As published in the Selling Power Blog (October 1, 2012) As you prepare for success in the new year, here are six common planning mistakes to avoid to ensure you achieve your goals. Those sales managers engaged in complex, value-based selling should be especially vigilant to avoid these fatal mistakes. You need a plan to win!
How many times have you sat in a territory or account review and heard great sales strategy after great sales strategy being proposed only to find out a month or two later that none of those strategies are actually implemented? We all know brilliant strategists who, because they do not implement their strategies, do not produce results. How do you ensure that strategy will turn into appropriate action to produce the desired results?
You need tools, including apps, that enable the user to do their job easier, faster, better. Let's take the case of sales planning apps, for example those that enable a salesperson to do good territory or strategic account planning. The app itself must be easy to use. It must provide specific functionality that gives the user unique insight into their territory, accounts and enable the user to: - Create strategic plans - Gain insight into their target market - Identify sales opportunities - Prioritize their accounts and opportunities - Identify and develop important relationships - Establish competitive differentiation - Take meaningful action to implement their plan Further, it is important to have the app reside within the CRM/Sales Force Automation tool of choice, making it easier to: - Actively work the plan - Enable team participation - Coach the sales team - Share best practices - Respond to change quickly and effectively - Report on and track progress If your sales people had a tool like this, wouldn’t they do a better job and improve their results?
Wouldn't it be nice if you could just buy a new tool and not have to do anything else to have your team use it and produce dramatic improvement in performance? Unfortunately, members of the team are already busy and having them do anything different takes effort on their part and yours. Resistance within the organization- especially the user base- and poor management of the process are the two biggest reasons software implementations fail to produce their intended results. However, the effort is well worth it as it can dramatically:
- Increase sales
- Improve predictability / forecast accuracy
- Enhance sales efficiency and effectiveness
- Drive team effectiveness
- Salesforce.com's Data.com (formerly Jigsaw)
How can you Write a Sales Plan to Penetrate and Grow a Strategic Account?In order to gain the insights you need to create a winning strategic account plan, you must ask the right questions. Use this checklist as a guide. Use your plan in your strategic account reviews and to manage your account team. 1. Analyze your Target Account's Business Start with what is going on in your account’s business.
- What are the key trends in their industry?
- Who are their top prospects and customers?
- What are the top issues facing their customers?
- What are the critical trends in the geography?
- What is reflected in their financial reports and news about them?
As published in Selling Power Blog, August 18, 2011 What are the critical steps in writing a successful Sales Territory Plan? You may be wondering, "Where do I start?" The key is asking the right questions to gather the insights you need to generate a winning plan. Use this checklist as a guide. 1. Analyze your Territory/Business Start with what is going on in your territory/vertical market.
- What are the key trends in your geography/ market?
- Who are your top prospects and customers?
- What are customers buying?
- Based on your conversion rates, how much business do you need in your funnel?
- What is the gap between what you need in your funnel and what you have now?