice, Practice, Practice

No amount of reading tips on the internet can give that final push that moves someone from the ranks of good sales people to great sales people. You can shorten the transition, you can figure out a blueprint for making the leap, but to make the final move takes real experience. Role-playing can act as a sort of Experience Lite, but eventually you'll need to take the things you've learned and bash them against real prospects.

Everything else you do to learn, you do so that when you're getting your hours in with prospects they aren't wasted.

5 Traits of a Great Sales Manager

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

How to Generate More Revenue With Your Existing Sales Team

  
  
  

how to generate more revenue with your exsisting sales teamExpanding the capability of your sales team and increasing the amount of revenue that they take in need not be a case of hiring new staff or training up new people. There are plenty of ways to reinvigorate your team and generate more revenue that don't involve hiring personnel changes, just by making a few tweaks to your strategy or helping your team in a few places they're having trouble can lead to a better performance all round.

Plug The Leaks

You can imagine your sales process like a series of connected pipes, each representing a different stage in the sale. Water flows through each of these pipes and eventually comes out the end (resulting in a purchase). The problem is that your pipes leak. While you'll never be completely watertight it is highly likely that if you get your sales team together and analyze where you lose sales you'll discover a lot of them happen at the same points in the process. You can then work together as a team to 'plug' these leaks and increase the amount of prospects that come through the process to completion, thereby helping to generate more revenue.

Increase The Productivity Of Your Sales Team

To do their job well your sales team need appropriate tools for the job such as marketing materials, CRM programs, and good lists of leads. How well are your current tools serving your sales team? If the only reason you're using them is because 'you've always done it that way' or because you haven't had time to find a replacement then this might be an opportunity to increase your team's productivity and generate more revenue. By providing some great tools for your team, you'll save them time that they're currently spending doing administrative tasks when they could be out selling your product. The investment in tools that help them do their job will also raise their morale because they'll feel invested in. When you do make changes to the tools your sales team use make sure they're the right changes - you want to make their lives easier not harder. Ask your team what they'd like or how they'd like to work and see if there is an appropriate resource that can help them work effectively in their preferred manner.

Encourage Your Team To Have A Great Attitude

Creating a great sales team is not just about what the individuals do, it's also about how they do it. We often encourage sales people to be competitive - but how does that work out in your team? You can be competitive with a great attitude, using failure as a motivational tool to work harder, or you can be competitive with a bad attitude, getting annoyed and angry when things don't go your way. Establish with your team what attitudes you expect from them and then help them to reach them. By sharing with people, the attitudes your company values those who want to be successful will work harder to embody those values and attitudes. If you do have someone on your sales team with a poor attitude don't shy away from talking to them - their bad attitude could be harming the whole team's performance, not just their own.

Whatever level your sales team is currently at, whether they are sales rookies or grizzled sales veterans, you can help them improve their performance. Good communication with your team is vitally important to find what areas they are having problems and where they think improvements can be made. If you do come across a problem, it can be a great team exercise to discuss it together - you'll find your team may come up with some great ideas that you wouldn't have thought of yourself, and by including them in the process you'll improve morale and help build a stronger team.

Sales Management Worksheet

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

5 Reasons Why You Should Use Sales Tips Videos on Your Website

  
  
  

5 reasons why you should use sales tip videos on your websiteIf you're looking to offer sales tips on your website, you should strongly consider implementing video if you've not already done so. Research has shown pronounced advantages in video learning over other methods, both in terms of individual learning preferences and overall teaching strength. Sales tips in particular benefit from certain aspects of video lessons, making the argument for their inclusion on your website all the stronger. In this article, we'll discuss just five of the many reasons your website should include sales tip videos.

#1 - The Audio and Visual Learning Advantage

The obvious advantage of adding sales tips in video form to your website lay in the power of visual learning. A significant portion of the population can't learn effectively from text on a page. They learn from hearing concepts explained or seeing them presented by a picture or physical demonstration.

