structure - strategy - sanity

Oh my… why would a Sales Consultant recommend that you “Fire” your clients? You should be helping me find new ones!! Dern Bob… you must not be very good!

Let me explain. When the market is “down” my clients hire me to help them with new business development (revenue) and when it is “up” they feel that they don’t need a “Sales Consultant”. Yet I am busy in “down” as well us “up” markets. Why? Because there is opportunity all the time!

In a solid market like we are experiencing now, why not work on new business development AND work even harder on increasing margins? This is why I say it’s time to consider “Firing” some clients.

Here is how you might do that.

  • Create a simple spreadsheet with the following columns
    1. 2015 Revenue
    2. 2015 Gross Profit Margin
    3. Average Aged Receivables
    4. “Hassle” Factor – On a scale of 1 (low) to 5 (high) how difficult are they to deal with i.e. heavy customer service support, tough to deal with, hard on employees, are not cooperative, tight turns, unreasonable demands, returns, etc.
  • Sort the columns and take a good look at it. Sort it a number of ways. Take another good look. You will see the clients that are best served by your competition!
  • Take another look with them out of your spreadsheet replaced with a “clone “of one or some of your midrange revenue but higher margin accounts and look how that effects your total gross margin. Fuss with it.
  • On the identified clients start to raise their prices to where it would be “worth-while” for you to have them on your balance sheet. You can do it incrementally if you like, but raise your price.
  • Now turn your attention to building new business opportunities with better potential.
  • If this scares you, consider raising your prices a ½ -1% per month every month on a grouping of lower ranked clients. You will see incremental margin improvement and lower the risk of a lower revenue number, should that be a specific concern.

It doesn’t cost you anything but some time to take a look. You might be surprised at what you see. This is why I stay busy. If you can increase margin and build a pipeline of “better” customers your business will be more profitable, stronger, worth more and more fun with potentially lower operating costs!

About simple.sales.strategy
We provide support and sales training to small and medium size businesses and individuals by building an effective, simple and proven systematic sales process that is scalable, sustainable and sane.

With this structure and guidance, sales teams and individual sales professionals move prospects to customers, existing accounts to growth and marginal accounts to improved profitability with consistent and measurable results. 100% Guaranteed

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, sales plan templates you need to execute for yourself.

asimplesalesplan.com 

keep calm

The Sales Epic Fail !!

On December 4, 2015, in Sales Plan, by bob davis
0

OK, a little sensational maybe. Epic? More like failure on the installment plan. It is the desire to succeed without the results. It is the Pareto Sales Guy or Gal. The 80% of the sales reps that bring 20% of the business. That is a FAIL. Maybe even epic. Why work hard and not get the results? That sucks. No fun. I get that.

The problem is that you don’t have a simple to execute, day in – day out sales plan PLAN that works. You are not focused on your on the best opportunities with the best possible results or one that provides you with the best tactical training for your individual needs.

If you agree, then what about a solution? Well I have shown hundreds of sales reps how to “Fix the Fail”, how to build a simple sales PLAN. Know who you are calling on and why, who to spend time with and not. Know the best possible introduction scripts and objection handing scenarios for your industry, know how to make a high value presentation that brings a high result proposal to a closed sale.

The solution is to define a process and plan that shows you how to leverage your time, your skills and your energy. Here’s how.

I fix this with a simple and sustainable sales plan that works. I use a simple outline of a Sales Discovery, a Sales Foundation Build and a Coach + Manage Plan. Very simple. Very flat. Very sustainable. And most of all very, very SANE! No tricks, no long term commitments, no manipulation. 90 minutes to review. 4 hours max to set up. Use forever.

You can learn this simple and sustainable sales plan with a $49.00 investment and 90 minutes of your time. If you don’t think it was worth it, I will refund your money 100%, no questions asked. Check out the details HERE.

If you are a Small to Medium B to B Business owner with an under-performing sales team, call me at 512 658 9500. I will trade an hour of my time for an hour of yours to get under the covers. No cost. If you hire me, great. If not, we have made a new friend.

Building a Simple + Sustainable Sales Plan
Start your 2016 off right !!
 – Step by Step Simple Instructions –
Digital Presentation
 with a Sales Template + Tools to Execute
$49.00

100 % Guaranteed – Doesn’t work for you – 100% Refund
Over 380 people have purchased this training with only 3 Refunds ! 

