Most people have a slight trepidation when it comes to sales. They think that selling is a skill that only a few people possess and that you need to be an extrovert to sell better. Additionally, they get daunted by the emphasis that is set on targets by most companies. But sales is really not as tough as all that. All you need is a sales strategy and you can become the sales superstar in your company!
Don’t believe me? I was also as apprehensive when I started out, but 5 years in sales can teach you quite a bit! You would think that a typical sales process simply involves calling up all the leads that your marketing team passes and deals would simply happen. But you know that reality bites, and it’s not always as simple or as straight forward. But do not worry, I’ll share my sales strategy, that I have perfected over the years, with you.
My Sales Strategy:
When I started to sell, it took me some time to learn the ropes and to figure out how to go about the entire process. The same applies to you. Do not expect that you can do it with no effort unless of course, you are one of those rare beings who are born with an innate ability to sell. It will get easier as you go ahead and planning your sales approach will come more naturally to you. Now that I have set your expectations rights let’s take a look at my sales plan.
#1) Target Audience
One thing that you should always tell yourself before you set out is that your clients are not interested in knowing how awesome your product is. All they want to know is how it is going to benefit them. Which is why as a salesperson, you should vow to learn the product/service you are selling inside out.
Deep knowledge of my product helps me to create various buyer personas which I then categorize. This is because the fit of the product for each persona would vary, and hence what I say to them would likewise vary. Other than knowing the benefits and strong points of your product, you should also be familiar with the shortcomings of your product. Say, you are selling to a school or university and your product is incapable of managing admissions, then you should not be trying to sell it to them, simply because it doesn’t make any sense for them. Therefore, having a clear picture of who your target audience is, is the first step you should have in your sales strategy.
#2) Sales Prioritization
Today sales teams have it much easier as they don’t really have to worry about lead generation. Their marketing teams take care of that. They send over leads right to your desk on a daily basis. All you have to do is know who to prioritize.
If you have already created buyer personas like I told you before, the leads who match the most with these personas should be contacted first. However, do not ignore those leads who do not have an apparent fitment. Reach out to them also to find out why they have come in touch with your business. Having an awesome sales automation tool has only made my life easier. Each lead comes with a quality score, which tells me which leads are more likely to convert and therefore who needs to be contacted immediately.
Once you have figured out which lead to contact first, you now have to know how you are going to position your product/service to them. For this, you need to do your homework. I spend anywhere between a few minutes to a few hours trying to figure out what exactly the business does. Then I try to map out how my product can help them out.
Additionally, I also try to analyze the person that I am going to get in touch with. I look them up on social media to find out what they do and to find an icebreaker that can help me out. This step though not necessary has helped me in building a good rapport with my leads and has ultimately helped me in closing the deal.
Again, LeadSquared gives me detailed insights on the lead such as the lead source, pages he visited on the website, forms he has submitted, emails he has opened and more. This means I have more information to arm myself with before I set out to make the sale.
#4) Lead Engagement
If a lead signs up on the very first interaction, then you have just had a good day. Unfortunately, these good days are a rare occurrence and do not happen as often as we’d like. To push a lead towards sales, you need to keep them engaged. You can do this by sending them useful content such as webinars, e-books, white papers, etc which would be relevant to them.
You can do this by sending them useful content such as webinars, e-books, white papers, etc which would be relevant to them. You can also set up trigger based campaigns, to engage them based on their activities. You can also interact with them on social media, just make sure you don’t come off as a stalker.
Instead of calling them up regularly to check up on the status of the sale, simply talking to them to find out how they have been or how the business is doing is also a good way to win brownie points for yourself.
Regular follow-up is an indication to the lead that you are interested in signing them on a customer. It is also a good way to remind people that you wish to close the deal as soon as you can, and just give them that little extra push. I have found that many salespeople call once or twice and then give up. Some leads require a lot of cajoling and you should be willing to do that.
For me, this step is not just about calling up leads I am already in touch with, but also about checking my lead list to ensure that I have not missed out on any leads that have come my way. Setting aside some time every week for this task makes sure that I do not miss out on any opportunities.
So, this is my sales strategy and it works out pretty well for me. Of course, you may have a different approach to selling. But having a tool to help you would help you sell much better and efficiently. If you also want to use the same tool as me, you can try LeadSquared!
– Authored by, Susan Maria,
Business Development Manager
Now that you have your sales strategy is in place, let’s take a look at how you can manage a sales funnel.