Sales tips in particular benefit from being taught this way, as different forms of sales involve different mediums--teaching someone to hold a conversation with words on a page is difficult, as is teaching someone good layout for sales copy with spoken words alone. Videos on your website can offer any form of learning stimulus an individual may need to master a given set of sales tips.

#2 - The Social Learning Advantage

A more subtle advantage, but learning from videos keys our mind in a way that text cannot. A person speaking to you, explaining things aloud, stimulates your brain in a way that that same person could not with mere text. The greatest technical writers can simulate this experience, but it is only simulation--nothing compares with the efficacy of the real thing.

Much of learning comes down to the connections your brain creates to a particular fact--the more parts of your brain involved in learning sales tips or anything else, the more avenues for recall you create and the better you remember. So getting the social part of your brain involved matters quite a bit.

#3 - The Teacher Advantage

Related to the social learning advantage, actual teachers offer something text has difficulty conveying. It's arguably a flaw of textual learning that personality and asides are stripped away in favor of pure facts without detour. But the insight and anecdotes of individual with personal real-world experience with the sales tips you're reading can give a much firmer basis for learning and applying what you learn.

#4 - The Self-Direction Advantage

Videos work better for self-directed study, partially because videos are easier to pick up and put down than a text lesson. Sales tips on your website being self-directed study, it makes sense to present them in video format--the format most conducive to effective self-study.

#5 - The Broad Appeal Advantage

Presenting your sales tips in video form can only serve to broaden the appeal of your website; it won't narrow significantly narrow your audience. A site with text sales tips alone, however, loses those who only learn from videos. Why? Because any well-designed video can be transcribed and the sales tips offered within provided in a manner beneficial to text learners with minimal effort. The reverse takes far more effort and works less reliably.

Videos also broaden your audience in other ways. People who understand spoken language and images greatly outnumber those who understand written language alone. Whether your sales tips are in English or another language, they'll have a broader potential audience in video form than as text. 

A CEO's Guide to The Future of Selling

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

How to Develop a Solid Sales Plan

  
  
  

how to develop a solid sales planHow are your sales doing right now? If you're online googling "sales plan," you're probably looking for answers. When your sales aren't performing as you'd like them to, it's time to develop a solid sales plan that will help you to reach your goals.

To begin, start by answering the following four questions.

1. What can I do to reach my target audience?

2. How will I engage potential customers?

3. How can I stay in touch with current customers?

4. How can I prospect within my current customer base?

The answers to these questions will help you to develop a solid sales plan, which you can use to plan the strategies and schedules of your sales team. Let's look at what to do with the answers to each question.

1. What can I do to reach my target audience?

A successful sales plan helps you to find and reach the people who are looking for the solutions you have to offer. But how will you find these people? Every business is different, and what works in one industry won't necessarily work in another industry, but here are some possible tactics to consider:

  • Join professional groups or organizations that will help you to meet potential customers.
  • Personally visit a certain number of prospective clients each month.
  • Plan a free seminar that offers your unique solutions to customer needs. Offer incentives to those who attend.

2. How will I engage potential customers?

Once you've found potential customers, how will you engage them in conversations that will allow you to work through your sales process? Developing relationships of trust with new customers is an art. Use your sales plan to help you set goals to regularly engage with potential clients:

  • Post meaningful content on your social media accounts.
  • Create a blog and add helpful posts on a regular basis. Use the comments section of your blog to start conversations and answer questions.
  • Volunteer to speak to local organizations whose members would be interested in your products.

3. How can I stay in touch with current customers?

Making a sale is always great, but don't write your customers off once you've made that initial sale. Not only could they become repeat customers, but they could also be valuable contacts leading you to other repeat customers. Keeping in touch with your existing customer base is an important part of any organization's sales plan.

  • Create email newsletters filled with valuable information for your existing customers, and send out your newsletter at least once a month.
  • Develop feedback surveys as part of your sales plan. Surveys give you important feedback and help your customers to know you're concerned about their opinions.
  • Keep your website up to date. When your website or blog is full of cutting edge industry news, your customers will check in regularly to get the scoop.
  • Make it personal. Send your customers birthday cards or congratulations cards for the births of their children. Kindness and thoughtfulness go a long way.