Order HERE

Use for Team Training – Sales Meetings – On-Boarding New Reps.
All tools included to execute as ONE or MANY.

In this 90 minute digital workshop I outline a sustainable and simple sales plan to help an individual or a team deliver sustainable results quickly and over time leveraging a simple process that works in large as well as smaller companies. Includes sales tools, a simple sales plan template scripting and formatting documents.

You can review and use as many times as you like and at your leisure.

I identify and breakdown into simple components a selling plan by defining the structure, identifying the tools, outline how to use a simple sales plan template as well as key tactics to improve sales results.

Outline:

  • Sales Audit– Identify and focus on key prospects and customers
  • A Qualification Funnel – To provide accurate Account and Prospect Ranking
  • Sales Pipeline Development using a simple sales plan template
  • Word and Script Development – The appropriate words to accounts/prospects along a structured selling pipeline
  • Building a CRM with sales plan template. (Customer Relationship Management Tool)
  • Selling tools and specific strategies (cold calls, voice mail, etc.)
  • Objection and Questioning
  • Additional Resources

What you will receive:

  • A sales plan that you can implement immediately
  • How you can build or repair an existing foundation
  • Tools to better manage activities and define next steps
  • Works for One or for a team
  • See account/prospects “stucks” and take corrective action
  • Ability to identify areas of future skills improvement

Sales Tools

  • A simple sales plan template
  • How to build an effective Elevator statement and Value Proposition
  • Scripting and Structure Outline and sample scripts
  • Spreadsheets Account Management for Importing into a CRM
  • Spreadsheet for weekly metrics reporting and management
  • 50 Probing Outline with open ended questions
  • Pipeline and Ranking outline
  • Note outline of the presentation

To Purchase
Order HERE

Sales Strategy referal

Dancing Monkey !

On November 4, 2015, in Sales Management, Sales Training, by bob davis
0

In this interconnected universe balance is a critical component of all things, including sales. So shouldn’t we have what I call “sales balance” in our sales process? How do we help the Monkey dance?

Well, let me illustrate. Most selling conversations are around my product, its features and the benefits. Sales 101 right? The prospect has the sales rep run around providing information and the sales reps thinks that he just hit a double. Phone calls are made, messages are left, emails are sent, PowerPoint presentations are shown over and over, case studies are reviewed, proposals are developed, tours are scheduled, demos are run… you get my drift. All these activities are sales related, driven by sales with the hopes that we hit a pain point that resonates with the prospect. The rep gets down the road with all of this activity and then… you got it… the prospect goes “dark” “cold” “silent”! The process is out of balance. That Monkey don’t dance!

Solution. As always it is simple . Here are a few ideas

  1. Ask… ask.. ask…. “Does this make sense?” “Are we on track?” “Who else do we need to have in the room?”
  2. Put your prospects shoes on… really on. Ask yourself if I were them what would be the most important reason for them to consider my services. Really pull those shoes on!
  3. By asking a lot of questions you can determine what you are going to ask the prospect to do. They need to have some skin in the game. Can you determine what actions they can do to help you prove your value? How about; a budget, a tour of their facility, a sample of their product, a view into their systems and procedures or an interview with one of their customers.  if you think about it you can find ways to engage your prospect and get the Monkey to Dance !.

For a FREE list of Open Ended Probing Questions that allow you to get closer to the customer click above. 

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, templates you need to execute for yourself or a sales team.

If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund your investment NO QUESTIONS asked. 
a simple sales plan

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My thoughts on DIY Hiring for Sales People.

I think it is safe to say that most small and medium business owners rely on doing the sales hiring themselves. I get it. I’m not 100% sure that it is the best way, but I get it. This might be a way for you to take some of the risk out. *

Hire a rep in your industry with a book.
I call this the 50/50/25 plan. My experience is that at best, you will get 50% of the book they tell you they can bring. 50% will come to you and 50% will stay with the old company. And 50 % of the reps will make the transition to bring you 50% of the business they tell you they can bring. The other 50% won’t make it. If you decide to do this, create a comp plan with base comp on 50% of the 50% or 1/2 of the book they told you they could move or 25% of the total they stated. (sorry. you might have to read that again!). Have them earn the other 50% on business booked. The net risk to you is 25% of the stated book and if they surprise you they still get the comp and you get the business. I want skin in the game when I hear “I can move my book”. Two final notes. Make sure they don’t have a non-compete (while it might not be valid who needs the legal headache and cost) and if the rep has been jumping, buyer beware.

