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Great Team; Great Product; Great Organization

 

Sales leaders are continuously exploring, how to improve the sales revenue?   When I focused on the question, the answer began to appear.

If you ask your customer why did he buy your product?  You will get back an answer in absolute terms.

–      I bought it because of your SALES TEAM.

–      I bought it because of your ORGANIZATION brand image.

–      I bought it because of your PRODUCT brand image.

Now if you sit back and ponder over the answer; you will realize that at any given time there are two pillars to capitalize on.  If your customer crossed his cheque because of your SALES TEAM, it reflects that there is a room to capitalize on  your Organizations and Product brand.  And if he crossed cheque because of your Product brand image, then there is potential to capitalize on your Sales team and your Organizations brand image.

A great organization would work on all THREE PILLARSGreat Team; Great Product; Great Organization..………..to realize their Vision & Mission.

 

How to increase sales revenue ?


How do you INCREASE  Sales Revenue year on year ?

This is a perennial question that challenges management of every company. After pondering I could think of two parameters that would contribute towards increase in the sales revenue i.e

  1. Increase sales targets of your field force.
  2. Increase head count of your field force.

The irony is many of the organizations fail to provide meaningful answers; how can field sales force achieve the increased sales targets ?  And this is one of the major factor  that field force feels let down year after year.   However there are four distinct areas through which field sales force achieve the increased sales targets ?

  1. Sell Additional new products.
  2. Sell in the new territory.
  3. Bright spot: Upsell and cross sell in your existing customers.
  4. Increase effectiveness through training.

The 2nd aspect is to increase the sales force head count ; that requires pure mathematical skills to mirror the organization revenue targets. This includes increasing your

  1. internal sales team head count.
  2. your reseller’s head count.
  3. your resellers team head count.

Having said that there is a NEW angle to the Increase your head count and i.e. Virtual Sales Force or automating your sales cycle such as being achieved by giants including Amazon.com; ebay.com; Zappos; Dell’s direct selling model and others. This is about developing an effective eCommerce platform/Virtual Sales Force and automating the marketing, sales, quotations, order booking and collection process; thus selling 24×7  across the globe.

 

10 Greatest Salespeople of All Time

Copy Source:  Inc.

John H. Patterson: The founder and CEO of the National Cash Register Co. was known to be a stern control freak. He was also the father of modern sales training. He was among the first entrepreneurs to organize sales training programs and retreats. His company provides salespeople with scripts, and encouraged them to view the sales cycle as a four-stage process that identified the key milestones as the initial approach, the proposition, the product demonstration, and closing the deal.

David Ogilvy: The legendary advertising executive who created iconic campaigns for Hathaway, Dove, Schweppes, and Rolls-Royce began his career in sales, moving cooking stoves door to door. He was so successful the company he worked for asked him to write an instruction manual that it then distributed to other members of its sales force. Filled with timeless advice, it became a cult classic. Among the advice: “The worst fault a salesman can commit is to be a bore. Foster any attempt to talk about other things; the longer you stay the better you get to know the prospect, and the more you will be trusted.”

Mary Kay Ash: A successful salesperson in Dallas, Ash quit her job in 1963 because, she said, a man whom she had trained was promoted above her at twice the salary. She planned to write a book, but her notes became instead a business plan for a beauty and cosmetics company that relied on women to sell merchandise to their friends and acquaintances through direct sales (otherwise known as multi-level marketing). She also pioneered the use of sales incentives, turning her company’s signature pink Cadillacs into a sign of women’s economic self sufficiency.

Dale Carnegie: The son of a hardscrabble Missouri farmer, Carnegie began his career selling products and correspondence courses to ranchers. He eventually landed in New York City, where he began to offer a series of public speaking classes that were frequented by many budding salespeople. His landmark book How to Win Friends and Influence People instructs readers to become more effective communicators who focus on fostering healthy team dynamics. Carnegie was also ahead of his time in exhorting his followers to pursue work-life balance

Joe Girard: This Detroit native made a name for himself as the greatest car salesman of the post-war era. As a young boy, he sold subscriptions to the Detroit Free Press door-to-door and learned that sales operated according to a law of averages all its own. The more doorbells he rang, the more money he made. He carried that philosophy forward when he graduated to selling big-ticket items. During a 15-year period that began in 1963, he sold more than 13,000 Chevrolets at a local dealership—at one point selling 18 cars in a single workday.

Erica Feidner: Despite a long sales cycle and little volume driven by repeat purchases, this legendary piano saleswoman sold more than $40 million in Steinways before retiring a few years ago. “It is not unusual for Feidner’s customers to describe her as a force of nature,” the journalist James B. Stewart, one of Feidner’s clients, wrote inThe New Yorker in 1999. “This is not because they feel pressured by her but because after they meet her many soon find themselves in the grip of musical ambitions they never knew they harbored. These ambitions often include buying a specific piano that they feel they can no longer live without, even if it strains both their living rooms and their bank accounts.”

