An underperforming sales team…
Struggling to get, or qualify, leads…
Juggling prospects, managing the pipeline, and trying to close deals.
These are some of the common barriers that sales teams face and that can obstruct success. If this resonates with you, it’s time to align your sales team.
We recently hosted a webinar on 5 August 2021, with B2B sales experts from Suse, Webeo, Web Insights, and Prodege on hand to share their knowledge.
This webinar was hosted by Christoph Trappe and the expert panel speakers were:
In this article, we’re going to look at the four key takeaways from our webinar.
1. How to really define a lead and why quantity doesn’t always matter
Learn how to define your leads
The view of ticking boxes to ascertain if a lead is good or bad is outdated; leads should be defined by scenarios and interest in the product or service offered.
“A list of leads is just data, not leads. Getting that understanding right in your business is critical to an effective sales process,” said Stuart.
Target specific companies
“There is no such thing as a good or bad lead. You might have leads that aren’t in the right target market, but that means that they aren’t really a lead. Target specific companies who truly need your service or product and latch onto them with all your sales techniques to qualify them,” said Lenny.
2. Communicating with prospects
There are four really important things to do when communicating with prospects.
The right people need to work on the right accounts
“It’s difficult for every sales rep to adapt to every prospect and this is a mistake sales leaders can make by not allocating leads of a certain type correctly”, commented Lenny. He continued, “You want the right people working on the right accounts.”
Be authentic in your communications
Stuart made the point that “you have to find what works best for you as nothing you do will appeal to everyone. To be successful, you need to be authentic in your message, adding relevance and value.”
Research your prospects
“It’s going to take more than one email for a prospect to engage with you,” said Marlen. Her advice was to research your prospects as much as possible, personalize touchpoints, and engage with them continuously.
Adapt, become an expert and use the power of referenceability
Tom advised that salespeople need to adapt to a new environment and use the technology available to them. “The game always gets harder, so you have to work harder and smarter.
“You don’t need fancy subject lines and processes, because if you have something strong to talk about that has got fantastic referenceability in a sector — use that. If you align to one vertical and become an expert, you give buyers a reason to want to talk to you because you can educate them based on your experience. There’s also the fear of loss and competition between prospects in each vertical.”
3. Ensuring sales and marketing teams align
In many companies, the sales and marketing teams don’t align and this can hinder success.
These departments need to align and integrate – starting with sales leaders understanding what business success looks like and leading the way, to the teams working together to create consistent messaging across departments, to understanding a customer’s journey throughout the entire sales cycle, and tracking KPIs.
Have consistent messaging across departments
“If marketing sends out a message, it needs to be the same as the sales team,” commented Marlen.
Humanize interaction between departments
“Make sure you have no keyboard warriors,” said Tom.
Sales need to take ownership of qualifying leads
“This shouldn’t be a toxic relationship. Any marketing efforts won’t hurt sales, as ultimately its persistence and personal interactions through sales efforts are what closes deals,” said Lenny.
4. Structuring sales teams for success
Ensure your team is working across the entire sales funnel
Even though the structure of your sales team will vary, they must cover the entire sales cycle.
“Find the right fit for working across the whole sales cycle”, said Marlen.
Have a collective goal
Each team member needs to clearly understand what the function of their role is, whilst working symbiotically towards a collective goal
Your team members are your brands biggest advocates
“People who have built their careers in your business will be your best advocates and will stay with you long-term”, commented Stuart.
Allowing salespeople to grow their careers within the company will create loyalty. Those loyal team members will stay for the long-term and truly understand your company’s culture and DNA.