Have you already tried increasing incentives and staging sales contests, only to see your sales numbers remaining flat? Here are six unusual but highly effective ways a company can improve sales productivity. Implemented and managed strategically, they can optimize revenues throughout even the largest and most dispersed sales departments.
- Identify & Propagate Best Practices. In most sales organizations, there are “A” players, “B” players and “C” players. The “A” players consistently perform at high levels and exceed expectations. “B” players are the workhorses who meet, but rarely if ever exceed quotas. “C” players are just trying to get through the day. In such a situation, an effective sales director asks, “What are my ‘A’ players doing that makes them successful – and how can I make my ‘B’ and ‘C’ players do the same?” Transforming an entire sales force into “A” players requires identifying and codifying Best Practices, creating a “template” of behaviors and protocols that becomes the organization standard. To optimize productivity, sales departments must train their people based on concepts proven to work in that company, and then regularly reinforce that training at established intervals – or whenever old, bad habits begin to reassert themselves.
- Standardize Brand Messaging. Larger companies often have sales offices situated throughout the country, or even the world. Growth can occur organically, or through the acquisition of smaller companies that have their own branding and corporate cultures. Under these circumstances, it can be difficult for a company to project the same brand image and message everywhere it operates. Yet such standardization is exactly what it necessary for a sales organization to be truly effective. To improve sales productivity, annually audit and, if necessary, update all your sales tools, including brochures, product data sheets, newsletters, etc. so that branding and messaging remain consistent and relevant.
- Get the Right Tools into the Hands of the People Who Need Them. Even the most skilled carpenter needs quality tools to do a job well. Likewise, field salespeople need tools like brochures, sales sheets and Success Stories to close deals and generate revenue. Often, such tools need to be customized to meet the needs of local markets. Do your salespeople have the tools they need to work effectively? If you don’t know for sure – ask them!
- Invest in Proposal Automation. If your salespeople spend time writing formal bids and proposals, it’s probably worth investing in proposal automation. Proposal automation allows salespeople to create more proposals in less time, often boosting monthly sales by an average 30 percent. Proposal automation also raises a company’s level of professionalism by ensuring that all bids and proposals conform to an established visual and messaging template. Salespeople using a proposal automation system don’t have to constantly scramble looking for old proposals from which to copy layouts, language or graphics. They can instead concentrate on strategy and solutions.
- Follow the Customer Through the Entire Sales Cycle. Many companies focus on acquiring new customers and then leave it there. But countless studies show that current customers are actually more valuable than new ones, generating repeat business lower costs. To optimize revenues, a sales organization should regularly monitor customer satisfaction, focus on customer retention and seek ways to “upsell” existing customers with new or expanded products or services.
- Sell Your Success. Skeptical prospects can often be persuaded by third-party testimonials and documented examples of how a company has recently succeeded with other customers. Companies that practice Success Story Marketing are able to build credibility with prospects and credentialize themselves as reliable, trustworthy sources for specific products, services or solutions. For a FREE GUIDE on how to create your own Success Story Program, CLICK HERE.
Tools & Technology to Improve Sales Productivity
The Peterson Group (TPG) specializes in helping companies of all sizes improve their sales productivity. Our Tools that Sell® and Technologies that Deliver® help companies improve individual sales performance and generate more revenue over time.
For more information, visit www.go4tpg.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.