If you want to get a great start in the new year, focus on how you can deliver unique value to your customers. There is a lot of talk about “adding value” for customers. Why is this so important and how can you do it?
Adding value enables you to set yourself apart when customers have a hard time distinguishing between alternatives. It can be the key to winning your first business deal with a new account or building a stronger relationship with an existing account.
Creating and implementing strong territory and account plans is an important part in this endeavor. Effective account management increases return from strategic accounts by 145%, according to Actify’s Account Planning Book of Evidence.
Here is how you can add value:
1. Be an indispensable resource.
In each communication, share creative resources and/or unique insight to help solve their issues. Provide links to white papers, expert opinions, case studies, user guides, set up guides and consulting services.
2. Be proactive.
John Reighard, who has been a very successful sales leader, says that territory and account management is central to success. He has earned $90,000 per month and has led sales teams to greatly out-perform expectations and their peers. See the short video. https://youtu.be/43TcozQlYaY
If you want to make more money, you need to look at how you are harvesting the opportunities within your key accounts and across your sales territories! Research shows that World Class Sales Organizations performed 25% better on key sales metrics by using sales planning methods like these:
- Using specific criteria to define a strategic account
- Having a method for deciding on opportunities to pursue
- Allocating the right resources to pursue large deals
- Being highly effective at advancing opportunities
- Leveraging the best practices of top performers
- Opportunities that you are not aware of
- Stalled deals that you could move forward
- Accounts you can penetrate deeper to generate new business
- Relationships you could leverage more effectively
- Partners that could help you accelerate your results
Here are 25 ways having sales plans will help you predictably achieve your results.
- Increase your team's sales effectiveness and efficiency.
- Having a plan improves your probability of success.
- Maintain better visibility into your pipeline and changes in opportunity status.
- Focus on both short-term and medium-term objectives.
- Have early warning signals to course correct quickly.
- Avert unnecessary stalls in the sales process.
- Leverage the new insights and plans across the entire year.
- Address new challenges in your territories, vertical markets and industry.
- Take advantage of new opportunities.
- Take a fresh look and implement new strategies.
- Proactively create new opportunities/ change the game.
- Make sure each strategy is turned into action.
- Identify new key players in your territories and strategic accounts.
- Leverage new partners; or current partners in a new way.
- Effectively respond to new events and opportunities in strategic accounts.
- Keep your finger on the pulse of important decisions in your accounts.
- Implement new ways of adding substantial value to your customers.
- Build new skills and develop your people in important new ways.
- Recognize and fill gaps in product knowledge.
- Generate strategies to beat specific competitors.
- Use a wider range of resources to accomplish your goals.
- Create/learn new tools and methods.
- Manage time and territories more effectively.
- Create new processes that help the team be more effective and efficient.
- Coach people even more effectively using their plans.
- An inefficient sales process that increases sales cycle length.
- Creating unnecessary stalls in the sales process.
- Losing business you could have won.
- Selling at a greater discount than necessary.
By Marty Levy / www.martylevy.net There comes a time in many cycles when a sales opportunity stalls and doesn’t proceed to the next step in the sales funnel. Calling an opportunity “stalled” implies that after a necessary pause it will again start moving through the sales cycle to closure. When a sales opportunity “stalls” at a stage in the sales cycle someone needs to decide if this opportunity requires some action and if it is one that is still winnable. We all know it is possible “the stall” in the opportunity is not temporary. It might be an indicator of a deal that could be lost or is already dead. Important decisions need to be made by the sales team as to whether or how to pursue the stalled opportunity. Is it temporarily stalled or is it lost or dead? Who decides what the real status of this opportunity is?