Ron Popeil: The Ronco founder pioneered the process of selling consumer appliances and other products by infomercial. His exuberance created a market for The Solid Flavor Injector, Mr. Microphone, and the Showtime Rotisserie. “If I create a product, I can market it as well as or better than anyone on the planet,” he toldInc. in 2009. “I have the confidence and the passion. People see that, and they know it is real.”

Larry Ellison: The king of aggressive corporate technology sales, Ellison seems to be one of those people who would rather be feared than loved. The database company he founded has for years been criticized for offering over-the-top discounts to win new business, followed unexpected fees larded on to cover the costs of additional services. Ellison himself is credited (or blamed) for creating a culture of winning new business at any cost. He is famous for calling sales managers late at night and on weekends to ask pointed questions about stalled deals or lost accounts.

Zig Ziglar: One of the leading motivational speakers in recent years, Ziglar has helped shape the modern vocabulary of sales as much as any other sales expert. In particular, he encourages salespeople to commit to a lifetime of learning and training; to be extremely shrewd when it comes to setting (and thereby exceeding) goals and quotas; and to maintain a heightened level of motivation by constantly visualizing success.

Napoleon Barragan: The founder of 1-800-Mattress was a genius at using technology to open new sales channels for his Simmons and Sealys. He was one of the first and most successful adopters of the 1-800 number, correctly predicting that consumers would be perfectly willing to have mattresses delivered to their homes sight unseen. Soon after the advent of e-commerce, he registered the domain name mattress.com, and derived significant online sales at a time when few retailers were thinking about the Web. Fun fact: The Ecuadorean-born Barragon got his start in 1950s Colombia selling beer and soda from the back of a burro

 

Copy source: Inc.

How to achieve more value with less

THE World is aiming for VALUE whereas VALUE for the materialistic world is sliding down and VALUE for time is climbing up.  To realize more VALUE the mantra is Achieve more with less”.

And people who Achieve more with lessare the most successful people.  They continually practice POWER OF 10”………………………

  1. Automate routine processes. [The 4 HOUR WORK WEEK – Timothy Ferris]
  2. Be creative – use disruptive technologies and ideas. [BLUE OCEAN STRATEGY]
  3. Duplicate successful processes and improve. [MICROSOFT]
  4. Focus on high impact activities. [TIME MANAGEMENT]
  5. Get more done from their team. [GOOGLE & ZAPPOS ]
  6. Grow people around. [JACK WELCH]
  7. Increase productivity – fail faster to get faster experience. [JIM ROHN]
  8. Leverage connections, strengths and skills. [JOHN LAFLEY – P&G]
  9. Outsource less paying jobs and activities. [ NIKE & DELL]
  10. Use scientific tools. [IBM & INTEL]

And continuallyachieve more with less

 

How to make a sale

When do you make a sale?

During the 2008, 2009, 2010 period businesses held on to their capital expenses. The market volatility changed the paradigm.  Businesses were skeptic on the outcome for the future.  What if they needed more cash that which banks would not lend them?   What if the projected investment did not provide the projected ROI?   So they concluded it was better to sit on decisions and delay them up until finer times appeared on the horizon.

Such scenarios become a challenge for sales professionals since they are expected to bring in business and keep the cash register ringing. Now the question is, what do you do?

I believe, that in order to have a healthy and maturing business pipeline it’s important that you identify the businesses pain points right at the starting mark…..  “Identify  businesses   who – without your products & services – are in that pain. They are your prospects” ….……

–   Losing customers?

–   Losing its reputations?

–   Losing its business to competition?

–   Losing market share?

–   Loosing share holders value?

–  Is a new employee joining and will they be idle without your sale?

–    Are customer profits declining  ?

If you can match any such pain point that your solution resolves, then you have made the sale.  Else the prospects response would be…. next week, next month, next year or not a budgeted expanse.

Enjoy reading……..

Top "7" skills to succeed in Sales


You have started your sales career or are in the middle of your sales career.   The following skills will help you to succeed and come out a winner.  It’s timeto start acquiring these skills now so that in the coming three to six months you are able to practice them as part of your life style.

