Maximising Your Sales Effectiveness In A Competitive World – 5 Key Lessons


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58% of business sales leaders say that new customer acquisition is their key challenge and it’s followed by finding and keeping top sales talent (45%) and 37% say that keeping and growing existing customer relationships is their third challenge. That’s according to a report by CEB Global /Gartner that appears in a great supplement in The Times today called Sales Performance.

There are some very interesting statistics in their that ‘Demonstrate‘ the Dramatically Different world that we are in when it comes to starting, building and maximising customer relationships! Here are 5 ‘key lessons’ that I’ve picked up from the report…

Lesson 1: Stop Interrupting People…

90% of senior executives claim that they never respond to traditional means of selling such as phone calls and emails and that 61% of transactions start online. In other words, they come looking for you! Bombarding people with ‘meaningless’ information doesn’t work – you have to seek ‘permission’ and that means providing something that they want they come to you for – that’s your .Dramatically Difference

Lesson 2: Be Patient….

64% of sales people say  that sales cycles are getting longer with 27% of them saying they are ‘significantly longer’. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to just sit back, you need to…

Lesson 3: Add Value…

77% seek sales people who act as ‘trusted advisors’. This is particularly important when 57% of buyers use social media to assess new tools and technologies – they’re ‘up to speed’ and ‘knowledgeable’. You need to ‘know your stuff’ and demonstrate your expertise by being able to deal with their queries, questions and comparisons. even better… Anticipate them!

Lesson 4: Get Personal…

73% of customers expect vendors to personalise engagement to their needs – that means the way you communicate with them, and the frequency and format, has to be tailored to them. It’s about knowing their needs, wants, aspirations and challenges… and them personally, and showing them you know!

Lesson 5: Do All You Can To Keep Them…

Customer loyalty is harder to maintain: 79% of B2B customers say that it is easier than ever to take their business elsewhere and 74% say that their standards for how companies interact with them are higher than ever. You’ve got to work hard to show them you care.

Taking a proactive approach when it comes to finding, attracting and keeping the customers you want is key.  Our research suggests that 3D Businesses take a very focused approach to identifying and targeting the customers they want to work with – we call it ‘Choose ‘Em Or Lose ‘Em’! However, many have a scattered approach and some have no focus whatsoever!

How do you measure up? Not sure where to focus your time, effort and resources? You might want to consider The 10 ‘D‘s of Different customers – a simple ‘framework’ we’ve developed to help you to evaluate and focus your sales, marketing and customer relationship management.

Click on the image to get the 16 page free e-book to help you make it work in your business. It provides you with some simple templates to help you ’segment’ and target your customers and crucially, focus your efforts and resources on the right ones accordingly! By painting pictures of 10 Different customer types, it’s an opportunity for you to take a bit of time out, evaluate and identify your customers and your approach to them.

You may also want to have a look at this Slideshare presentation I produced that that takes you through the 10 Different types – you can see that below….

Would love to know your thoughts… what works for you in this tougher business environment?

And finally, a ‘bonus’ lesson as it is all about exceeding expectations…

Lesson 6: Don’t Just Stand There, Do Something!

Winning sales people take ‘action’ not notes!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Andy Hanselman
Hi there! I help businesses and their people create competitive advantage by 'Thinking in 3D'! That means being 'Dramatically and Demonstrably Different'! I research, speak about, write about and work with businesses to help them maximise their sales and marketing, their customer service and their customer relationships.


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