HOW TO BUILD A WORLD-CLASS SALES TEAM

Rock-Star Sales Team

You may have the best product or service out there, but if you lack a high-performing sales team, chances are your business will suffer. As anyone who’s ever been in (or dealt with) sales knows, it takes a combination of locating a person with the right sales traits and skills, combined with the best approach to training and guidance, to get the desired result.

HERE ARE TIPS ON BUILDING A WORLD-CLASS SALES TEAM FOR YOUR COMPANY:

HIRE WISELY.

The hiring process is most effectively employed with a multi-phase approach. Start by identifying the specific needs your business has in the area of sales. From there, craft a succinct and compelling job description that helps weed out inappropriate candidates and narrows the range of applicants for the open position.

Focus on attracting people with a background that closely resembles your business and industry. As sales expert Laurence Bret-Stern observes, “While it is important to be open-minded about experience and background—the experience must be relevant.” A person “with five years’ manufacturing sales is unlikely to be appropriate for your property business.”

TAKE A SYSTEMATIC APPROACH TO THE INTERVIEW PROCESS.

Interviewing candidates for a sales position is a key element in choosing the right person for the job. Ask each candidate why they want to work for you. Their answers will indicate whether or not they’ve done the necessary “due diligence” on your business beforehand—a useful trait for researching and contacting potential customers on your company’s behalf.

In addition to asking the right questions about past sales experience, knowledge of sales cycles, their process for closing a deal, etc., pay close attention to the candidate’s attitude and demeanor. “The way salespeople sell themselves is the way you can expect them to sell your product or service,” notes sales and customer service expert Wendy Connick.

With the right individual in place, here are suggestions for guidance and support:

PROVIDE THE BEST SALES TECHNOLOGY RESOURCES AVAILABLE.

In today’s digital era, no business can hope to compete without a strong investment in sales performance technology. At the very least, you need a powerful CRM platform so your sales team can track important metrics and update every transaction with prospects up to and including a closed sale.

Other sales-related tasks that once had to be performed manually now require significantly less time and effort due to automation. Email software, for example, automates follow-up messages to prospects, messages that can be personalized and closely tracked for data-collection and other purposes. Whatever technology can do to reduce or eliminate process-oriented drudgery  will help your sales team focus on what’s most important—sales themselves.

STRENGTHEN YOUR TEAM WITH TRAINING AND COACHING.

Training in specific areas can enable even your best sales reps to fill in gaps in their experience. Plenty of online sales training courses are available and may be customised for your company’s unique needs. When a salesperson has the opportunity to take part in webinars, attend sales conferences or engage in other learning activities, they can collaborate and share new ideas, but also become re-energised about the entire sales process.

Just as importantly, on-the-job coaching can work wonders with motivated salespeople. Where possible, look for mentoring opportunities that partner a veteran sales team member with an up-and-coming rookie. Or let more experienced sales reps accompany newbies on a sales call and then offer helpful criticism to better achieve their goals. This type of focused interaction and collaboration helps make the entire team stronger.

Every business seeks enthusiastic, hard-working salespeople. By hiring wisely, offering top-notch technical support and coaching for success, you greatly increase the odds that your team will emerge with a deep bench of sales rock-stars for years to come.

 

4 Tips for More Effective B2B Lead Generation

In the perennial search for B2B sales leads, the equation always seems to come down to quantity versus quality. Any campaign that generates a ton of sales leads is well worth the effort, isn’t it? Or is it more effective to analyse and isolate those elements that lead to more qualified sales leads, even if it takes more work and time to come up with those leads?

Whatever the answer, a majority of those engaged in B2B marketing and sales report that “lead generation remains the top challenge” in their companies.

If this holds true for your organisation, here are four tips to generate more effective and qualified B2B sales leads:

Keep faith with email campaigns. Sales experts seem to go back and forth about the overall effectiveness of email campaigns to generate leads. But if you haven’t embarked on such a campaign for a while, it may be worth trying again. The following steps can lead to more achievable results:

  • Resurrect an old or neglected existing email list.
  • Assemble a new email list from your social media contacts, particularly those on LinkedIn.
  • Focus on a concise, compelling email message that answers the prospect’s key question, “What’s in it for me?”
  • Closely monitor who clicks on and opens your email message and target them accordingly.

Expand your social media efforts. Speaking of LinkedIn, how much time and effort does your sales team put into making new connections and developing relationships within your target audience? The process demands time and patience, but building a solid relationship paves the way to setting in-person appointments and/or sharing product demos with the right individual in the right organisation.

Make a renewed commitment to quality content. Social media, in general, remains a fertile landscape for B2B sales leads. A key component of social media sales strategies is providing content of quality to prospects—as a means of demonstrating your specific industry knowledge and a willingness to share that knowledge with others.

“Content” doesn’t mean written text only, not by any means. Today’s buyers are drawn to images, video, infographics and other interactive content that gives them a kind of “hands-on” feel for what you have to say. As we’ve noted before, however, valuable content comes free of the typical hard sell. Instead, the goal is establishing you and your business as thought leaders who offer the kind of insights and information your prospective customers want in order to succeed in their own endeavours.

Host virtual events. Increasingly, B2B and other businesses are exploring the potential of “virtual event platforms” in the realm of sales and marketing. These carefully planned and orchestrated online events can produce, with the right attention to detail, generate new sales leads. Sales strategist Hurera Sheikh offers these virtual event planning tips:

  • Create a simple, easy-to-navigate registration page and don’t skimp on intriguing content and crisp imagery.
  • During a live event, staff virtual booths and help desks to “maximise the contacts exchanged over the booths.”
  • Leverage high-quality live or pre-recorded webinars to get participants engaged in the event.
  • Offer a seamless online transaction process. If sales opportunities arise during the live event, make sure your PayPal or debit/credit card integration process is fully operational to meet any kind of demand.

By renewing dormant lead-generation tools and exploring new, high-tech options, you can see a spike in B2B sales in 2018 and beyond.

Want more advice on sales and lead generation? Find out if a TAB Board is right for you!

 
Show Buttons
Hide Buttons