The world is filled with sales advice. Some great, some harmful, mostly outdated or ‘nice’.
‘Nice’ is helpful if you want a 30% sales boost. But what if you want a 300 percent increase? It happens more often and more methodically than you may realize...
Download your copy of “The Predictable Sales Revenue Machine” and see how you could triple your sales revenue.
What Drives Rapid Sales Growth?
Most think that adding salespeople and working them harder is what drives sales growth!
Lead generation drives growth; salespeople fulfill it. (Aaron Ross)
If you have an established, scalable lead generation strategy, only then can you create scalable revenue. How can we expect field salespeople to perform their duties, stay on target and generate pipeline, if they don’t know how to prospect in this market place?
I hear those of you saying; “rubbish”, when I was in sales we had to do everything from prospecting, sales and implementation. I’ve got news for you; things have changed and getting a steady stream of well-qualified meetings are not that easy anymore.
Why salespeople shouldn’t be the main source of prospecting in today’s environment?
- Most salespeople hate to prospect.
- Most salespeople aren’t very good at prospecting.
- Even if a rare salesperson prospects successfully, they become busy closing deals, and stop prospecting consistently. It's just not sustainable.
- The game has changed significantly over the past few years and most don’t generate a steady stream of qualified prospects
80% of the time, better & more lead generation is the key to unlocking faster, growth.
Specialisation Is The Key… Prospectors should prospect, closers should close. Specialising your sales roles is one of the most important things you can do to improve everything.
Lets talk Scalable Growth
”Work harder" and "make more calls" rarely scale sales. Don’t do more of what’s not working – rather fix the core systems first, then put more energy into them after they’re working correctly.
Great lead generation fixes a lot of sales problems.
Of course you only want to hire only great people, but the better your lead generation is, the less dependent you are on the quality of your salespeople and sales process and the better great salespeople will perform. You can have the most perfect sales process, but if your lead generation lags, you will struggle.
Equally, you can have a mediocre sales process, but still do well if you have great lead generation.
Want new salespeople to ramp FAST? Create pipeline for them to walk into.
Outbound Prospecting and Advanced Cold Calling
The outbound prospecting role is often treated as a low-level job. If you treat it that way, you’ll get low-level results. In most instances, this is left to field salespeople, and we can see the result of this strategy in most businesses…not so efficient!
A dedicated prospecting team with a successful process (which isn’t “make 200 calls a day”) is a very predictable way to create leads. And if you can create predictable leads, you can create predictable sales revenue.
Traditional cold calling is mostly ineffective, but an email-based approach, for instance, using simple text-based emails, followed up by a “warm” call, can generate 7-10% response rates.
Ever tried an approach where you deliver value before engaging a prospect? Tried sending a prospect a valuable whitepaper or EBook, and waiting for them to contact you? The challenge is that traditional salespeople don’t really now how to execute a strategy like this, and you can’t blame them. How would they design or write such a valuable white paper? This approach works extremely well, but hardly implemented, as salespeople just don’t know how to do this. (they are too busy hitting the phone or knocking on doors)
With great lead generation, you can get pretty much let everything else go wrong, and still do really well. The best way to triple new sales isn’t by tripling your salespeople – but by tripling your qualified leads. If you’re a one-man-band, the same counts for you. Implement this system 3 days per week and if you stick to the system, business will ramp up very quickly.
The Death Of Field Salespeople
By now you must have realised that creating real sales opportunities have become extremely challenging.
In a book I studied recently, Justin Roff-Marsh, makes this statement “The death of field salespeople.” When you drill down to what's happening around us, it rings true in many instances. If you want proof of this, follow one of your field sales people around for a week, or take note of your own time in the field. What you will likely discover is that they/you spend less than 15 percent of the time in the field. The balance will be spent in an office of some kind or a coffee shop. You will then realise that your field salesperson is not really a field salesperson at all! It takes a lot more research, office work, admin and other dedicated task to create sales opportunities or face-to-face meetings.
Ask yourself this question: If you are looking at making a purchase of some kind, is your first starting point to look for a person whom can come and visit you in the field? Probably not! It's more likely that your first approach will be to turn to a medium that enables you to purchase or research without human interaction.
If you need to communicate with a person to make a purchase or get more information, you would probably prefer to have a phone call or email interaction rather than a face-to-face meeting? Now you would, depending on what you want to buy, interact with a person, but only after collecting some data and doing some homework.
When we then look at the Outside In Sales Approach, this is where most companies and salespeople fail. When it comes to meeting and selling face-to-face, they are really good at adding tons of value. The problem is that most salespeople just don't know how to get a steady flow of sales meetings in this market place. In many organisations, the main methodology behind sales strategies, is for managers to push salespeople on amount of calls/emails and new meetings.
Outside In approach to sales
Many executives are uncomfortable when it comes to the revisiting their current strategies and making way for inside sales professionals, because it's based on the assumption that inside sales people are capable of making many of the sales currently made by field sales people. This is a very valid point and there are many situations where face-to-face meetings are critical. The point is, each business should have specialised team/s.
In-fact when you have your team setup as per the image below, you will most likely see exponential growth in sales over the next year.
The above is a “perfect world” scenario, and I understand that many businesses don’t have that expertise or manpower within their current structures. This is not a big problem as it can still be implemented and taught to field salespeople.
Most leaders think that adding field salespeople solves their problems. This could not be further from the truth. If you have to start with only one type of salesperson, start with the BDC and not field sales. It’s still possible for the BDC to see clients, but highly unlikely that a field salesperson can generate enough leads in this market place.
Cold calling is dead
The harsh reality is that cold calling is, and has been quite dead for many years. When examining those that still engage in cold calling, you will realise that they spend an enormous amount of time on the phone to generate very few opportunities. When we refer to opportunities, we mean actual business closed from cold calls.
The problem with cold calling is that is simply doesn't make sense for your clients!
There are more effective ways to engage new clients in such a way that cold calling is not required. When you follow the Predictable Sales Revenue Model, you have a system with a pre-determined outcome and not a guessing game.
This new methodology, followed by a small number of companies, across three continents has produced massive sales performance improvements.
Download your copy of "The Predictable Sales Revenue Machine" and find out how these leaders have tripled sales in just a few months.
I trust you will find it insightful, and should you require more information on how to implement these strategies, let's talk.
Strategy originally developed by Aaron Ross and Justin Roff-Marsh.
Over the past 20 years, Riaan has been working with leading Sales Organisations, Sales Managers and select Individuals who want to improve sales performance, design and implement winning strategies and sales cultures that leads to more deals.
Since 1985, Riaan has been in Corporate | B2B | High-level Sales and led teams to maximise performance. He provides strategic oversight and serves as executive sales coach and advisor to clients ranging from small, rapidly growing start-ups to well-established, large corporations.
His experience has allowed him to work with organisations and executives within entities such as Old Mutual, Sanlam, the Telecoms Industry, Siemens, Capgemini, Accenture, BWI in Hong Kong and many others, to help them improve sales performance.