Strategic Sales: How your Business Development team can win more sales

If you were asked to accelerate your sales pipeline, what would that look like to you? Squeezing in more phone calls, pouring over more spreadsheets of names and numbers or pounding the keyboard to send out one more email in the hope of converting a new prospect?

Sales success doesn’t always have to be about more.

Figures show that traditional telemarketing operators make between 100 and 500 calls to get one lead.  So no wonder they feel burned out, tired of putting in a lot of effort for little return.

If you want to put some energy back into your sales and connect with, dare we say it, fewer prospects but get a greater conversion rate, then it’s time to get strategic with your approach to sales.

Step 1: Do Your Research

You might be thinking “I haven’t got time for research!” with all the calls and emails you need to send out every day. But if you want results, research is non-negotiable.

Some well-invested time to discover what your prospect is up to, what they are interested in and what problems they have will give you strength when it comes to contacting them.

Think about the impact you want to have on your prospect – you want them to feel like the perfect solution just dropped into their lap, right when they needed it.

Rather than calling cold, knowing little about them, connect with them on LinkedIn. Maybe you’ll see that they’re attending an event next week or they’ve liked a post that’s on a particular subject? Or perhaps their business has been in the news after experiencing a data breach? This will give you a clear focus for your conversations with them and you’ll be able to use that focus to pull out relevant angles that match what you’re trying to sell.

Focus your attention on quality over quantity – if you do your research then your quality will go up automatically and you won’t need to spend as much time calling or emailing.

Step 2: Make It Personal

Take a look at this short clip from the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. If you’re still reading from a sales script then it’s probably time to re-think your approach. Cramming words or answers into your conversation despite the reaction or response you’re getting at the end of the phone will only make your prospect, and you, uncomfortable.

If you’re not a natural conversationalist, then there is no harm practicing a few well-thought-out responses to common questions. But the key is, don’t be a robot.

If you’ve paid attention to Step 1: Do Your Research then this should be an easy approach to apply. You already know what your prospect’s problems are and where your solution fits in with this so it’s going to feel a lot more natural.

We focus on having 5 meaningful conversations a day.

And you can’t have meaningful conversations without time spent researching.

Of course, being personal can apply to a whole host of other points of contact with your prospect. A targeted and well-researched email, a relevant comment on a LinkedIn post or even a like or a retweet on Twitter.

Nurtured leads make 47% larger purchases than non-nurtured leads, which means that time spent getting personal will make you more profitable.

Step 3: Be Direct

Your time is limited, and so is your prospect’s, so don’t waste time waffling. The clarity and simplicity of your message is vital to clinching that sale or arranging a follow-up meeting.

It’s the Features vs. Benefits fight. And if you don’t know it, the best thing you can do is read about the impact it can have on your selling efforts.

It’s an approach we always advocate – putting yourself in your prospect’s shoes to get clarity. What is it about your product or service that’s going to benefit them? What are they going to get out of it? Focusing on their needs and how you help meet them is the most important thing.

Think about how you convey that over your various contact points with them. When you compose an email to someone, are you getting to their problems right from the start? When you’re on the phone, are you clear about the value that you can add to their business?

65% of customers are lost because of indifference, not because of mistakes, so you need to show them why your product or service is better than your competitors.

With that in mind, this requires you to know your service or product inside out so that you can truly understand what it would bring to your prospects.

Get to the heart of what you’re offering and you’ll reap the rewards.

Step 4: Be Genuine

Working in business development is about building and adding value to relationships.

Make connections, have fun, communicate in a way that’s natural, stay busy researching and discovering and truly care about your prospects and how you can help them. That’s the difference between a good salesperson and a great one.

If you need some help harnessing your lead generation power then speak to us – we’d love to show you the difference we can make to your business.

Posted July 20, 2018

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