No matter how big or small your business is, building a sales team that works effectively is not an easy task. It’s not an easy task, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t challenging, rewarding, and enjoyable for motivated leaders. It doesn’t matter if you are working with young salespeople or seasoned account executives who have been in the industry for many years. A strategy is essential to ensure that your team understands what they are doing and how to achieve the company goals. These seven steps will help you build your sales manager game plan.
1. You and your sales team can prepare!
Your salespeople are your reflection. Make sure your salespeople are ready for anything. You can help them to anticipate objections and learn every detail about the pitch, product, and company. You can use the internet to find a target company or investigate prospects’ interests through social media networks. Proper preparation is key to avoiding poor performance.
2. Defining and focusing on the prospects
Knowing the product is essential, but it is equally important to know who will buy it. Divide and conquer territory or industry to manage your sales team. Consider the strengths and weaknesses of each salesperson, not only their proximity to you. So that sales pitches can be tailored to the needs of potential customers, create prospect profiles.
3. Grab the attention of your prospect
It’s excellent to schmooze, but it is best to do so with a purpose. Businesses owners are busy. They are constantly being approached. They don’t want to hear another sales pitch that takes up their time and prevents them from making money. Your salespeople should be different. Find something you can share with your prospect, then help them get to the point. You don’t have to close the deal in your first meeting. You can get them to like you and spark their curiosity. Then they will be more inclined to buy from you than to be sold to.
4. Follow up
It is not the job of your prospects to call you and say thank you for taking your time. It is your job to sell! Don’t be discouraged if you need to follow up. Prospects might forget about you. Your employees should be polite and persistent. They should also find ways to follow up, even if it is not business-related. Make sure they know your company is on their radar. To be noticed, you don’t need to be a stalker but use Twitter, networking groups, or mutual contacts.
5. Stay organized
To manage your appointments and those of your salespeople, use a calendar. To order contact information and communications, make sure that they choose a CRM or shared spreadsheet platform. To organize your prospect files on your computer and email, use folders. Keep your desk looking neat. It’s the little things that count, and this applies to you as well as your sales team.
6. Master the pitch by practicing, refining, and improving it.
Salespeople can get too confident or rigid. They believe they know the answer to every problem and that they can solve it. Complacency breeds failure. Role-playing with your employees is a great way to stimulate the buyer’s mind. Record their performances and practice in front of others. People who observe themselves can help them identify their weaknesses and find ways to improve. Even in sales, the old saying “Practice makes perfect” is still valid.
7. Set realistic goals, and ensure they are met
Managers who are the best are always looking for ways to improve their performance. Your job is to establish realistic benchmarks and to work with your sales team in order to achieve them. This does not mean waiting for the end of the quarter to look at the numbers. The journey is what determines where you end up. Your sales team should be able to ride along and support them throughout the season. To avoid any surprises and to help them monitor their work/life balance, meet with them frequently.