Did you know that 80% of all sales teams consist of people that are NOT sales “superstars,” as in people that are so darn good at their craft, they can pretty much sell anything, to anyone, at any time? So…If you’re responsible for sales in your company or have a team that is, chances are most of you don’t fall into the “super” category (ouch – sorry about that.)
But, there is GOOD news, just because you don’t have super selling powers doesn’t mean you can’t be incredibly successful. What it means is you need “super tools” to help you get the job done right and that’s where having a persuasive sales process comes in.
A sales process, when done correctly should turn leads into customers much like playing a baseball game. You’d love to hit a home run every time, but the game is really won on first and second base hits. This is where your focus should be. And like baseball, where you don’t get to skip third base to speed your journey to home plate, you must also make sure you touch every milestone within your sales process.
Not doing so can result in wasted time quoting or selling to unqualified opportunities.
So, you need to make sure you have a clearly thought out step-by-step sales process, identifying your “milestones” along the way. To do that you need to walk through each step, and or prospect “touch point,” from prospecting to closing, making sure each step is documented, scripted and followed.
Here are the Four Steps of a Successful Sales Process:
Step One: Prospecting
This step defines the best ways to consistently find potential customers. The process may include telemarketing, knocking on doors, social media introductions or referral strategies. The key is to figure out how to quickly find the right candidates and effectively demonstrate credibility. Measure each effort until you find those that work consistently.
Step Two: Prospect Qualification
During this phase you’ll test the best questions to dig deep and determine if the prospect is truly a good fit for your company and its products or services. This phase may consist of one conversation or months of ongoing meetings depending on the complexity of the sale. What questions would you need to ask to uncover not only their basic needs, but those they may not be aware of? A successful qualification process will help put together a strong case for business.
Step Three: Demonstrate Value
Once you understand the customer’s true needs through successful prospect qualification questions, it’s time to reveal how your products and/or services will solve the prospects issues. The key to success here is determining the correct timing and presentation methodology of the solution. This phase may consist of written proposals, facility tours, product demonstrations or even third party reports. What would work best in your situation?
Step Four: Close and Onboard/Deliver
Closing the sale should be the easy part if you’ve done a thorough job during phases one through three, but it still requires testing to determine the best methodology. What question will you ask to finally get an answer? How easy will you make it to get started? Once the agreement is “inked,” we also highly recommend you have a process for onboarding a new customer. There’s nothing worse than bringing on a new client only to lose them before the delivery date because the handoff was handled poorly.
You know that sales are the lifeline of your company and now you know there’s a good chance you don’t have a team with “super sales powers,” so I hope it makes great sense to have a solid persuasive process in place that can make up the difference and deliver the remarkable results you deserve.