Promote from within.
The best way to do this is to set a sales development program in-house prior to the need and nurture this individual(s). Make sure they have a solid sales aptitude, have expressed a desire for promotion, wants to make a lot of money, builds relationships in the company quickly and well, and likes the business. This takes more time but you know what you got, they will be loyal and already have product knowledge and internal relationship that will support them.

Hire a Young Buck or Buckarina.
Finding an entry level sales type and plug into your team. I suggest you hire for aptitude, personality and cultural fit. A first job out of college is higher risk than the second. Learn a lot about Millennials. They are not like us or at least like an old guy like me! Generally you are looking for a “worker and learner” who:

  1. Had a job in and through college. A big plus if they put themselves though college.
  2. From a smaller mid-level College or University with a solid GPA.
  3. His or her family is middle class in mid-size cities and already has a work history.
  4. Tests high on a Sales Aptitude test.

How to take more of the Risk Out.
In addition to the ideas above, have a specific sales plan and strategy (hint. hint. this is what I do). Don’t do “Go Get’em Tiger” and hope they make it. Don’t have your best rep train them. He or she have a lot of bad habits, trust me. Have specific goals and performance metrics and coach, “lip load” them with content on your value proposition, scripts that work, how to handle objections, product descriptions and benefits and finally, work with them, encourage, role play and review their progress weekly . Provide small carrots for hitting achievable goals. Start them off on smaller account opportunities and let them fail a little. If they are a 2 or 3 from above they will do just fine. Sometimes really, really great.

About simple.sales.strategy
We provide support and sales training to small and medium size businesses and individuals by building an effective, simple and proven systematic sales process that is scalable, sustainable and sane.

 If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider my low cost 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, templates, scripts you need to execute for yourself or for a sales team. If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund your investment NO QUESTIONS asked.
a simple sales plan

* I would like to qualify this post by saying that if you want to take most of the risk out of hiring, find a very reliable recruiter that provides a full service offering, including writing clear job descriptions, assessments, multiple posting sources, initial review and interviews, qualification and hiring guarantees. With this said most small and medium business owners rely on doing the hiring themselves. I get it. I’m not 100% sure that it is the best way, but I get it.

 

 

A Simple Sales Plan Template

On July 18, 2015, in Sales Plan, sales plan template, by bob davis
0

Sales Plan Download
How to Build a Simple + Sustainable Sales Plan

 – Step by Step Simple Instructions –
– includes a simple sales plan template –
Digital Guide with Tools to Execute
$49.00
—- Try it Now —
100 % Guaranteed – Doesn’t work for you – 100% Refund
ORDER HERE

Use for your Team Training – Sales Meeting – On-boarding New Reps.
All tools included to execute as ONE or for MANY.

In this 90 minute digital workshop I outline a sustainable and simple sales strategy and plan to help an individual or a team deliver sustainable results quickly and over time leveraging a simple process that works in large as well as smaller companies. Includes sales tools, sales template, scripting and formatting documents.

Includes sales tools, scripting and formatting documents.
You get LIFETIME access.
You can review and use as many times as you like and at your leisure.

To Purchase CLICK HERE

I will identify and breakdown into simple components a selling process by defining the structure, identifying the tools and key strategies to improve sales results.

Outline:

  • Sales Audit– Identify and focus on key prospects and customers
  • A Qualification Funnel – To provide accurate Account and Prospect Ranking
  • Sales Pipeline Development
  • Word and Script Development – The appropriate words to accounts/prospects along a structured selling pipeline
  • Building a CRM. (Customer Relationship Management Tool)
  • Selling tools and specific strategies (cold calls, voice mail, etc.)
  • Objection and Questioning
  • Additional Resources

What you will receive:

  • A structure that you can implement immediately
  • Sales plan template and tools
  • How you can build or repair an existing foundation
  • Tools to better manage activities and define next steps
  • Works for One or for a team
  • See account/prospects “stucks” and take corrective action
  • Ability to identify areas of future skills improvement

