Welcome to your weekly roundup for June 30-July 7. This week we’ve got advice on how to hit your sales target if the month is coming to a close, how social selling fits into salespeople’s daily routines and how to craft that perfect sales pitch. Enjoy.
Influential sales leader Daniel Disney writes for Sales Hacker on how salespeople under pressure can hit their sales targets. Basically, it comes down to two factors: if you have enough pipeline or if you don’t. If you do, dig in and pull out the most likely opportunities. If you don’t, you have to hustle hard to find new opportunities that will convert quickly.
Step #1) Audit Your Sales Pipeline. The key here is to be brutal in your audit, says Disney. Spent your valuable time on those opportunities that will convert, and forgot those that won’t.
Step #2) Remember To Sell Emotionally. Question, question, question untill you find your buyer's pain, then create excitement in the purchase that will drive it home.
Step #3) Identify And Pursue Lowest Hanging Fruit Opportunities. To maximize your return, Disney advises, invest your time wisely. Don’t waste it on deals or customers that won’t convert.
Step #4) Leverage Your Network To Help Influence The Sale. It’s now or never that you leverage those connections to make the sale. If a decision maker isn’t responding, don’t hesitate to ask other people you know in the company when he or she might be available. This has worked well for Disney in the past.
Step #5) Follow Up At Various Times. If your decision-maker isn’t responding at lunch, try them after work, if not after work, try them in the morning. Remember most people are quite busy during the day so be tactful and strategic with your outreach.
Step #6) Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For Help. Time to put your ego away and leverage the people around you. This could mean the top performing rep, your manager, or even your social network.
Step #7) Find A Way. No Excuses. You’ll either find a way, or you’ll find an excuse, writes Disney. Push yourself. Stay late, come in early. The bottom line here is to do everything you can to hit that target.
Step #8) Don’t Be Afraid To Ask For The Close. This might seem incredibly obvious but if you don’t ask, you won’t get. Even if they say know, find a way to overcome that!
*This is a summary of How To Hit Your Sales Target...With ONE Week Left! by Daniel Disney.
Digital media strategist and ex-social selling training Taylor Moran sits down with one of her outbound sales people, Maeghan Kane, to ask “how she has integrated social selling into her sales routine and what challenges she has faced.”
Here are our three favourite questions, and some commentary around them.
TM: What have been the biggest challenges in integrating social selling into your daily routine?
MK: Keeping up with relevant prospect news has been challenging. I work with so many prospects/clients, it’s difficult to keep up and filter out the noise that isn’t relevant.
Our commentary: Feedly is a great RSS aggregator tool to help build customized insights. You select which blogs/sites you’d like to follow and build lists around them.
TM: What is your daily social selling routine?
MK: Generally, I push Miller Heiman Group blog posts and share relevant Miller Heiman Group news. I look for things such as:
- Prospective companies hiring new people
- Prospects changing positions
- Prospect anniversaries
And with this information, I search for relevant things to share that may align with a new hire, or a prospect’s new title.
Our commentary: Nice! Don’t forget to share non-company-related third-party insights. There are buckets in EveryoneSocial that team members (marketing, who might have more time to search for this stuff) can add insights into. The moderators can approve this and everyone then has access to them.
If you only share company-associated information, your messaging may come off as biased or self-serving.
TM: What would help improve your social selling efforts?
MK: A feature that pinged me when top prospects share something relevant. And, of course, more time in the day.
Our commentary: Wouldn’t that be awesome! An alternative might be to use the Twitter list building feature, which allows you to follow only a select group of prospects. It doesn’t take long for the algorithm to recognize what you are engaging with, and filter those posts to be at the top of the feed.
On LinkedIn Sales Navigator, you can also build a saved search around top prospects, and basically keep close tabs on that list.
*This is a summary of Women in Sales: How Social Selling Fits In Your Daily Routine by Taylor Moran.
Annie Simms, Vice President, Financial Services, Salesforce writes on how to create a great sales pitch.
Your pitch is your opportunity to stand out, so don’t be afraid to create something beautiful, engaging and modern. If you don’t have the ability to do so, ask the help of marketing.
Ultimately, the pitch isn’t about the company our its products, says Simms. It’s about the customer and the benefit they’ll achieve by leveraging your solution. Use creativity to “secret shop” and put yourselves in the shoes of your customer. This will help show you’ve done your research and provide creative fuel for your pitch.
People remember stories, not facts. They remember the why, not the what or the how.
Simms tells the story of pitching Heroku, a cloud platform service with multiple languages used as a web application deployment model. She was having a hard time speaking technical details, so she launched into a story about the differences one of her entrepreneur friends experienced launching a software startup in 2006 vs 2010 (when Heroku changed the world). It hit the right spot and offered something memorable to walk away from.
Practise Makes Perfect
Salesforce Chairman and CEO Marc Benioff practises his presentations seven times before delivering them. If Marc needs to practice seven times, Simms figures she needs to practise 14.
And don't think that practise means staring at your computer, reciting your pitch in your head. Stand up and practise in front of the mirror! After all, practise makes perfect, especially if your messaging is constantly changing.