“The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak” – Hans Hofmann.
The sales process is a sequence of organized and value-added procedures which help achieve a predetermined sales goal.
According to Kotler and Armstrong, the sales process has been divided into several steps namely prospecting & qualifying stage, pre-approach & approach stage, presentation & demonstration stage, objection handling stage, closing, and follow-up stage.
Sales evangelists should tweak every method of the sales process to snare high-quality leads. They should also accurately pinpoint any leaks in the sales process to seal the deal. The entire sales processes can be elegantly obtained through the sales funnel.
The sales funnel exhibits the prospective buyer at the top and few percentages of prospects are successfully converted into the next stage. The funnel gradually narrows down as the process continues. Having a tool that effectively displays the sales funnel helps in simplifying the sales process.
Discipline is another sales hack that can be developed through practice. B2B selling involves more of a personal selling approach because of the bulk order value and fewer buyers. Here, buyers and sellers have long-term business relationships. Hence, implementation of relationship management strategy by the organization is vital for a business to success.
Since the long-term relationship is involved, more prominence is given towards building personal contacts. Adding a note, inputting details regarding what to bring up during the meetings, sending automated messages for prospects saying ‘Thank You’ or ‘Happy Weekend’ can help build a better relationship. Better discipline equals good follow-up leads.
Having the right discipline helps the sales personnel to understand products and deliver the right solution for the customer. Customers feel happy when they hear that the enterprise remembers their previous conversations and a value for customer’s time can be created through discipline. Since a good business can only be built on trust for it to succeed, it’s imperative that one has to have good discipline during the sales process.
This can eventually lead to referrals. Referrals are obtained only through the right discipline and networking. CRM software can help create a loyal customer database for getting referrals.
“Get your stinking paws off me, you damned dirty ape!’’ – Planet of the Apes, 1968
Don’t let your potential prospects say this to you!
Prospecting involves identifying qualified customers. Approaching the right candidate at the right time is the key to boost sales. Prospects can be qualified by their financial capabilities, location and growth possibilities.
Many recruitment consultancies call up potential leads after they’ve joined another organization or one who isn’t interested as the data is not handled efficiently. Data is stored on a spreadsheet instead of CRM software.
It is high time that recruitment firms make use of CRM software for better handling of prospect data. Prospects can also be searched on newspapers, journals, phone contacts and web directories.
Tweaking the other stages
For the pre-approach stage, the sales personnel should learn as much as possible about the organization and should follow the best practice while approaching prospects. Whether it’s through phone, email or personal visit, the timing of approach is crucial for closing the deal. For the presentation, the sales person’s story should bring value to the buyer.
A good presenter is one who can understand the different types of customers and one who asks questions. Deal closure can be done by asking for the order and reviewing points of agreements. A follow-up call or meeting should be done to assure the buyer of a sales person’s interest and to reduce buyers concern.
Other ways of catching the big enchilada
There are also multiple different ways of catching the big enchilada. They can be caught through social media, networking, YouTube or Google AdWords. A successful entrepreneur takes you out for a cup of coffee or lunch. He has mastered the art of influencing people. While cold calling prospects, never use a script. Pitching should be energetic and also proper telephone etiquettes should be followed.
Maintaining customer relationships
CRM software is the Holy Grail of the sales process. The most powerful paraphernalia for maintaining relationships are new products, powerful leaders, influencers and industry experts. Good relationships can be honed for future references by using CRM software.
Maintaining customer relationship by creating a positive environment and growing through ideas and sales community is the approach that has to be followed. From a simple handshake to flashy emails with classy subject lines, it all plays a big role in netting quality prospects.
Call to action and getting into the customer’s shoe
Call to action is a statement that brings about the quick response from the person hearing or reading it. Nothing happens unless somebody takes them into action. Call to actions is necessary for directing a prospect to the next level of the sales funnel or process. The target market can easily respond through action.
Call to action can be used on calls or emails. Giving a sense of urgency for customers can create a feeling of missing out and works best when they are simplified. Paraphrasing and listening to potential prospects or buyers can also do wonders. Choosing the right client and mastering the art of persuasion helps levitate the sales process and can give you an edge over the crowd.
These are some of the ways of simplifying the sales process.
Try playing catch me if you can now!