Sales Tools

  • Building an effective Elevator statement and Value Proposition
  • Scripting and Structure Outline and sample scripts
  • Sales Plan Template for Account Sales Management and Importing into a CRM
  • Sales Plan Template for weekly metrics reporting and management
  • 50 Probing Outline with open ended questions
  • Pipeline and Ranking outline
  • Note outline of the presentation

To Purchase CLICK HERE

simple - circle

 

What the heck can that mean? Maybe you need something with a little more heft (and expense) to get your sales and margins up. A sticky note? How is that for a high tech tool? No software, no hardware, no tricky program or slight of hand, workbooks or homework or a shot at being the next best selling business book. I don’t think so. Thats not much of a sales plan. Maybe you need a fresh look at your sales plan – team – efforts – markets – resources. I use large sticky notes and a Sharpie when I work with my clients and their sales teams. In this session we build the foundation by taking a new look at where they have been, what they are doing now and where they want to go. No sense throwing the baby out with the bath water. I facilitate this among the ones who know what is happening in your market. Your sales team. So what happens after a few hours in an audit or discovery session? We end up with a wall of ideas, most good, some out of the box and some not so good. Now we have a base or foundation to work from. Here is a short example of the categories that we uncover and explore. The we leverage this data into a simple sales plan template.

  • Markets served/not served and why.
  • Concentrics, Clones or “Look A-likes”
  • Most “growable” accounts and markets.
  • Areas of resistance to success.
  • Tools
  • Sales Plan Template
  • Word Development – An Elevator Statement, a value proposition and the beginnings of scripting for emails, letters and phone calls.
  • Objections.
  • Best practices.
  • Underutilized assets.

From there we can see the “gaps” that exist in the current plan. Now we have a beginning road map out to a desired goal. Simple, defined and accountable. I finished this exercise recently with a sales team in two meetings and reviewed it with my client. When I asked him if I delivered the value he expected, his response was “I got much more than I anticipated”. That made me VERY happy.

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, templates you need to execute for yourself or a sales team.

If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund your investment NO QUESTIONS asked.
a simple sales plan

connect on LinkedIn - handle sales objections effectively Connect with me

 

I learned to sell from Dr. W. Edwards Deming the American statistician, college professor, author, lecturer, and consultant. Strange huh? Dr. Deming is known for saying “you can’t manage what you can’t measure”. I learned that effective and efficient sales training and management requires measurements throughout a defined sales pipeline..

I have had an opportunity in my career to look into many small and mid-size companies. Often I see sales management operating with limited tools, subjective decision-making, fragmented communication, limited accountability and a missmash of sales training programs.  If product development, engineering, administration, manufacturing or services departments had product failures or customer complaints they would quickly gain the attention of upper management and corrective action would quickly be forthcoming. Often not so much with sales.

An example is how a “lead” is managed. A “lead” has value. It cost money to exist and will cost more to nurture. And if it is an unqualified lead, the more time, money and effort that is extended, the more under-performing it becomes. What of that solid lead or potential account that has been or is being “worked on” or “I left a message” without delivering results? What about that “great” lead that is chased down only to find at the RFQ stage you can’t meet the price point or you just found out that the buyer’s sister is your competitor.

Managing a lead through a defined pipeline is essential to leveraging the value of that lead. A process supports accurate qualification; that the prospect buys what you sell, allows sales management to see a lead as it progresses, institute corrective action and creative solutions if it gets stuck and provides tools and content for seven touches through a DEFINED pipeline or stages. Then sales management can identify how and when to apply the appropriate sales training to create corrective action.

Sales Management through a thought-through strategy: tools,management and the appropriate sales training provides growth potential and protects sales resources. Ultimately it also does what it is intended to do. Sell more of your product.

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the instruction, tools and a simple sales template that you need to execute for a sales team or individual.

If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund 100% of your investment NO QUESTIONS asked. 
a simple sales plan

Bob Davis is the President of simple.sales.strategy in Austin, TX providing sales training and holding sales people accountable to a proven, systematic sales system. He can be reached at 512.658.9500 or rsdavis@simplesalesstrategy.com

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I was thinking the other day about my consulting practice and what others are doing in the sales training space. I was wondering what I do that keeps my clients engaged (and paying my invoices!). The answer is that I provide a strategic sales strategy with specific tactical sales training that works dependent on what is going on in the sales pipeline. I do simple, common sense, chop wood – carry water strategic and tactical sales training.