  • Sales Methodology: Select a sales methodology, learn it, practice it and breathe it.    You can choose amongst many… such as SPIN, Select Selling, Miller Heiman. Attend a training session, buy books on sales processes and subscribe to the web to track innovative processes introduced in sales processes.  Remember  “A proven process succeeds”
  • Know your products and services: What product or services are you selling?   Read case studies, industry reports and visualize how your products and services will help your customers.  Visualize how and what pain points it will help resolve.  Talk to your product principal and request them to explain the product’s positioning.
  • Know your company: What does your company stand for and what are their values and business strategy?  Align your products and services around your organization values and business strategies.  Know your organization SWOT.
  • Know your competition: Every product and service is a ‘Blue Ocean’ for some time until the competition crops in and the Blue turns to Red Ocean.  Having said that, it’s important you study your top five competitors – SWOT.    Visit your competitors web site and Subscribe to Google alert about your competition.
  • Know  your  market: Know your market potential and market spend; know your market share and the market share of your competitors.  Study  the next 3 years market projection and trends. Get this data from research and market analyst organizations. For e.g. for information technology  it could be IDC, Gartner and others.
  • Know your customers: Know your customers.  Build up your customer’s profile whilst exploring their purchase cycle, the users of your products, influencers and decision makers.  Know their budgets and a reason that compels your customer to buy your product.  Know your customer’s customer.
  • Know your  core competency (your value add): Explore and find out why customers buy from you? That could be your core strength. Then work on strengthening your strengths.

Having said that, the key to success is Discipline, Initiative and Perseverance, so “DIP” and success will follow.

Good Luck

Enjoy Reading………

Building on your foundation

Gartner predicts that “When picking new CIOs, by 2016 companies will use a candidate’s innovative accomplishments as one of the top-three selection criterion. Finding innovative ways to create growth, in revenue, jobs and industries, will set you apart from the pack.  Balancing innovation and management will be key.”

I would say that successful Sales professionals always strive to build and  add value to  their customers. Having said that; sales professionals must also, continue building on a  strong foundation to add value to their customer’s success.  There are a number of tools which will assist sales to build strong foundation and enhance your knowledge and skills.  And I am sharing “ 8” of them;

  1. CRM: It is important that sales professionals know their customers well.  Use a CRM system to document your customers profile and if your company does not provide you with CRM system,  get an  open source  CRM system and record your customers details.  Choose a CRM that provides an online link with your  customers web sites for any updates as alerts. http://www.freecrm.com
  2. Mind map: Use a mind map when making notes or building a proposal to maximize your creative output.  You may subscribe to an open source mind map program. http://www.edrawsoft.com/freemind.php
  3. Speed reading: Time is money and a scarce resource.  Use speed reading to effectively read and retain the content.  And with practice speed reading  will help you squeeze-in upto  “3 books within your standard reading time span of reading one book. http://www.mindtools.com/speedrd.html
  4. Free net resources: Subscribe to two top free net resources each on current sales practices and on your industry.  This will keep you abreast with current trends and practices in the local &  global market. People love to buy from knowledgeable people. (www.millerheiman.com; www.thetasgroup.com; www.huthwaite.com; www.ameinfo.com)
  5. Social media: Subscribe and effectively use social media sites to connect with your customers, prospects and find their interests and background. Log onto the FAQ or learning resource to use the Social media tools effectively. (Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn)
  6. New learning: Mandate to learn a new craft every quarter and use that to effectively deliver your services.  ( Such as Online tech certifications or sales certifications).
  7. Brain train: Exercise your LEFT brain using various techniques and I would recommend a glittering book by Edward De Bono “ How to have creative ideas”. Practice exercises in the book and make it a part of your day to day activities.
  8. Flex your Thinking muscles: Spend 30 minutes every day;  thinking and planning your next day and also retrospection of  the day gone by.  Put down your ideas in a notebook and review them every weekend.

And finally I would paraphrase Gartner’s prediction… “When picking new sales professionals, starting now;  companies will use a candidate’s innovation accomplishments as one of the top-three selection criterion. Finding innovative ways to make a sale, help customers increase their revenue and  industries leadership, will set you apart from the pack

Enjoy Reading…..

Sales Productivity Tools

Unlike any profession, in  sales you need all the help you can get and extract to be a success.  And I am sharing few powerful tools to help you succeed faster.

Google Alert: Subscribe to for the company  you are prospecting for business and be the first to know what’s happening with your prospect.  Similarly follow the company and person on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook.  I said follow and avoid stalking.

Docstoc:  Register free on a premier online community and marketplace to find and share professional documents.  And this can be used to  prepare professional reports, proposals and ROI for your prospects and customers.

Slideshare : Register free on and access brilliantly crafted PowerPoint presentation, videos and documents for your customer presentation.  You could also upload your best PowerPoint presentations and earn USD

Find on-line presence : Go on and enter name.  Find information on people if they have on-line presence.  Get to know your customers better.

Reminders: Register free on and enter your  things to do list with dates and creatively crafted message. This will constantly remind you of things to do.  Because things get done when reminded.


Enjoy reading

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