4. How can I prospect within my current customer base?

You already have a base of people who are interested in your products and services. Don't neglect this group. Prospecting within your current customer base can be a hugely important part of your sales plan.

  • Include promotional flyers about new products with each order shipment.
  • Scan the social media profiles of existing customers to find out what their current needs and concerns are, and offer solutions for those concerns.
  • Schedule brief meetings or lunch dates with existing customers to learn about what you can do to help them further and find out if they have contacts you can work with.

By incorporating some of these to-dos into your sales plan, you can more effectively reach both your current customers and new customers. A solid sales plan will direct your sales team to higher success.

Job Search Readiness Assessment

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

5 Tips to Selling Your Value

  
  
  

describe the imageUnless your company is looking to slash margins to nothing, selling on price is a losing game for any sales team. That's why the best salespeople specialize in selling value: establishing clearly in a prospect's mind a gap in product quality, customer service, and other traits that makes your product worth the expense. Selling value has become all the more difficult and important a skill in recent years, as the internet has ruthlessly eliminated any obfuscation of pricing--if you have a cheaper competitor, 90% of customers will know that going in. So today, we're going to discuss five tips for selling value: selling something more than 'the cheapest solution'.

Pick Your Leads

Not all prospects respond to selling value; there's a significant number of buyers in any industry who will take the cheapest option above all others, dismissing any downsides for one reason or another.

For that reason, picking leads is important if you want to focus on selling value. It takes only a little research to spot the lost causes--if a company has nothing but 'cheap' solutions in place, you can be reasonably certain that they're not going to splurge on your product.

Form a Rapport

Your ability to form a rapport with prospects will be your single most important skill when selling value over price. You have to be someone the prospect wants to buy from, not with a higher price as a cash grab--regardless of the reality of your product versus competitors'. That's why the arrogant, slimy salesperson of Hollywood isn't the kind of person you see at the very top--being unlikeable is a death sentence in sales.

It's quite important to provoke investment from the prospect as soon as possible for this reason. Make them to spend time or resources on you, and they'll take a greater liking to you. It's basic psychology that every salesperson should use to their advantage. It also serves to shorten sales cycles, so it's well worth the effort.

Know The Industry

If you can't go toe to toe with your prospects in a discussion of the industry, your word will be worth nothing and you'll find selling value nigh impossible. That means knowing the competition, knowing how the industry is evolving, and being able to explain where your company and your product exist in that industry. If an innovation has occurred in the field that you don't know about, savvy prospects are going to go elsewhere.

Know Your Product

Knowing your product means knowing the answer to any strange question the prospect might throw at you. One of the keystones of selling value is knowing the things about your product that AREN'T in the standard pitch. If a prospect raises a common complaint, you should be able to respond with an immediate workaround, the sort of thing your current customers are already doing.

On the other hand, if you're confronted with an objection you know has no solution--lying isn't the option. Your relationship with the prospect is in many ways more important than the quality of your product; value is more than the contents of your product's box.

Customer Service Matters

The forgotten value. The number of excellent products that have lost sales because word-of-mouth decried their customer service should tell you exactly how important this is when selling value, but entirely too many sales teams and marketing divisions forget about the importance people place on customer service. Think of it this way--the rapport you create with a prospect is incredibly important. Every aspect of customer service can serve to strengthen or damage that rapport permanently.

A messy sales process, shoddy support, or a rude company representative going viral can kill your work selling value. Think of negative word-of-mouth you've heard in the past...and consider how much of it was customer-service based, not product quality based.

Find Sales Jobs

SalesForce Search specializes exclusively in sales recruiting across North America and serves small, medium and Fortune 500 companies. SalesForce Search helps companies find qualified sales people who will have an immediate impact on their sales targets.

All Posts