Other trainers do a lot more tactical stuff and a ton of it is great. The questions I have are when do use a tactics like, scripts for appointment setting, objection handling, trail closing questions and so forth? How do you coach effectively a team where there is naturally a difference in skill set and personality?

So back to strategic and tactical. What the heck does that mean?  What is the difference between tactical and strategic? Now the truth is that I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer, so for that answer I turned to someone a bunch smarter than me… my wife! (it’s way true).  She said think of it this way.  During a war, there is a strategy set by leaders with an overall goal in mind.  Tactics are the individual actions necessary to carry out the strategy that moves you incrementally towards that goal.  Tactics are the substance of strategy and require solid management and leadership. Ah ha!

I tell my clients that they need to be careful not to confuse the activity with results. Very likely they are confusing the tactics with the sales strategy. Are we arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic? How do we keep from getting caught in this dilemma? Simply, by keeping a keen eye on the sales strategy with incremental key measurements towards the goal and then adjusting and sales training around the tactics that support it. All of the best tactics in the world won’t get you there with a flawed strategy. A simple sales strategy defines and measures the tactics that create a successful outcome, not the other way around.

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, templates you need to execute for yourself or a sales team.

If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund your investment NO QUESTIONS asked.
a simple sales plan

Bob Davis is the President of simple.sales.strategy in Austin, TX providing sales training and holding sales people accountable to a proven, systematic sales system. He can be reached at 512.658.9500 or rsdavis@simplesalesstrategy.com



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Sales Training Tiger

I love to tell the story of my typical client. She builds a company on a real passion for the widget. The passion is her sales strategy. She is so passionate and enthusiastic she brings down a few accounts and starts to grow. She has not had a day of sales training.

The pressures of the business keep her inside in manufacturing, operations and management activities, all necessary but taking away from her sales activities. Ah! The Solution! Hire a sales person, “my widget practically sells itself!” So she reaches out to find a sales person. Let the sales training begin!

A candidate is found, good resume, sold some stuff before, has a nice personality and a bonus, she likes him. The hire is completed, her new rep is sent into the business for a few weeks to learn the ins and outs of widgets. The next step is to travel around meeting clients to learn why they buy this particular widget. Now it is time to show the rep to his new office to belly up to the phone, boot up and thumb through this year’s Austin Business Journal Book of Lists to research leads. As she leaves his office she will say (9 out of 10 times this happens!) “Go Get em’ Tiger!” End of the sales training.

Fast forward 6 months later and well…. It’s surprising how many small and medium businesses (and startups) are guilty of this action plan–and the problem is that many business owners wonder why it didn’t work and then become concerned (rightfully) about the cost of training and salaries (there is no or little commission!) that they invest in unsuccessful sales hires.

The Fix? A PLAN– based on clear action steps, understanding your best clients/prospects, knowing that most reps quit at 3 calls and having a system to contact prospects 7-8 times (that’s when they buy), performance metrics that drive accountability, appropriate training and corrective action while systematically driving a series of prospects down a structured pipeline and as a result – booking business.

Motivating your sales force is a necessity–but what separates small businesses from larger businesses is a true sales plan, based on clear action steps, building a pipeline, and holding sales people accountable for either closing deals, moving prospects to close and managing profitable business.

The good news is that building a sales plan is not difficult–but it does take management and persistence. So you shouldn’t be surprised to know that is what I do and I do it well. Let me know how I can serve you.

If you don’t have a Simple Sales Plan that works consider purchasing my low cost ($49.00) 100 % GUARANTEED Training Video with all the tools, templates you need to execute for yourself or a sales team.

If it doesn’t work for you, I will refund your investment NO QUESTIONS asked.
a simple sales plan

Bob Davis is the President of simple.sales.strategy in Austin, TX providing sales training, strategy and holding sales people accountable to a proven, systematic sales system. He can be reached at 512.658.9500 or rsdavis@simplesalesstrategy.com

Connect with me on 

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